Franchising 19th-century style

With the repeated fiascos of the East Coast Mainline rail franchise, here’s how a very local franchise was put up for franchise for over 100 years. Bradford Road, formerly known as the Bradford and Wakefield Turnpike Road, had gates at various intervals including Snow Hill and Carr Gate. Here are the earliest and latest notices for franchise setting meetings found in the online newspaper archive. They date from 1766 and 1871.

Leeds Intelligencer
Tuesday 1 July 1766

TURNPIKES

THE Trustees for repairing the Roads from BRADFORD to WAKEFIELD, intend to meet at the house of Mr Whiteleg in Adwalton, on Wednesday the 9th Day of July inst. at Two in the Afternoon, in order let the Tolls to arise at the Barrs at Carr-Gate, Tingley-Gate, and Wisket-Hill, either together or separate, entered to immediately. Also to appoint a Surveyor; when any Person properly qualified for, and desirous to serve that Office, may attend; and on other special Business relating to the said Road.ss

SAMUEL LISTER,
Clerk to the said Trustees.

Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer
Saturday 9 December 1871

BRADFORD AND WAKEFIELD TURNPIKE ROAD

Notice is hereby given, that a MEETING of the Trustees appointed under and by virtue of an Act passed in the fifty-ninth year of the reign of His late Majesty King George the Third, intituled “An Act for more effectually repairing and improving the road from Bradford to Wakefield, in the West Riding of the county of York”, will be held at the BULL HOTEL, in Westgate, in WAKEFIELD aforesaid, on Friday the Fifteenth day of December Next, at the hour of Twelve o’clock at noon, for the purpose of transacting any business relating to the trust that may then and there appear necessary. At the same time and place the Tolls to be taken from and after the 31st day of December next at the several tollhouses, toll-gates, and chain bars, now standing and being upon and across the said road, called or known by the names of the Tong Street, the Gildersome Street, the Carr Gate, and the Snow Hill Toll Bars, and the Gildersome Street, the Scotchman Lane End, the Bruntcliffe Thorn, and the Woodhouse Lane Chain Bars will be LET BY AUCTION, in the manner directed by the Statutes for regulating turnpike roads by the said trustees, subject to conditions to be produced at the said meeting, which said tolls produced at the last letting, and now produce the yearly sum of £2,780 above the expenses of collecting, and will be put up at the same sum. Whoever happens to be the highest bidder must at the same time pay one month in advance (if required) of the rent at which such tolls may be let, and give security, with sufficient sureties, to the satisfaction of the trustees of the said turnpike road for payment of the rest of the money monthly, or in such other proportions as shall be directed by the said trustees. – Dated this 9th day of October, 1871. – By Order.

JOHN DARLINGTON,
Clerk to the said Trustees.