11 - Off the Newcastle and Carlisle Road – the mail up a tree 1834
Description‘Family Annals by Road and Rail, By Flood and Field’ By Samuel Tuke Richardson Of Darlington c.1890 ‘During the Autumn of the Year 1834 the Newcastle & Carlisle mail coach on its way to the former place was upset owing to some mishap occurring near Chollerford, on a portion of the road bordering the Tyne at a place where the banks are steep & high. The coach was only prevented from falling into the river by coming in contact with the Oak Trees which abound in those parts. It is not known whether any one was killed though no doubt the horses would not escape such a drop. The firm of J. Backhouse & Co. had at that time a bank in Newcastle & on the day of the accident were expecting a valuable parcel of notes from Carlisle; after waiting several hours & no tidings reaching them of the mail or parcel, the Bank dispatched their head clerk Coulson by name [on horseback] in search of the missing parcel, he arrived upon the scene at midnight & very weird the operation must have been, no living thing near fortunately perhaps darkness all around save when his flickering lantern disclosed the wreck of the coach as he groped about for the hidden treasure, eventually he discovered the hidden treasure in the front boot, & returned in triumph with his prize to his employers who presented him with a valuable diamond ring in acknowledgement of his gallant conduct’.
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