Papers relating to drainage and elections in South Lincolnshire, 1794-1868

Scope and Content

The collection consists of two series:

Papers mostly relating to improvements in the outfall of the River Welland near Boston, Lincolnshire, 1794-1846 (MS 168/1/1-19);

Papers relating to elections in South Lincolnshire, 1857-1868 (MS 168/2/1-18).

Administrative / Biographical History

The election papers in this collection relate to the constituency of South Lincolnshire (in existence 1832-1885) which covered parts of Kesteven and Holland, including the towns of Boston and Spalding.

Spalding was a constituent part of the Port of Boston. The navigation of the River Welland, which leads from Spalding to its outfall into The Wash, south of Boston, was first the subject of an Act of Parliament in 1571. The principal act governing its improvement was 'An Act for improving the outfall of the River Welland, in the County of Lincoln', passed in 1794 (MS 168/1/1). The Act appointed Commissioners who were empowered to collect duties from merchants using the navigation.

Some of the items in this collection appear to have been in the possession of William H. Tatam, attorney of Spalding. Others were in the possession of Charles Bonner, solicitor of Spalding and clerk to the Trustees of the River Welland Outfall. The connection of the River Welland papers to the election papers is not known.


The collection has been arranged into series based on content and form, and chronologically within series.

Access Information

Accessible to all registered readers, with the exception of MS 168/2/1-18 which requires conservation treatment.

Other Finding Aids

Copyright in all Finding Aids belongs to the University of Nottingham.

In the Reading Room, King's Meadow Campus:

Typescript catalogue, 9 pp.


Item level catalogue available on the website of Manuscripts and Special Collections, Manuscripts Online Catalogue.

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

MS 168/2/1-18 requires conservation treatment before production

Conditions Governing Use

Reprographic copies can be supplied for educational and private study purposes only, depending on access status and the condition of the documents.

Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult.

Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in writing from the Keeper of Manuscripts and Special Collections

Custodial History

The collection was given to the Department of Manuscripts at the University of Nottingham in 1965.