From 17 Beaumont Street, Marylebone, London to [Jabez] Bunting. Atherton contracted a heavy coldlast week on a journey to Tenterden and this combined with the effects of flu from which he wasalready suffering. After the heavy work of tomorrow, he fears that he will be in no fit state toattend the meeting to which he was summoned by Bunting. Atherton has had a letter from Nichols inwhich he says that Bunting has asked him [Nichols] to find another preacher to take his place, andthen asks Atherton to request [Joseph] Beaumont to attend in his place. After some hesitation,Beaumont consented and can produce Nichols’s letter as his authority. Atherton is unfit toconsider the subject, either mentally or physically, ‘not being able to command the strictimpartiality of a judge. I have had such a personal experience of the man’s restless spirit,insolent treatment of the preachers, and anti-Methodistic principles, that unless he is mostoutrageously improved, no exercise of discipline upon him can be too extreme. With these views Iwould make a very feeble advocate’.
Archivist’s Note Annotated in an unknown hand ‘Papers etc Nichols v Westerham’