Four young boys are accused with robbery. one of them with murder, Hanging in Britain was still prevalent at that time. Can one of them escape the hangman's noose?'
Ruby White the petite honey blonde who works in a chemist shop spends her lunch break reading poetry in the local library. it is there that she meets Richard Llewellyn Shaw a writer and poet from Wales who has come to the North East to write a book. A relationship develops even though he is eight years her senior.
Then there is Jessie Longworth who has been saddled with looking after her father who is in the early stages of dementia. She is unable to cope with looking after her father, and her family and asks her brother Edward if he will take her father for a while. Joe Corder is an ex-dock worker. He worked hard all his life and gives his son his savings to help him start his own business. He meets Elizabeth who comes from a well to do family who all look down on Jessie and her father. She will not have him in her home.


9. 9

“Is this the verdict of you all?’

“It is your honour.’

Alan Stoneman let out a huge sigh of relief as people shouted from the gallery. “Hang him, hang the bastard. Justice for John Banister.’

The judge banged down his gavel. “Silence in my courtroom or I will have you for contempt.’ Then he turned to the accused and said “the four of you shall return here tomorrow morning where I will pass sentence upon you for the robbery of HO Wills LTD.’  “I warn you now that you are all looking at a long period of incarceration.’

“This court is now adjourned.’

“All rise said the court usher as again the Judge left to walk into his chambers.’

 The screw led the men back to the cells again to await transportation back to Durham.

“You are one lucky bastard said the screw as he fitted the handcuffs on Alan Stoneman’s wrists.

Danny McMullen said I’m glad that’s over at least we aren’t going to swing on the end of the hangman’s noose.’

Albert Reynolds thought about what Tommy Bell had said “expect the worst.’

“He knew that tomorrow he would be facing the possibility of a long sentence.’

He was seventeen and he wondered how old he would be before he would be a free man.



The next morning after a sleepless night the four young men stood before the Judge.

“I have thought long and hard about this case said Lindsay I am going to impose the most severe sentences that the law in this country will allow. “ William Royal I have taken into account that this is your first offence; however, you went along with the others and committed a robbery. I sentence you to two years to ten months Borstal training. “I hope that this will be a stern lesson to you and that you never stand in front of a courtroom again.

Albert Reynolds although this is your first offence also you stole a vehicle with no driving licence, tax, or insurance. “You could have easily killed another driver or pedestrian. “ I sentence you to two years Borstal training. Daniel McMullen it seems that you have not learned your lesson and that you continue to lead a life of crime. You ran off leaving others to take the blame.’

“I sentence you to five years to two years Borstal training. “ And finally to you Alan Stoneman, you are lucky that I am not passing the death sentence upon you here today.

“A man lost his life doing his job.’ Be it self defence or not you took another man’s life and I cannot allow you to go unpunished, you planned and executed this robbery then you left Reynolds and Royale to carry the blame too.’

“I hereby sentence you to seven years in prison for manslaughter. You will also receive twelve stokes of “The Birch”.’ “During this period that you are incarcerated I hope that it will give you time to reflect on the misery you have caused others. When you are released back into society you will be older and hopefully wiser than you stand here before me now. Take them down.’

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