I wish to alert your readership to a scandalous situation occurring in Wiltshire as I write. The London to Bristol road—much used by our military during the hostilities—has suffered a great degree of damage from the demands for rapid delivery of armaments and troops from the West of England to the Capitol and beyond.
I cannot describe the number of serious accidents that have occurred with increasing frequency. From personal experience, I can relate that ruts as deep as ditches wander the road in all directions, causing all sorts of mayhem. I myself was so badly tossed about when traveling to my cousin in Chippenham that I was unable to walk for a week after arriving. My daughter-in-law suffered the deep embarrassment and pain of being forced to deliver my grandchild at the side of the road, when driving conditions became so terrible as to make forward progress impossible. Our local newspapers are filled with tales of businesses and even schools that are forced to close because of the poor condition of the road.
Now I have learned that a dastardly plot is afoot to prevent the much needed repairs. Several months ago, when the Corsican Monster was finally defeated, a proposal was made in Parliament to spend monies no longer needed for war on improving the roads between London and Bristol. These turnpikes have needed improvement since before the turn of the century. However, any monies available for such necessary improvements was diverted to our military efforts in more than ten years of war with France.
The MP for Wiltshire has made a valiant effort to see success for the proposal to allot national funding to aid the various turnpike trusts with direly needed improvements. Most of these trusts are as impoverished as the general citizenry of Wiltshire. Else I am certain that improvements would have been made promptly.
However, I digress, despite all the efforts of our MP to see that right is done, the proposed allotment has been diverted to fund another canal. Another canal is not needed. This diversion is simply an attempt by coal companies and barge owners to line their pockets at the expense of the good citizens of Wiltshire.
Worse yet is the financial speculation that the government has allowed for what are clearly spurious canal companies. I have it on good authority that Lord L W. and Earl F—among many others—are deeply involved in speculative investments in the canal companies. No doubt in an attempt to repair the fortunes they each lost to gambling and extravagance.
This cannot be allowed to continue. I urge you, sir, and your entire readership to protest most vociferously to Parliament against allotment of funds for mere speculation when British citizens are suffering.
Most Respectfully Yours
Lady R. N.
Dear fans of The Teatime Tattler, I wrote this fictional letter as I began research for a new novel involving a lady engineer and the man she comes to love. I am still in the midst of drafting The Pirate Duchess, so this new book is a year or so in the future, but I enjoy sharing the possibilities inspired by research. The images and factual information that this letter is based on come from Wikipedia and Shutterstock. Thank you very much for reading,