1804: 44 George 3 local act 85: An Act for enabling the Sheriffs of the City of London to remove the Debtors and Prisoners in the Poultry Compter to another Place of Confinement in the said City.
[20th July 1804.]
WHEREAS by a recent Survey of the Poultry Compter in the City of London, it has been found that the said Compter is in such a State of Decay, as to become inadequate to the safe Custody of the Debtors and Prisoners therein confined, and extremely dangerous, as well to the Lives of the said Debtors and Prisoners as to other Persons resorting thereto:
And whereas it may become indispensably necessary to remove the Debtors and Prisoners in the said Compter to some other Place of Confinement for safe Custody during the Time that maybe requisite for the rebuilding or repairing of the said Compter, or providing another Compter; but the Sheriffs of the City of London cannot, without the Aid and Authority of Parliament, effect such Removal;
May it therefore please Your Majesty that it may be enacted; and be it enacted by the King’s most Excellent Majesty, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the Authority of the same,
[The Sheriff may remove prisoners in the Poultry Compter, to Giltspur-Street Compter, &c. till a new Poultry Compter is built.]
That, from and after the passing of this Act, it shall be lawful for the Sheriffs of the said City of London, and they are hereby authorized, to remove all the Debtors and Prisoners in their Custody in the said Poultry Compter to the Giltspur-Street Compter, or to such other safe, secure, and convenient Place within the said City as shall be approved of by the Lord Mayor, Aldermen, and Commons of the said City in Common Council assembled, which Removalshall not be deemed or taken to be an Escape; and it shall also be lawful for the said Sheriffs from Time to Time, and until the said Poultry Compter shall have been rebuilt or made secure and fit and commodious for the Reception of Prisoners, or another Compter shall be provided, to receive, and keep, and detain, in such Place as aforesaid, all such Debtors and Prisoners as may, during such Time, be and remain in or be committed to their Custody, who would otherwise have been confined in the Poultry Compter; and it shall be lawful for the said Sheriffs, and they are hereby authorizedto remove to the same Place, all Offices now at the said Poultry Compter, for the Purpose of transacting any Business or Matter relating to theirSheriffalty, and Records, and Proceedings, usually kept at the said Poultry Compter; and the Place to which such Prisoners shall be so removed shall, during all the Time of the same being so used by the said Sheriffs, be deemed and taken to be, and is hereby declared to be the Poultry Compter for the Time being of the City of London; and the Office of the Sheriffs of the said City shall be and is hereby appropriated to the Use of the said Sheriffs for the Time being, for the safe Custodyof the Debtors and Prisoners committed to the same, and for every other Use and Purpose to which the said Gaol or Prison, called the Poultry Compter, and the Offices thereto belonging, have by Usage and Custom hitherto been appropriated; and the said Sheriffs are also hereby authorized and empowered, when and so soon as a new Poultry Compter shall be built or provided, or the present Poultry Compter of the said City of London, or any Part thereof, shall have been rendered safe, and fit, and commodious, for the Reception of Prisoners, again to remove all such Debtors and Prisoners as may be then in their Custody, in any such Place as aforesaid, or so many of them as can be respectively secured and kept secure in such Poultry Compter, when rebuilt, provided, or repaired as aforesaid, to the said Poultry Compter; and such Removal shall not be deemed or taken to be an Escape.
II. And be it further enacted, That this Act shall be adjudged, deemed, and taken to be a Publick Act, and shall be judicially taken Notice of as such, by all Judges, Justices, and other Persons whomsoever, without specially pleading the same.
Source: Oireachtas archive (pdf).
Further reading: Poultry Compter (Wikipedia).