On 24 March 1916, the Shipley Times & Express published a report of the Shipley Military Tribunal which included consid-ering the appeals of a number of Conscientious Objectors.The members of the tribunal were Cllr Thomas Hill (chairman), Cllrs C E Learyod, F F Rhodes, T F Doyle, Mr Ernest Illingworth and Mr J A Burton (representing the military authority).“There were 32 cases to be dealt with and of these 22 were conscientious objectors. A large number of the public attended and the accommodation of the room in which the Tribunal was held was taxed to its utmost.”The reports appear to have largely carried a verbatim note of what was said on both sides.
Fred Rennard, an overlooker at Saltaire Mills, said he knew he could have got exemption by claiming to be in a reserved occupation but his conscience would not allow him to appeal on that ground.He did not believe all that he had read about the atrocities in Belgium.Mr Burton: Would you like to leave the wife whom you recently married to the tender mercies of the Germans? Fred Rennard: I am claiming to stop here and look after her.(laughter)By asking her to cook your breakfast and dinner? Well, I need looking after.Mr Burton: I cannot congratulate your wife!The application was refused.