An act of 1691 (3 William & Mary c.11 s. 29) forbade relief to persons not in the parish books other than by order of one justice or of Quarter Sessions ‘except in cases of pestilential diseases, plague or small pox, for such families only as are infected’, thus effectively making it illegal for the parish to support travelling poor in emergencies such as childbirth or broken bones, and reinforcing the reluctance of many parishes to dip into parish funds for strangers, even in an emergency. Probably if the parish did take emergency action in such circumstances the officers could readily obtain a retrospective justice’s order, but technically such relief was ultra vires without one, and open to objection by a malicious or tight-fisted ratepayer. If a private individual charitably took care of a poor traveller he or she had no entitlement to claim the cost from the parish, although a petition to Quarter Sessions might be successful.