Sunday, 6 December 2009

Stratton Brothers. Murder of the Farrows Daily Mirror Reports 1905

Extract from the book "Queer People" By Colin Beavan

On Monday, March 27, 1905, at 8:30 am, William Jones went to Chapman's Oil and Colour Shop on High Street in Deptford where he worked. When he arrived at the shop he found it closed and shuttered, which he found very unusual. The manager of the paint shop Thomas Farrow, aged 71, lived with his wife, Ann, aged 65, in the flat above the shop and he was not in the habit of having the shop still closed at such a late hour. Unable to open the door, he tried knocking but since he did not get any response from either Mr. and Mrs. Farrow he peeked through a window and saw that there were chairs knocked over. Alarmed at what he saw, he ran for help and found Louis Kidman, a local resident who worked in a nearby store, and the two men forced their way into the shop. It was not long before they found the body of Mr. Farrow on the ground dead, while Mrs. Farrow was found barely alive but unconscious in the couple's bed in the upstairs flat. Both bore the signs of being repeatedly beaten. A doctor and the police were called and Mrs. Farrow was taken to hospital. After each side had given their summations and the jury given their final instructions, it took them a little more than two hours of deliberation to find the Stratton brothers guilty of murder, and they were sentenced to death by hanging. The sentence was carried out by Henry Pierrepoint (Britain's Chief Executioner) on May 23, 1905.

Murder Scene 

Henry Pierrepoint. Curiously enough I worked as a bricklayer in Swindon for a contractor named John Ellis who told me he was the great grandson of the same name, John Ellis, who was Henry's prodigy. John took over the duties when Henry was sacked for causing a fracas with prison guards who were handing over details of a condemed man. He attack John Ellis in a drunken stuper as he thought John was moving in on his position. He asked the home office for his job back but was refused. Its a small world.

Wonder if the present owners know of its grim past?

No comments: