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back to article Mystery of David Attenborough's garden skull cracked

Cops in southwest London have identified a skull found in the Richmond garden of TV star Sir David Attenborough as that of an 1879 murder victim. Kate Webster The skull was discovered last year during excavations at the rear of the former Hole in the Wall pub in Park Road, close to where Julia Martha Thomas was killed by her …

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Anonymous Coward

"...killed by her Irish-born maid Kate Webster (pictured)..."

From the picture, are they sure 'she' wasn't a 'he'?

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Coat

Which reminds me...

"Kate"

"Isn't that a bit of a girl's name."

"It's short for... erm... Bob."

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Holmes

Speedy

Located, captured, tried, convicted, sentenced, and executed within 4 months. Nowadays you can't even get a trial date in that short a time, let alone finish the process.

Sherlock, for, well, you know...

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Perhaps

it was because op cops weren't busy with their private business

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Holmes

News of the World

I believe there is also compelling evidence that Rebekah Wade had Kate Webster's phone hacked and was listening to her voicemails.

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Pirate

RE: News of the World

I'm sure the records will show that R. W. was on leave for just those 2 weeks.

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Coat

RE: News of the World

Or possibly visiting her aunt just outside of Quirm?

Coat? mines the one with baggy sleeves and the pointy hat thank you.

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Thumb Down

Wha?

Great stuff...solving 130 year old cases that have already been closed. No wonder you can't find a policeman when you need one.

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Holmes

Is é an teideal ag teastáil, agus ní mór go bhfuil litreacha agus / nó digití.

That seems a bit harsh. You'd kind of expect a bit of investigation by the police if you dug a human skull up in your back garden, wouldn't you?

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Happy

True but...

...it probably didn't take them long to work out how old the skull was...everything after that isn't really solving crime...it's more "being curious".

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Happy

To the utter astonishment of everyone

The Daily Mail resisted the opportunity to snipe at the police with a headline like "Now bungling cops take 132 years to solve London murder". I fully expected to see a footnote that read "Richard Littlejohn is on holiday."

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WTF?

WTF

...did I read that right...her remains were a free meal for kids???

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Devil

@AC@ 13:03

Free meal for kids - the Daily Mail reported.

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Holmes

yum!

Get your pies 'ere at Mrs. Lovett's pie's..

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IT Angle

Slow...

...day?

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Coat

Radiocarbon dating

Must have involved a computer...

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Anonymous Coward

Oh, come on...

'... the former Hole in the Wall pub..'

It mentions a pub, well, a former pub. I've lost track of the number of 'important' IT related 'meetings' I've held in pubs over the years...

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Silver badge
Windows

Geeez Louise!

A stare from that (cough) Lady would be enough to kill ya!

Creepy.

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WTF?

Ceart go leor

A cough from that (stare) Lady would be enough to kill ya!

Creepy.

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Unhappy

Reading

Wow bad time to pick this to read whilst eating my lunch!

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umm

Was it something a lady gave you for free?

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Joke

First line of investigation..

Surely the first thing the police need to do is establish if Mr Attenborough can account for his movements on 22nd March 1879..?

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Silver badge

Hands up...

If you found a skull in your garden, and weren't a famous and much respected personality, would you feel comfortable calling the plod when you know the first person they are going to suspect is you?!

I think it would go straight back into the hole it came out of, just a bit deeper this time!

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Bury it? Never!

I've got the perfect candlestick for it right here! That'll go nicely on my desk at work, methinks...

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Silver badge

Reminds me

of an aquaintance who was digging the footings for a village bench and dug up a skull. He was inclined just to stick it back in the ground, but eventually reported it.

Police were not overly worried about it to be honest, the bench was being installed in a graveyard.

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Anonymous Coward

And when

PC Plod finds a freshly dug hole with a skull in it in your garden....

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Pint

Bacon sandwiches for the kiddies

Most people know that people taste like pork.. and yet no one wants to recognise that pork tastes like people. Just something to ponder over your next BLT.

Anyway in those days I'm sure the attitude was why let good meat go to waste, you have to think of the children you know...

(Definitely pork, it's an urban myth that we taste like chicken, a number of Argentines have confirmed this).

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Childcatcher

Hence the Euphemism

of "Long Pig"

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Silver badge

Er...

How do "most people" "know" this interesting fact?

I've certainly heard it, but I've never knowingly eaten anyone (cue ribaldry from the cheap seats), so all I can say is "I've heard that etc etc etc".

Therefore I have no yardstick with which to compare my delicious bacon doorstep with a PLT.

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Joke

People taste like Oyesters.

The ones I've eaten.

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Anonymous Coward

That some polymorph residue?

quick, hand me my sonic screwdriver...

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Silver badge

Is that Ralph Richardson?

The guy who played Supreme Being in Time Bandts.

Google image search for him, it's uncanny!

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The Daily Mail

I didn't realise the Hate Mail had been spreading fear for so long.

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Anonymous Coward

Dumb question time...

Pardon my ignorance, but what's the purpose of boiling the body parts?

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Silver badge

Not a dumb question at all!

Probably it was an attempt to reduce the disposable volume?

Not sure if it would actually work (and realising the freshly-boiled meat could be passed off for human consumption was possibly an afterthought when it didn't work). Kate likely had no more idea about how to properly dispose of a body in a hurry than you or I.

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Silver badge

She did it for the children.

Stew. I'm sure it also helps to inhibit the stench as it decays and makes disposal easier as all you really need to do is get rid of the bones once the kids and village dogs have been fed. I imagine it would take too much time stewing large bones to get them to that brittle and easily crushed state chicken bones get after making a stock.

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Silver badge

To get the meat of the bones,

probably.

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drunkeness

"Webster, who had a history of drunkeness ..."

So, was that unusual back then? How times change.

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Silver badge

Must be kidding

"recorded... the cause of death as asphyxiation and head injury"

I get the asphyxiation part as the article mentions strangling but is head injury some strange euphemism for decapitation?

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Think of the children

I know know how to dispose of a worthless politician .

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1800's 'Hacking' ;)

Of course 'Ye Olde News of the Empire' would have 'hacked' Ms Webster's diary and employed some disreputable fellow to overhear her conversations down at her local drinking establishment...

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Headmaster

"Ye Olde News..."?

I think that it could have been just plain "News of The Wolrd", considering that that paper was around then.

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The clever bit.

That's what she did with the head but which of her pissed mates was she with when she burried it?

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