Coventry Herald - Friday 19 March 1824

The following Inquisitions have lately been taken before Robert Weston, Gent, one of his Majesty's Coroners for the county of Northampton:

At Old Stratford, in parish of Cosgrove, on view of the body of Sophia Douglas, who was drowned in the Buckingham arm of the Grand Junction Canal. The deceased was servant  to Mr. Matthew Willison, who keeps the Falcon Public House, Old Stratford, and it is supposed, went to the side of the canal to enquire of the Buckingham Fly Boat (which was then lying there) after her aunt, who lived at Buckingham, and that while leaning over a rail between the towing path and the canal, looking after the boat, her shawl blew off, and that in attempting catch it she overbalanced herself, and fell into the water. There being no direct evidence, however, to prove that fact, the Jury returned a verdict of found drowned.

Coventry Herald - Friday 20 August 1824

The following Inquisitions were taken before Robert Weston, Gent, one of the Coroners for Northampton:

At Cosgrove, on view of the body of Joseph Swannville, an old man, aged about 75 years, who fell over the rails of a bridge to the ground, near the canal, and received violent concussion of the brain, which caused his death in a few minutes. Verdict—Accidental.

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 23 July 1825

Saturday last, an inquisition was taken at Cosgrove, before Robert Weston, Gent, one of his Majesty's coroners for this county, view of the body of William Durrant, who, with two other men was employed the preceding evening in building a hay rick in that parish. One the men pitched the hay to the other who was on ladder, and forwarded it to the deceased, who was on the rick,30 feet from the ground, and when they had done, the deceased, instead of waiting for the ladder to get down, leaped from the rick on a small load of hay, from which fell to the ground and broke his neck, which caused his instant death.—Verdict Accidental.

Northampton Mercury 8 December 1849

A GIRL BURNT TO DEATH. On Monday last an inquest was held at the Infirmary, before John Becke, Esq., on the body of Eliza Watkins, aged 14 years. From the evidence, it appeared that deceased was a native of Cosgrove, in this county, and that in October last, while sitting by the fire, a poker, that had been placed between the bars of the grate, fell from the fire against her frock, which instantly ignited. In her fright the poor girl ran into the street, which increased the violence of the flames. The neighbours ran to her assistance, threw water upon her, and succeeded in extinguishing the fire, but not until the poor creature was dreadfully burnt. She was brought to the Infirmary, where she lingered till Sunday last, when death put an end to her sufferings. Verdict- Accidental Death.

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 18 December 1852

Death from Destitution, Cosgrove.—

On Monday last, two labouring men, while seeking shelter from the rain in a lone barn, occupied by Mr. Thos. Slade, in the parish of Cosgrove, were attracted by groans, which were found to come from a poor man, lying in the heap-hole, in a state of extreme exhaustion. They spoke to him, kindly offering him some their breakfast, but without receiving any answer; and upon touching him, found his body almost cold. Having fetched Mr. Slade, who was shepherding nearby, this gentleman, after some time had elapsed, sent him, by a boy, in a cart, with bed and covering of straw in it, to the Yardley Union-house, about a mile distant, where he arrived just before one o'clock, but expired a quarter of an hour afterwards.

The famished, filthy, and ill-clad condition of the poor creature presented a most frightful spectacle. It appears that this unhappy being, on the evening of Thursday, the 2nd, obtained vagrant's order for a night's lodging at the Yardley House from the Relieving Officer at Stony Stratford, and that, having then walked to Yardley, a distance of three miles and upwards, was accordingly admitted; that had food given him, which he ate heartily, and that he begged to be allowed to remain the next day and night, which was granted him; and upon leaving on Saturday morning early, after his breakfast (most likely his last meal in this world) took the road back to Stratford. It, is probable that, being weak and foot-sore, for he had a bad place on one heel, he was glad again to seek the first friendly shelter he could find, which was an open shed, forming part of some out-farming buildings, a quarter of mile from the turnpike road. Here he was found lying in the straw Monday, the 6th inst., at, noon, and it not being wished that stranger should remain on the premises, he was desired to go away. He asked leave to stay a little longer, and went off about four o'clock, once more to seek at nightfall the nearest place of rest and shelter, which was the heap-hole of this lone barn, with its thatch partly off, its door left open, and in the coldest possible situation, there to lie without food for seven days more, till discovered, as has been described above, on the morning of the 13th. This ill-fated man had given his name Henry Morgan, a needlemaker, and appeared between 30 and 40 years of age; in person, a good-framed man.

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 05 August 1854


An inquest was held before R. Weston, Esq., on the 25th July, at the Barley Mow, Cosgrove, on the body of Thomas Wright, aged 7 years, son of Thomas Wright, a labourer at the station at Wolverton, who, on the previous evening, was drowned the Grand Junction Canal at Cosgrove.

The deceased, when bathing with two other lads got out of his depth; an alarm was given, and Noah Kirk, who was near, went into the water and fetched him out. He had then been in the water about 15 minutes, and there was no signs of life. A verdict of accidental death was recorded.

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 04 November 1854

FATAL DISASTER COSGROVE.—On Saturday last an inquest was held before A. Weston, Esq., at Old Stratford, in the parish of Passenham, on view of the body of William Slater, a labourer, aged 22 years, who came by his death under the following distressing circumstances.

It appeared that he was working with brother and a lad in Captain Maunsell's stone quarry, the parish of Cosgrove, on the previous Thursday, and was undermining with iron bar, when his brother saw the embankment giving way, and called to him to move, but before he could do so, the earth fell on and buried him. He was extricated as soon as possible, and was conveyed home, but death ensued about 30 minutes. Mr. Bache, surgeon, found that the deceased's back was broken. A verdict of Accidental Death was recorded. The poor fellow had been married but about eight weeks.

Bucks Herald - Saturday 25 November 1854

Death from Drowning at Cosgrove.—On the inst. an inquest was held at the Plough Inn, Cosgrove, before R. Weston, Esq., view of the body Edward Wilson, whose death occurred under the melancholy circumstances detailed in the following evidence :—

Zilpha Wilson - I am the wife of Edward Wilson, now lying dead in this house. We lived at Yardley Gobion, two three miles from Cosgrove. He was a labourer, and is 36 years of age. We have six children. Between five and six o'clock on Tuesday evening, the 14th inst., he left home to go Cosgrove, to pay Mr. Warren for some beer. He was then quite well and sober. He did not return at night. About the middle of the next heard he was drowned.

Josiah Lowe—l am 15 years old. I work for the Grand Junction Canal Company, at Cosgrove. About 11 o'clock yesterday morning, I was going over the trunk of the canal about half-a-mile from Cosgrove. I saw the body of a man in the water. He was taken along by the side of a boat to Cosgrove lock, and then taken out the water and brought to this house. He was dead. He did not appear to have received any violence. The trunk passes over the river Ouse, and there is a fence between the towing path over it and the canal. He would have pass over the trunk from the Locomotive to Yardley.

Daniel Warren- I am a brewer at Cosgrove. A little after six o'clock, on Tuesday evening, the deceased called at my house and paid me three beer bills, amounting to 16s. 10½d. He gave a me sovereign, and I gave him the change.  I did not see any more money.

George Masters - I keep the Barley Mow Inn, at Cosgrove. The deceased came to my house about 7 o'clock on Tuesday, he left a little before 5 o'clock with a person to direct him the way to the Locomotive at Wolverton. He was perfectly sober. It was a very dark night.

Joseph Foster - I am one of the constables of Cosgrove. I have seen the deceased pockets searched by his wife. She found his purse with a shilling in it, and three of Mr. Warren's bills for beer. From the Locomotive at Wolverton, he would have to pass the trunk.

It was shown that the deceased left Wolverton alone. The jury returned verdict of “Found Drowned.”

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 17 March 1855


On the 6th instant, at the Plough, Cosgrove, on view of the body of Ann Hurst, aged five years, who, the 16th of February, was so injured on her clothes taking fire that death ensued on the evening the 3rd instant. It appeared that the child was left by her sister at Mrs. Jelley's, a neighbour, to be taken care of while she went to Stratford. Mrs. Jelly went into her neighbour Atterbury's on an errand, leaving her two children and the deceased in the house. During her absence a stick fell from the grate and set the child's clothes on fire, whereby her neck, arms, face, and back, were severely burnt. Mr. Back, surgeon, of Stony Stratford, attended the deceased up to the time of her death. A verdict of accidental death was returned.

Bucks Herald - Saturday 01 December 1860

An inquest has been held the Barley Mow, the village of Cosgrove, Northamptonshire, before Mr. Arthur Weston, deputy coroner, on the body of the Rev. Charles Styles Drake. It appeared from the evidence that deceased (who was Fellow of Jesus College, Cambridge, and resided with his father, Admiral Drake, Castle Thorpe, near Cosgrove) dined with Mr. Francis Thursby, at Cosgrove Priory. He left there in his usual health, at twenty minutes past ten o'clock at night, to walk home to Castle Thorpe. His nearest way was along the towing-path of the Grand Junction Canal, into which he must have fallen. His hat was found the next morning floating on the water, and the canal was dragged, but the body was not recovered until three o'clock on Saturday afternoon. The deceased had in his pocket, when found, a watch, money to the amount of £9  0s. 6d., a post-office order, and various other papers. He was forty-four years of age, and unmarried.

Bucks Herald - Saturday 07 June 1862

On Monday an inquest was held on the body, at the Locomotive Inn, Wolverton, before J. Worley, Esq., and a jury, of which Mr. Thomas Ganderton was foreman. It appears from the evidence adduced that deceased was riding a young horse on the canal towing path between Old Wolverton and Cosgrove, and by some means both he and the animal got into the water. Before assistance arrived the unfortunate man was quite dead. The inquest stands adjourned.

Croydon's Weekly Standard - Saturday 07 June 1862

WOLVERTON. A Man Drowned —On Saturday night last a man named Thomas Winterburn, colt breaker of Stony Stratford, was drowned in the canal, about midway between Old Wolverton and Cosgrove. On Monday an inquest was held on the body at the Locomotive Inn, Wolverton, before J. Worley, Esq., coroner, and a respectable jury. After viewing the body the following evidence was adduced;

H. Green, apprentice the Wolverton Works, deposed, I had been fishing at the broad waters Saturday evening, and on returning home about half-past nine, I saw something in the water; on approaching nearer, two young men came and directed me to proceed to Cosgrove Lock for assistance, there was a man in the water; on my return from the lock-house they had got him out.

Thomas Beecroft deposed, I live at Wolverton; on night in question I was out for a walk in company with my brother and a friend; we were going in the direction for Cosgrove on the canal towing path; when we had got a short distance we met two boats; the man at the helm of the last boat said, there’s horse, and I believe a man, in the cut near to the aqueduct, you had better go and give him assistance; we then set off to run, but my brother and friend outrun me and arrived there first; as soon as my brother got there he shouted out at the top of his voice for me to make haste, as there was a man in the water; no sooner had I arrived at the spot than I divested myself of coat and trousers, jumped into the water, and with the assistance of my brother and friend, brought the drowned man ashore.

The jury deemed it advisable to have the boatmen present, consequently the inquest was adjourned till Thursday in order to procure their attendance, when was resumed at three o’clock, Burton and William Warwick the two boatmen being present, but their evidence was unimportant as to how the deceased came by his death. The jury after consulting a short time returned a verdict of accidentally drowned.

Croydon's Weekly Standard, March 9th 1867

FATAL ACCIDENT,- A sad accident occurred at the village on Sunday last, Mr. Henry Foster of Cosgrove, suddenly lost his life. The unfortunate man had been to Hanslope and was returning to his home, he was accompanied on the road by a person of Castlethorpe who had also been to Hanslope ; they parted in the village, and Mr. Foster passed over the stile into the fields leading to Cosgrove ; within a few feet of the stile was a deep ditch, lately cleaned out, and it appeared (owing to darkness) he must have stumbled over the soil on the bank and fallen head foremost in. The body was found on Monday morning and taken to the Carrington Arms , when an inquest was held before J. Worley, Esq., coroner, on the same day. After hearing the evidence of those who last saw him alive, and also of T. N. Heygate, Esq., surgeon, who gave as his opinion that death had been instantaneous from dislocation of the neck; the jury returned a verdict of accidental death.

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 02 August 1873


AN INQUEST was held on Monday before A. Weston Esq., district coroner, on view of the body of Frederick Baker, son of Eli Baker, a labourer employed at the Wolverton Station, who was drowned in Mr. Dawson's mill stream at Cosgrove.

From the evidence it appeared that deceased went on the previous Friday evening to the mill stream with a lad named George Lovesay, aged six years. Deceased got into the Mill "tail" and the little boy saw him as he expressed it "Go up-and-down two or three times." The child, taking deceased's clothes with him, went home, and on his way was met boy named George Hillier, nine years of age, who noticed him crying and asked what was the matter. He said "Walter Baker was sunk in the mill dam." upon which Hillier went to the mill and gave information to Joseph Hall, the miller, and they went together to the mill stream and found the body of deceased in the mill tail. Deceased was lying flat on his face at the bottom of the water which was not more than three feet deep. The body was pulled out and taken to the mill house, but not before life was extinct deceased having been in the water about half an hour. In the spot where the body was found the water was not deep enough to have drowned him, and it is supposed he must have been seized with the cramp, and no assistance being procurable was unable to get out of the water. The jury returned a verdict "Accidentally drowned."

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 19 October 1878

COSGROVE —Sudden Death.

On Monday last George Curl, gardener, Cosgrove, was bringing a perambulator, containing two baskets of apples to Stony Stratford, and, when near to where the old toll gate used to stand, on the Cosgrove-road, fell down, and instantly expired.

The following day an inquest was held at the Barley Mow, Cosgrove, before A. Weston, Esq.

Ann Burnham said her father was 61 years of age. He lived by himself, and she attended his wants. On Sunday evening he complained of spasms in his left side, but otherwise appeared well as usual.

George Jeffcoat deposed to finding deceased. Dr. Bull, of Stony Stratford, was passing, and be examined him, and pronounced life extinct.

Dr. Maguire, surgeon at Stratford, knew he had bronchitis and heart disease, and cautioned him to be very careful if he went to work. He had not the least doubt he died from heart disease.—Verdict accordingly.

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 17 April 1880

COSGROVE.—An Inquest was held at the Falcon Inn, Old Stratford, on Friday, touching the death of Jane Monk, wife of a boatman, who died suddenly the previous Wednesday. Mr. Francis, surgeon, of Fenny Stratford attributed the death to heart disease, accelerated by confinement. The jury returned a verdict of death from natural causes.

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 14 May 1887


INQUEST. On Saturday afternoon last, Mr A Weston held inquest at the Plough Inn, touching the death of Gertrude Annie Holman, daughter of James and Maria Holman, of this village.

From the evidence, it appeared that the deceased had always been a healthy child. It slept with its mother on Friday evening, and when the latter awoke about a quarter past three the child appeared to be dead. There were no marks of violence on the body, and the jury returned a verdict of "Death from natural causes."

Northampton Mercury - Saturday 20 October 1888


Mr. A. J. Barnes (deputy-coroner for the Southern Division of Northamptonshire) held inquest at the Plough Inn, Cosgrove, on 12th inst., touching the death of Ann Rebecca Marks, aged 65 (wife of John Marks, district superintendent of the Grand Junction Canal Company), who was drowned the canal the previous day.

The jury, of whom Mr. T. Seymour was foreman, having viewed the body, the following evidence was taken.

John Marks said that his wife was well when he left home in the morning about eight o'clock. He did not see her alive again.

Pamilla Ann Willison, daughter of deceased, said she took her mother a cup of tea the afternoon, about three o'clock, as she did not feel well. She thought her legs would drop from under her. She did not see her mother again till she saw her go by with a milk tin in her hand, to go to the canal to fetch some water. Shortly after witness went out and saw her mother in the water with her face downwards. She got a fire-rake out of the house, and dragged the body to the side, and held the deceased's head up above the water, and shouted for assistance. Some men who were going by in a lighter looked back on hearing witness shout, but took no notice. The body was got out of the water about ten minutes after it was dragged to the side. A doctor was sent for, who came once, and pronounced life to be extinct.

Mr. F. Dickens, farmer, of Cosgrove, said he was fetched by the previous witness's little girl about four o'clock on Thursday afternoon. He went at once and saw Mrs. Marks in the water. With the help of Mrs. Willison and Mr. L. Bird (Old Stratford) the deceased was pulled out of the water, and was, in witness’s opinion, quite dead.

The jury returned a verdict "Accidental Death."

A vote of censure was passed on Samul Phipkin for his conduct in not helping to pull the deceased out of the water when called. A vote of condolence was also accorded Mr Marks and family in their sad bereavement.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 09 September 1892


Mr. T. M. Percival, Coroner, held inquest on Monday, the Plough Inn, Cosgrove, on the body of Mrs. Mary Ann Holdom, wife of John Holdom, general labourer, of Cosgrove.

John Holdom stated that deceased was 65 years old. She got up on Saturday morning about seven o'clock, and went downstairs. Witness was in bed. He was called by William Henson, and he got out of bed and went downstairs, and found his wife lying on the floor at the bottom of the stairs. Her head was nearest the house door, and her feet pointing upstairs. Her head bled very much. She never spoke at all, and lived for about an hour. Deceased had not been well for some time, and five or six years ago she had a stroke.

William Henson, of Bradwell, labourer, stated that he was staying at Cosgrove with the Holdoms on Saturday, and about a quarter to seven that morning he was downstairs in the living-room. The door was shut, and he heard a great noise. He went out immediately, and found deceased (who was his sister) lying on the floor, with her head against two pails of water at the foot of the stairs.

Thomas Stephen Maguire, of Stony Stratford, surgeon, stated he found the deceased woman dying. She was quite unconscious, and completely paralysed in all her limbs. They tried to rouse her, but she did not utter a sound, and seemed unable to speak. He believed she had an apoplectic seizure, and that was the cause of death, no doubt accelerated by the fall and loss of blood. There was a small cut the back of the head. He examined the head carefully, and there was fracture of the skull. She had, to witness's knowledge, a stroke a few years ago.

The Coroner briefly summed up, and the jury returned the following verdict:—"That deceased died from apoplexy, accelerated by an accidental fall downstairs.”

Northampton Mercury - Friday 29 April 1898


On Monday evening an inquest was held at Cosgrove Mill before Mr T M Percival touching the death of George Rogers, a groom of Paulerspury, who had been in the employ of Mr J. J. Atkinson. C C . the Priory, Cosgrove, a short time. The following evidence was adduced.

Samuel Rogers, of Paulerspury, gardener said the deceased was has son and was 20 years of age. He came to Mr Atkinson's as groom last Tuesday April 19th and had always enjoyed good health.

Thomas Jelley, of Cosgrove, gardener, said he went to the Barge Beerhouse about 8.30. The deceased was there when witness went in but soon left, returning again about 9.15. and then complained about having hurt himself. Witness understood that he had fallen over a stile The deceased declined to have a drink at witness's request, and again repeated that he had hurt himself. He put his hand up to his head, and witness noticed some blood on his finger. The deceased, who was quite sober, went home, saying he would soon get to bed. There was some dirt on the shoulder and back of his coat.

George Chater, gardener, of Cosgrove met the deceased by arrangement at the Barge Beerhouse about 9.20. The deceased said he had fallen over a stile and hurt himself. They went to bed about ten o’clock, sleeping in adjoining rooms. Witness drooped off to sleep, but about 5 am he shouted out, but getting no answer went downstairs and saw the deceased lying on the floor. Witness fetched the stud groom, and the doctor was sent for. Witness did not now think that the deceased had had beer, but thought he must have been suffering in some form.

Dr T S Maguire of Stony Stratford said he was sent for on Sunday morning and arrived at Cosgrove Mill about eight o’clock. He examined the body and found three slight abrasions, one on the shin bone, one on the second finger of the left hand and one on the left shoulder. There were no external marks of injury on the head. He made a post mortem examination on Monday, and found that there had been a rupture of a blood vessel. A large clot of blood, about the size of an egg, was resting on the brain. That was sufficient to account for death. Death was due to haemorrhage from the rupture of a blood vessel. That could result from a fall. The body was well nourished and healthy.

The Jury returned a verdict of “Accidental Death”.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 09 March 1900


An inquest was held at the Plough Inn, Cosgrove, on Wednesday, before Mr. T. M. Percival. coroner, touching the death of Frederick Pittam.

William George Pittam, Cosgrove, labourer, stated that the deceased, Frederick Pittam, was his son, and was 13 years old last birthday. Deceased was a labourer and worked for Mr. Grant-Thorold. His son was in good health and witness believed deceased had never had a day's illness, and was a big, strong boy who never complained about his work.

Joseph Swain, Yardley Gobion, labourer, stated that he worked for Mr. Grant-Thorold. On Tuesday several of them were engaged carting manure. The deceased was with the horse and cart, drawing manure from, one yard to another. Witness was emptying the carts. It was about half-past twelve when deceased brought in load of manure. Witness tipped it straight out, and sent deceased back to fetch another load. There were two horses in the cart. Witness never saw deceased again alive. Deceased was perfectly well when witness last saw him, attending to his work and doing it properly and well, and had been at it all the morning. The deceased was a strong boy, and thoroughly understood horses and his work.

Frederick Keech, Cosgrove, labourer, stated that he worked for Mr. Grant-Thorold. On Tuesday, witness was looking after the cattle. At about mid-day witness was pumping some water in the farmyard, an empty cart, with two horses, was coming into the yard. It was in the gateway. Witness saw Frederick Pittam lying on the ground. Witness did not see him fall and did not know how he got on the ground. He was alone, no other person was near him. The near cart wheel was just passing over his body as witness saw him. Witness never heard deceased speak and never saw him move. Witness went to him; he was quite dead.

Trevor Halket Evans, assistant to Dr. Bull, of Stony Stratford, made examination of the body. Prior to removal, found the track of the wheel across the body, the muddy mark was clearly perceptible. There were bruises on both hands, left shoulder, both sides of the neck, and the left side of the face was very much bruised and cut about; and there was a bruise on the left hip, where the wheel, apparently, first touched the body. The ribs seemed to be pressed inwards by the wheel, but witness could not discover any actual fracture. The neck was fractured and dislocated just below the head, which alone was sufficient to cause death, which must have been instantaneous.

The Jury returned a verdict of "Accidentally Killed."

Northampton Mercury - Friday 15 August 1902


An inquest was held on Friday, the 8th August, at the Plough Inn. Cosgrove before Mr. T. M. Percival, touching the death of George Phillpot, who was found drowned on Thursday, in the Broadwater, Cosgrove.

Sarah Caroline Humphrey, 13, Silver-street. Stony Stratford, stated that deceased was her father, was a bricklayer by trade, and was 76 years of age. Deceased, who had been ill since Whitsuntide, left home Aug. 6th, and did not return.

Ellis Beckett. Old Wolverton, labourer, deposed to speaking to deceased, who was going towards the Broadwater, Wednesday. Deceased was strange in his manner.

William Thomas Gates, Stony Stratford, furnace man, stated that deceased was his father-in-law. Hearing that deceased was missing he searched the river, in company with Joseph Humphrey. They eventually found deceased lying in the Cosgrove Broadwater.

George Gaius Robinson, Potterspury, sergeant of police, gave evidence to searching deceased.

Thomas Stephen Maguire, medical practitioner, Stony Stratford, stated that had attended deceased, who was suffering from general paralysis and was very depressed at times. He might have had a fit and fallen in the water. He considered deceased was of unsound mind.

A verdict of Found drowned was returned.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 17 May 1907


On Wednesday evening the body of woman was found in the canal at Cosgrove, and Thursday it was identified as that of Mrs. F. Swann, wife Mr. Frank Swann, manager of Smith’s Top Boot Factory, Henry-street, and residing at 78, Wellingborough-road, Northampton. Mrs Swann has recently had. severe illness, and for the past week her condition has caused some anxiety. She went away from home about half-past nine on Wednesday morning, leaving a message for her husband to the effect that she had gone to see her father at Stony Stratford. When night arrived and Mrs. Swann did not return her husband naturally became alarmed, and instituted inquiries. He wired his father-in-law, and asked whether his wife had been at Stony Stratford during the day. The reply was in the negative. Subsequently Mr. Swann reported the disappearance of his wife to the Northampton Borough Police. The announcement in the “Northampton Daily Reporter and Echo” that a body had been found, and the description given, raised a suspicion that the body was that the missing woman. Mr. Jack Swann cycled over to Cosgrove in the afternoon and there identified the body. The greatest sympathy is felt for Mr. Swann, as both and his wife were well known, especially in Good Templar and temperance circles.

This (Friday) morning an inquest was held at the Plough Inn, Cosgrove. Mr. W. Panter, of Old Stratford, was chosen foreman of the jury, and the inquiry was conducted by Mr. T. M. Percival, Coroner, of Towcester.

The first witness was the husband Hedley Frank Swann, 78, Wellingborough-road, Northampton, manager of a boot factory, who said the deceased was his wife, and was years of age, last saw her alive on the morning of May 15, about six o’clock. She was then in bed. He went out for walk before breakfast, returning at 7.15. His wife was not up, and did not see her, but went to business. Returning home to dinner between twelve and one, was informed that his wife had left the house, and was going to see her father at Stony Stratford, and would home again the same day. She didn’t return home. The witness’ brother came over to Cosgrove, and the husband wired to Stony Stratford to know if his wife bad been there. His wife had been in indifferent health for some time, and had been medically attended. She suffered from spinal complaint, and Dr. Hichens told her that he could not give her much hope of being better. The husband did not think this preyed on her mind, but she used to be low spirited at times. She had never threatened take her life, no letter was left, and nothing was found in her clothing.

Francis Crowley, of New Duston, said she had been with the deceased as companion for about eleven weeks, but did not sleep there. The witness got to Mrs. Swann’s about 9.30 on Wednesday morning and Mrs. Swann was then coming down stairs with her coat on her arm and her hat in her hand. She put on her coat and hat and gloves, and the witness inquired where she was going, and she said, I think I shall go and see dad to-day.” The witness told her she did not think she ought to go. She had not been well, and the witness was afraid she could not stand the journey. It was because of her health that the witness went, as companion. She said she thought she could manage the journey if she took the car to the station and also the car from Wolverton to Stony Stratford. She left but never returned. There was no doubt she suffered considerably at times, and made bit of trouble of it, but there were no signs of suicide. She seemed the last person to do that, and it seemed impossible belief that she had done so. The deceased was in bed for six weeks out of the eleven weeks the witness had been with her as companion. The deceased told the witness that she would be back before six o’clock on Wednesday evening. John Charles Martyr, of Wolverton, fitter, said he was walking along the towing path with a companion, and near the first bridge he noticed some clothing lying on the bank. The young woman and he walked along, and some distance further along saw a body floating face downwards in the water. The witness went to Wolverton and informed P.C. Sibbald, returning with him to the place. Witness saw the body got out. When he returned a young man was standing near the clothing, and said, looks if we have case here,” and witness replied "Yes.”

P.C. Sibbald, stationed at Wolverton, said the last witness came to him about 9 p.m. Wednesday evening and said a woman was in the canal, near the Buckingham Arm, Cosgrove. Witness proceeded with him to the place. He showed witness where he had found the clothes—a long jacket, white hat, umbrella, and a pair of kid gloves. They were adjoining the towing path on the bank farthest from the canal. They went a few yards further on, and procured the drags. It was very dark, and they could not see the body. The canal was very full, and the body had floated 150 yards from where the clothes were. At 10.15, in company with P.S. Lillywhite and P.C. Cooper, Stony Stratford, the body was recovered, and conveyed to Cosgrove Locks, where it was searched. In the pocket was a purse containing 3s. 4½d., some false teeth wrapped in a pocket hand kerchief, the latter being marked with a large S. P.C. Pollard took the rings off the hands of the deceased. There was nothing else in her pocket, no railway ticket nor anything of that kind. The three rings produced were on the deceased’s hands - two on the left hand and one the right. Sergeant Lillywhite afterwards sent information to P.C. Pollard, of Yardley Gobion. P.S. Bailey said the deceased had not been to her father’s, at Stony Stratford. The Coroner summed up, and pointed out that the clothing being on the bank pointed to it not being an accident. She was wearing the false teeth when she left home, and it was a peculiar fact that they were taken out. The question was, did she drown herself or did she fall in accidentally? There were marks on the body. It had been suggested that from loss of memory she might have thought she was going to bed. It might have been an accident. He thought, therefore, it would be the safest plan to return an open verdict. The jury all agreed, and a verdict “Found drowned” was returned.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 20 September 1907


A frightful accident occurred the London and North-Western Railway at Roade on Tuesday morning. John Smith and Fred Keech, two Cosgrove men, were walking along the line to proceed to their work at the new loop which is being constructed near Ashton, when they were run into by a fast goods train, running from Warrington to London, and instantly killed. There was no actual eye-witness of the fatality, but other persons were near at hand, and the bodies were at once removed to the George Hotel, Roade, where, on Wednesday morning, Mr. C. H. Davis, the Divisional Coroner, held an inquest, when all available particulars were laid before the jury.

The L. and N.-W. R. Co. was represented Mr. H. T. Tait (solicitor to the company) and Mr. Williams (Divisional Engineer). Snpt. Butlin and Supt. Norman were also present.

Henry Percy Keech, Cosgrove, son of the deceased Frederick Keech, identified both the bodies. George Curie Gardner, a platelayer, said that he passed the deceased men at quarter to six, about two minutes before the accident happened. They saluted each other with “ good morning,” and witness said to Smith. “ Well, John, how shall we put you down this morning?” Smith replied; “Oh, put me down as middling.’ Smith and Keech were then walking in the direction of London outside the metals, but as witness passed they turned towards the sleepers. Nothing further occurred to arouse witness’s attention till two minutes later, when he was called back by a young man. He then found the remains of the two men on the line.

In reply to the Coroner, witness said there was room for the men to walk along the railroad without walking between the metals. They would have to walk along the railroad about a mile to get to their work. At the point they were knocked down there were ten yards of room at the side of the line in which they could have walked.

By Juror: Witness did not notice any other train pass. He did not hear the engine’s whistle sound, but the train made plenty of noise.

Superintendent Butlin: Was there any necessity for them to have been on the line where they were cut down?—

None whatever, sir.

A Juror: Is it better walking the main line than the loop?

It is just as good on the loop.

William Webb, platelayer, Ashton, who was with the last witness, bore out the statement already made. He added that he was first to get to the bodies, and he picked them up, but they were lifeless. Witness had cautioned the men about walking along the line, but did not that morning as there was train about. By the Coroner: There was plenty of room on the loop line, and the men were walking the main line at their own risk.

A Juror; All the men engaged the loop would have to walk either along the loop or on the down side of the main line.

Walter Gardener, labourer, Ashton, said the two men were walking along the railway about a hundred yards in front of him. The train passed him, and the next he saw was the bodies the two men lying on the railroad, one in the four-foot way.

By Mr. Tait: Witness had been warned not to walk along the line.

Thomas Smith, driver of the first of the two engines attached to the express, living at Rugby, said that he did not see any men on the line. Questioned by the Coroner to the speed the train, the witness said that at the time they had shut off steam, and were pulling up at the signal. The speed would not exceed 15 miles an hour. He knew the loop was being made, and when men were engaged on the line they were always the alert. When he got to Bletchley an inspector came to him and said, “Are you aware you have knocked two men down?” He replied, “No, I am not.” He got down and examined the engine, but could find no trace of an accident. The engine was thoroughly examined upon its return to Rugby’, and again no trace was found.

The jury returned a verdict  “Accidental death.”

Northampton Mercury - Friday 20 September 1907

TWO COFFINS FOR ONE BODY AT ROADE. CURIOUS SEQUEL TO THE RAILWAY FATALITY. Peculiar circumstances occurred in connection with the burial of the body of John Smith, one of the men who were killed the line near Tuesday morning by the Warrington to London goods express (as reported on Page 6). Smith was a widower with a family to maintain, and in addition to providing for his children contributed to the support his aged parents, who are in receipt of parish relief, had no relatives who could afford to bear the expenses of his funeral, and steps were therefore taken for the burial of the body by the Union. Mr. C. H. Davis, the Divisional Coroner, upon return to Northampton after the inquest on Wednesday, kindly facilitated matters calling upon both the Clerk to the Union (Mr. J. R. Phillips) and the Relieving Officer (Mr J. A. Bennett), and an order for coffin was telegraphed to and placed the hands of Mr. VV. Walker. Meanwhile a brother of the deceased had visited Roade from Stony Stratford. As labourer of slender means he was unable undertake the cost the burial, but upon his return to Stratford he mentioned the facts to others, with the result that Mr. John Brown, landlord of the Black Horse, Old Stratford, who is a native of Cosgrove and knew the deceased man well, resolved to save his old acquaintance from a pauper’s grave. He therefore gave orders to Mr. Page, of Stony Stratford, to provide a coffin and execute the funeral. Mr. Page complied and went to the George Hotel, Roade, where the body was lying with the coffin on Thursday morning. Upon his arrival found that the body had already been enclosed in the parish coffin, and that arrangements had been made for the interment in the churchyard the same afternoon. Thus a bewildering position presented itself. There was no time to be lost, a gentleman and Mr. Page visited Northampton and interviewed the Relieving Officer, who thereupon wired to Mr Walker authorising him to deliver the body to Mr. Page. The proposed interment at Roade was therefore not proceeded with, but matters were still complicated by the fact that the body was in a putrefying state, and had been screwed down. Ultimately it was agreed not to disturb the corpse but to adopt the parish coffin as the private coffin, and the transfer was simplified exchanging the breastplate of Mr. Page’s coffin to Mr. Walker’s, with the understanding that the Union would be relieved all responsibility and expense. The second coffin was then taken back to Stony Stratford and the remains of the deceased were removed by Mr. Page the same evening to Cosgrove for interment in the churchyard today. The remains of Frederick Keech, the other man who was killed, were removed to Cosgrove on Wednesday by the family.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 04 September 1909

BLOWN FROM A CANAL BOAT. On Tuesday night Mr T. M Percival held inquest at Cosgrove, touching the death of Emily Bunn, the daughter of Daniel Bunn, boatman, of Long Buckby.

Daniel Bunn said he was in the service of Messrs. Fellows, Morton, and Co. The deceased resided with the witness at Long Buckby, she was 17. He arrived at Cosgrove locks about, eight that morning with his boat. He was going towards Birmingham. They had two boats, and the deceased was steering the last boat. Witness last saw her alive just against the stop below the locks. He went into the lock with the first boat. The next one came half in the lock, and he shouted “Hold in, Emma!” He did not get any answer and ran to see where she was. He could not see her anywhere. He got the boat-hook and tried to find her, but could not do so. A young man named Joseph Clarke got a rake and he felt her body with the rake, and put the boat-hook in and pulled her to the top of the water. The witness heard no splash, and did not hear her call out. It was only about three minutes from the time he spoke to her till he missed her. He should think was ten minutes from the time he missed her till they got her out. The body was behind the boat, not under it. She appeared dead. They tried artificial respiration, but without success. Deceased was used to the boats and acquainted with the working of them. It was raining very heavily at the time, and would be slippery. He fancied she slipped and dropped over the side. She enjoyed good health, and was not subject to fits. There was no reason why she should throw herself in. She was quite happy.

Frederick Joseph Clarke, of Cosgrove, said he saw them dragging. He procured a drag and found the body.

Douglas William Anderson Bull, of Stony Stratford, said he examined the body. Death was due to drowning.

The jury returned a verdict of “Accidentally drowned.”

Northampton Mercury - Friday 01 January 1909


Mr. T. M. Percival held an inquest at the Plough Inn Cosgrove, Thursday week on the body William Morton, labourer at the Wolverton Works, who found drowned in the canal at Cosgrove the previous day. Mr. Thomas Seymour was foreman of the jury.

Mrs. Lucy Morton said that her husband was a labourer employed at Wolverton Works, and was 36 years of age He got up at his usual hour on Wednesday morning—soon after five o’clock and went out at 5.30 to Wolverton. Before he went he said he did not feel well, and if he felt no better later would come home at breakfast time. She never again saw him alive. He had never threatened to take his life, but he had been very much troubled about his father, who met with an accident at Yardley whilst at work. The deceased made himself responsible for a great deal expense in connection with proceedings to claim damages for the accident, and also made himself responsible for the proceedings which took place at Towcester County Court. Her husband had spoken of the difficulty he  had in meeting those expenses.

Robert Brown, labourer, of Cosgrove, employed at Wolverton Works, said that he accompanied the deceased part of the way on the road to work on the day named. He noticed nothing peculiar about his manner. They walked to work along the canal towing path. Later in the day the witness went to the canal towing path near the locks, where lot of people were searching. They found Morton’s basket just through the bridge and his hat close to it. The body was subsequently dragged out of the canal. There were no signs of a struggle. Where the body was found it was not on the way Morton would go to work. P.C. Heath, Yardley Gobion, deposed that searching the body found 1s.3d in a leather purse and a pipe. The food inside the basket was untouched.

The jury returned a verdict of "Suicide during temporary insanity.”

Northampton Mercury - Friday 17 September 1909

THE INQUEST. Mr T M Percival inquired into the circumstances of the sad affair at the Barley Mow on Thursday. Charlotte Brown, wife of Albert Brown, of Cosgrove, drayman, said that Tuesday she left her house go to the barn at about a quarter to seven in the morning. She was going to do some washing, and left her two children, William, aged three years, and the deceased, Frederick Albert, aged one year and seven months upstairs fast asleep. When witnesses left her husband was at work. A lodger was in the house reading the paper. He said he heard nothing of the children, and when he left everything was quiet. Witness went back to the house about 7.30 staying a few minutes and writing a note. She listened, but all was quiet, and she assumed the boys were still asleep, and she went back the barn. Later a Mrs. Key, who lived next door, said the children seemed quiet. Witness then told her she was going back. They got to the door she said, “They are screaming.” Witness rushed upstairs, and found the deceased in flames. She picked him up, took him into the yard, and put him into some water. The other boy followed downstairs. He was not burned at all. She added that the bedclothes were fire, and she threw them out of the window. There was a candle alight in the lodger's room where the children were. Continuing, she said William had that morning told witness that he struck the matches and lighted the candle. He told her how Fred stood, and that he got frightened and hid under the bed. Witness sent for the doctor at once, but her child died the same day. Dr. Powell said the child was terribly burnt all over the body and more particular on the front of the abdomen. The child was absolutely hopeless from a curative point of view. The cause of death was shock arising from extensive burns. The jury returned a verdict in accordance with the medical testimony.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 07 June 1912



An aged Cosgrove resident, Mrs. David Smith (75), widow, met her death under somewhat sudden circumstances on Saturday. It appears that the old lady, who lives alone, became very seriously ill whilst following her household duties on Friday evening, which illness forced her take to her bed. Mrs. Lambert, a near neighbour, undertook to nurse the old lady, and she remained with her until she died in the early hours of Saturday morning. At the inquest, conducted Mr. K. Whitton, held at the Barley Mow Inn, Cosgrove, on Saturday evening, Dr. Brawn, Stony Stratford, gave evidence of a post-mortem examination which had revealed the fact that deceased had suffered from acute indigestion, and that death was due to heart failure. Thomas Smith, 23, Osborne-street, Wolverton, identified the body as that of his mother, and a verdict of Death from heart failure was returned.

Wolverton Express 19th October 1917


The mystery of a Wolverton Works blacksmith’s striker, Alfred Swain, of Cosgrove, who had been reported missing for a week, was cleared up last weekend by the finding of his dead body in a ditch, which then contained two feet of water. But considerable rain had fallen during the intervening period. On the bank was deceased basket, full of food for the day, and on it was placed his cap. No note was left behind to indicate his intentions, and beyond the fact that he was depressed through having three sons at the war, he had betrayed no suicidal tendencies. During dry weather the ditch in question, which is close to the footpath to Castlethorpe, and just on the fringe of Cosgrove village, contains very little water.

The inquest was held at the Plough Inn, Cosgrove, on Saturday afternoon, before Mr W. E. Whitton, Coroner for the Towcester district.

Clara Swain, wife of the deceased, stated that her husband was 48. He had been suffering from nervous debility, for which he had been on the club for about a fortnight before re-starting work on October 1. He had no other infirmity, but three of his sons in the Army, one of whom was in France, seemed to worry him, especially when one came home a fortnight ago.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 21 July 1922


A motor accident, attended with fatal results, occurred at Cosgrove on Monday afternoon, when a motor cyclist named Arthur James Beasley, a resident of the village, was thrown under the wheels of a steam wagon and crushed to death. The wagon, the property of G. Horne, Ltd., millers, Kempston, Beds was leaving the village and was mounting the incline to the canal bridge. When half way the hill the wagon came level with two men walking in the same direction. At the same time Beasley, on a 2¼ Royal Enfield motor cycle came out from the village and followed up the hill. The road was very narrow, being only twelve feet wide, and the cyclist in attempting to pass between the men, one of whom was walking on the road, and the vehicle, caught one of the men with the handle bars of his machine and the impact caused him to lose control and his balance and fall under the hind wheel of the wagon.

The driver pulled up within a yard, but when it came to a standstill the wagon wheel was resting on the chest of the deceased. The driver drew his machine little further, but when the man was released he was found dead. It was believed death was instantaneous.

The inquest was held at the Barge Inn, Cosgrove, Monday evening, conducted Mr. W. E. Whitton, district coroner. Mr, Clover, managing director to G. Horne, Ltd., represented the firm. Supt. Dunn, Towcester, represented the police.

Evidence of identification was given by the father of deceased, Mark Beasley, a railway electrician, living at Cosgrove. He said his son, who lived at New Buildings, Cosgrove, was 27 years of age, a married man with one child, aged six months. He was a striker in the smithy of the Wolverton Railway Works. He was a very careful rider and was perfectly fit in health and body to ride a motor cycle. Joseph Parker, general labourer, 56, Queen-street, Stony Stratford, said he was walking out of Cosgrove in company with Thomas Jelley. He was walking on the road, Jelley was walking on the grass at the side, about one or two yards in front of witness. They were on the right-hand side of the road and a steam wagon came up on the left. He did not hear anything of the cyclist but felt the handles of his machine touch his arm. The cyclist passed them and came level with the wagon, and as the result of the contact with witness he seemed to lose control of his machine, which swerved to the right and then to the left. Some part of the cycle caught in the hind wheel of the wagon and the man was dragged underneath. Witness did not hear the cycle come up, as the noise of the other vehicle prevented it. The wagon was going very slowly up the hill, having only started at the foot. The vehicle dragged the cycle about a yard and the driver pulled the wagon in about yard’s length.

In reply to Supt. Dunn, witness said he did not think there was sufficient room in the road for the cyclist to have attempted to get through. Thomas Jelley, labourer, Cosgrove, corroborated part the evidence of the previous witness. The vehicle was well on its proper side of the road, and he did not think any fault was attached to the driver. Supt. Dunn pointed out that that type of wagon measured 7ft. 2ins. to 7ft. 6ins, and a man walking took 18ins to 2ft. space, which left 2ft. 6 ins, of the roadway.

Alfred Beard, 30, Church-walk, Kempston, Beds, driver of the wagon, said he had been delivering flour in Cosgrove and was returning home. He did not hear a motor cycle horn; the first thing he knew of was a rattle and a person shouting “Man under the wheel!” He had no side glass to the wagon; there had been one, but it had jarred off. The unladen weight of the machine was 4 tons 18½ cwts. He was travelling at from to 4 miles per hour.

Dr. D. W. A. Bull, Stony Stratford, described the injuries of deceased, which showed that his chest had been crushed. Death would be instantaneous. The Coroner returned verdict of Accidental Death, exonerating the driver from all blame. He commented that it seemed doubtful whether the deceased was not taking an extra risk. Mr. Clover expressed sympathy behalf of his firm the relatives of deceased.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 22 February 1924


A strange story of how a boy of fourteen whose dog is said to have knocked a boy of seven into the canal Cosgrove Sunday afternoon, and who walked away while the unfortunate boy drowned, was told at the inquest on Thomas Hillyard Payne, at the Plough Inn, Cosgrove, on Monday afternoon,

Mr. W. E. Whitten, the Coroner for South Northamptonshire, conducted the inquiry, and a jury of twelve was sworn.

Thomas C. Payne, the father, a coach maker at Wolverton Carriage Works, stated that he last saw his son alive at about a quarter to two on Sunday afternoon just before the boy left home for the Mission Hall Sunday School. Deceased was in the house again at three o’clock, and about three quarters of an hour later, a boy named Lovesay ran into the house and said that Tommy was in the canal, and he could not get him out. Witness went to the canal and when nearly opposite the overshot saw his son face downwards in the water at the outlet to the culvert. Lovesay told him the boy fell in the tunnel, and witness ran down the field to the outlet and waded into the river and got the boy out, but he appeared to be dead. Unfortunately witness did not know anything about artificial respiration, but some men who were following him took the lad in hand.

In reply to the Coroner, he said there was no grating to the entrance of the overshot. The tunnel would be about 30 inches high, and he considered about the most dangerous place possible to fall in. He had cautioned the boy, as had also his mother, against going near the water, but it seemed have had a fascination to him.

Thomas Lovesay, the boy’s companion, who gave his evidence in tears, said they walked across the fields to the canal and watched the water rushing through the sluice. They were looking at the water when a big boy came along with a dog and pushed against Tommy Payne, who lost his balance and fell in.

The Coroner; Accidentally?—Yes.

Witness said he called to Payne, but he did not answer, he ran home and told Mr. Payne.

In reply to the Coroner, Lovesay said he did not know what the name of the other boy was. The other boy saw young Tommy go down and did not say a word, but went away. He would recognise the boy again.

Mrs. Lovesay, who was present the inquest, informed the Coroner that the boy, as far she could make out, was about 14 years of age. She had questioned her son in every way, but he stuck to the same story. Dr. E. G. Heffernan, assistant to Dr. D. W. A. Bull, Stony Stratford, said he arrived at about 4.25 and used artificial respiration until five o’clock without success.

Upon examining the boy he was of opinion that death was due more or less to shock. He might have banged his head against something, but there were no external marks. There were appearances of drowning.

The jury returned a verdict of “Death from misadventure by a fall into the sluice, partly from and partly from drowning.”

Upon the suggestion of the Coroner, it was decided to make representations to the Canal Company for the culvert to be protected with a grating The Coroner remarked it was a very mean and miserable thing for the other boy to go away. Sympathy was expressed with Mr. and Mrs. Payne.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 12 December 1924


The inquest was conducted by Mr. W. E. Whitton, District Coroner, at the Barge Inn, Cosgrove, on Wednesday afternoon, into the circumstances of the death of Mr. Joseph Watson, of Wolverton, whose body was found in the river near Cosgrove, on Tuesday.

Mr. W. S. Parrott, Stony Stratford and Wolverton, represented the Wolverton Benefit Building Society, of which Mr. Watson was secretary.

Mr William Watson, coach-painter, 130, Cambridge-street, Wolverton, said his brother was a cashier in the Railway Works at Wolverton. He had not at any time threatened to take his life.

Mr. Henry Clay Jenkins, Wolverton, railway accountant, stated that he saw Mr. Watson on Tuesday morning, when he sent for him to his office to discuss business matters. He asked deceased how he was and he replied that he was just as usual. At 1.45 the same day he received a message that Mr. Watson had not been home to dinner and he caused inquiries to be made. It was found that shortly after 11 o’clock, before going to the bank with the day's cash. Mr. Watson had left the keys of the Railway Office safe with the deputy cashier. Witness had the safe opened and found three letters —one addressed, to Mrs. Watson, one to witness, and the other to the directors of the Building Society.

The Coroner read the letter to witness, as follows;

Dear Mr. Jenkins. —Forgive me. You have been very kind and helpful and the staff generally has been kind. It seems an awful ending to a long service but I am completely done. Have tried to please. The accounts are quite correct. Do what you can for my wife if anything happens. I have had an awful time —mental depression and have tried to keep a smiling face at home and in the office. My wife has been kind and patient, but of course it has been a trial to me. Forgive me please.—Yours, J. Watson. Witness afterwards had the safe checked and found everything correct. The Works Manager sent a search party out after deceased, and the office staff went across the fields to see if they could find him. P.C. Bonner, Wolverton, gave evidence of the discovery on Tuesday afternoon of a hat and coat on the bank of the Ouse, near the Iron Trunk, Cosgrove. In the pocket of the coat was a postcard upon which was written: Love to all. May God forgive me. Distracted.”

The Coroner said it was a very sad case. A perfectly honest, straightforward man, for some unknown cause, took his life. He returned a verdict of “Suicide during temporary insanity.”

Mr. Parrott stated that the annual audit of the Building Society had recently taken place and the auditors’ certificate had been received that everything was in perfect order.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 23 January 1925


Monday night’s dense fog, one the worst experienced in the locality was the cause of tragedy near Cosgrove in which Henry Thomas Giles, who resided at The Green, Cosgrove, lost his life.

Giles, who was about 50 years of age, left his work at the Works at about seven o’clock to return home along the towing-path of the canal. The last heard of him was that he shouted “Good-night’’ to a cyclist named Haynes who was passing between the Iron Trunk, which spans the river Ouse, which is the boundary between Northamptonshire and Buckinghamshire, and the lock. The next morning his cap and pipe were found floating on the water between the Trunk and Cosgrove Locks,

Dragging operations were conducted until dusk Tuesday, and were resumed eight o’clock on Wednesday morning by the Northamptonshire and Bucks police, and at 2.20 in the afternoon the body was recovered about 50 yards on the Old Wolverton side of the Iron Trunk. It was taken to the Locomotive Hotel, Old Wolverton, to await the inquest. Giles was a married man with three sons, all at work, and a daughter of school age.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 23 January 1925


The Deputy Coroner (Mr. W. J. C. Ray) conducted an inquiry at the Locomotive Hotel, Old Wolverton, on Thursday into the death of Henry Thomas Giles, of Cosgrove, whose body was recovered from the Grand Junction Canal on Wednesday. Supt. E. Callaway represented the police.

Mary Jane Giles said her husband was 52 years of age. When he left home at 7.10 a.m. on Monday morning for his work Wolverton he seemed quite bright and happy. He did not return, and at ten o’clock her son went to look for him.

Henry Lewis Haynes, a coach finisher, Cosgrove, said he left work at 7 p.m. on Monday, and cycled from Wolverton, along the tow path of the canal. It was a foggy night, and he had to ride very slowly. When about 50 100 yards past the Iron Trunk he passed Giles walking towards home. He was as far away from the water as was possible. He noticed nothing unusual about his walk, and said “Goodnight, Harry.” Deceased did not reply. He was walking along a small path made by the barge horses. Frederick Joseph Clark, the Locks, Cosgrove, said he heard of the occurrence at 8.15 on Tuesday morning. He searched the bank of the canal both sides from the Locks to the Iron Trunk. When he got half-way to the Trunk he saw a cap floating in the middle of the Canal. He afterwards found a pipe about 20 yards from the Locks, which would be about a quarter of a mile from the cap. He helped drag for the body, which was found on Wednesday, at about 2.20 p.m., about 100 yards on the Old Wolverton side of the Iron Trunk. He knew Giles well and he knew of nothing to account for him being in the water. It was a very bad night and he did not himself consider it safe to walk along the bank that night.

P.C. Bonner, Wolverton, said there was message of any sort in the clothing. P.S. Rollings, Wolverton, stated there were three marks on the back of his head, hut no marks to indicate foul play. Dr. E. J. Penny, Wolverton, stated death was due to drowning.

The Coroner, in recording his verdict, said death was due to drowning, but there was no evidence how the man got into the water. He expressed sympathy with the relatives.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 06 August 1926


Mr. A. J. Darnell, the Borough Coroner, held an inquest at the Northampton General Hospital on Saturday on the body of Ebenezer Butcher, aged 57, wood machinist, of Cosgrove, who died at the institution on Friday morning. Sarah Ann Butcher, the widow, said that some weeks ago her husband fractured his arm. He was treated at the Hospital as out-patient. Then other things developed. She said xxx that the accident had nothing whatever to with the cause of death.

Dr. J. B. Bell, house physician at the Hospital, said Butcher was treated for a fractured arm but developed a growth. He was admitted and an operation was performed and the growth successfully removed. But the man had other growths and gradually got worse until he died on Friday morning. A post mortem examination revealed the fact that he had cancer on the liver, and that was the cause of death. The Coroner recorded a verdict to that effect.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 26 January 1934

Samuel Jordan Pinney (65), was knocked down by a lorry and fatally injured while cycling from Old Stratford to Cosgrove.



The inquest on Pinney was conducted the Divisional Coroner (Mr. W. L. Whitton), sitting with a jury, at Old Stratford yesterday, Pinney was a retired grocer and sub-postmaster at Old Stratford.
Mrs. Jane Pinney, the widow, said her husband left home on his bicycle to go to Cosgrove.  His eyesight was good, but he was little deaf. As he went out he withed her " Many happy returns " on her birthday.


Fred T. Washbrook, haulage contractor, Old Stratford, who was warned by the Coroner (Mr.  E. Whitton) elected to give evidence. He said he had had eight years experience of driving. It was very foggy at the time of the accident, and the visibility was only about four yard.

The windscreen wiper of the lorry was not working, but the glass was clean. He had two side lights. He sounded his horn before approaching the Dog’s Month Bridge at about five m.p.h. When three yards from the bridge be saw a man on a bicycle shooting across in front of him, as if going in the direction of Cosgrove. He could only make out a dark shape going across this radiator. He felt an impact on the near side of the cabin.


The Coroners: When you saw him cross the radiator why did not you pull up?—I tried to swerve and miss him, but it all happened In about three seconds.
The Coroner: Were you cutting the corner? No, I was about a foot from the kerb no the near side. Did you carry him along with you?—No. I don't think so.
Dr. Douglas Bull, Stony Stratford, said Pinney was dead when brought to the surgery. Death, which must have practically instantaneous, was due to a fracture at the base of the skull and shock. Charles Henry King, 127, Birchfield-road, Northampton, commercial traveller, said he was motoring from Northampton to Stony Stratford when he was requested to stop by the lorry driver, who was supporting Pinney in his arms. The bicycle was lying in the rood.
A juryman, Michael Haltom, Old Stratford, left his seat to give evidence. He Washbrook asked him to come to the scene of the accident and assist him. Pinney was lying on the road in a dying condition, and there were two pools of blood. It was very foggy, and he could see only five or six yards.
The Coroner said it was an unfortunate ease, caused by the fog. He thought the lorry driver took an reasonable precautions.
 A verdict of " Accidental Death " was returned.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 23 September 1938


After hearing medical evidence and evidence of identification the Borough Coroner (Mr. A. J. Darnell) on Monday adjourned until Friday the inquest on 73-years-old Arthur Frederick Jelley, retired farmer, of Brewery House, Cosgrove, who received fatal injuries when his bicycle was involved in collision with car on the Watling Street at Potterspury, on Saturday afternoon. Jelley died soon after admission to Northampton General Hospital, where the inquest was opened. The car involved in the accident was driven by Percy Joseph Wilson, of Bourne-end. Cranfield. Appearing for Jelley’s relatives was Mr. J. O. Jones (Messrs. Parrott and Sons, Stony Stratford), while Inspector Bone, of Towcester, represented the Northamptonshire County Police. Mr. John Milligan, house surgeon at the Hospital, said Jelley was admitted at 4.5 p.m. on Saturday with a small punctured wound on the right arm, slight head abrasion, and a more extensive abrasion above the left eyebrow. Jelley was unconscious, and died soon after admission. Death was due to a fracture of the skull, cerebral hemorrhage, and a puncture of the right lung.


Evidence of identification was given by George Williamson Ruff, lorry driver, of Brewery House, Cosgrove, Jelley’s son-in-law. He said he last saw Jelley at seven o’clock on Saturday morning, when he was getting ready to go to meet of the hounds. He was a very active and healthy man. He had ridden bicycle for years. I have heard him talk about when he rode a penny-farthing,’ said witness. I have ridden one,” said the Coroner. Ruff said he thought his father-in-law was going to Potterspury. He added that Jelley cycled nearly every day.

Northampton Mercury - Friday 06 June 1952


A verdict of death by drowning while the balance of mind was disturbed was recorded by the Coroner for South Northamptonshire (Mr. J. S. Budge) at an inquest held on Tuesday at the Barley Mow, Cosgrove, on Percy Swain, of The Green, Cosgrove.

Ernest Swain said he lived with his brother, who was 55. They were both leather dressers. For the past two weeks his brother had been very depressed. Last Tuesday night when witness went to bed his brother was reading the paper. The next morning he found his brother was missing. Witness made a search, but could not find him, so notified the police. He found a note among some papers which stated that his brother intended to take his life. In it his brother said that his nerves had given out.

Dr W. M. M, Douglass said he saw the body on Tuesday and thought death had occurred four to six days previously. The cause of death was drowning. Swain had been to see him, had said he was worried, but was not very communicative. Witness could find nothing wrong with him physically.

Richard Longman, 6, Bridge-street. Cosgrove, gave evidence of seeing the body in the river about 50 yards from the mill basin. Mr Budge said the note Swain had left showed his mind was unbalanced.