Unsolved Murders

Sarah Ethel Pritchard Thomas

Age: 44

Sex: female

Date: 21 Sep 1929

Place: Berrow Sands, Burnham-on-Sea, Somerset

Source: www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

Sarah Ethel Pritchard Thomas was found drowned.

Her body was washed ashore at Berrow Sands at Burnham-on-Sea on 21 September 1929 after having gone missing on 7 September 1929. She was found by a postman.

She was a wealthy widow and had been missing for a fortnight. She had two young children and was the widow of a coal exporter.

She was fully dressed and had been wearing a gold expanding wrist watch and a 22-carat gold wedding ring.

She had lived thirty miles away from where she was found at The Chelet, Langland Bay, near Swansea.

Four days after she had gone missing her car was found near the cliff's at Southerndown and a hat and coat that were said to belong to her were found on a cliff ledge.

An open verdict was returned stating that there was no evidence to show how she came by her death.

Sarah Thomas's cook said that Sarah Thomas had been depressed since December 1928 when her husband had died but said that she had never threatened to take her life. She said that she last saw Sarah Thomas alive at 10.47pm on 7 September 1929 when she was preparing to go to bed and said that she seemed quite normal. She said that before Sarah Thomas went to bed she had read some stories to her two young children.

The next morning at 10am a parlour maid went to Sarah Thomas's bedroom but found that the door was locked.

It was found that her bed had been disturbed but that she was missing.

Her car was later found in a regular parking space on the cliffs at Southerndown which was 25 miles away from where she lived. The route had been a favourite drive of hers.

It was not known why she had gone out in the car that night.

The cliff was described as being almost perpendicular at that spot and that there was only a very small cleft along the top.

A doctor said that Sarah Thomas had died from drowning and that there were no external signs of any injury. The medical evidence stated that Sarah Thomas had been in the water for a considerable time.

An open verdict was returned.


see Nottingham Journal - Tuesday 24 September 1929

see The Scotsman - Tuesday 24 September 1929

see Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette - Saturday 28 September 1929

see Shepton Mallet Journal - Friday 27 September 1929