Unsolved Murders

George Lidbetter

Age: 66

Sex: male

Date: 22 Mar 1942

Place: Findon, Worthing, West Sussex

George Lidbetter was found dead in a water tank.

He was a gardener and the water tank was in a garden that he had been working in on Monday 22 March 1942.

His wife said that George Lidbetter had told her that he had felt giddy that day, and also said that he had been worried on account of he had so much to do due to another gardener dying.

George Lidbetter's son said that George Lidbetter always took off his cap when getting water from the tank which was let into the ground. Whilst George Lidbetter's cap was found, there was no water can nearby and no can was found in the tank.

A policeman that examined the water tank said that it was about six feet deep and that its top was about a foot above the ground. He said that there had been wire netting protection around it but that the woodwork had rotted away, although it was also stated that the tank had been protected by beams which were in their proper positions.

His inquest returned an open verdict stating that his death was due to drowning.

The coroner said that he did not feel justified on the evidence in entering verdicts for either suicide or accidental death, stating that the only indication of the state of his mind at the time was that he had complained of his head and that he had seemed upset over the death of his fellow gardener. He added further that on the possibility of him having slipped into the tank, he did not see any evidence to support that conclusion.

*map pointers are rough estimates based on known location details as per Place field above.

see www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

see Worthing Herald - Friday 27 March 1942, p8

see West Sussex Gazette - Thursday 26 March 1942