Date: 24 Feb 1945
Maud Maria Young was found dead in a bath of rain water in the yard of the Dog and Gun Inn in Peatling Parva on the morning of Saturday 24 February 1945.
Her death was stated as being due to drowning and the post-mortem revealed that there were no marks of violence or anything suspicious about her body. It was noted that her heart was bad and that it would have taken very little to have killed her.
She was found in her night attire and a coat that she was in the habit of wearing to bed.
Her husband said that they had lived together at the Dog and Gun Inn for nearly 42 years and said that Maud Young had had a stroke two years earlier and had had a heart attack in the ambulance on the way to the Leicester Royal Infirmary. He said that she suffered from severe headaches and at times was greatly depressed. He noted that she had not been downstairs since she had returned from the infirmary but said that apart from her illness they were a very happy couple.
He said that on the morning of Saturday 24 February 1945 he got up at 7.30am and that Maud Young told him that her head was bad but that she had had a fair night. He noted that they slept in separate beds in the same room and that he took her up her breakfast at 9.45am and then left to get his own breakfast.
He said that at about 10.15am he went out into the yard and saw two legs sticking out of a bath of rainwater. He said that she was lying on her back in the bath with her legs hanging out and her face under the water.
He said that he had been in the house the whole while after taking Maud Young her breakfast and that he would not have heard her coming down the stairs. After the police arrived, they left instructions that nothing was to be moved, but apparently the husbands son-in-law didn't know that and moved the bath.
Their daughter said that she went to see Maud Young every day and said that Maud Young could not do much beyond getting up and moving about in the bedroom and would complain about her head but had never mentioned suicide.
She said that her father had been in the kitchen when she called on the Saturday morning and that she was going up the stairs when she heard him call out, and that when she got went into the yard she saw him pulling Maud Young out of the bath, saying that Maud Young seemed to be dead.
The daughter’s husband who was also at the pub said that when he heard his wife call out he went out into the yard and found Maud Young lying on the ground near the garage and said that he applied artificial respiration.
However, when the woman from the post office, a former hospital matron, came along, she told him that there was no hope.
When the brother-in-law was asked why he moved the bath he said that he did not know that he was doing wrong and said that he didn't want his wife seeing it every time she crossed the yard.
A policeman that was called out said that he arrived at about 11.45am on the Saturday morning and found Maud Young already laid out. He said that the distance from the door to the bath was about 18 yards and that the water in the bath was rather dirty and appeared to have been in it for some time.
He noted that the bath could be seen from the bedroom window, but not from the kitchen or the road.
When the coroner summed up he said that it was a puzzling case in some respects as the doctor and another witness who knew Maud Young had both expressed their surprise that Maud Young was capable of walking downstairs. He concluded that Maud Young had died from asphyxia caused by drowning, but that there was not sufficient evidence to show how she had got into the bath and an open verdict was returned.
see Rugby Advertiser - Friday 02 March 1945
see Rugby Advertiser - Tuesday 27 February 1945