Unsolved Murders

Womans Skull

Age: 25

Sex: female

Date: 6 Jul 1948

Place: Beacon Cove, Watergate Bay, Newquay

The skull of a woman was found on the cliffside at Beacon Cove in Watergate Bay on 6 July 1948.

It was found by a farm student from Amble. He found it on 6 July 1948 whilst walking up a cliff path lying in a crevice about 150 feet up the cliff.

No other human remains were found in the crevice.

A doctor that examined the skull said that he thought that it was that of a woman aged about 25 years, lower limits 18 and upper limits 30, and that she had suffered a violent death after having been struck very forcibly through the face by a heavy instrument.

However, the inquest also heard that her injuries were equally, or more consistent, with having either having fallen head foremost from a considerable height on to a sharp projecting rock, or as the result of an accident whilst travelling at speed in an aeroplane.

The pathologist said that he was of the opinion that she had died between six months and ten years earlier.

A police inspector said that they carried out a certain amount of digging on 10 July 1948 at Beacon Cove but said that they found no other human remains.

He said that the skull could not have reached the position in which it was found from the top of the cliff and said that there were no old burial grounds elsewhere in the locality where it could have come from.

He added that he thought that the skull must have been brought up from the beach, possibly by a bird.

When the coroner asked the police inspector whether anybody had been reported missing in the last four or five years who would answer the description suggested by the doctor, the police inspector said that he could not answer the question as there was such a wide margin in the suggested ages. He said, 'If the age were confined still more, I might be able to say 'Yes' to the question'. When the doctor then put the age as 27 or 28, the police inspector replied, 'The answer is 'No''.

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

see www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

see Western Morning News - Thursday 19 August 1948

see Western Daily Press - Wednesday 18 August 1948