Unsolved Murders

Edith Turton

Age: 18

Sex: female

Date: 26 Jun 1933

Place: Sutton-in-Ashfield

Edith Turton was found dead in a shed on an allotment on 26 June 1933.

Her boyfriend was arrested and charged for her murder but hung himself in Lincoln Prison on 10 July 1933.

She was found covered with her boyfriend’s mackintosh coat and with a white silk scarf tied tightly around her neck. The allotment was about 1.5 miles away from her home.

Her inquest on 3 August 1933 recorded an open verdict. The Coroner noted that the person that had been arrested, charged and committed for trial in connection with the case was no longer available to ask questions.

It was suggested that they might have been involved in a suicide pact.

When the boyfriend who was charged with her murder was asked if he had anything to say he had said, 'I should like to see her again'.

Edith Turton and the man were described as lovers and it was said that they had been talking about getting married. A person that knew them said that they seemed to be a devoted couple and were always together.

Edith Turton was a cotton worker and had worked at the Old Mill in Sutton-in-Ashfield. She had lodged in Swan Street which was just off Market Place. The man had lived about 300 to 400 yards away.

It was said that they were going to get married the following month and had been getting furniture together in readiness.

Her landlord said that Edith Turton was always a bright and cheery girl and said that the boyfriend would frequently come to their house. He said that the man had been there on 26 June 1933 at about 11.15am and that he later came by at about 6.30pm and had some tea. The landlords said that the boyfriend left at about 8.40pm saying, 'Well, I think I'll go home and get changed into my pit clothes' and that Edith Turton went with him but that at about 9.20pm, when the man should have been on his way to work he had come back and said, 'We are going for a walk'. They said that the man seemed about the same as usual, pleasant and jolly and said that Edith Turton went upstairs and put on her scarf and said, 'I'm just going for a little walk, I shall not be very long'.

The landlady said that when she and her husband returned to the house at about 11.45pm and found that Edith Turton had not returned they went out to the top of the street to look for her and later saw the boyfriend that she had gone out with. She said that when she saw him she said, 'Hello, where's Edie?', and said that he replied, 'I don't know, I haven’t seen her for a time'. However, she said that the boyfriend then turned to her husband and said, 'I want a word with you, come up to my dad's house with me'.

It was said then that after they went to the boyfriend's dad's house a group of them went off to the allotment. She said that they then saw Edith Turton's body and the boyfriend said, 'Have a look and see if you can do anything for her', but the landlady said that she said 'I'm afraid she is dead'.

The landlady said that they then walked back into town where they met a policeman and the boyfriend was then taken to the police station.

Edith Turton's body was found in a small, roughly built wooden shed that was lined with cardboard in an isolated spot on the allotment known locally as 'The Weeds'. It was noted that there were numerous allotments in the vicinity but no houses for a considerable distance.

A piece of rope was also found in the shed which had once been used to a bucket near a garden well, but which had been made into a noose although it wasn't known if there was any connection with that and Edith Turton and the man.

The shed was not locked but it was bolted from the inside although it was noted that anyone could have opened it by putting their hand through some barb wire netting and drawing the bolt.

It was also noted that the scene was only a stones throw away from the location where Arthur Simms murdered Rosa Armstrong for which he was hanged.

When the boyfriend was charged he said, 'I should like to go to keep Teed company'. When the policeman asked the boyfriend what he meant by Teed he said, 'My young lady, Edith. I should have gone at the same time, only I went to tell my dad. She took my knife out of my pocket and tried to cut her throat, and I took the knife from her, and she said, 'Let's both go together'.

see www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

see Aberdeen Press and Journal - Thursday 03 August 1933

see Hartlepool Northern Daily Mail - Monday 26 June 1933

see Nottingham Journal - Friday 30 June 1933

see Nottingham Journal - Tuesday 27 June 1933 (photo of Edith Turton)

see Northern Whig - Thursday 03 August 1933