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Jackson torso location in Battersea Park

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  • Jackson torso location in Battersea Park

    I'm determimed to pinpoint the location in Battersea Park where a section of Liz Jackson's torso was discovered. So thought I'd collect as many clues as I could find. Here's a couple, feel free to add any more you come across;

    London Evening Standard 17 June;

    "Joseph Davies, gardener, employed at Battersea Park, of 15, Randle-street, on the 6th inst. found a parcel in the park, at the back of the frame garden, in the shrubbery, at about two in the afternoon. Only the gardeners had admission to that part of the park, but anybody else could get over the fencing. The bundle was 25 yards away from the fence. He called Police-constable Anger, who took the parcel away. The wicket-gate of the park was opened at five a.m., and that would be 200 yards away from where the parcel was found. All the gates of the park were opened at the same time in the morning. The wicket-gate was close to the Albert Bridge, and there was no one on duty at that point."


    South Wales Echo - Friday 07 June 1889

    "The Thames Mystery.
    A CLUE TO THE VICTIMS IDENTITY.
    LONDON, Thursday Night. At twenty minutes to two oclock this afternoon a labourer named Joseph Davies discovered in Battersea Park a bundle containing some human remains, and there seems to be little doubt that these belong to the body of which the other remains recently found formed part. The bundle was discovered in a shrubbery near Park Wall. They were wrapped in a piece of brown paper, and inside was a piece of a womans skirt of plum colour with two fringes of red and white. The band of the skirt has a blue ground with white check, and the bundle was tied with white Venetian blind cord, and some ordinary string. A large black pin was fastened to the band of the skirt, in the pocket of which was found a small black vaiganite moulded button, the surface of which is marked with parallel lines. The remains consist of the upper part of a womans trunk, some of the ribs being missing. The breast bone has been cut nearly across. The chest cavity is empty, but the portion found contains the spleen, both kidneys and portion of the stomach and intestines. The five lower ribs are entire, and portions of the upper ones were found, but the first and second ribs are missing."

    "Joseph Davis, in the course of an interview, said: I am a gardener employed in Battersea Park. About 20 minutes to two this afternoon I was at work there, when I saw a parcel lying among shrubs near the frame ground. This place is about 200 yards from the river shore, and is closed to the public, but people can get to a path leading to it by first climbing a low railing. The place is not much frequented by anyone employed, and the parcel might be unnoticed here for some time. When I got near the bundle I noticed a most suspicious and very unpleasant smell, and after examining it I called P.C. Angler, and together we conveyed it to the police station in a garden basket."


  • #2
    Joshua,

    These clips may provide enough info to figure it out.

    The wall would seem to indicate the Albert Bridge Road side in my opinion.







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    • #3
      This plan of Battersea Park from a 1904 book has a 'frame yard' marked on, close to the nursery area mentioned in other similar discussions.
      ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

      I am not DJA. He's called Dave.

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      • #4
        Click image for larger version  Name:	frame yard.JPG Views:	0 Size:	82.9 KB ID:	704386
        ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

        I am not DJA. He's called Dave.

        Comment


        • #5
          Joseph Davies said that the spot was about 200 yards from the river shore. That puts it in the area immediately to the south of the frame yard. He also said, if I understand it correctly, that the spot was about 25 yards from the railing beyond which the public were not admitted. I'm assuming Davies spotted the bundle while walking along the path to/from the frame ground. In other words, it was probably not far from the path if he could see it. The layout of paths today seems to be pretty much the same as it was then, so I would place the spot approximately here (see image). Of course, it could have been on the other side of the path (because that would still be approximately 200 yards from the river, 25 yards from the fence barring the public, and adjacent to the frame ground wall) but this is surely the general area.

          Click image for larger version

Name:	batterseapark-torso.jpg
Views:	113
Size:	116.2 KB
ID:	704751

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          • #6
            Aah, I knew you'd come through, well done all. And welcome to the boards, Dubmill, excellent first post! I think your suggestion is probably pretty close. The one doubt I have is that, if the dump site was that close to the frame-ground entrance, wouldn't Davies simply have said so? Then again, that does seem to be the only place near the wall with a path to it marked on the map. Nevertheless, it must be somewhere in the vicinity, and for me, certainly somewhere along the non-river side of that walled off area.
            Is that map an old one overlayed with a modern one, Dubmill? Of so, is the "park police" point modern or period?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by dubmill View Post
              Joseph Davies said that the spot was about 200 yards from the river shore. That puts it in the area immediately to the south of the frame yard. He also said, if I understand it correctly, that the spot was about 25 yards from the railing beyond which the public were not admitted. I'm assuming Davies spotted the bundle while walking along the path to/from the frame ground. In other words, it was probably not far from the path if he could see it. The layout of paths today seems to be pretty much the same as it was then, so I would place the spot approximately here (see image). Of course, it could have been on the other side of the path (because that would still be approximately 200 yards from the river, 25 yards from the fence barring the public, and adjacent to the frame ground wall) but this is surely the general area.

              Click image for larger version

Name:	batterseapark-torso.jpg
Views:	113
Size:	116.2 KB
ID:	704751
              welcome Dub
              very nice and thanks for posting.

              it dosnt look to me like the torso could have been thrown from the albert bridge/road? how far is that spot from it?if its 200 yards from the river-than that spot to the bridge/road looks at least 50yards?
              "Is all that we see or seem
              but a dream within a dream?"

              -Edgar Allan Poe


              "...the man and the peaked cap he is said to have worn
              quite tallies with the descriptions I got of him."

              -Frederick G. Abberline

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post

                welcome Dub
                very nice and thanks for posting.

                it dosnt look to me like the torso could have been thrown from the albert bridge/road? how far is that spot from it?if its 200 yards from the river-than that spot to the bridge/road looks at least 50yards?
                I don't think it was thrown from the bridge (sorry Debs). One interview with Davies says it was found 200yds from the river, another that it was 200yds from the wicket gate at Albert Bridge. They may both apply, or be confused one for the other, but I'm not sure whether he meant as the crow flies or along the winding paths.

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                • #9
                  I think by 'the wicket gate' it means the one not far from the river, on the south side of the bridge. There are no other gates shown on the map untll the main one, the Albert Gate or West Gate, at the junction with Park Road (now Parkgate Road). The distance from the river or the wicket gate would be roughly the same. Davies did say it was near the wall of the frame yard, so my thinking was that if it was both near the wall and 200 yards from the river (or for that matter the wicket gate), it would have to be on the south side of the frame ground.

                  Originally posted by Joshua Rogan View Post
                  Is that map an old one overlayed with a modern one, Dubmill? Of so, is the "park police" point modern or period?
                  Yes, I overlaid the modern map and one from 1915. There was no police station shown there then.

                  https://maps.nls.uk/geo/explore/#zoo...layers=168&b=7
                  Last edited by dubmill; 04-07-2019, 09:43 AM.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Joshua Rogan View Post

                    I don't think it was thrown from the bridge (sorry Debs).
                    No Problem, JR. Luckily I have no theory based on my idea and so will not fight to the death over it. I agree with you.

                    Excellent work Dubmill.
                    ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

                    I am not DJA. He's called Dave.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I have seen the park police referenced in relation to Battersea Park in the 90's IIRC . That might be a turn up for the books if there was police presence in that particular area.
                      ,,`,, Debs ,,`,,

                      I am not DJA. He's called Dave.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Debra A View Post
                        I have seen the park police referenced in relation to Battersea Park in the 90's IIRC . That might be a turn up for the books if there was police presence in that particular area.
                        Mmm! I don't believe there was any police presence at the Whitehall dump site (it being a building site at the time) but if there were police in the park at the time it would be interesting indeed.
                        This site suggests the park police came into being around the time of the murder (coincidentally? in the wake of the LCC takeover from the MBoW);
                        ​​​​http://www.londongardenstrust.org/features/policing.htm

                        But other sources (the mighty Wikipedia, anyway) suggest the "Royal Park Keepers" had been around since 1872.

                        It seems anyway that by 1899 Battersea Park had 18 police officers based there, one even living in the park itself;

                        "Battersea Park had an inspector, a sergeant and sixteen constables"

                        "Battersea Park: one inspector in a lodge in 1899"

                        I wonder if there are any recorded earlier?

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by dubmill View Post
                          I think by 'the wicket gate' it means the one not far from the river, on the south side of the bridge. There are no other gates shown on the map untll the main one, the Albert Gate or West Gate, at the junction with Park Road (now Parkgate Road). The distance from the river or the wicket gate would be roughly the same. Davies did say it was near the wall of the frame yard, so my thinking was that if it was both near the wall and 200 yards from the river (or for that matter the wicket gate), it would have to be on the south side of the frame ground.
                          Yep, agree with that. Although there are in fact two small pedestrian gates visible today, and possibly on the map posted by Debra. But only 20-30 yards apart so little difference whichever one Davies was referring to.



                          Yes, I overlaid the modern map and one from 1915. There was no police station shown there then.
                          Lovely, ta.

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