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FATAL. ACCIDENT ATTIIE ROYAL 5 v NAVAl SCIIOOf. Mr. ø. J. Carttar, coroner! for West Kent, held a lengthened inquiry, on Thursday nig$it, in the Council Chamber of the lloyal Naval School, New-cross,. touching the'death of Richard Charles St. llelier Croker, aged 13, a pupil,. and. son of the Rev. Richard Grower, M.A., ehaplam-in the royal navy. It appeared that the deceased, with another pupil of the school were, on Wednesday evening, stand- ing on a rope ladder belonging to the gymnasium, when a cry was raised that a beam was cracking. The deceased jumped off the ladder, and was run- ning across the tan laid at the base of the gymnasium, when he stumbled and fell, and one of the two up- rights, weighing nearly 6 cwt., falling at the same instant, and striking him on the skull, the back and front of which was fractured, killed him on the spot. Mr. Renton, a surveyor, who had superintended, the erection of the gymnasium in the summer of 1858, gave evidence to the fact that it was con- structed upon the same principle as the gymnasium at Primrose-hill. The uprights being morticed ■' to the extent of two and a half inches into the lower part, which was four feet depth under- ground. The material used was crown Dantzic timber, a piece of which, where the fracture took place, was produced. The core of the wood was completely decayed and rotten, the outer part still retaining its fibrous character. In witness's opinion the decay of the wood had been occasioned through the,rain finding its way into the morticed portion of the upright; and in answer to questions put by the jury he stated that a fair price ( £ 95) was paid by the Council of the School for the' erection of the gymnasium, and that the Dantzic timber was the next best material to English oak, of which the Primrose- hill gymnasium was composed, being intended for the use of adults. Mr. Jamei, the secretary of the school, called Benjamin Johnson Shadgate, the house steward, who deposed that during the last Midsummer holidays he caused the whole of the tan at the base of the gym- nasium to be removed, and that he examined the timber work, but saw no trace of decay. The Coroner having remarked upon the melan- choly nature of the case, the jury returned a verdict of Accidental death," with a recommendation that in the future construction of the gymnasium English oak should be used, with beams of greater dimen- sions, and that the same should be subjected to periodical professional supervision.


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