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THE MONEY-LENDING INQUIRY.…

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FORESTRY IN CHESTER. ol

ACTION AGAINST THE HIGH SHERIFF…

CHESTER EXTENSION PROPOSALS.…

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A SOLDIER'S STRANGE DEATH.…

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A SOLDIER'S STRANGE DEATH. « THE INQUEST. Edward Tudor, a sergeant in the 22nd Cheshire Regiment, who resided at 7, Militia Barracks, Chester, was admitted into the Chester Infirmary on Monday suffering from a cut head, and he died the same day. According to information supplied to the police, Sergeant Tudor had some refreshment in the sergeants' mess at the Castle on Sunday evening. He left the place at eleven o'clock in company with two civilians. In the Castle Yard, just outside the mess-room door, he is supposed to have fallen down. The two civilians informed Sergeant Bert of the occurrence, and on going to the place he found Tudor lying there unconscious. He removed him home, and afterwards the unfortunate man was taken to the Infirmary, where he died as stated. The inquest on the body of deceased was held at the Infirmary on Wednesday morning before Mr. Frank Turner, deputy coroner, who, at the commencement, warned the members of the jury that the case was a rather mysterious one. After the adjournment to view the body, Dr. Herbert Emerson, house surgeon, gave evidence'to the effect that deceased was brought to the Infirmary about three o'clock in the afternoon on the day in question in an un- conscious condition. He had a small scalp wound on the left side of the head. They could do nothing for him, and he died between eight and nine o'clock the same evening, having never regained consciousness. The cause of death was hemorrhage at the base of the neck. The wound was rather less than an inch long, though the periosteum was undivided. From the general appearance of the wound the injury was likely to have been caused by a fall on any hard substance. Mrs. Tudor, widow of deceased, stated that her husband had just retired from the army on his deferred pay. He was 39 years of age. He went out of the house on the Sunday evening about seven o'clock saying he was going for a walk down town. She did not see him again until a quarter past eleven the same night, when he was brought home by a soldier, who was sober, and a civilian, who was so drunk that he seemed scarcely able to hold himself up. They propped her husband up in a chair, and witness noticed that he was bleeding on the left side of the head. She bathed the wound, and then a man named William Roberts came into the house with deceased's hat. The latest arrival had evidently had some drink, but he was perfectly sensible. He addressed Mrs. Tudor to the following effect: "I met this gentleman (meaning Tudor) in the Sergeant's Mess, and he had two glasses of beer with me. There were three of us. Your husband had two glasses of beer only." He added that three of them left the mess together with deceased, who was talking perfectly sensibly with them, but it was so dark they could scarcely see where they were going. Roberts then pointed to the other man in the house, and said, "This man, in coming out of the mess, stumbled, fell against your husband, knocked him down, and fell over him." He further told her that someone took him into the mess and introduced him to Tudor. Witness asked him if her husband was sober, and he replied that they only had two glasses of beer together. From what Roberts told her she gathered that there was a third man present. Witness deposed that Roberts also informed her that he said to those present, I'm not going to leave him, mate, in the lurch, I will see him safe through it." She asked him about the other man, and he replied that he turned and went round a corner. The man who went in the house with her husband asked Roberts to look at Tudor. When Roberts said he was sleeping, this man answered, You are not sleeping, old man, you are unconscious; your heart is bad." He spilt some water on Tudor, and witness, seeing that he was very drunk, asked him to leave her husband to her. He thereupon went out, remarking You won't be long, old man, it's your heart." Mr. Roberts went out shortly afterwards, and advised Mrs. Tudor to get her husband to bed. She and her children tried to raise him, but he fell heavily forward on to witness, and she was under the impression that he was in a drunken sleep. He never moved during the night, and his breathing became heavier and heavier. About 8 o'clock the next morning she sent for the hospital sergeant (Mr. Schloss), who helped her to get her husband on a couch bed in the same room. He asked her why she bad not sent for him last night, and added, That man has been strongly drugged." In changing his shirt witness noticed a large green bruise on one of deceased's arms, and called Mr. Schloss' attention to it, whereupon he made an examination and told her he thought there was some foul play. He after- wards said I tell you for a fact, Mrs. Tudor, your husband has been badly treated." He thought he was paralysed on the left side, and that the spine was injured. The smell as of drugs which emanated from her husband nearly made her vomit. Dr. Hopkins came later, and could hold out no hope. He asked witness whether she thought any one would be so wicked as to give him poison, and she replied that to her knowledge he had no enemies who would injure him. The doctor said there was a large clot of blood resting on the brain. Surgeon Captain Burt saw deceased, and was of the same opinion as Dr. Hopkins as to the clot of blood. Tudor shortly afterwards took a strange turn, and Dr. Burt advised his removal to the Infirmary, as nothing could save him but an operation. Dr. Emerson, however, when he was admitted to the institution, said he was too far gone to be operated upon. He died the same evening, never having regained consciousness. Witness had never seen the men who were with her husband. Deceased and herself had only arrived in England' three months ago from India, where they had been for twelve years. She had been under the impression for some time that deceased was not quite right in his head, as during the last twelve months he bad been reckless. Very little drink affected him. By a Juror: He had no money with him to her knowledge when he went out on the Sunday night. He went out with the intention of going for a walk, and he was in the habit of giving her all his money, and getting some from her as he wanted it. Sergt. Bert was in ebarge-of the quarter guard on the evening in question, and when he had relieved the corporal on gate duty just after eleven o'clock two civilians reported to him that Tudor had fallen down and cut his head. They came from the direction of the sergeants' mess. It was dark, but the men were sober. On going to the spot he struck a light, and found Tudor bleeding-on the ground. Witness spoke to him, but he did not answer. There were spots of blood on the floor, on the wood- work of a table, and on the iron rim of the table. He ordered assistance, and the man was taken home. He did not see a third man there. By a JUROR He did not hear of any alterca- tion having taken place in the mess. Frederick Roberts, driver, in the employment of the Chester Mineral Water Company, and residing at 4, Charlotte-street, met deceased at five minutes past 10 on Sunday night, by Frod- sham-street, with a fellow-workman of his, named McGregor, and another man named J. Tatler. McGregor left them, and the others went to the barracks at the invitation of Tudor, who appeared to have had a little drink. They had two drinks in the mess, and then went out at 11 o'clock. They walked through the yard adjoining the mess, witness being four yards in front of Tudor, who was followed by Tatler. He heard a sound behind, and asked whether one of them had fallen, when Tatler replied Yes, Tudor, and I fell over his legs." They lifted Tudor, and when they struck a match witness noticed some spots of blood on the ground, and saw that Tudor's head was cut. He left Tatler holding the injured man's bead, and went to inform the sergeant of the occurrence. Witness, in answer to questions put to him, denied that he told Mrs. Tudor he met her husband in the Sergeants' Mess, but said that lie accompanied him there. Neither did he say to her that Tatler stumbled and knocked Tudor over. He also contradicted the state- ment made by Mrs. Tudor to the effect that he said he would not leave the deceased in the lurch. He was quite sure that there were only three of them who came out of the mess. The reference he made to Mrs. Tudor about the man who went round the corner, and would not go with them, referred to the man McGregor, who left them at the Cross, and not to anybody at the barracks. There was not an unpleasant word spoken between them. He did not notice any table near where deceased fell, but the noise sounded as if someone had first come in contact with something and had then fallen to the ground. He had not seen Tatler since. He left Tatler holding deceased's head up when he went to the sergeant. At this stage Sergeant Bert was re-called, and repeated his statement as to there being two civilians who came to inform him of the accident. One was following the other. By the DEPUTY CORONER: Witness left the man Tatler holding Tudor's head up when he went for the sergeant, but he did not know whether Tatler continued to do so, or whether he followed him when he went to the gate. Mr. TURNER, iri addressing the jury, pointed out that there were certain points of the enquiry which were somewhat peculiar. According to the evidence of the deceased's widow, it appeared that very little drink upset Tudor. She made rather a strong point as to the drugs, although the doctors did not confirm her in her conviction. Perhaps, if they thought it necessary to recall the Infirmary surgeon, he might be able to enlighten them as to that. The point to consider was how he fell. They had had evidence about the table, also of the spots of blood on the ground and on the table. There seemed to be no doubt that deceased met his death by a fall, but whether accidentally or otherwise was for them to con- sider. There was no motive for, and no evidence of, a quarrel. In his own mind he thought that no doubt deceased had had too much drink, and fell down in the dark. After a short deliberation the jury came to the conclusion that the cause of death was hemorrhage at the base of the neck, caused by an accidental fall. The inquiry was of a very exhaustive nature, and lasted over three hours. THE FUNERAL. The interment took place with military honours on Thursday. A detachment, con- sisting of about a hundred men of the Cheshire Regiment, formed up at the Infirmary, and headed by the band, playing the Dead March' in Saul, the procession wended its way slowly to the Cemetery, crowds of spectators lining the route. The Rev. H. Grantham conducted the burial service, at the conclusion of which the firing party, under Sergt. Barnett, delivered three volleys over the grave. Capt. and Quartermaster Howard was present, and the parade was under the command of Sergt.- Major Dutton. A large number of deceased's military friends attested their respect by their presence, while the assembly also included many civilians. The chief mourners were Mrs. Tudor (widow), William, Bertie, Edward, and Arthur (sons), Daisy, Lilly, Elsie, and Florence (daughters), Mr. and Mrs. James Tudor, Mr. and Mrs. William Tudor, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Tudor, Mrs. Morgan, Mr. Samuel Tudor, Mr. Ernest Tudor, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Woodcock, and Messrs. James, Daniel, and Joseph Wood- cock. Messrs. Edgar Dutton and Sons carried out the funeral arrangements.

COURT MARTIAL AT CHESTER.…

- DEATH OF THE REV. CANON…

HAWARDEN FESTIVAL. <♦>

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