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The British Newspaper Archive

British Newspaper Archive

Read about historical events at the time they were happening. Perhaps you'll discover your ancestor in their local newspaper?

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Rendcomb murderer - final update

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Unknown Report 2 Jul 2004 17:11

Today I got a prompt response from the West London Mental Health Trust about my ancestor William Mealing. Despite making a big song and dance about confidentiality and my having to send lots of certs to "prove" my connection to him [though as we know certs often don't "prove" anything!], the result was not at all exciting. William was transferred from Bethlem Hospital to Broadmoor on 23 July 1864. He died there on 22 July 1864, an inquest held 2 days later confirmed he died from natural causes and he was buried there on 27 July in an unmarked grave. So I'm now thinking the poor chap was in a secure environment for over 40 years. He was obviously fed and clothed, but what kind of life did he have? Was he treated well, did he have any kind of therapy and did he have any visitors? I imagine not since his close family were poor and lived in Gloucestershire. Helen