Research Blog. Week 1

Zoom Research Workshop

With Barbara Crosbie.

We got off to a great start with the first meeting of the research team. The police reports gave us some very useful details but also a lot to think about. We know the body was found on Killhope Moor close to where the counties of Durham, Northumberland, and (what is now) Cumbria meet. The remains were those of a male (age unknown) dressed in old-fashioned clothing, but without any trousers. We had some excellent suggestions about why this might be, but I’ll leave that your imagination for now. The body was wrapped in woollen blankets, before being placed in a pitch pine coffin with a two-part gable or vaulted lid (like a house roof).  We decided we need to know more about his clothes and coffin – so watch this space!

The man who found the body, Titus Harrison, was more than a mile from home tending his sheep when he stumbled on the remains, and it was eight hours later when he reported the find to the police in St John’s Chapel.  This made us think about how he got the six or so miles to the police station, and why he had not reported it to one the constables stationed in nearer villages. Maybe, because it was Sunday the station at St John’s Chapel was the only one open. Did Titus have to walk all the way to report his find? Would either the policemen or the local doctor who went the next morning to examine the body have had motorised transport?  All things we need to find out.

Dr Barbara Crosbie

Research  Mentor