Ernest Henry William Twite

Mr Ernest Henry William Twite drowned in the pond opposite the King’s Arms on or about 10th September 1942.

Details of the newspaper report published on Saturday 12th September 1942 are given below.


Black-out Tragedy at Martham

A Coventry man’s fatal fall into the pond on Martham Green in the blackout whilst on a visit to his uncle was the subject of an inquest conducted at Martham on Saturday by the County Coroner (Mr G W Barnard).

The man: Ernest Henry William TWITE (57) of Ribble Road, Coventry was reported missing on Thursday evening and his body was recovered next morning.

The Coroner returned a verdict that death was due to accidental drowning in the pond into which he fell when he lost his way in the dark.

Stanley Twite, a sheet metal worker, of 220 Ferren Road, Wyken, Coventry, said his father lived at Martham with is uncle in his youth and regarded the village as his home.


John Frank Oliver, of Gaze’s Terrace (Cess Road) Martham, Twite’s uncle said he arrived at Martham on Thursday evening and at 9.15 left witnesses house to go to the King’s Arms. When he did not return witness went to the public house and inquired of the landlord if he had seen him. He was told that his nephew had left just before 10.30. Witness informed the Home Guard  thinking that his nephew had lost his way and men were sent out but he could not be found.  He sat up all night waiting for him and next morning reported his disappearance to the police. It was an exceedingly dark night but his nephew had no torch as he left it at Coventry.

Edward William Warner, labourer of Damgate, Martham, said  he was on Home Guard duty when he heard that a man was missing. When going to work early on Friday morning he saw a man in the pond on the green about ten yards  from the road, and with help pulled him out.

Arthur Harold Dulley, licensee of the King’s Arms, said  Twite called in at the house at 9.20 and had a pint of mild and two pints of bitter. When he left at 10.25 he was quite sober.  The distance from the door of the  King’s Arms to the edge of the pond was about eight yards.


PC Copeman said there was about three feet of water in the centre of the pond.  The direction Twite should have taken to return to his uncle’s house was to the right of the pond.

Answering the Coroner, witness said he himself had found it difficult on a dark night to discover when he had reached the pond. Other people had fallen into the pond and 17 years ago a man was drowned in it.   

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