YOUR NEWS: Murder in Brimington in 1881, a true story

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My book, "Rags to Bones", has been published by Tavernicus Publishing and is available as a paperback on Amazon Books and on Kindle as an e-book.

The book tells the true story of the murder of a six year old girl, Eleanor Windle, in Brimington on the 20th of August 1881 and follows the daily events through to November when the accused goes to trial.

I was born in Chesterfield and now live near Oxford. I was brought up in both Old and New Whittington and am a member of the Windle family. My birth date is the 20th August. I was educated at St Helena's Grammar School for Girls in the 1960's and then trained as a history teacher . As a child I was warned off talking to rag and bone men as part of Windle family folklore although the reason for the warning had been lost in the mist of time. In researching the Windle family tree the true events of the brutal violation of a very young Windle girl unfolded. The accused was a rag and bone man!

After researching this piece of family history for nearly five years I decided to share the compelling story and my book, entitled Rags to Bones, is the result. The book has obvious local interest as Chesterfield people will recognise the many locations which include places in Chesterfield town as well as many in Brimington, most of which still exist today. Derby and Leicester also feature. Pictures of the places are viewable in the Gallery at www.ragstobones.co.uk .

Many local family names are mentioned as there were over 20 witnesses called to the inquest and later the trial. If anyone has images relating to the story, in particular anything relating to the Windles or to Superintendent Elijah Carline of the Chesterfield Police that would be a great help as none emerged in my research.

Readers interested in history can follow the legal and court process in the late 19th century. The book is also an account of the social history of the time as it follows day by day how the crowds were in uproar and how the newspapers followed the story in all it's drama.

Although my home is now " down south" I have a foothold in Derbyshire which is always in my heart as we have a cottage near to Chatsworth which we frequent as much as possible.

Linda Gatto

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