Answers to Questions


Murder of Fanny HILL, Broad Colney, 1880-1920

January, 2006




Marcia Anthony (davamarc @t of Newport Pagnell, Bucks, writes: I'm researching my husband's family tree in London Colney and surrounding areas. I've already found one murder, that of Gertrude Allen in 1910, who was a cousin of my husband's although several times removed. It has been mentioned in family tales that there was also someone called Fanny killed (not the same time). I have reason to believe it might have been Fanny Hill and she was killed at Broad Colney. I cannot find any info on this at all, having scoured the net, spoken to local libraries and HALS. Ii would appreciate any help or advise with this.  The family I'm researching are the Anthony's and the Allen's and also the Hill's.

From what you say I assume that you have checked the main indexes at HALS, and looked at the books they have relating to crimes in Hertfordshire. Did you check the Times Index, which I believe is available from a computer terminal at HALS?

However - if your information is correct there is another possible approach. If you visit Ancestry and look for "Fanny Hill" living in Shenley you will find one born there circa 1832 and living in Shenley in the 1861, 1871, 1881 and 1891 censuses. She is actually recorded as living at Broad Colney in 1881. (She probably hadn't married in 1851 - so would not show up in the search under her married name.) 

She is not listed in the 1901 census and FreeBMD shows that the death of a Fanny Hill aged 62, was registered at Barnet in 1895. Could this be her??? You will need to buy the death certificate to find out what she died of. If she was murdered you now have a date to help you to track down details of the event in local (and possibly national) newspapers - and court reports, etc.

Let me know what you find out - particularly if the death certificate confirms that she was murdered.

P.S. For others interested, the murder of Gertrude Allen is described in Connell & Stratton's book Hertfordshire Murders.

If you can add to the information given above tell me.

Page created January 2006