British Executions

Richard Buckham

Age: 20

Sex: male

Crime: murder

Date Of Execution: 4 Nov 1906

Crime Location: Honeypot Lane, Basildon

Execution Place: Chelmsford

Method: hanging

Executioner: Henry Pierrepoint


Richard Buckham was convicted of the murders of Albert Watson 47 and Emma Watson 50 and sentenced to death.

He shot them in Honeypot Lane, Basildon on 23 August 1906.

Albert Watson and Emma Watson lived in a bungalow off of Honeypot Lane and on the morning of 23 August 1906 they went to fetch water from a pond in a field occupied by Richard Buckham's father.

Richard Buckham and his younger brother were there and Richard Buckham had an altercation with Albert Watson about them taking the water and he then shot them both dead

He had shot them three times with a double-barrelled gun that he had had to reload once.

Both of the brothers were arrested and tried for murder but Richard Buckham's younger brother was found not guilty.

They lived half a mile apart from each other. On the morning Richard Buckham and his brother had gone out together taking a gun with them and shortly after shot shots were heard followed by cries of 'Oh'.

Later the brothers were sat at breakfast but the younger one could eat nothing and after they went out to work.

Then, at 10pm the younger brother came back and told his mother that Albert Watson and Emma Watson were dead in the pond. When the police went to Albert Watson and Emma Watson's bungalow they found that it had been ransacked and a sum of money stolen.

The next day Richard Buckham and his younger brother were assisting the police in finding the gun and while they were examining the spot where the bodies had been found the police noticed that the younger brother was showing signs of agitation and when the superintendent questioned he admitted that Richard Buckham had shot Albert Watson and Emma Watson.

Richard Buckham then admitted that he had shot them saying that he had done so in a fit of passion. He also admitted that he had then gone to their bungalow and stolen 4s. 8d and a silver watch.

Richard Buckham's father said that Richard Buckham's grandfather had died in a padded cell at Colney Hatch and that his mother had a mania for breaking windows. He also noted that Richard Buckham's head was out of shape and said that he had been guilty of terrible acts of cruelty, on one occasion having had cut up a cat in a chaff cutting machine and on another occasion held a cat in a vice and tried to bore a hole into its head. the father also said that Richard Buckham had had a favourite dog which he had cut in half with an adze.

In court the younger brother said that Richard Buckham had been fighting Albert Watson and that while he had been running to get his sister he had heard three shots.

Richard Buckham said that 'They nearly killed me and I shot both of them'.

see National Archives - HO 144/840/146334

see Essex Newsman - Saturday 08 December 1906

see London Daily News - Thursday 15 November 1906