British Executions

John William Thompson

Age: 43

Sex: male

Crime: murder

Date Of Execution: 27 Mar 1917

Crime Location: Constitution Hill Farm, Molescroft, Beverley

Execution Place: Leeds

Method: hanging

Executioner: Thomas Pierrepoint


John Thompson was convicted of the murder of Lily Tindale 13 and sentenced to death.

He cut her throat at Constitution Hill Farm, Molescroft, near Beverley on 15 February 1917.

John Thompson had been a shepherd.

He cut her throat with a razor.

He said that the knife that was found in his pocket that had blood on it was from bleeding a sheep. He said 'The knife found in my pocket which has bloodstains on it was done bleeding a sheep. I put the razor down a hedgerow as I went down the Leconfield Road.'

Lily Tindale was last seen in the stack yard at 2.10pm chopping wood by her mother. When she was found hidden beneath some straw near to straw stacks her hair was matted with blood and her eye was blackened and bruised as though beaten and her throat was cut clear through to the spine.

After the murder John Thompson didn’t go home and was later arrested in Beverley. when he was arrested his fingers were still covered with blood.

The police followed boot prints in the mud through fields from the murder scene to the point on the Leconfield Road where John Thompson put his razor. It was covered in blood and was in part of a case, the other part of the case being found under Lily Tindale's body. The razor was identified as John Thompson's property that he normally kept on his mantelpiece and the prosecution said that when he took it from the mantlepiece he did so with the intention of killing Lily Tindale.

Before his execution John Thompson confessed to her murder.

see National Archives - HO 144/1475/332005

see Hull Daily Mail - Saturday 24 February 1917

see Evening Telegraph - Tuesday 27 March 1917