Nurden, William

Nurden, William         1914 Dec 18th         Newton Toney

Sad Accident at Newton Toney

The body of Lieut-Corpl William John Nurden, of the Wilts National Reserve, a resident of Swindon, aged 50 years, was found on the railway near Newton Toney station Saturday morning, and the Coroner for South Wilts (Mr F H Trethowan) on Monday conducted an inquiry into the occurrence. Mr John Young was appointed foreman of the jury.

John Bevins, laundry keeper of Allington, said that on Friday at about 5pm he was in the waiting room at Newton Toney station. Nurden was also there and said he was going to Amesbury on relief duty. It was a very wet, dark night, and the train was late. They heard a train coming and Nurden said “Here’s our train,” and they went out. The train was a fast one and did not stop. In the mean time he lost sight of Nurden and never saw him again.

James Roberts, a driver on the L & SWR, living at Salisbury, said that on Friday he drove the 4.18 empty train from Salisbury through Newton Toney station without stopping. It was late. He noticed nothing unusual on the journey until he reached Bulford station when he found the headlamp was gone from the bracket. That made him think something had been struck, and on his return to Salisbury he reported the matter. He examined the engine but found nothing to indicate that an accident had occurred.

Isaac F Pennells, foreman platelayer, on the L & WR at Newton Toney, stated that on the Saturday morning at about 7.10, he found Nurden lying on the down road, dead, face downwards and about 45 yards west of the level crossing by the platform. One foot had been cut off.

Dr H Browne, of Amesbury, deposed to examining the body, and finding terrible injuries. Death was practically instantaneous, and was due to fracture of the skull.

The Coroner said it was an unfortunate accident which resulted in Nurden losing his life whilst engaged in his country’s service. He expressed sympathy with the relatives.

The jury returned a verdict to the effect that death was due to fracture of the skull caused by being accidentally knocked down by a train. They concurred in the Coroner’s expression of sympathy, and they and the witnesses gave up their fees for the widow.

A brother of Nurden said the family wished to express their thanks to Major Ketlock, in command of the Wilts National Reserve, stationed at Newton Toney, for the kindness he had extended to them in their bereavement.

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