The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: The Scene of the Crime

When Thomas and William Bradbury were discovered on 3 April 1832, the scene was horrific, as were their injuries. Both of these were described in gruesome detail at the inquest and in the newspapers. Do these descriptions give us any clues about what happened in the Bill o’Jack’s murders?

Read More The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: The Scene of the Crime

The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: The Red Bradburys

As the people who had been detained on suspicion of murdering William and Thomas Bradbury were gradually released, it seemed that the culprits would never be found. But then two new suspects emerged – a father and son who it was claimed had a strong motive for silencing Thomas Bradbury. For years afterwards, the family were believed to be involved. But was there actually any evidence against the “Red Bradburys”?

Read More The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: The Red Bradburys

The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: The Night Before

While we can be fairly certain of most of the events which followed the discovery of William and Thomas Bradbury at on 3 April, there is much less clarity about what happened the night before. Almost everything we know comes from the evidence of one man, Reuben Platt. He spent maybe a couple of hours with Thomas Bradbury that evening before the two went their separate ways . His description of their encounter with three suspicious men formed the basis of a frenzied hunt for suspects in the following days, and much speculation since.

Read More The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: The Night Before

The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: The Tales of Thomas Smith, Ammon Platt and Joseph Bradbury

Apart from the three journalists who covered the story for the newspapers, we have two other accounts of what happened in the hours after the discovery at Bill o’Jack’s. But the major source for many who wrote about the murders afterwards was a book called Saddleworth Sketches. And its author, the mysterious Joseph Bradbury, did not always tell the truth…

Read More The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: The Tales of Thomas Smith, Ammon Platt and Joseph Bradbury

The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: An introduction

At some time late on 2 April 1832, two men were brutally attacked in their home on the edge of Saddleworth Moor. They lived in a public house, known locally as “Bill o’Jack’s” which was beside the road from Greenfield to Holmfirth – the modern A635. The men – a father and son, William and Thomas Bradbury – died soon after. Their murderers were never found, but the mystery has continued to fascinate people in the local area and far beyond for almost 200 years. Perhaps interest has been sustained through a combination of the murders remaining unsolved, the remote location and the undeniable brutality of the attack upon both men.

Read More The Bill o’Jack’s Murders: An introduction