1248 - Theft by William Turnpeny:
"Kintbury Through the Ages" (Kintbury Volunteer Group, 2004, page 15) records that "in 1248 ..
an escaped convict, Wiliam Turnpeny, having been captured and improsoned for theft in Hungerford, escaped again and sought refuge in Kintbury church. Possessing no goods himself, it was
the village that was fined!"
1675 - Felony by John Boone:
In 1675, John Boone, a maltster who lived in what is now Wilton
House, 33 High Street, was convicted at the Quarter Sessions at Newbury Court of receiving stolen goods. He was "legally tried and found guilty of the said felony", and as a result, his
punishment was to be "burned in the hand".
John Boone had bought the property in 1665 from William Curtis, the Parish Clerk for £86.
When John Boone was convicted of the felony in 1675, he claimed right of clergy, and escaped imprisonment, but all his properties were confiscated
to the borough. The feoffees (John Boone was one of them!) sold it for £200 to Jehosophat Stevens and John Lewis, but it was later bought back by John Boone snr and John Boone
jnr, (see 1722 deed) and he was able to remain in his residence (other properties were not "returned").
In 1692 John Boone (unclear at present whether father or son) became Bailiff, and Porrtreeve in 1693. In 1696 John Boone was Constable (although the boards in
the Town Hall give the years 1695 & 1706)
John Boone made a will in 1706, and died in 1714. His only daughter Sarah inherited his property. She had married (in 1704) William Ryman (plumber).
Follow this link to see the transcription of the Indenture
between the Feoffees of Hungerford and Jehosophat Stephens and John Lewis, granting them the lands and goods of John Boone, after his conviction for felony.
1676 - Murder of Martha and Robert Bromham - George Bromham and Dorothy Newman hanged at Combe Gibbett.
Combe Gibbett was erected in 1676 to hang George Bromham, a married farm labourer from Combe,
and Dorothy Newman, a widow of Inkpen. They were together found guilty of the murder of George Bromham's wife Martha Bromham, and their son Robert Bromham
The trial took place at Winchester Assizes, and began on 23rd February 1676.
The accused were charged with "the murder of Robert, son of George Bromham and of Martha, wife of said George Bromham, each with a
"staffe", and were ordered to be hanged "in chaynes near the place of the murder".
The public hanging duly took place on 3rd March 1676
See also: Combe Gibbett
1762 - Murder of William and Ann Cheyney, 1762:
The Berkshire Directory of 1762 reports that
"In the year 1762 a shocking murder was committed in this town, on the bodies of Mr. Cheyney and his wife, an old couple, who for many years had resided here: the murder
was supposed to have been perpetrated about nine o'clock in the evening, but was not discovered till the next morning. Many persons were suspected, but no proofs appeared
of their guilt. Diligent search was made after the author or authors, but without success, nor have they yet been discovered."
A mural monument was erected in the parish church against the wall of the north aisle which commemorated the burial of the murdered couple in
these words:- "Near this place rest the remains of William Cheyney, late of this town aged 83 and of Ann his wife, aged 71, who were barbarously murdered in their
own house on the evening of 11th of December, 1762."
- "The Murder of William and Ann Cheyney" in Norman Hidden's "Aspects of the Early History of
- A full report in The Gentleman's Magazine (1762 vol 11, pp 124-5),
- 114 High Street, Hungerford
1793 - Sarah Liddiard - Theft - Transported to Australia:
Lina Moffitt (of Australia)
contacted the Virtual Museum in May 2013 with the following information about her ancestor Sarah Richardson:
General Post Office, 15 March 1793:
Whereas Sarah Liddiard, the wife
of William Liddiard, lately a Letter Carrier in the Post office in Hungerford, was convicted at the assizes held at Salisbury the 9th instant, of feloniously stealing Bills and Notes,
which were taken out of a letter at Hungerford;
and at the same assizes an indictment was preferred and found against Mary Richardson, the wife of Thomas Richardson, Hungerford,
painter, mother of the said Sarah Liddiard, as an accessory after the fact to the said felony so committed by her, the said Mary Richardson was committed to Devizes Bridewell on the same
charge in November last, but escaped from thence on the 24th December. Whoever shall apprehend the said Mary Richardson and secure her in any of his Majesty's gaols of this kingdom, shall
be entitled to a reward of FIFTY POUNDS to be paid on her conviction.
By command of the Postmaster-General ANTHONY TODD, Sec.
Sarah was convicted at Wiltshire Assizes, 9
Mar 1793, and sentenced to 7 years deportation. She had married William Liddiard on 8th Oct 1792. She initially spent a few years on a prison hulk, before departing Oct 1795. She arrived
on the Indispensable on 30 Apr 1796. She remarried in Australia.
1803-1812 - Excise crimes by local maltsters
See: Crimes by Maltsters
1825 - John Giles and George Breadmore - Theft - Transported to Australia:
contacted the Virtual Museum about an ancestor John Giles, who was employed as a servant for 8 years by James Jelfs. John Giles was tried at the Berkshire assizes in 1825 and
sentenced to death - later commuted to life and transported to Australia.
John Giles was a farmer, ploughman and sawyer. He called upon Mr Jelfs his late master (of the Free Grammar School in The Croft) for a character reference but Mr Jelfs declined giving him one.
There is an article in the Berkshire Chronicle of 5 March 1825 detailing the trial of John Giles and George Breadmore charged with having on Saturday night the 18th of December feloniously and burglariously entered the dwelling house of George Edwards at Hungerford and stolen thereout a number of silver and plated articles also £40 in country bank notes. We do not yet know where George Edwards' house was.
- Trial of John Giles and George Breadmore, 28 Feb
- Report in Berkshire Chronicle, 5 Mar 1825
- Transcription on Indictment, Berks Assizes 1825
1830 - Agricutural "Swing" Riots in Bridge Street and other places:
See - Agricultural "Swing" Riots, 22nd November 1830
1876 - Murder of two local Policemen near Folly Crossing:
See - Police Murders, 11th December 1876
1987 - Hungerford Shooting Tragedy:
At lunchtime on 19th August 1987
local resident Michael Ryan began a frenzy of shooting. Over the next few hours Ryan was to murder 16 people, before he took his own life. This event shocked people around the
The Hungerford Massacre, as it became known, led to the Firearms (Amendment) Act of 1988, which banned the ownership of semi-automatic rifles and restricted the use
of shotguns with a magazine capacity of more than two rounds.
Much further material is available both locally and on-line.