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Author Topic: Sheerness Robbery 1974  (Read 34078 times)

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John38

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #27 on: November 28, 2013, 17:08:37 »
I'm certainly interested and appreciate all the transcribing, thank you.

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #26 on: November 28, 2013, 16:19:10 »
That was a particularly long one, over 3000 words!

Not too many more statements to go and then some other paperwork.  It is all worth it if members are interested!

John38

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #25 on: November 28, 2013, 15:44:41 »
Your fingers must be worn out, Kyn

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #24 on: November 28, 2013, 11:57:21 »
Statement of:   Frank Bryan Marsh
Age:   Over 21 years.
Occupation:   Detective Sergeant 2101
Address:   Police Station, Sheerness, Kent.

This statement (consisting of 15 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 31st day of December, 1974.

At 9.50 a.m. on Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, I went to the Brewery Tap public house, High Street, Sheerness, where I saw Police Sergeant Redman, Detective Constable Tilling and Mr. Eric Percival Nicholls, all of whom were known to me.

I examined the first floor of the building and saw that a room, apparently used as an office, was in a state of disorder.

A toilet opposite was open and I saw a nightdress with a knot tied in it and an iron bearing a length of flex.

Upon further examination of the building I noticed that a ground floor toilet window at the rear was open.

Later that same morning, I went to a wall at the end of the rear garden of the Brewery Tap.  Beyond this wall is the school playing ground of Delamark Road School.

In the school grounds immediately over the wall was a small pile of safe ballast.  I then walked across the school grounds to a gate giving entrance to Beach Street service road, where I found further piles of safe ballast.  At the same point I found a safe hinge (labelled and marked FBM/D), which I took possession of.

I then followed a trail of this safe ballast to a flight of steps in a road opposite the entrance leading to Royal Road, some 200 yards from the rear of the Brewery tap.

At 2.50 p.m. on Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, I saw the accused Paul Harris detained at Sheerness Police Station.

I said to him, after identifying myself, “I am making enquiries concerning a robbery which occurred at Sheerness early this morning and believe you know something about it?”

He said, “No.”
I said, “What did you do yesterday evening?”
He said, “I was out with Rod having a few drinks.”
I said, “You mean your brother Rod?”
He said, “Yes.”
I said, “What time did you go out?”
He said, “About half past nine.”
I said, “Which pub did you use?”
He said, “The Phillipa.”
I said, “Any others?”
He said, “Yes the Brewery tap.”
I said, “What time did you leave there?”
He said, “About ten past eleven.”
I said, “What did you both do then?”
He said, “We went to the Cellar Club and came out of there between eleven thirty and twelve.”
I said, “What did you do then?”
He said, “Rod drove me home to Rushenden in his car and dropped me off.”
I said, “Which car?”
He said, “His Vauxhall.”
I said, “What did you do them?”
He said, “I went indoors and Rod went home.”
I said, “Have you seen rod since?”
He said, “No.”
I said, “Where was your wife when you got home?”
He said, “In bed, she got up.”
I said, “What time was it then?”
He said, “About twelve o’clock.”
I said, “I believe you committed a robbery some time after that.”
He said, “Me – robbery?  No, that’s not my game.  Thieving maybe, but never robbery.”
I said, “We would like to search your home.”
He said, “Okay,” and with other officers, including Detective Constable Biddiss, I went to 14, Ferry View, Rushenden, Sheppey, where I searched it but found no stolen property.

We then returned to the Police Station, when I said to Paul Harris, “I am not satisfied and have further enquiries to make.  You will be detained pending the result of those enquiries.”
He said, “Honestly Mr. Marsh, I don’t know anything about an robbery.”

At 8.15 p.m. the same day, I saw the accused Roderick Harris, detained at Sheerness Police Station.  As I entered the cell, he said, “F**k off.”

I identified myself to him, and said, “I am making enquiries concerning a robbery, and want to ask you some questions.”

He made no reply.
I then said, “Where were you last evening?”
He said, “Indoors.”
I said, “Did you go out at all during the evening?”
He said, “No.”
I said, “You were indoors with your wife?”
He said, “Look, get stuffed.”
I said, “Were you indoors with your wife?”
He said, “You know I wasn’t.”
I said, “Where were you?”
He said, “Look, you can’t verbal me on your own, so f**k off.”
I said, “I’m not here to verbal you.  I want to know where you were last night.”
He said, “You know I did a robbery.  I know I did a robbery, but you try proving it.  You’ve got no chance.”
I said, “What did you do with the stolen property?”
He said, “Give over.”
I said, “Do you want to make a statement admitting the office?”
He said, “F**k off, I’m saying nothing.”
I said, “In that case you will be detained here whilst I make further enquiries.”
He said, “Please yourself.  I’ve done plenty of jobs and you’ve never proved any of them.”

At 8.30 p.m. the same day I again saw Paul Harris at his request.

He said, “Can you tell me what’s happening?”
I said, “Enquiries are not yet complete.”
He said, “I know you won’t believe me, but I never did it.”
I said, “I believe you were concerned with your brother Rod.”
He said, “No.”

At 10.20 p.m. the same day, I saw Paul Harris, again, together with Detective Constable Biddiss.  Paul Harris said to me, “Honestly Mr. Mars, I have told you the truth.  I had nothing to do with the robbery.”
I said, “D.C. Biddiss tells me you know something about the robbery.”
He said, “Yes, I know Rod did it.”
I said, “Tell me the story.”
He said, “What I told you about being out with Rod was true.  He took me home and that was it.  About half past seven this morning he came to my house and gave me some tools to keep for him.  He also told me he’d done the Brewery tap and taken the peter.”
I said, “Have you still got the tools?”
He said, “Yes.”
I said, “What about eh safe.  Do you know where it is?”
He said, “Yes, I’ll show you.”
With Detective Constable Biddiss, I then took Paul Harris to his home and from a shed he took a nail bar and a screwdriver (labelled and marked FBM/B) which he handed to me.

With Detective Constable Biddiss, I afterwards took Paul Harris to an opens pace of ground near a reservoir at Halfway, Sheerness.  We searched the surrounding area, and from a bush took possession of a safe (labelled and marked FBM.A), which contained various documents.

I then returned Paul Harris to Sheerness Police Station and there obtained a witness statement from him (labelled and marked FBM/E).

At 9.30 a.m. on Thursday, 12th December, 1974, I again saw Roderick Harris at Sheerness Police station.
I said to him, “Do you now wish to make a statement about it?”
He said, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.  I didn’t do a robbery.”
I said, “That’s not what you said yesterday.”
He made no reply.
I said, “What are you saying now?”
He said, “Nothing.”
I said, “Where were you Tuesday night?”
He said, “Out with Paul.”
I said, “Whereabouts?”
He said, “We went to the Phillippa and then to the Brewery tap.  After that I took Paul home and then went home myself and went to bed.”
I said, “That’s not what you said last night.”
He made no reply.
I then showed him a Bank Credit Book (labelled and marked (IT/V) and said, “I see that you paid £135 into your bank yesterday.”
He said, “Yes.”
I said, “From where did you get the money?”
He said, “It’s my wages.”
I said, “What last week’s?”
He said, “No, the last two weeks’.  I had £57 last week and £130 the week before.”

At 12.30 p.m. Thursday, 12th December, 1974, at Sheerness Police Station yard, I examined a Vauxhall motor car, index no. KGF.839.D.  On the floor of the vehicle Is aw what appeared to be safe ballast.  Also on the floor of that car I saw a wooden stick (labelled and marked FBM/C), which I took possession of and later handed to P.C. Wallace.

At 20.50 hours that day, in company with Detective Chief Inspector Spencer, I saw the accused Roderick Harry Harris in the Interview Room at Sheerness Police Station.
D.C.I. Spencer introduced himself and said to Harris, “You know why you are here?”  Harris replied, “Yes.”
D.C.I. Spencer then cautioned Harris, and said, “I understand you are the owner of a Vauxhall motor, number KGF.839.D.”
Harris said, “Yes, I’m not sure of the number.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “I understand you were involved in an accident yesterday afternoon in your car.”
He replied, “Yes, I believe so, I had been drinking in the Rose at Queenborough.  The port and brandy didn’t agree with me.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “Don’t you work then?”
Harris replied, “Yes, but I wasn’t feeling very well, so I didn’t go.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “You say you were unwell but yet you went out drinking.”
He replied, “Yes, that’s right.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “Has anyone driven your car between Thursday evening and when you had the accident on Wednesday afternoon?”
Harris replied, “No, only me.  I ran out of petrol in Minster, when it was quite late.  I left it there.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “Was the car secure?”
He replied, “I don’t know about locking it up but I had the keys.”
I then said to Harris, “Was it still out of petrol when you went back to it?”
He said, “Yes, it didn’t start until the petrol ran through.”
I said, “Where exactly did you run out of petrol?”
He replied, “At the Broadway, Minster, between the two dips in the road.”
I said, “When did you leave it there?”
He said, “I don’t know the time.  I haven’t a watch, but it was some time Wednesday morning.  I walked home.”
I then said, “When did you go get your car?”
He replied, “It was later.  Stan Northover took me to the Island Motors and then took me back to my car.  Then we went to the Rose in Queenborough.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “Your car has been examined and safe ballast has been found in it.”
He replied, I don’t know anything about that.”
D.C.I. Spencer then showed him a cheque (labelled and marked MBG/15) and said, “This has been found in the car as well.”
He replied, “Don’t know nothing about it.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “You will see that the cheque is made payable to SOVA LTD., and signed C. Nicholls.  That is the name of the wife of the licensee of the Brewery Tap.  How did it get in your car?”
He said, “Don’t know anything about it.”
D.C.I. Spencer then showed him a length of wood (labelled and marked FBM/C) and said, “This was found in your car.”
Harris said, “Yes, that’s mine, it’s my walking stick.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “It doesn’t look like a walking stick to me.”
Harris replied, “It is my walking stick.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “Do you use a walking stick?”
Harris shrugged his shoulders.
D.C.I. Spencer then showed him a nail bar and screwdriver (labelled and marked FBM/B) and said, “These tools have been recovered from your brother Paul.  He says that you gave them to him to look after yesterday morning.”
Harris replied, “Not true.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “A safe has been recovered with the back forced open and it is the safe from the Brewery Tap.  It was found in a hedge at the reservoir at Halfway.”
Harris said, “Yes, I know the place, but I didn’t dump it.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “I understand your wife washed two pairs of your trousers before you were arrested, why was that?”
Harris replied, “Probably because they were dirty.  I get through a lot at work.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “What trousers were they?”
Harris replied, “I don’t know.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “When did she was them?”
Harris replied, “It must have been Tuesday because she doesn’t wash Monday.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, I put it to you they were washed because you wore one pair when you committed the robbery and they probably had safe ballast on them.”
Harris said, “I told you I didn’t do the robbery.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “Somebody assaulted Mr. Nicholls and I believe you were concerned.”
Harris said, “I am not a violent man.  I never use violence.  I don’t even get involved in street fights.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “I understand that you offered your brother Paul, two small bottles of perfume when you took the tools to his house.”
Harris said, “I told you I didn’t give him any tools and I don’t know anything about any perfume.
D.C.I. Spencer said to Harris, “A bank paying-in book in your possession when you were arrested yesterday shows that on the day of the robbery, that is on the 11th December, you paid in £135, where did you get this?”
Harris replied, “From my wages from the last couple of weeks.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “How can you manage to save £135 in two weeks?”
Harris replied, “I earn good money in the Dockyard.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “According to the paying-in book, previous payments have been paid in by your wife and they have not been such big sums.”
Harris made no reply.
D.C.I. Spencer then said, “Mr. Nicholls was found dead in bed this morning.  I have been to his post-mortem this evening and at this stage his cause of death is not known.  It may well be that this will become a more serious matter than one of robbery.
Harris said, “Oh, he is dead is he?”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “I am satisfied that you were concerned in this robbery and I want to know what part you played.”
Harris sat with his head in his hands for about a minute and said, “How do I know he is dead?”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “If you don’t believe he is, there is a report on the newspaper.”
Harris said, “Show we that then.”
D.C.I. Spencer then showed Harris a copy of the Evening Post, dated 12th December, 1974 (labelled and marked ERS/A) which he read.  He then said, “O.K. you win.”
I then said to Harris, “What have you got to say?”
Harris replied, “You’ve got plenty of evidence, so I’ll make a statement.”
D.C.I. Spencer then took down a statement under caution at his dictation.  He read the statement over to Harris, who read it, initialled the alterations, made the declaration and signed it (labelled and marked ERS/B).
D.C.I. Spencer said, “I wish to clarify a part of your statement.  You said that you gave one of the men your trousers and jacket and that you were in your underwear in the car and then down on the beach.  Do you expect us to believe that?”
Harris said, “Yes, it was wet and bloody cold, and it was freezing.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “I believe that you entered the Brewery tap and you are saying that one of the men wore your clothes as you are fully aware that safe ballast and blood may be found on your clothes.”
Harris said, “I keep telling you when they came out they made a noise like a bloody lot of elephants.”

At 23.44 hours, I was present when D.C.I. Spencer charged Roderick Harris with the offence of robbery, cautioned him, and Harris said, “Well, I made a statement.”

At. 00.35 hours on Friday, 13th December, 1974, Paul Harris was bailed under section 38(2) of the Magistrates’ Courts Act, to appear at Sheerness Police Station at 10 a.m. on the 9th January, 1975.

At 12.10 hours on the 13th December, 1974, in company with D.C.I. Spencer, I saw Roderick Harris in his cell at Sheerness Police Station.  D.C.I. Spencer reminded Harris that he was under caution and showed him two bottles of scent (labelled and marked ADP/A and ADP/B).  D.C.I. Spencer said to him, “These have been recovered from your home.  You remember I spoke to you about offering two bottles of perfume to your brother Paul.”  Harris said, “Yes, I remember you speaking to me but I can’t remember the perfume.  I have given my wife some Chanel but I don’t know whether it is that bottle.”
D.C.I. Spencer said, “How long ago did you give her the perfume?”
Harris replied, “Some while ago.”

At 3.30 p.m. on Friday, 13th December, 1974, together with D.C.I. Spencer, I saw the accused Paul Harris in Sheerness High Street.
He said to us, “Stan Northover wants to see me.  He has sent a message to say so, I think he’s got something for me.”
I said, “What is it?”
He said, “I don’t know.”
I said, “Is it about the robbery?”
He said, “I expect so, but I’m not sure.”
I said, “If he gives you anything, bring it to us at the Police Station.”
Harris said, “I will, but I’ve got to be very careful.”
I then arranged to see him later that day.

At 7.30 p.m. on the 13th December, 1974, I saw Paul Harris at Sheerness Police Station.
I said to him, “We have taken possession of two bottles of perfume.  I want you to examine them, and tell me if they are the bottles of perfume Rod showed you.”
He said, “O.K.”
I then showed him the perfume and I afterwards obtained from him a witness statement (labelled and marked FBM/F).
I afterwards said, “Have you seen Northover?”
He said, “No, he wasn’t there, but I’ll see him as soon as I can.”

At 10 p.m. on Saturday, 14th December, 1974, with D.C.I. Spencer, I saw Paul Harris at Sheerness Police Station.
He said, “Look Stan Northover is definitely in on this job.  I reckon he had the jewellery from the safe.”
I said, “Have you seen him yet?”
He said, “No, I’m going there now.  If he gives me anything I’ll bring it back for you.”
I said, “What makes you think he had the jewellery?”
He said, “He has all the stolen jewellery from round here.  I expect Rod gave it to him after he left me.”

At 10.20 a.m. on Monday, 16th December, 1974, I saw the accused Roderick Harris in his cell.  I handed him a Legal Aid application form for him to complete.  As I did so, he said, “Have you found the two men yet?”  I said, “No, I don’t think they exist.”
He sat and thought for a moment and said, “How about if I told you the truth?”
I said, “That’s all I want.”
He said, “I’ll tell you the truth then.  It was me that hit him.”
I cautioned him and said, “Do you wish to make a statement telling us the truth?”
He said, “Yes.”
I told him I would make the necessary arrangements.

At 10.52 hours on 16th December, 1974, in company with D.C.I. Spencer, I saw Roderick Harris.  He said to D.C.I. Spencer, “I want to tell you the truth.  I hit the geezer.”
D.C.I. Spencer then asked him if he wishes to make a statement.
Harris said, “Yes.”
D.C.I. Spencer then took down a statement under caution at his dictation.  He read the statement over to him and Harris read and signed it in my presence.  (Labelled and marked ERS/C).

At 18.20 hours that same day, D.C.I. Spencer and I saw Paul John Harris in the Interview Room at Sheerness Police Station.  Harris said, “I want to give another statement giving you the truth this time.”
D.C.I. Spencer then took down a statement under caution at his dictation, read it over to him and then he read and signed the statement in my presence.  (Labelled and marked ERS/E).

Signature:   F.B. Marsh.

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #23 on: November 23, 2013, 19:36:24 »
Statement of:   Carol Lillyan Nicholls (Mrs.)
Age:   51years. (Born 1.11.1923).
Occupation:   Housewife.
Address:   Brewery Tap public house, High street, Sheerness.

This statement (containing of one page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 23 day of Dec. 1974.

Signature:   C. Nicholls.

Further to my previous statement I have given more thought to the contents of my stolen safe, and now remember two other items which were in the safe.

Firstly there was a 9 ct. diamond and sapphire ring, valued about £75, also I recall a pair of gold cuff links, value £15.

I remember also owning a charm bracelet.  One of the charms, which I would describe as a small drum had broken off and I know that the drum was in the safe.

Signature:   C. Nicholls.

This statement was taken by me at The Brewery tap public house, High Street, Sheerness, on 23.12.74.  I read it over to Mrs. Carol L. Nicholls, and she read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   F.B. Marsh, D.S.



Statement of:   David Michael Hine
Age:   39 years. 5.5.35.
Occupation:   Bar Man
Address:   137, St. George’s Avenue, Sheerness.

This statement (containing of 4 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 23 day of December, 1974.

Signature D. Hine.

I am employed as a barman at the Brewery tap public house, High street, sheerness.  I am employed by Mr. Eric Nicholls, the Licensee.  I have been so employed during the last sixteen months, broken by a spell of six months when I was a self employed scrap dealer.  This spell was four months ago.  I am responsible for the running of the bar and cellar.  The house has one bar at present.

At about 5.30 p.m. on Tuesday, 10th December, 1974, I went to the public house and opened the bar.  I have a key to the street door of the house.  The house was open at 6 p.m. as usual and during the course of the evening, Mr. Nicholls came into the bar several times.  He didn’t stay long on these occasions and went upstairs afterwards.

At about 9.30 p.m. this evening, two persons who I know as Paul Harris and Rod Harris came into the bar.  I know them as brothers.  They came into the bar by themselves and drank by themselves.  They stayed until closing time leaving at about 11.10 p.m. or 11.15 p.m.

After I closed the bar I cleaned up and checked the premises.

During this time Mr. Nicholls was in the bar area.  After this I left the premises at about 11.45 p.m. leaving Mr. Nicholls in the bar.  The premises were secured when I left.

At about 9.30 a.m. the following morning, Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, I let myself into the bar of the Brewery Tap as is my usual practice so that I can prepare for the morning opening.  When I came into the bar from the street entrance, I noticed nothing unusual.  I went through the bar and opened the door leading into the downstairs hall.  From the hall there is the entrance door to the area behind the bar counter and the stairs leading upstairs.  When I opened the door to the hall I noticed the wires to the telephone were hanging in front of the door.  They appeared to have been cut.  I went to the area behind the bar counter, and checked this area.  It appeared to be as it was the last time I had checked it.  I then went down into the cellar, and checked the spirits locker.  This too was in order.  I came up and started walking up the stairs.  I then heard Mr. Nicholls say in a distant voice, “Dave, come up here.”  I thought something was wrong because of the way he called me and I ran up the stairs to the second floor where the bedrooms are situated.  I looked in the rooms but couldn’t find Mr. Nicholls.  I then went back downstairs to the first floor where the kitchen, living room, office and bathroom and separate toilet are situated.  As I got to the first floor I heard Mr. Nicholls call again.  I said, “Nick, Nick, where are you?”  I heard him again.  I went into the kitchen and into the living room which is off the kitchen.  I saw Mr. Nicholls wasn’t in there and came out again into the kitchen.  I then went into a small corridor adjacent to the kitchen.  I noticed that the office door was open and went in.  I saw the office had been disturbed and was very untidy.  I then heard Mr. Nicholls say, “Open the door.”  The voice came from the toilet situated opposite the office.  I went over to the toilet door and noticed a small hole in the door panel near the lock.  I unlocked the lock on the outside of the door and opened the door.  I saw Mr. Nicholls standing inside the toilet.  He was dressed in his night clothes, which consisted of pyjama jacket and trousers.  His face was blood stained and swollen.  His wrists were bruised.  I helped him into the kitchen.

As the result of what he told me I went next door to Oakshotts groceries shop and called the police from their phone as out phone was out of order in the bar.

When I opened the door of the toilet to let Mr. Nicholls out I noticed on the floor of the toilet, an iron and flex still attached (labelled and marked MBG/3) and some rags which I couldn’t identify again.

The following morning, Thursday, 12th December, 1974, about 9 a.m., I went to the Brewery tap to clear the bar ready for lunch time opening.  I was met in the bar by Michael Nicholls, Eric Nicholls’ son.  As a result of what he said to me I went to the second floor and into Mr. Nicholls’ bedroom.  I saw the apparently lifeless body of Mr. Nicholls lying in bed.  He was lying on his back and wearing his night clothes as on the previous night.  The blankets were pulled up to his chin.

At 5.25 p.m. the same day, I identified the body to Detective Constable Biddiss, Police Constable Simpson, Doctor Harse and others.

I should add on the Tuesday evening, 10th December, 1974, whilst Paul and Rod Harris were in the bar, three coloured gentlemen came in a couple of minutes before closing time.  They could not speak English very well and I served them with three drinks.  At closing time I asked everyone to leave as usual and Paul Harris whom I have referred to earlier said, “We’ll hang on in case there’s any trouble.”  He indicated the three coloured gentlemen.  I informed him there would be no trouble and everyone left.

Signed D. Hine.

The above statement was taken by me on 23rd December, 1974, at The Brewery Tao pubic house, High Street, Sheerness.

I read it over to Mr. Hine, and he read and signed it in my presence.

Signature: F.B. Marsh, D/S.



Statement of:   Nicholas Anthony Biddiss
Age:   Over 21 years.
Occupation:   Detective Constable 4272
Address:   Police Station, Sheerness, Kent.

This statement (containing of 5 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 23 day of December, 1974.

About 2.30 p.m. on Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, together with Temporary Detective Constable Williams, I went into the Railway Hotel, Sheerness.  I there saw Paul John Harris.  I said to him, “Can I have a word with you outside?”  He then accompanied us into the street and I said to him, “We are making enquiries into and offence which happened last night.”  I arrested him and he said, “O.K.”  We then took him to Sheerness Police Station.

At 3 p.m. the same day, together with other officers, I went to 14 Ferry View, Rushenden, Sheppey, in company with the occupier Paul Harris.  In his presence we searched the house.  I said to him, “What clothes were you wearing last night>”  He replied, “I’ll get them for you.”

I then took the following items of clothing from Harris which he took from a cupboard under the stairs.

1.   Jacket (labelled and marked NAB/A)
2.   Pair of trousers (labelled and marked NAB/B)
3.   Jumper (labelled and marked NAB/C)

I said, “What else were you wearing.”

He replied, “I can’t remember.”

At 6 p.m. together with other officers, I searched the house of Roderick Harry Harris in the presence of his wife Joyce Harris.  I then took possession of the following exhibits from a cupboard under the stairs.

1.   Left boot (labelled and marked NAB/G)
2.   Right boot (labelled and marked NAB/H)
3.   Flying jacket (labelled and marked NAB/I).

At 9.15 p.m. I went with Detective Constable Tilling to the Brewery tap Public House, High Street, Sheerness.  There I saw in a first floor living room, the licensee Mr. Eric Nicholls, who is known to me.  He was sitting in an armchair but stated that he was unable to get up without extreme difficulty.  I saw that his nose was swollen and there was some congealed blood in the nostrils.  I had a conversation with him.  I then told him we would call back in the morning after he had had a night’s sleep and obtain a statement from him.

At 9.40 p.m. the same evening, I returned to Sheerness Police Station, where the Station Officer informed me that the prisoner Paul Harris had asked to see me.  I went into the cell block and saw Paul Harris.  He asked me to come in the cell as he wanted to see me on my own.  I then had the following conversation with him.

Q.   I understand you want to see me.
A.   Yes, Look I ain’t having no part in this.
Q.   No part in what?
A.   The job that was pulled.
Q.   Up until now you have said you didn’t know about any job.
A.   Oh f**k off.  The Brewery Tap – Old Nick got beaten up.  You know me, I don’t use violence on a job.  I go in places what are unoccupied.  I’ve never harmed anyone, not on a job anyway.  You know that.
Q.   How do you know it was the Brewery Tap?
A.   Cause he told me about it.
Q.   Who is he?
A.   Rod.  He can’t hear us, can he?
Q.   No.  When did he tell you?
A.   He came round my place early this morning and told me that he done the job with some other blokes.
Q.   Were you involved in the job?
A.   F**k off.  I wouldn’t be telling you this now would I.  Look, just before you picked me up in The railway, I’d heard that Old Nick in the Tap had been beaten up pretty bad and robbed.  Well I aint having no f**king part in it, even if it is my brother.  I aint never beaten up anyone on a job and I’m not starting now.
Q.   What did he say to you?
A.   You get me out of here on bail and I’ll tell you.
Q.   You know full well that bail is not considered by me.  Are you going to tell me where he said the safe is?
A.   Look, I’ll take you to where he says he dumped it, and to where there are some tools he gave me.
Q.   Whilst I can arrange to take you out for you to show me where the safe and tools might be, I must tell you that someone else must come with us.
A.   If that’s the case, O.K. I just want to get out of here.
Q.   Sergeant Marsh is on the station.  Do you mind if it is he who comes?
A.   No he is all right.

I then left the cell to speak to detective Sergeant Marsh and a short while later I returned to see Harris with Detective Sergeant Marsh.

I said, “Here is Sergeant Marsh.  Tell him what you have just told me.”

Harris replied, “Honestly Mr. Marsh, I have told you the truth.  I had nothing to do with the robbery.”

Detective Sergeant Marsh said, “D.C. Biddiss tells me you know something about the robbery.”

He replied, “Yes, I know Rod did it.”

Detective Sergeant Marsh said, “Tell me the story.”

He replied, “What I told you about being out with Rod was true.  He took me home and that was it.  About half past seven this morning he came to my house and gave me some tools to keep for him.  He also told me he’d done the Brewery Tap and taken the peter.”

Detective Sergeant Marsh said, “What about the safe?  Do you know where it is?”  he replied, “Yes, I’ll show you.”

The three of us left the Police Station, and we went to his home at 14, Ferry View, Rushenden, where he took a nail bar and screwdriver from an exterior shed, which he handed to Detective Sergeant Marsh.  Afterwards at the direction of Harris we drove to some open ground adjacent to a reservoir at the top end of Southdown Road, Halfway.  We searched the area and I saw a safe in a bramble bush which Detective Sergeant Marsh and I took possession of and brought to Sheerness Police Station.

At 23.15 hours that day, I was present at the Police Station, when Detective Sergeant Marsh tool a witness statement from Paul Harris.

At 9.35 a.m. on Thursday, 12th December, 1974, as the result of a call, I attended the Brewery Tap public house, with Police Sergeant Redman & Police Constable Simpson.  We entered a second floor bedroom where I saw two ambulancemen, giving cardiac massage and artificial respiration to Mr. Eric Nicholls.  Present in the room were Mr. Nicholls’ son Michael, and the barman, David Hine.  I then left and went to the Doctor’s Surgery at 46 The Broadway, Sheerness, and collected Police Surgeon Doctor Uppal and returned to the Brewery Tap with him.

I was present when doctor Uppal examined Mr.  Nicholls ad pronounced life extinct.

At 11 p.m. the same day, I again searched 8, Ashley Close in the presence of Mrs. Joyce Harris, I took possession of the following items:

1.   Pair of light blue jeans from a washing basket on the landing (labelled and marked NAB/N).
2.   Combat jacket from a bedroom (labelled and marked NAB/P)

At 9.55 a.m. on Monday, 16th December, 1974, I went to 14, Ferry view, Rushenden, where I saw Paul Harris.  I said to him, “You are wanted at the Police Station for further enquiries concerning the robbery at the Brewery Tap.”  I then arrested him and brought him to the Police station.

Signature:   N.A. Biddiss.



Statement of:   Anthony David Pollen
Age:   Over 21
Occupation:   Police Constable
Address:   No.2 Support Group, Herne Bay.

This statement (containing of 1 page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 23 day of December, 1974.

At 11.15 hours on Friday, 13th December, 1974, I went to 8, Ashley Close, Sheerness, together with other police officers and searched the premises in the presence of Mrs. Joyce Harris.

Whilst searching the front bedroom I found a Wedgewood Vase, a bottle of No.5 Chanel perfume (labelled and marked ADP/A) and a bottle of Christian Dior perfume (labelled and marked ADP/B).

I later handed both bottles of perfume to Detective Chief Inspector Spencer.

Signature:   A.D. Pollen, P.C. 4130.




Statement of:   Diljit Singh Uppal
Age:   30 years. (3.8.44)
Occupation:   General Practitioner
Address:   Overton House, (Surgery), 46 Broadway, Sheerness.

This statement (containing of two pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 23rd day of December, 1974.

I am a Batchelor of Medicine and a Batchelor of Surgery (MBBS) and a partner in the practice of Dr, Madwar and Partners at Overton House Surgery, 46 The Broadway, Sheerness.  About 10.30 a.m. on Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, as a result of a telephone call to the surgery, I went to the Brewery Tap Public House, High Street, Sheerness.  I was directed upstairs to the sitting room, where I saw a patient sitting on a chair.  There were Police Officers present.  I asked the patient his name and he said it was Mr. Nicholls.  He was fully conscious.  I asked him whether he had been unconscious and he said he had not.  He said he had not vomited.  He looked shaken and was trembling a bit.  I did a full examination and found that there was a lot of clotted blood under his nose.  He was orientated to time and place.  His pulse was eighty per minute regular, blood pressure was 130/80.  His pupils were right – left reacting with light.  There was no neck stiffness but pscriatic patches on the body.  There was a small bruise at the top of the head and both arms and hands.  His right wrist was tender.  There was tenderness in the left side of the chest 4th and 5th intercostal space just in the line of the left nipple.  Movements in the joints were normal.  Cardiovascular system showed that heart sounds were normal and regular.  Chest – few basal crepts.  Abdomen – No tenderness was present.  As he looked shaken, I gave him a tablet of Valium 5 mg. orally.  I told him that I suspected a fracture in his nose and possibly ribs on the left side, so I wanted him to go to hospital.  I went back to my surgery and made arrangements, for an ambulance to convey him to Sheppey General Hospital, Minster, Casualty for X-rays.

At 9.45 a.m. on Thursday, 12th December, 1974, I was taken to the Brewery Tap public house, High Street, Sheerness, where I saw Mr. Nicholls in the bedroom.  He was lying on the floor near the bed.  There were two uniformed Policemen present and an ambulanceman.  I examined Mr. Nicholls.  His pulse was absent, heart sounds were absent, pupils were dilated and fixed.  There was no respiration.  I pronounced him dead and returned to my surgery.

Signature:   Diljit Singh Uppal.



Statement of:   George John Vickery
Age:   Over 21 years.
Occupation:   Detective sergeant 1525
Address:   Police Station, Canterbury.

This statement (containing of 1 page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 23rd day of December, 1974.

I am stationed at Canterbury where I am engaged on photographic duties.

At 6.30 p.m. Thursday, 12th December, 1974, I was present at All Saints Hospital, Chatham, when Dr. Harse, Home Office Pathologist, performed a post mortem examination on the body of Eric Nicholls.  During the course of the examination I took several photographs.  I later processed the negatives from which I made photographic enlargements now produced in album form (marked and labelled GJV/A).  I have the negatives in my possession.

Signature:   G.J. Vickery.

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #22 on: November 21, 2013, 12:19:30 »
Statement of:   John Austen Bellaris
Age:   Over 21 years
Occupation:   Detective Inspector
Address:   Police Station, Gordon Road, Herne Bay

This statement (containing of 7 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 22nd day of December 1974.

At 10.35 a.m. on Monday, 16th December, 1974, with Detective Chief Inspector Spencer, I saw Paul John Harris in the interview room at Sheerness Police station.  Mr/ Spencer said, “You know D.I. Bellaris.”  He replied, “Yes.”  D.C.I. Spencer then said, “Since you were last here, enquiries have been made which lead me to believe that you were involved with your brother Rod in entering the Brewery Tap.”  Mr. Spencer then cautioned him.  Harris replied, “No, not me,”  The Chief Inspector said, “You said in your statement that Rod called at your house about 7.30 to 7.45 on Wednesday, 11th December.”  He replied, “That’s right.”  Mr. Spencer said, “I know that his vehicle was left at West Minster before 6.45 a.m. that day, so he could not have called in his car as you said.”  Harris said, “He did call then.”  The Chief Inspector said, “I also know that he called on his sister-in-law’s house at 5.30 a.m. that morning and he had then left his car.”  Harris replied, “Yes, I told you he called.”  The Chief Inspector said, “How could he call on you with his car about 7.30 a.m. when he was trying to get a lift home about 5.30 a.m.”  He made no reply.

Chief Inspector Spencer said, “Your wife made a statement as you know to the effect that Rod did not call on you that morning.  You said that she would not tell the truth in any statement.  I believe that this was a truthful statement she made.”  Harris said, “He did call.”  The Chief Inspector said, “So your wife is a liar as you said.”  He made no reply.  The Chief Inspector said, “I believe the tools Rod is alleged to have taken to you are infact your tools which you both used to open the safe.”  Harris replied, “No true.  I wasn’t on the job.”  Chief Inspector Spencer said, “A cash box and bags and correspondence from the safe has been found in the mud at Rushenden some 200 yards from your house.”    Harris said, “He must have put it there.  I know nothing about it.”  Mr. Spencer said, “Your wife bought a bed and also put a deposit on a cooker on Wednesday.  Where did the money come from?”  Harris replied, “From my mother-in-law.  She lent me the money.”  MR. Spencer said, “I believe the money used was proceeds of the robbery.”  Harris said, “I didn’t do it.”

Mr. Spencer then showed him a piece of patterned material (CN/A – labelled and marked) and said, “This was found in the kitchen of the public house.  It doesn’t belong there.  From enquiries made it would appear that you were wearing similar material as a scarf during the evening of the Tuesday, 10th December, when you went into the Brewery Tap earlier.”  He replied, “I’ve never seen it before.  I wasn’t wearing it.  I had a pullover on.”  Chief Inspector Spencer was then called away.  I said to Harris, “There was quite a lot of ballast from the safe and it is possible there will be some on your clothing.”  He said, “If there is, that came from another safe, I opened for a couple of blokes.  I didn’t so it.  I only opened the safe for them.”  I said, “Where did that safe come from?”  He said, “The Methodist Church Hall.”  I said, “Where is it now?”  He said, “It’s over the wall along Alma Road by that electric thing, the sub-station.  You will find it there, that’s where the ballast came from you go and see.  I didn’t do the job.  I only opened it for these blokes.”  I said, “Who are they?”  He replied, “I can’t tell you that.”  I said, “What was in it?”  He replied, “I can’t remember, not much.”  I said, “What did you get out of it?”  He replied, “I can’t remember.”  I said, “Let’s get back to the job at the Brewery tap.  You obviously know more about the job than you are telling us.  Were you involved?”  He replied, “No, not really.”  I said, “What do you mean – not really.”  He said, “I didn’t have anything to do with it myself.  I have told you all I know about it.”  I said, “You have lied about the time your brother called at your house.  I think he called much earlier.  Did he call on you or did he drop you off after you had both done the job?”  He replied, “No, I didn’t do it.”  I said, “I know he ran out of petrol much earlier than you have told us that he called at your house.  He couldn’t have brought the car to your house at 7 o’clock or half past seven like you say.”  He said, “Well it was earlier about half past four.”  I said, “Why lie about it then?”  He said, “Well he is my brother.  I didn’t want to say anything which might make it worse.”  I said, “I think you both got home about that time and I also think you dumped the papers and the cash box from the safe not far from where you live.”  He replied, “No, he dumped them.  I didn’t.”  I said, “Why so near to your house?”  He said, “He came with the stuff and sorted it out and then he went out the back door and dumped it.”  I said, He sorted the stuff out at your house then?”  He said, “Yes, he counted out the notes and the change and then dumped the papers and the time.”  I said, “How much cash was there?”  He replied, “About £300.”  I said, “All I notes?”  He replied, “No, there was £337 in notes and £47 in loose change.”  I said, “And jewellery?”  He said, “That was in that tin box, a bracelet and some stuff.  It wasn’t much good.  There was a ring and a few other bits and pieces.”  I said, “What did you have?”  He replied, “He gave me some money.”  I said, “How much?”  He said, “I don’t know, he just gave me a handful and I put it straight in my pocket.  You don’t count it when somebody gives it to you.”  I said, “Where is it now?”  He said, “I spent most of it.”  I said, “What did you get?”  He replied, “We went down the Co-op and got that bed.  I got a coffee table and a picture too.”  I said, “What did you have left?”  I said, “I don’t know.”  I said, “Where is it?”  He replied, “I gave it to my wife.  When we had been to the Co-op I went in the railway.  They were talking about Nick being done then there was some talk about C.I.D. Officers and Nicholls came in.  I went out in the toilet and handed the money to my wife.  I thought if the C.I.D. came they would suspect me.  It had to be me, it’s always me.”  I said, “How much do you think you had all together?”  He replied, I don’t know - £65, £70, or £80, I don’t know, something like that.”  I said, “What about the jewellery.  Did you have any of that?”  He replied, “No, he put that in his pocket and took it away with the loose cash.”  I said, “Did you dump the stuff near your house?”  He said, “No, he did that, he went out the back.  I didn’t see him after that.”  I said, “What else did he have?”  He replied, “Nothing, just the stuff from the safe and a cloth bank bag.”  I said, “You are still not telling the whole truth are you?  You were more closely involved than just taking the money from Rod.  You were on the job.”  He replied, “No, I don’t have anything to do with violence.”  I said, “Was there anyone with Rod when he came to your house at 4.30 that morning?”  He replied, “No, he was on his own.”  I said, “He didn’t call on you did he, he was taking you home from the job.  You were both on it together.”  He replied, “It wasn’t planned.  I didn’t even know Nick was hurt.”  I said, “What is the truth?  What did happen?”  He replied, “It wasn’t planned.  That night he called on me and we just went for a drink.  We went in the Brewery Tap and I was speaking to the barman.  There was nothing in that about me talking to him about the kitten he said that Carol wouldn’t be back for a week but I didn’t mention it for that it wasn’t t find out anything it was only about the kitten.  Rod spoke to Nick but he didn’t answer and Rod said, “He must be bloody deaf or something.”

We ended up in the club walking to Stan and Sammy and about 1 o’clock we left and went for a walk down by the beach.”  I said, “Just the two of you left – you and Rod?”  He replied, “No, another bloke came out with us.”  I said, “Who was that?”  He replied, “I can’t say.”  I said, “Go on with your story.”  He said, “We went for a walk.  There wasn’t any planning, we just went for a walk down the beach.  When we got round the back Rod said, “Hang on here”, and he went over the school.  He came back and told me to hangon, and then he went over the back again.  He was gone some time and then he called out and he dropped the safe out.”  I said, “Where were you then?”  He replied, “In the garden.”  He dropped it down to me.”  I said, “Was there anyone else with you and Rod?”  He made no reply.  I said, “If there was only the two of you, how did Rod get the safe out on his own?  You were inside weren’t you?”  He replied, “No, I wasn’t – let me tell you I carried that safe on my own up the side of the tennis courts and along the back while Rod went and got the car.”  I said, “I would have thought the safe was too heavy for one to carry.”  He replied, I carried it on my own.”  I said, “In that case, there were only two of you then.”  He said, “Yes.”  I said, “The morning after the robbery, Mr. Nicholls was interviewed and said that there was at least two men inside who attacked him.  If you and Rod were the only ones there you must have been inside.”  He replied, “No, I never went inside.  I didn’t know there was going to be a job.”  I said, “Do you mean Rod went inside with someone else.”  He replied, “Yes.”  I said, “Who was it?”  He replied, “I can’t tell you.”  I said, “Why didn’t he help you with the safe and come back to your house to get his share of the proceeds?”  He said, “I didn’t see him after they went inside.  Rod got the safe out on his own.”  I said, “But the third man must have come out.  You were only in the garden.  You must have seen him.”  He replied, “He didn’t come out.  I don’t know where he went.”  I said, “Are you suggesting he went out a different way?”  He replied, “I didn’t see him again.  I don’t know where he went.”  I said, “What about his share?”  He replied, “Rod took that to him in the morning.  He had the jewellery and the loose cash.”  I said, “What did you do when you had got the safe to the car?”  He replied, “We drove to where we opened the safe and then back to my place.  We just sat in the living room and sorted the stuff out on the table.  I don’t suppose my wife knew that Rod had been there.  Then Rod went out the back and I didn’t see him again.  I didn’t go inside.  It wasn’t planned or anything like that.  I didn’t even know there was going to be a job until Rod went over the school.”

At 12.20 p.m. the same day, I again saw Paul Harris with D/Ch. Insp. Spencer, who said to him, “I understand that you have made certain admissions to detective Inspector Bellaris.”  Harris replied, “Yes.”  The Ch. Insp. Said, “Do you wish to make a statement?”  He replied, “Yes, but I will only say what I said.”  He then made a statement which was taken down by Chief Insp. Spencer and he read and signed it in my presence.  When it was concluded Harris said, “I’ll go down on remand now then.”  (The statement is labelled and marked ERS/D).

Signature:   J. Bellaris, D/I.

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #21 on: November 20, 2013, 16:57:40 »
Statement of:   David Andrew Murray Wallace
Age:   33 years.
Occupation:   Police Constable
Address:   Police Station, Central Avenue, Sittingbourne.

This statement (containing of 2 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 20th day of December 1974.

I am a Police Officer engaged as a Scene of Crime Officer in the Kent County Constabulary, stationed at Sittingbourne.

On the 12th December, 1974, I received from Detective Constable Biddiss, the following exhibits in sealed containers – jacket – P. Harris (labelled and marked NAB/A), Trousers – P. Harris (labelled and marked NAB/B), Jumper – P. Harris (labelled and marked NAB/C).

Also on the same day I received the following exhibits in sealed containers from Detective Sergeant Marsh – a safe and contents (labelled and marked FBM/A), a nail bar and screwdriver (labelled and marked FBM/B).

At 3 p.m. on 15th December, 1974, I attended at 14, Ferry View, Rushenden, and with other officers, made an examination of the living room floor. I took possession of certain debris from the living room floor which I sealed in a polythene bag (the exhibit labelled and marked DAMW/A). 

At 6 p.m. the same day, I received the following exhibits (all labelled and marked MFP/A) from Detective Sergeant Surridge:-

Passport No. P. 735837
Hastings and Thanet Share Book, MRs C.L. Nicholls.
Hastings and Thanet Share Book, Mr. E.P. Nicholls.
Barclays Bank Deposit Pass Book No. A/J 578407, C.L. Nicholls.
Barclays Bank Deposit Pass Book No. !/E 571284, C.L. Nicholls.
National Savings Certificate book No. ARM.8959 – Mrs. E. P. Nicholls.
Roneo – Neopast Card
Two coins:- 1.   Old Penny, 2.   South African two shilling piece.
Travel Agency account and receipt
Via Lanvin Paris scent bottle
Cardboard box lining
Letter – Mrs. C. Nicholls
Airmail letter – Mrs. C. Nicholls.
Various personal papers.
Three photographs
Four bank bags:-   1. White – Barclays Bank,    2. Yellow – marked £250 – 50 pence,   3. Blue, marked £20 bronze,   4. Green bag.
Christian Dior scent box
Christian Dior scent box

At 8.40 p.m. on 16th December, 1974, I received from Doctor Madwar a sample of blood in a sealed container marked Paul Harris (the exhibit labelled and marked AM/A).

At 10 a.m. on 17th December, 1974, I received from Detective Chief Inspector Spencer and off-white jacket in a sealed container (labelled and marked ERS/F).

At 3 p.m. on 17th December, 1974, I conveyed the exhibits NAB/A, B & C, FBM/A (safe back only), and FBM/B, DAMW/A, AM/A and ERS/F to the Forensic Science Laboratory, Lambeth, London, where I left them in sealed containers.

Signature:   D. Wallace, P.C. 3701.



Statement of:   Earl Rodney Spencer
Age:   over 21 years.
Occupation:   Detective Chief Inspector
Address:   Police Station, Canterbury, Kent.

This statement (containing of 10 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 20th day of December 1974.

At 11.05 hours on Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, I went to the Brewery Tap Public House, High Street, Sheerness, where I saw Mr. Eric Nicholls who appeared to be very shocked, and was trembling and apparently cold.  There was a large area of dried blood around his nostrils and mouth. 

Shortly after a doctor arrives, and subsequently Mr. Nicholls was taken to hospital by ambulance.

At 16,00 hours on Thursday, 12th December, 1974, I went to the Brewery Tap Public House, where I saw the body of Mr. Eric Nicholls lying on the floor alongside a bed in a rear bedroom.  He was dressed in pyjamas.

At 17.25 hours that day I was present at the Brewery Tap when the body was identified to Doctor Harse, Police Constable Simpson and Detective Constable Biddiss by Michael Nicholls and David Hine.

At 18.30 hours that day, I was present at All Saints Hospital, Chatham, when Doctor Harse, Home Office Pathologist, conducted a post-mortem on the body of Eric Nicholls.

At 20.50 hours that day in company with Detective Sergeant Marsh, I saw the accused Roderick Harry Harris in the interview room at Sheerness Police Station.  I introduced myself and said, “You know why you are here?”  He replied, “Yes.”  I then cautioned Harris and said,

Q.   I understand you are the owner of a Vauxhall motor, number KGF.839.D
A.   Yes, I’m not sure of the number.
Q.   I understand you were involved in an accident yesterday afternoon in your car.
A.   Yes, I believe so, I had been drinking in the Rose at Queenborough.  The port and brandy didn’t agree with me.
Q.   Don’t you work then?
A.   Yes, but I wasn’t feeling well, so I didn’t go.
Q.   You say you were unwell but yet you went out drinking.
A.   Yes, that’s right.
Q.   Has anyone driven your car between Tuesday evening and when you had the accident on Wednesday afternoon?
A.   No, only me, I ran out of petrol in Minster, when it was quite late.  I left it there.
Q.   Was the car secure?
A.   I don’t know about locking it up but I had the keys.

Detective Sergeant Marsh said, “Was it still out of petrol when you went back to it?!
A.   Yes, it didn’t start until the petrol ran through.

Detective Sergeant Marsh said, “Where exactly did you run out of petrol?”
A.   At the Broadway, Minster, between the two dips in the road.

Detective Sergeant Marsh said, “When did you leave it there?”
A.   I don’t know the time.  I haven’t got a watch, but it was some time Wednesday morning.  I walked home.

Detective Sergeant Marsh said, “When did you go and get your car?”
A.   It was later.  Stan Northover took me to the Island Motors and then tool me back to my car.  Then we went to the Rose at Queenborough.

I said, “Your car has been examined and safe ballast has been found in it.”
A.   I don’t know anything about that.

I showed him a cheque (labelled and marked MBG/15) and said, “This has been found in the car as well.”
A.   Don’t know nothing about it.
Q.   You will see that the cheque is made payable to SOVA LTD. and signed C. Nicholls.  That is the name of the wife of the licensee of the Brewery Tao.  How did it get in your car?
A.   Don’t know anything about it.

I then showed him a length of wood (labelled and marked FBM/C) and said, “This was found in your car.”
A.   Yes, that’s mine, it’s my walking stick.
Q.   It doesn’t look like a walking stick to me.
A.   It is my walking stick.
Q.   Do you use a walking stick?

Harris shrugged his shoulders.

I then showed him a nail bar and screwdriver (labelled and marked FBM/B) and said, “These tools have been recovered from your brother Paul.  He says that you gave them to him to look after yesterday morning.”
A.   Not true.
Q.   A safe has been recovered with the back forced open and it is the safe from the Brewery Tap.  It was found in a hedge at the reservoir at Halfway.
A.   Yes, I know the place, but I didn’t dump it.
Q.   I understand your wife washed two pairs of your trousers before you were arrested, why was that?
A.   Probably because they were dirty.  I get through quite a lot at work.
Q.   What trousers were they?
A.   I don’t know.
Q.   When did she wash them?
A.   It must have been Tuesday because she doesn’t wash Monday.
Q.   I put it to you that they were washed because you wore one pair when you committed the robbery and they probably had safe ballast on them.
A.   I told you I didn’t do the robbery.
Q.   Somebody assaulted Mr. Nicholls and I believe you were concerned.
A.   I am not a violent man.  I never use violence.  I don’t even get involved in street fights.
Q.   I understand that you offered your brother Paul two small bottles of perfume when you took the tools to his house.
A.   I told you I didn’t give him any tools and I don’t know anything about any perfume.
Q.   A bank paying-in book in your possession when you were arrested yesterday shows that on the day of the robbery, that is on the 11th December, you paid in £135, where did you get this?
A.   From my wages from the last couple of weeks.
Q.   How can you manage to save £135 in two weeks?
A.   I earn food money in the Dockyard.
Q.   According to the paying in book, previous payments have been paid in by your wife and they have not been such big sums.

He made no reply.

Q.   Mr. Nicholls was found dead in bed this morning.  I have been to his post-mortem this evening and at this stage his cause of death is not known.  It may well be that this will become a more serious matter than one of robbery.
A.   Oh, he is dead is he?
Q.   I am satisfied that you were concerned in this robbery and I want to know what part you played?

Harris sat with his head in his hands for about a minute and said, “How do I know he is dead?”

A.   If you don’t believe he is, there is a report in the newspaper.
Q.   Show me that then.

I then showed him a copy of the Evening Post, dated 12th December, 1974 (labelled and marked ERS/A) which he read.  He then said, “O.K. you win.”

Detective Sergeant Marsh said, “What have you got to say?”

A.   You’ve got plenty of evidence, so I’ll make a statement.

I then took down a statement under caution, at his dictation.  I read the statement over to him.  He read it and initiated the alterations, made the declaration and signed it.  (Labelled and marked ERS/B).

Q.   I wish to clarify a part of your statement.  You said that you gave one of the men your trousers and jacket and you were in your underwear in the car and then down on the beach.  Do you expect us to believe that?
A.   Yes, it was wet and bloody cold and it was freezing.
Q.   I believe that you entered the Brewery Tap and you are saying that one of the men wore your clothes as you are fully aware that safe ballast may be found in your clothes.
A.   I keep telling you when they came out they made a noise like a bloody lot of elephants.

At 23.44 hours, I charged Roderick Harris with the offence of robbery, cautioned him and he said, “Well, I made a statement.”

At 12.10 hours on the 13th December, 1974, in company with Detective Sergeant Marsh, I saw Harris in his cell at Sheerness Police Station.  I reminded him he was under caution and showed him two bottles of scent.  (Labelled and marked ADP/A and ADP/B).  I said, “These have been recovered from your home.  You remember I spoke to you about offering two bottles of perfume to your brother Paul.”

A.   Yes, I remember you speaking to me but I can’t remember the perfume.  I have given my wife some Chanel but I don’t know whether it is that bottle.
Q.   How long ago did you give her the perfume?
A.   Some while ago.

At 11.05 hours on Saturday, 14th December, 1974, I took possession of a piece of patterned material that was handed to me by Mrs. Carol Nicholls.

At 10.35 hours on Monday, 16th December, 1974, in company with Detective Inspector Bellaris, I saw Paul John Harris in the Interview Room at Sheerness Police station.  I said, “You know detective Inspector Bellaris.”

A.   Yes.
Q.   Since you were last here, enquiries have been made which lead me to believe that you were involved with your brother Rod in entering the Brewery Tap.

I then cautioned Paul Harris.

A.   No, not me.
Q.   You said in your statement that Rod had called at your house about 7.30 a.m. to 7.45 a.m. on Wednesday, 11th December.
A.   That’s right.
Q.   I know that his vehicle was left at West Minster before 6.45 a.m. that day, so he could not have called in his car as you said.
A.   He did call then.
Q.   I also know that he called on his sister-in-law’s house at 5.30 a.m. that morning and he had then left his car.
A.   Yes, I told you he called.
Q.   How could he call on you with his car about 7.30 a.m. when he was trying to get a lift home about 5.30 a.m.?

Harris made no reply.

Q.   Your wife made a statement as you know to the effect that Rod did not call on you that morning.  You said that she would not tell the truth in any statement.  I believe that this was a truthful statement she made.
A.   He did call.
Q.   So your wife is a liar as you said.

Harris made no reply.

Q.   I believe the tools Rod is alleged to have taken to you are in fact your tools which you both used to open the safe.
A.   Not true, I wasn’t on the job.
Q.   A cash box and bags and correspondence from the safe has been found in the mud at Rushenden, some 200 yards from your house.
A.   He must have put it there.  I know nothing about it.
Q.   Your wife brought a bed and also put a deposit on a cooker on Wednesday, where did the money come from?
A.   From my mother-in-law.  She lent me the money.
Q.   I believe the money used was proceeds from the robbery.
A.   I didn’t do it.

I showed him the piece of patterned material (labelled and marked CN/A) and said, “This was found in the kitchen of the public house, it doesn’t belong there.  From enquiries made, it would appear that you were wearing similar material as a scarf during the evening of Tuesday, 10th December, when you went into the Brewery tap earlier.

A.   I’ve never seen it before.  I wasn’t wearing it.  I had a pullover on.

I was then called away by Detective Sergeant Marsh and left Detective Inspector Bellaris with Paul Harris.

At 10.52 a.m. in company with Detective Sergeant Marsh I saw Roderick Harris.  He said, “I want to tell you the truth.  I hit the geezer.”

I then asked him if he wished to make a statement.

A.   Yes.

I then took down a statement under caution at his dictation.  I read the statement over to him and he read and signed it in my presence.  (Labelled and marked ERS/C).

At 12.20 hours I saw Paul Harris in the company of Detective Inspector Bellaris.  I said, “I understand that you have made certain admissions to Detective Inspector Bellaris?”

A.   Yes.
Q.   Do you wish to make a statement?
A.   Yes, but I will only say what I said.

I then took down a statement at his dictation.  I read the statement over to him and he read and signed it in my presence.  (Labelled and marked ERS/D).

Paul Harris then said, “I’ll go down on remand now then.”

At 18.10 hrs. Roderick Harris was served with an amended copy of the charge.

At 18.13 hrs. Paul Harris was charged with the offence of robbery.  I cautioned him and he made no reply.

At 18.20 hours, at the request of Paul John Harris, I saw him with Detective Sergeant Marsh in the Interview room at Sheerness Police Station.  Harris said, “I want to give another statement giving you the truth this time.”

I took down a statement under caution, at his dictation.  I read the statement over to him and he read and signed it in my presence.  (Labelled and marked ERS/E).

At 11.00 hrs. on 17th December, 1974, I saw Roderick Harris.  I said to him, “I wish to put some questions to you about the offence with which you have been charged.  You are not obliged to answer any of these questions, but if you do, the questions and answers will be taken down in writing and may be given in evidence.”

I then took possession of a white jacket from Rod Harris (labelled and marked ERS/F).

Q.   Is this your jacket?
A.   Yes.
Q.    I understand your wife has had it cleaned for you.  Why was that?
A.   To appear at Court today, same as the trousers.
Q.   Was this the jacket you were wearing when you assaulted Mr. Nichollls?
A.   No.
Q.   It would appear that this jacket has bloodstains on it.
A.   Oh, I got beat up one night.
Q.   How long ago?
A.   It was on Friday night, only a few weeks back.

Signature:   ER. Spencer.

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #20 on: November 18, 2013, 20:23:24 »
Statement of:   Ian Tilling
Age:   Over 21 years.
Occupation:   Detective Constable 5041
Address:   Police Station, Sheerness.

This statement (containing of 3 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 18th day of December, 1974.

At 9.45 a.m., Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, as a result of what I had been told, I went to the Brewery Tap public house, in company with Police Sergeant Redman.  We were met by Mr. David Hine, a barman.  As a result of what Hine said, together with P.S. Redman, I went to the kitchen, situated on the second floor.

Sitting on a chair in the kitchen I saw a man I know as Eric Percival Nicholls.  He was shocked and very distressed.  I saw that the lower half of his face was heavily bloodstained, as was his pyjamas he was wearing.  I said, “Do you want to see your doctor or go to hospital?”  He said, “No, I’m all right.”

I then left Mr. Nicholls with Mr. Hine and went to an adjacent hallway corridor.  To my left I saw an office which was very untidy with papers, bank notes, coins and other objects scattered over the floor and tables.  I noticed the door to the officer was open, and when I examined it, noticed that wood from the door was lying in the doorway.  Wood from the doorjam surrounding the lock keep was also broken.  It was consistent with the door being forced from the outside of the office.

Opposite the office I saw a toilet.  The door was open and there was a small hole in the door panel near to the lock.  The wood was broken and splinters were facing towards the hall from the toilet.  I noticed on the floor, inside the toilet, an iron and flex (labelled and marked MBG/3) and what appeared to be a nightdress knotted in the centre (labelled and marked MBG/2).

I then left the kitchen area and began to walk downstairs.  I noticed a window was open opposite me.

Looking through the open window I saw a flat metal roof.  I noticed the roof, opposite the window two scratch marks about 2 feet apart.  I then carried on walking down the stairs to the ground floor.  In this hallway I noticed several wires were broken and hanging.  Several of these wires were telephone wires.

I saw a telephone on the floor of the hallway.

I examined the flat roof and returned to the yard.  I followed a red brick path in the yard.  The path followed close to the wall of the premises.  At one point I noticed a large indentation in the path and safe ballast in and around the spot.  I then went to a low wall at the rear of the yard.  Beyond this wall is the play ground of Delamark School.  There was a stretch of earth in front of the wall.  I noticed a boot mark in the earth, the toe pointing towards the wall.  I then returned to the kitchen and again saw Nicholls sitting in the chair.  He attempted to stand up but could not do so without support.

At 9.15 p.m., the same day, in company with Detective Constable Biddiss, I again saw Nicholls at the Brewery tap Public House.  He was sitting in an arm chair in the living room.  He was coherent but still very distressed.

At 6 p.m. on Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, together with other officers I searched 8, Ashley Close, Halfway, Minster, Sheppey, in the presence of Mrs. Joyce Harris.  I took possession of the following exhibits from the master bedroom:-

A pair of trousers (labelled and marked IT/A)
A Pair of trousers (labelled and marked IT/B)
A coat labelled and marked IT/C)
A left glove (labelled and marked IT/D)
A right glove (labelled and marked IT/E)
A left glove (labelled and marked IT/F)
A right glove (labelled and marked IT/G)

At 7.15 p.m. I returned to Sheerness Police Station and checked the property of Roderick Harris and found a Barclays Bank paying-in book in the name of Roderick Harris (labelled and marked IT/V.)

Signature:   I. Tilling, D.C.




Statement of:   Richard Donald Eldridge
Age:   Over 21 years.
Occupation:   Detective Constable 4565
Address:   Police Station, Faversham.

This statement (containing of 1 page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 19th day of December, 1974.

At 10.45 hours on Sunday, December, 15th 1974, I saw Roderick Harris at Sheerness Police Station.  I introduced myself to him and said, “Take me to the spot where you abandoned your car on the morning of Wednesday, December, 11th, 1974.”  Harris directed me to Woodland Drive, Minster, and pointed out a spot some 20 yards from its junction with The Broadway, Minster, in Woodland Drive, the vehicle being parked on the south side of this road, facing east.

At 11.20 hours on Sunday, December, 15th, 1974, I saw Stanley Northover at his shop premises in The Broadway, Sheerness.  I said to him, “Will you take me to the spot where you saw Roderick Harris’s car parked on the morning of Wednesday, December, 11th, 1974.”  He directed me to Woodland drive, Minster, and pointed out a spot on the south side of this road some 20 yards in from its junction with The Broadway, Minster.  The vehicle had been facing east.

Signature:   R.D. Eldridge.

John38

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #19 on: November 16, 2013, 10:53:45 »
The amount of physical material collected is considerable, which, together with the many statements taken, makes a substantial body of evidence

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #18 on: November 15, 2013, 14:27:41 »
Statement of:   Malcolm Edward Pordage
Age:   31 years.  (DOB. 14.10.43)
Occupation:   Restaurateur
Address:   The White House, The Broadway, Minster.

This statement (containing of 2 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 17th December, 1974.

I am the proprietor of The White House Restaurant, The Broadway, Minster.

About 3.30 p.m. on Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, I was in the restaurant clearing up for the day and standing by the front door.  I looked up and I saw a blue Vauxhall saloon car with a gold flake spray on the bonnet and boot lids.  This vehicle was travelling about 30 to 40 miles per hour from the direction of Sheerness and going round the bend which is situated outside my restaurant.  This is the junction of Marine Parade, The Leas and The Broadway, Minster, which has to be taken with extreme caution for vehicles travelling along Marine Parade into the Broadway.  I thought when I saw this Vauxhall it was travelling too fast for the corner.  As it went round the bend I saw it mount the kerb by where the road name for the Broadway is situated, this being immediately opposite the front door to my place and where I was standing.  The vehicle knocked the conduit covering off of a telegraph pole and then hit a lamp standard a few yards further along where it stopped.  The driver got out of the car, stood by his door and looked towards the front of the vehicle.  I would describe him as 30 years. 5’ 8”, medium build, fair shoulder length hair, wearing what looked like a combat jacket, possibly light in colour, but as the light was failing, I’m not sure about this.  I would describe his general dress as that of a builder.  I would not recognise him again.

After he had looked towards the front he got straight back in and reversed up and then drove off in the direction of Minster, along the Broadway.  When he drove off, I took the index number of his car as KGF. 839D which I wrote down on a piece of paper which I have since lost.

Signature:   M.E. Pordage.

This statement was taken by me at The White House Restaurant, Minster, on 17th December, 1974.  I read it over to Mr. Pordage, who then read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   N.A. Biddiss, D.C. 4272.



Statement of:   Michael Barry Goodwin
Age:   Over 21 years.
Occupation:   Police Constable 3886
Address:   Police Station, Canterbury

This statement (containing of 4 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 17th December, 1974.

I am stationed at Canterbury where I am engaged on scenes of crime duty.  At 10.20 a.m. Wednesday. 11th December, 1974, I attended premises known as Brewery Tap, High Street, Sheerness, and made an examination of an alleged robbery.  On arrival, I was met by Mr. Nicholls, the licensee. Who explained to me what had happened.  I then took a number of photographs of what I saw on the ground floor and first floor accommodation of the premises.  I also photographed the injuries received by Mr. Nicholls.  I later developed the negatives from which I made photographic enlargements now produced in album form (marked and labelled MBG/34).

I then made a forensic examination of the first floor of the premises and took possession of the following items.  First floor toilet floor, I took a piece of brown material (exhibit MBG/1), a knotted black nightdress (exhibit MBG/2), and an electric iron and flex (exhibit MBG/3), from around the broken door catch to the front office I took a sample of paint (exhibit MBG/5) together with s a sample of paint from the broken toilet door (exhibit MBG/7).  On the half landing to the first floor was a window which was open.  I took a sample of paint from around the window frame (exhibit MBG/8) and from the window sill I took samples of glass from a shattered electric light bulb (exhibit MBG/9).  Around the window frame, I saw what appeared to be smears of blood.  I took swabs of these (exhibits MBG/29) together with a swab of blood from the skirting board near the toilet (exhibit MBG/28).  On the floor of the kitchen and hallway to the half landing I noticed pieces of soap flakes.  I took a sample of these soapflakes (exhibit MBG/10).

In the rear yard, on the brick paving I saw some ballast.  I took a sample of this ballast (exhibit MBG/11).  I then received from Mr. Nicholls his bloodstained pyjama top (exhibit MBG/12) and his pyjama bottoms (exhibit MBG/13).  At 12.20 p.m. Thursday, 12th December, 1974, I again went to the Brewery Tap, Sheerness, and in a second floor bedroom I saw the body of Mr. Nicholls.  At 2.30 p.m. the same day, I made an examination of a Vauxhall Victor saloon, index number KGF.839.D that had been brought to Sheerness Police Station.  I noticed that on the rear seat of the car, there appeared to be two indentations and sawdust.  I took tapings from the top of the seat (exhibit MBG/14).  I then removed the rear seat squab (exhibit MBG/19) and underneath it, to the nearside of the vehicle, I found a cheque, dated 17th May, 1971, singed C.N. Nicholls, drawn on Barclays Bank, for the sum of £39.25 (exhibit MBG/15).  I then swept debris from under the rear seat (exhibit MBG/16) and took possession of flooring felt from the rear seat positions (exhibit MBG/17), and the front positions (exhibit MBG/18).  I then photographed the marks on the rear seat squab and the vehicle.  I then saw a safe that had been forced open at the back.  I took a control sample of ballast from this safe (exhibit MBG/27).

At 5.25 p.m., Thursday, 12th December, 1974, I was present in the second floor bedroom of the Brewery Tap, High Street, Sheerness, together with other officers when Mr. Michael Ian Nicholls, the deceased’s son, and Mr. David Hine, barman, formally identified the body to Police Constable 2566 Simpson, to Dr. Harse, Home Office Pathologist and myself as that of Mr. Eric Percival Nicholls.

At 6.30 p.m., Thursday, 12th December, 1974, I was present at All Saints Hospital, Chatham, when Dr. Harse performed a post mortem examination on the body of Mr. Nicholls.  I took from Dr. Harse certain body samples, namely a sample of blood from the head (exhibit MBG/22), the contents of the stomach (exhibit MBG/23), a sample of bile (exhibit MBG/24), and a sample of liver blood (exhibit MBG/25).  All these samples were retained by me.

At 1.35 p.m., Friday, 13th December, 1974, I was present at Sheerness Police Station, when Dr. Uppal took a sample of blood from Roderick Harris (exhibit DS/A), and a sample of saliva (exhibit DS/B).  I took possession of these exhibits.

At 5.40 p.m., Friday, 13th December, 1974, I took all of the above exhibits together with sealed exhibits FBM.C, IT/A, IT/B, IT/C, IT/D, IT/E, IT/F, IT/G, NAB/G, NAB/H, NAB/N, NAB/P to the Metropolitan Police Forensic Laboratory, London.

Signature:   M. B. Goodwin.
 


Statement of:   Stanley David Northover
Age:   35 years.  (Born 23.9.39).
Occupation:   General Dealer.
Address:   9, Neptune Terrace, Sheerness.

This statement (containing of 1 page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 17th December, 1974.

About 11 a.m. on Sunday, 15th December, 1974, I went with detective Constable Eldridge to Woodlands Drive, Minster, Sheppey, and indicated to him, the unmade road to which I referred in my previous statement where I took Rod to collect his car on the 11th December, 1974.

Signature:   Stan Northover.

This statement was taken by me at Sheerness Police Station, on 17.12.74.  I read it over to Stanley David Northover, and he read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   F. B. Marsh, D/S.

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #17 on: November 15, 2013, 09:05:02 »
Statement of:   Leslie John Barnett
Age:   24 yrs.
Occupation:   Driver.
Address:   19 Strode Crescent, Sheerness.

This statement (consisting of 1 page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 16th day of December, 1974.

Signature:   L. Barnett.

About 8.30 p.m. on Tuesday, 10th December, 1974, I met Maurice Pearn and Jim Plester in the Britannia.  About 10 p.m. we all went over to the Brewery tap public house.  We went in the front bar and stood at the bar.  We were the end nearest the door.  We ordered one drink and stood drinking and talking.  About five minutes later, two fellows I know as Rod and Paul Harris came into the bar.  They both said hello and nodded to us.  They went down to the other end of the bar and got a drink.  I had no other conversation with them.  I do not remember what they were wearing except that they were scruffy.  All three of us, that is Maurice, Jim and I left about five minutes later and went over to the Britannia.  I think Rod and Paul were still in the Brewery tap when we left.

I have not seen them since.

Signature:   L. Barnett

This statement was taken by me at Sheerness Police Station on 16.12.74.  Mr. Barnett read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   M.W. Johnson, D.C. 4180.




Statement of:   George Alfred Kitson.
Age:   Over 21 years.
Occupation:   Police Constable 4832.
Address:   No.1 Support Group F.H.Q. Maidstone.

This statement (containing of 1 page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 16th December, 1974.

I am a member of the Kent County Constabulary Underwater Search and Recovery Unit.  On Monday, 16th December, 1974, the Unit was called upon to carry out a search of the mud flats, Sheerness, known as Rushenden Whale.  At approx. 1000 hrs., the same day whilst wading in the mud about 8 yards from the footpath on the bank I found a buckled metal cash box (labelled and marked GAK/A) and a white plastic box containing pink coloured capsules (labelled and marked GAK/B).  I handed these items to Detective Constable Moss.

Signature:   G. A. Kitson, P.C. 4832.



Statement of:   Hylton Denis Jordan
Age:   Over 21 years.
Occupation:   Bricklayer
Address:   3, Royal Road, Sheerness.

This statement (containing of 1 page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 16th December, 1974.

At 2 a.m. on Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, I was in the dining room of my house.  I have difficulty in sleeping and I was listening to the radio.  The radio went off the air at this time, and about five to ten minutes later I head a bang.  This was an unusual sound and seemed to come from the direction of the Co-op. garage at the rear of my house.  After a minute or two, I went to my back door and opened it.  I heard footsteps believed of two people, going along the alleyway at the rear of my garden, that runs from the side of 1 Royal road to Delamark Road.  They were going towards Delamark Road.  I think by the sound of the footsteps it was two men who were walking swiftly.  I closed the door and went to bed.  After I had undressed and got into bed and had been there for a short time, I heard a car start up, to the sea side of my house, I believe in Royal Road.  The car appeared to have difficulty in starting as though it had a cold engine.  It then drove off towards the Broadway.  Where I refer to undressing I mean taking off my dressing gown as I was already in pyjamas.

Signature:   H. Jordan.

The above statement was taken by me at 3, Royal Road, read over to Hylton Denis Jordan, who read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   R.L. Tiller, Sgt. 2487.



Statement of:   Dr. Amin Madwar
Age:   69
Occupation:   Medical Practitioner
Address:   Overton House, Sheenress.

This statement (containing of 1 page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing  that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 16th December, 1974.

I am a qualified medical practitioner.  In my capacity as a Police Surgeon, I attended at Sheerness Police Station at 8.40 p.m. on Monday, 16th December, 1974 and with his permission took from Paul John Harris a sample of blood (the exhibit marked and labelled AM/A)  I handed this exhibit in a sealed container to Police Constable Wallace.

Signature:   A. Madwar.

This statement was taken by me at 8.50 p.m. on 16th December, 1974.  I read it over to Dr. Madwar, and he read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   D. Wallace, P.C. 3701.



Statement of:   Paul John Harris
Age:   24 Years (29.9.50)
Occupation:   Painter
Address:   14, Ferry View, Rushenden, Queenborough.

“I, Paul John Harris, wish to make a statement.  I want someone to write down what I say.  I have been told that I need not say anything unless I wish to do so and that whatever I say may be given in evidence.”

I was in the cellar Club about 1.0 a.m. on Wednesday, (11th December, 1974) with Rod and Stan Northover and Sammy just drinking & talking about different things.  Rod went and had a talk with Stan when I was having a drink with Sammy.  I have no idea of the discussion that went on between the two of them.  We then had a few more drinks and we left the club.  Rod said to me that we would have a walk down the beach.  When we got to the school, Rod said to me hang on here.  He shot over the school fence & disappeared for three or four minutes I suppose.  Then he came back & said, “Wait here for us” & disappeared.  I waited, I don’t know how long, and he called me over and said, “Grab hold of this.”  It was two bags and the safe.  We then carried the safe away along the beach.  He left me at the Tennis courts to get his motor.  He got down by the Swimming Baths & pulled up there and we got the safe to his car & put it in his car.  We took the safe off & took the back off up the reservoir.  Rod just grabbed what looked valuable, got back in his car and we went to my house.  We counted out the money & opened up the small cash box.  He gave me part of the money, seventy five pounds it run out too.  He then again disappeared with the cash box and the bag which I imagine was to get rid of.  Then he came back and said, “Come with me.”  I just went with him down to the phone box along Manor Road.  He went into the Phone box, I was still in the car.  He came out the phone box and got in the car.  He said, “Sod it, I can’t get through.”  He then drove me home & dropped me off & disappeared.  The same day I bought a single bed, a coffee table and a picture with some of the money.  At no time did I know this job was taking place.  The first I knew was when Rod disappeared for a considerable length of time and then called me over & told me to grab hold of the bags.

“I have read the above statement & I have been told that I can correct, alter or add anything I wish.  This statement is true.  I have made it of my own free will.”

This statement was taken by me at sheerness Police Station on the 16th December, 1974.  I read it over to Paul John Harris & he read & signed it in my presence.

Signature: E.R. Spencer, D.C.I.
This statement was recorded and signed in my presence.
Signature: J. Bellaris, D/I.



Statement of:   Mrs. Carol Lillyan Nicholls
Age:   51 years. (Born 1.11.1923)
Occupation:   Housewife
Address:   Brewery Tap public house, High street, Sheerness.

This statement (consisting of 5 pages each signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully states in it anything which I know to be false of do not believe to be true.

Dated the 16 day of Dec. 1974.

Signature C. L. Nicholls.

I married Eric Percival Nicholls in 1940.  He has been the landlord of the Brewery Tap public house, High Street, Sheerness, for the last twelve years.

I went to Tenerife on holiday on the 1st December, 1974.  At that time he was in good health, apart from suffering with his nerves and an ulcerated leg.  He had never had a serious illness.

When I went on holiday I went with my son, Michael who returned home on the 8th December, 1974.

In the office on the first floor of the pub is kept my safe the contents of which are my property.

When I left Sheerness on the 1st December, the safe was in the office and contained the following property:-

Three small brown envelopes, containing approximately £30, £13 and £10.
A number bottles of pills.
Several bottles of perfume, including Christian Dior, and Chanel No. 5.
Three ladies watches, including a gold Rotary watch, on a black leather strap, the winder of which had been replaced with a larger winder.
A Seiko watch, black velvet strap, with loop of strap missing.
An Avia gold watch with gold coloured link bracelet.
A gents Waltham pocket watch, gold.
A gents gold ring with one raised pearl.  It had been made smaller.

There were also various documents in the safe, including personal papers, old cheques previously issued by me, bank books, a passport in my husband’s name, Building Society Books, Savings Certificates and possibly other property.

There was also a variety of old type and foreign coins and notes, including a £1 note, 3 brown 10/-d. notes and a George III florin.

On Thursday, 12th December, 1974, I received a telephone call from my son Michael as a result of which I returned home to Sheerness arriving there during the early hours of the 14th December.

Upon arriving back, later that day, I made an examination of the office and found the safe was missing.

It is within my knowledge that my husband was in the habit of keeping the takings from the pub in the office on the desk.  I examined the office desk and found no money there.

In the kitchen on the first floor, I noticed a piece of patterned material (labelled and marked CN/A).  I have not seen this material before and at 11.5 a.m. that morning I handed it to Detective Chief Inspector Spencer.

That same morning, I was shown by Detective Chief Inspector Spencer, a bottle of No.5 Chanel perfume (labelled and marked ADP/A) and a bottle of Christian Dior perfume (labelled and marked ADP/A).  Both bottles are similar in all respects to bottles of perfume which I kept in the safe, but whilst in the safe the bottles were in boxes.

At 3.30 p.m. on Monday, 16th December, 1974, I went to Sheerness Police Station, where I was shown by Detective Sergeant Marsh a safe (labelled and marked FBM/A) which I positively identified as my safe missing from the Brewery Tap.

At the same time I was shown exhibit MFP/A, which comprises if several items.  Amongst the property I recognised the personal property and papers and also the passport, photographs, Club Card, National Savings Certificate Book, National Savings stamp Book, Barclays Bank Deposit Book, Barclays Bank Deposit Pass Book, Hastings and Thanet Building Society Books.  All these items I identify as property which had been in my safe.

I was also shown a number of bottles of pills (labelled and marked FBM/A) which I identify as those which had been in my safe.

I was also shown a metal cash box (labelled and marked GAK/A) which I identify as a box which was in my safe.

I was also shown a plastic box containing pink capsules (labelled and marked GAK/B) which I identify as having been in the safe.

I was further shown a cheque, drawn on Barclays Bank Ltd., Sheerness, dated May, 17th, 1971, payable to Sova Ltd., for £39.25, and signed by me (labelled and marked MBG/15).  I positively identify this cheque as one of those which had been in my safe.

The total value of my safe and contents I estimate at £223.

Signature:   C.L. Nicholls.

This statement was taken by me at Sheerness Police Station on 16.12.74.  I read it over to Carol Lillyan Nicholls and she read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   F.B. Match, D/S.



Statement of:   Paul John Harris.
Age:   24 yrs. (B.29.9.50).
Occupation:   Painter.
Address:   14 Ferry View, Rushenden, Sheppey.

“I, Paul John Harris, wish to make a statement.  I want someone to write down what I say.  I have been told that I need not say anything unless I wish to do so and that whatever I say may be given in evidence.”

(Signed)   P.J. Harris.

Early on Tuesday evening (10.12.74) my brother came round to my house, That is my brother Rod, and asked if I would like to go out for a drink with him.  I said that I didn’t mind.  We then went up to the Phillipa in Queenborough and had one or two drinks in there.  We then took a walk down along the sea wall to a place by the name of Bri-cars to see if there was anything worth looking into for a later night.  We slung a big brick over the wall to see if there was any dogs.  We walked a little way down the sea wall and waited for a while and on returning we saw a dog in the grounds which was barking.  We decided that it would be impossible to break into the place because of the dog.  We then left and started walking back along Queenborough towards the sea wall where we passed a bloke coming towards us with an Alsatian at his side which I believe must have been one of Bri-cars employees.  So we left and came back to Queenborough.  We then went back into the Phillipa and had another drink and then decided to come into Sheerness.  Originally to go down the Cellar Club but I suggested we had a drink in town.  We went into the Brewery Tap which I do use quite often.  It was while standing in there I said to my brother, “This will be quite an easy place to do.”  It was previous to this when I was living at 19 Strode Crescent one of the people occupying the rooms there had broken into it and stolen some spirits and cigarettes and had told me how easy it was to get into the Brewery tap as they could not lock their toilet windows.  This would have been three or four weeks ago.  On leaving the Brewery Tap we then went down to the Cellar Club arriving there about twenty past eleven.  We was down there drinking with Stan Northover and Sammy when Rod came up to me and said, “Are you sure that it is easy to get into that place?”  I said it was.  Then he went back talking to Stan Northover and they both left together.  This would be about one o’clock to a quarter past one.  I don’t know how long it was afterwards that Rod came back down the Club and said he wanted my help.  I then went with him.  We went down along the beach, past the Church, turned along the back of the Swimming Pool to the bushes behind the school to where there was a safe hidden in the bushes.  We then picked it up, carried it around the side of the Tennis Courts onto the beach, along the beach to Rod’s car which was down along by the Swimming Pool with Stan Northover at the wheel.  We then all got in, drove off down along beside the Swimming Pool with the safe on the back seat.  We drove out beside the church around down into Alma Road where we stopped and Stan Northover got out.  My brother and myself then carried on up to the Reservoir where we took the back off the safe.  We then went back to my house to count the money, which was done in my house.  Rod left my house carrying a grey cash bag and the cash box to dump them.  There was £328 or £348 in notes.  He already had them in a bag in his hand.  There was also I think £34 in 50 p. pieces and some jewellery including a bracelet, a ring and one watch.  Also a tiny little beer mug like you get on charm bracelets.  We then left my house and Rod drove to the first call box he saw.  He got out of the car and went into the call box.  I stayed in the car.  He then came back in the car and drove me home & dropped me off at my house.  That must have been coming on about a quarter to five.  He said, “I’ll see you later” and pulled away.  When we counted the money out in my house Rod gave me £70 and said, “Will this do you babe?”  I said, “Yes.”  It was fine.  Rod took with him the rest of the money and the jewellery, I have told you about.  I didn’t see Rod at all after that.  I haven’t seen him since.  My wife told me on Friday morning (13.12.74) that Stan Northover and Sammy had been to my house earlier whilst I had been in custody looking for Rod.  I then got in touch with Stan Northover and he said he would like to see me.  I ‘phoned him on the Friday dinnertime.  I was supposed to go and see him at eleven o’clock the following morning.  I went there but there was a police car in the road outside so I didn’t go in.  I went to the Club that same evening.  It was then that he said to me that the stuff he had for me to look after for Rod had had to have been dumped because a police officer had asked Stan some questions about whether I had spoken to Stan and that he (Stan) had got worried of anything coming back on him.  He then asked me to collaborate a story with him as to what had happened saying that he wasn’t involved at all and that myself and Rob would have to be barred from the Club for the trouble that had been caused to himself and his wife.  It was in a round about way that I collaborated his story otherwise I would always be looking over my shoulder.  That is about all.

“I have read the above statement & I have been told that I can correct, alter or add anything I wish.  This statement is true.  I have made it of my own free will.”

(Signed) P.J. Harris.  I wont to say that all I have said is the truth & that I will give evidence exactly as the statement says.

(Signed) P.J. Harris.

This statement was taken by me on the 16th December, 1974 at Sheerness Police Station.  I read it over to Paul John Harris and he read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   E.R. Spencer, D.C.I.

I was present when this statement was taken.
Signature:   F.B. Marsh, D/S.



Statement of:   Roderick Harry Harris.
Age:   25 yrs. (13.1.49).
Occupation:   Stevedore
Address:   8. Ashley Close, Halfway, Sheerness.

“I, Roderick Harry Harris, wish to make a statement.  I want someone to write down what I say.  I have been told that I need not say anything unless I wish to do so and that whatever I say may be given in evidence.”

(Signed) R. H. Harris.

I want to tell you the truth.  I hit the geezer.  We went in through the downstairs window.  Went into the bar.  Went behind the bar.  Had a look in the till saw there was nothing in there.  By the way I have never done the pub before.  We went through the door upstairs.  We cut the telephone wires.  Went into the living room first when we got upstairs.  I realised that was the wrong room so I tried the door next to it which was locked.  I applied a bit of pressure on that one and it opened.  Didn’t use any tools because we didn’t have any with us.  The door opened.  I turned on the light.  We was looking around the office.  I closed the door behind us first.  I heard a noise from outside the door.  We had found the safe by then.  The door started opening to the office.  I just swung my hand around the door trying to get to the lights switch to switch it off but I was too late then.  In doing so I hit the geezer right on the nose.  I came out of the office, put my hand on his shoulder and the other one over his eyes.  He said, “Let me go, I wont tell anybody.”  I told the other one to blind fold him & tie his hands and he did.  He used some old clothing that was laying there and I think an electric flex.  Then I got off him.  He was laying on the ground and I was kneeling beside him with one hand on his shoulder and one hand over his eyes until he was blindfolded.  The other grabbed under his arms & pulled him into a little room.  We grabbed the safe and some money, about a couple of hundred pounds, just over, from the desk.  We tool the safe down the stairs to a landing & opened the window and threw the safe out.  Came off the roof over the Delamark School Playground and out to the Tennis Courts.  I went and got the car and put it outside the swimming Baths.  Brought the safe down the steps.  First time I brought the car down I saw a set of lights going up towards the Post Office so I backed the car.  I parked the car in Alma Road then – Come back up the beach to make sure everything was alright.  The other one said it was alright it was a Post Office van going to the Post Office.  That’s when I went back & got the car and put it by the steps.  We put the safe onto the back seat and got out there as if the place was on fire.  We went up to the Halfway and opened the safe.  One of the bottom rivets on the back had split open when we dropped it over the wall and it was easy to get it open.  The tools you showed me were the tools we used.  There was a lot of pills and one of two other bits in there.  Envelopes and that sort of thing.  There was about four or five pounds in notes in an envelope and some change in bank bags.  All two’s and that sort of stuff.  There was only one or two bits of jewellery, a couple of things, a pocket watch, a bangle bracelet, two lady’s watches, one had like a plastic strap.  They weren’t much good anyway.  None of them were working.  Also like a pearl necklace affair.  A single strand.  We put everything in this big sack money bag.  Threw the safe in the bush.  Got back in the car took the other one home.  We split up the gear at the other one’s house.  We also had a small cash box that was in the safe.  We threw all the stuff we didn’t want were they are reclaiming the land at Rushenden.  It was wrapped up together.  The other one jumped into the car and we went round to the telephone box in Rushenden Road near the shops and made a ‘999’ call.  I think it’s near Swale Avenue.  When the bloke answered the ‘phone, he asked what service we wanted.  I said, “The Landlord of the Brewery Tap is tied up.”  He said, “What’s your number.”  I said, “It’s an anonymous call.”  He said something like, “Don’t waste my time if you are not giving me the number” or something almost like that.  That’s when he hung up on me.  After he hung up on me I told the other one to go home.  There was no telephone directory in the telephone box so I drove around trying to find a telephone box to call the police but there was no directory in any of them.  I went to eight or nine boxes, that’s when I ran out of petrol.  I parked the car up and walked up to the other telephone box at the bottom of Wards Hill.  I couldn’t see a directory in there and that’s when I walked home.  I called at my sister-in-law’s house in Coronation Road and asked for her husband to give me a lift home but he was in bed.  She went and asked him.  She came down & said he couldn’t do it as he had to get up early for work.  This must have been getting on for six anyway.  I walked up to the main road and got a lift up to the Halfway Traffic lights and then I went home.  That’s it.  As I couldn’t carry the gear when I left the motor, I put it up under the back seat.  The two men I described to you before are a load of cobblers.  There were only two of us and the other was my brother Paul.  About sixty five to seventy pounds of the one hundred and thirty five which I banked on Wednesday morning was from the Brewery Tap.  It was both our ideas to ‘phone the police that he was tied up.

I have read the above statement and I have been told that I can correct, alter or add anything I wish.  This statement is true.  I have made it of my own free will.

(Signed) R. H Harris.

This statement was taken by me at Sheerness Police Station on the 16th December, 1964.  I read it over to Roderick Harry Harris and he read and signed it in my presence.

Signature: E. R. Spencer.

I was present when this statement was taken.

Signature:  F. B. Marsh, D/S.

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #16 on: November 14, 2013, 10:16:48 »
Statement of:   Miss Angela Ward
Age:   18 years
Occupation:   Shop Assistant
Address:   15, Richmond Street, Sheerness.

This statement consisting of 1 page signed by me is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 15th day of December, 1974.

I work as a shop assistant at the Co-op. Cleaners, Broadway, Sheerness.  About 12 p.m. on Monday, 16th December, 1974, a young lady of about 19 years came into the shop and asked if she could have a pair of black trousers and a creamy coloured jacket cleaned urgently.  She said it was for someone to go to court tomorrow morning.  She gave the name of Harris, 8, Ashley Close.  I noticed that there were what appeared to be blood stains on the left hand cuff, the left shoulder near the armpit, and on the left breast near the lapel.  Later that afternoon I saw the garment after it had been cleaned and the stains were still there.  I was not in the shop when it was collected.  I would describe the lady as 5’ 6”, slim, nice looking, long fair hair.  The garments I have mentioned have been collected.



Statement of:   Maurice Trevor Pearn
Age:   15.4.49.
Occupation:   Brick Layer.
Address:   70 Noreen Ave., Minster, Sheppey.

This statement (consisting of 2 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 15th day of December, 1974.

At between 9.30 p.m. and 9.45 p.m. on Tuesday, December, 10th, 1974, Les Barnett, Jim Plester and myself walked into the Brewery Tap public house, for a drink, in High Street, Sheerness.  After being in there for a couple or three minutes and whilst we were still being served, two men, who are known to me as Paul and Rod Harris came into the pub.  These two are brothers and I have known them for about 10 years.  Rod was dressed scruffily and he was in his work clothes.  This is unusual as I have been seeing him recently dressed quite smartly.  Paul was dressed in a leather or plastic jerkin and a light coloured shirt which was patterned.  He was also wearing a light colour patterned material round his neck.  I do now know whether it was a cravat or whatever.  I have been shown exhibit CN/A by the police today, and I can identify this item as being somewhat similar to the item which he had around his neck.  I cannot positively identify it but it is certainly similar.  They walked into the bar and over to the gents toilets end of the bar where I acknowledged them and they stood and ordered a drink.  They were entirely alone, when they came in, and no-one approached them whilst I was in the bar.  After being in the Brewery tap for about 10 minutes (as long as it tool to drink one drink), I, along with Les and Jim, then left the pub.  When we left both Rod Harris and Paul Harris were still in the pub.  I have not seen either of these two since this time.

Signature:   M. Pearn.

This statement was taken by me at Sheerness Police Station on December, 15th, 1974.  I read it over to Maurice Trevor Pearn, and he read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   R. D. Eldridge, D.C. 4565.



Statement of:   Doreen Jean Howells (nee Stevens)
Age:   37 years.   (8.7.37).
Occupation:   Housewife.
Address:   104 Coronation Road, Sheerness, Kent.

This statement (consisting of 3 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 15th day of December, 1974.

I live at the above address with my husband Derek and family. 

I am the sister of Mrs. Joyce Susan Christine Harris, the wife of Roderick Harris and they live at 8, Ashley Close, Minster, Sheppey.

On Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, at five thirty in the morning I was awoken by a knocking at the front door.  I got out of bed and went and opened the door and saw Rod Harris on the door step.  I particularly noticed the time as five thirty, by the clock in the bedroom.

Rod appeared to me to be dazed and white in colour.  He was dressed in a grey coloured parka coat with a zip up the front, I think dark trousers and a pair of clack shows which were covered in mud.

I asked him what he was doing calling on us at that time in the morning and he stated that the engine of his car had caught fire.  I asked him where was his car and he stated that he had just walked from Westminster but he didn’t tell me where his car was.  He made a comment that his car had caught light about eleven o’clock the night before, and that he had managed to get it started once and then it had packed up.

He then asked if my husband Derek would give him a lift home.  I told rod that Derek was in bed.  Because of his general appearance he looked worried as if he had done something, but I didn’t know what.

Rod was during the conversation standing in the hallway and I then left him and went upstairs to speak to my husband.  I told my husband who was half asleep, that Rod wanted a lift home, but my husband told me to tell Rod ‘No.’

I then returned to Rod and told him that I couldn’t wake Derek and Rod had left the house and as he did so he made a comment about a milkman delivering in the road.  Whilst Rod was in my home I asked if he wanted to sleep in my house, but he refused and kept saying that he wanted to get home.  He then left my house and walked along Coronation Road in the direction of the High Street.

Signature D. Howells.

This statement was taken by me at 104, Coronation road, Sheerness on 15.12.74.  I read it over to Mrs. Howells, and she read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   A.K. Moss, D.C. 3218.



Statement of:   Derek Leonard Howells.
Age:   39 yrs.  27.11.1935.
Occupation:   Driver.
Address:   104 Coronation road, Sheerness, Kent.

This statement (consisting of 2 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 15th day of December, 1974.

I live at the above address with my wife Doreen, and my four children, and their ages range from four years to fourteen years.

My wife is the sister of Mrs. Joyce Harris, the wife of the accused Roderick Harris.

I haven’t seen Rod or had any communication with him for about three weeks, and on that occasion I met him in the Railway public house, Sheerness, and we just greeted one another.

Since last Tuesday, the 10th December, 1974, I have been off sick from work, with the flu.  I spent the following days, Wednesday and Thursday, in bed, and the first time I left the house was Friday, 13th December, at lunch time.  It was that day that I first learned of a robbery at the Brewery Tap and this was by glancing at a local paper (The Evening Post).

Shortly after this, I was informed by my wife that Rod Harris had been arrested in connection with the incident at the Brewery tap.

Whilst I was in bed on Wednesday, 11th December, my wife informed me that Rod had called to my house, between half past five and a quarter to six in the morning of that day (11th December).

I asked her what had Rod wanted and she stated that rod had commented that his car had broken down or blown up and could he be given a lift home.

I saw Rod’s brother, Paul Harris in the Railway pub at Friday lunch time (Friday, 13th December, 1974) and again on the following day in the same pub.  We had a drink and asked him what had happened to Rod or did he know anything about the robbery at the Brewery Tap and he made no comment.

Paul looked apprehensive, so I didn’t push him any further about the matter.  The last time I saw Paul before the 13th was the previous Saturday and that was in the Railway pub.

Signature:   D. L. Howells

This statement as taken by me at 104, Coronation Road, Sheerness on 15.12.74.  I read it over to Howells and he read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   A.K. Moss, D.C. 3218.



Statement of:   Mrs. Mary Jefferies.
Age:   52 yrs. 
Occupation:   Housewife.
Address:   6, Woodland Drive, Minster, Sheerness.

This statement (consisting of one page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 15th day of December, 1974.

I have lived at the above address with my husband for several years and our house is on the left side of Woodland drive, travelling up from the Broadway.  At 6.45 a.m. on Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, my husband left for work.  At that time I saw a cream and maroon coloured coach parked in Woodland Drive outside No.2 and on the right hand side of the road.  This coach is owned by Mr. Cox who lives at 96, The Broadway and is sometimes parked in that position.  Also that morning there was an old dirty car parked just in front of the coach on the same side.  It was right opposite my neighbours gates at No.4  I think the car was a Vauxhall and it was dark blue in colour with a gold bonnet and boot.  Although it was dark the street light was on and I could see the gold colour clearly.  I saw the coach leave sometime after 9 a.m.  Sometime before 12 noon I saw a small dark coloured van parked in front of the car.  The bonnet of the car was open and there were two men who appeared to be trying to start the car.  I can not describe these men.  I paid no more attention to the car and later noticed that it had gone.

This statement was taken by me at 6, Woodland Drive, Minster on 15.12.74.  Mrs. M. Jefferies read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   R. Goldsmith, 4106.



Statement of:   Melvyn Francis Peters.
Age:   28 years.  B. 3.2.1946.
Occupation:   Stevedore.
Address:   120 Manor Road, Rushenden.

This statement (consisting of 2 pages signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 15th day of December, 1974.

This afternoon, Sunday, 15th December, 1974, I was out walking with my family over Rushenden Whale and along the mud banks.  About half past three, as we were walking along I saw a green coloured bag about ten feet out on to the mud.  I thought no more of it, but then about twenty feet from there, on the edge of the bank, I found a khaki coloured cash box that seemed to have been broken open.  This made me think about the bag.  I hunted round and found a piece of plastic and I tied the box to this and managed to retrieve the bag.  I opened up the bag and found that it contained a Barclays Bank Book and some other things, so I took it home to have a closer look at it.  I tipped it all out in the sink and found various other things, including a passport in the name of ‘E.P. Nicholls’.

I realised then the significance of this bag and its contents (exhibit labelled and marked MFP/A) and so I replaced all the things back in the bag and fetched them here to the police station and handed them to Detective Sergeant Surridge.

Signature:   M.F. Peters.

This statement was taken by me at Sheerness Police Station on 15th December, 1974, when I read it over to Mr. Peters, who then read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   D. Surridge, D/Sgt.



Statement of:   David Allen Surridge
Age:   Over 21 years. 
Occupation:   Detective sergeant
Address:   Police Station, Canterbury.

This statement (consisting of 1 page signed by me) is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 15th day of December, 1974.

At 4.25 p.m. on Sunday, 15th December, 1974, I saw Mr. Melvyn Francis Peters at Sheerness Police Station.

As a result of what he said to me, I took possession of a green bag and its contents (exhibit labelled and marked MFP/A).  On examination I found this to contain various items including a Barclays Bank Deposit Book number 571284 and a passport in the name of E.P. Nicholls, and numbered 735837.  I retained these items for further examination.

Signature:   D. Surridge. D/Sgt.

John38

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #15 on: November 13, 2013, 19:58:24 »
Thanks Kyn

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #14 on: November 13, 2013, 19:56:06 »
Statement of:   Steven Wilks.
Age:   22 years.  1.12.52.
Occupation:   Pipe fitter.
Address:   Parents:-   Coleshill Farm, Iwade, Sittingbourne.  C/O. Tankerton Villa, High St., Queenborough, Sheppey.

This statement (consisting of 3 pages signed by me is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 14th day of December, 1974.

I have known Rod Harris for about three years. I see him from time to time, mainly in pubs, and we buy each other a drink.

I also know Paul Harris, but have nothing to do with him.

About 8 p.m. on Tuesday, 10th December, 1974, I met my friend Barry Wellard in the True Britton public house at Sheerness.  We left there about 9 p.m. and went to his sister’s public house, The Highlander at Minster, which we left at closing time.

We then went in Barry’s taxi to Ronnie Scott’s jazz club in Frith Street, Soho, arriving there about midnight or so.

The doorman there, Henry, can confirm our presence there, he knowing me as Steve (long haired Steve in fact.) 

We remained there until 3.30 a.m. when the club closed arriving back at Barry’s flat at 5 a.m.  I stayed there with him until awakened about 12 n.n. by Norma Bridges banging on the door.

I was standing at the open window of the flat overlooking the High Street minutes later when I saw Stan Northover driving his white Thames van from the direction of the railway station.

He called up and asked if I was coming for a drink.  I said we would see him there, meaning the ‘Rose’, our local pub.

Barry and I had tea and breakfast quickly first, then both of us went to the pub.  Barry went in his taxi taking Norma Bridges.  I drove there alone in my car, a Sprite, colour red, number 626 JBF.  We got there about 1 p.m.

Stanley Northover and Rod Harris were in the pub together as were a couple of local people I don’t know. 

We stayed until close upon 3 p.m. drinking and enjoying ourselves.  Stan and rod finished up drunk.

As I had not been to work that morning I went to Sittingbourne Mill, (Bowaters) where I reported to my employers, Allness Engineering, about 3.30 p.m.

During the time we were in the ‘Rose’ we were all clowning about.  Nothing was said about a burglary at the Brewery tap.  I first heard about that in the Highlander pub during Thursday evening, the 12th December, 1974, from either Barry Wellard of his mother.

Signature:   S. Wilks.

This statement was taken by me at Sheerness Police Station on 14.12.74.  I read it over to Steven Wilks and he read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   F. B. Marsh, D/S.



Statement of:   Miss Norma Pauline Bridges
Age:   20 yrs.  (15.6.54).
Occupation:   Salesgirl
Address:   14, Halfway Road, Sheerness.

This statement (consisting of 2 pages signed by me is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 14th day of December, 1974.

I work part time at the Halfway public house as a barmaid.  During the day I work at Boots the Chemist, Sheerness.  Last Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, at about 1.10 p.m. I was on my way from the shop towards the taxi rank outside the railway station to meet a friend.  As I got to the road that runs alongside the True Brit public house, I saw a cream coloured van coming up the road towards me.  It was driven by a friend of mine Stanley Northover and in the passenger seat there was another acquaintance of mine, Rod Harris.  I subsequently tool a taxi to a friend’s house at Queenborough.  It would have been at about 1.30 p.m. that I went to a supermarket in Queenborough when I again saw Stan Northover in his van.  Rod Harris did not appear to be in the van at that time.  I later met Stan and rod in the Rose public house at about 1.40 p.m.  One of them bought me a drink and shortly after that we were joined by Barry Wellard and a boy called Steve.  There was a few minutes between the two of them.  We all had a good few drinks together but I can’t remember any particular conversation I had with them.

We all left at closing time, and by then Rod appeared to me to be drunk.  We broke up then ad I went with Stan and Barry in Barry’s car.  The idea was that Rod was going in his own car.  I can’t remember what happened to Steve.  I don’t know what car rod drives and I didn’t see him leave in it.  I haven’t seen Rod since that day, and can’t remember exactly when I saw him prior to Wednesday.

Signature:   N. Bridges.

This statement was taken by me at Sheerness Police Station on 14.12.74.  I read it over to Miss Norma Bridges, and she read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   C.S. Alanskas, DC.4529.



Statement of:   John Dillon
Age:   45 years.  14.7.29.
Occupation:   Chief engineer – (J.P. Knights Tugs).
Address:   23 Delamark Road, Sheerness, Kent.

This statement (consisting of 2 pages signed by me is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 14th day of December, 1974.

On Tuesday, 10th December, 1974, in the early evening, I went with my wife to a dinner and dance at Chatham and we returned home at two o’clock the following morning Wednesday, 11th December, 1974.

I then took my dog out for a walk and I went from my back garden into Beach Street (Service Road) which runs towards Clarence Row and I noticed a dark coloured Vauxhall Viva car or possibly a Vauxhall Victor that was parked in Beach Street right adjacent to the row of cottages in Clarence Row.  The windows of the car were steamed up and I saw two persons in the car, but thinking that it was a couple courting I didn’t look any further.  I walked past the car and onto the sea wall and then I retraced my steps back home by the same route, and I again noticed the Vauxhall car.  I then went indoors and I went to bed.  About a quarter to three as I was lying in bed I heard the sound of a loud crash.  It appeared to me to come from the direction of Delamark School, which is situated at the end of my road – a cul-de-sac.  I then went to sleep.

Signature:   J. Dillon.

This statement was taken by me at 23, Delamark Road, Sheerness on 14.12.74.  I read it over to Dillon, and he read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   A.K. Moss, D.C. 3218.



Statement of:   Lesley Greensmith
Age:   25 yrs.
Occupation:   Petrol Pump Attendant.
Address:   ‘Sunnyside’, First Avenue, Eastchurch, Sheppey.

This statement consisting of 2 pages signed by me is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 14th day of December, 1974.

Sometime last Wednesday, 11th December, 1974, or Thursday, 12th December, 1974, whilst I was working as a petrol pump attendant at Island Motors, Railway Road, Sheerness, I recall a dirty white old Fort van came to the filling station.  It pulled up by the office somewhere and at about the same time I remember a man who works down the Stevedores came into the cash desk and ask for a gallon of petrol in a can.  This man is about 6 feet tall with straight shoulder length light ginger hair.  He had a freckly face and was wearing a whitish coloured jacket.  I know he works as a Stevedore as he is quite a regular customer.  He usually come to the garage in a dark blue Vauxhall with a gold painted bonnet and boot.  I believe he was banned from driving not so long back bit I don’t know his name.  I gave him a can on the condition that the change from a one pound note was used as a deposit which would be returned to him when he brought the can back.  The petrol he bought cost fifty eight pence and the forty two pence change from a pound is still in the till as he has not yet returned with the can.  I never looked to see where he went with the can of petrol and I don’t recall him coming from or going to the white van I saw mentioned earlier.  This morning in question was quite busy and I cannot recall anyone being with this man.  I would be able to recognise this man again should I see him.

Singature:   L. Greensmith.

This statement was taken by me at Island Motors Ltd.  I read if over to Miss Greensmith and she read and signed it in my presence.

Signature:   N. R. Williams.



Statement of:   Raymond Kemsley.
Age:   Over 21
Occupation:   Police Constable
Address:   Police Station, Cross Street, Sheerness, Kent..

This statement (consisting of 1 page signed by me is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and I make it knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I shall be liable to prosecution if I have wilfully stated in it anything which I know to be false or do not believe to be true.

Dated the 14th day of December, 1974.

At 14.30 hours on Friday, 13th December, 1974, I went to the Brewery tap Public House, High Street, Sheerness, Kent, where I obtained certain measurements, and subsequently drew three plans.  One showing the entire first floor, the flat roof (adjacent to the first floor) and yard to a scale of six feet to one inch (6 feet to 1 inch) (Exhibit labelled and marked RK/A), one showing the entire first floor to a scale of three feet to one inch (3 feet to 1 inch)(Exhibit labelled and marked RK/B), and one showing the flat roof and yard to a scale of four feet to one inch (4 feet to 1 inch)(Exhibit labelled and marked RK/C).

On the plans showing the first floor I have shown the position of the desk in the office.  I have also shown marked the relevant heights of the walls surrounding the flat rood and the height of the roof from the ground at two points.

Signature:   R. Kemsley, P.C. 3661.

Offline kyn

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Re: Sheerness Robbery 1974
« Reply #13 on: November 13, 2013, 19:24:58 »
The Brewery Tap is now the Tudor along the High Street in Sheerness.  The Cellar was open in the late 80's/early 90's but I am not sure about now.  The building is still there.

 

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