Held at:

Private Collection




Original document


Newspaper Cutting: Shooting at Great Cefn Farm

Place name:

Michaelchurch Escley




The photographs below are of a report in the Hereford Times of March 6th 1930 which describes a ’double shooting tragedy’ at Great Cefn Farm Michaelchurch Escley.


The report describes how Bill Price the then occupier of Pikes Farm in the Upper Escley Valley shot Mrs Beatrice Maddy of Great Cefn Farm just across the valley and then shot himself. A verdict of “manslaughter in a sudden transport of passion” was returned on Mrs Maddy by the coroner’s jury which sat at Llanrosser chapel and “felo-de-se” [self murder] on Mr Price.     

Mrs Beatrice Maddy was aged 30 and a widow of 10 years and lived at Great Cefn with her 70 year old mother Mrs Maria Jones, an 11 year old daughter Dorothy and a baby of 11 weeks old of whom Bill Price was said to be the father. Bill Price was aged 39 a widower of some 11 years his wife having died in childbirth. The events are summed up in a newspaper report of the Inquest, which was held in the Methodist Chapel at Llanrosser:  


 “Whilst sitting in the kitchen of Great Cefn Farm, about 9 o’clock on Friday night, with her 70 year old mother, her daughter, and baby, Mrs Maddy fell dead in her seat as a result of gunshot wounds, the gun having been fired through the window. Half-an-hour later there were further reports of a gun, and Price was found dead outside the house with terrible injuries to the face and the gun was lying by his side.”     


Bill Price had been courting Beatrice Maddy for some time according to Mrs Jones and their baby had been born only 11 weeks earlier. However, although Bill Price never disowned the child, it was registered as illegitimate which had upset Beatrice Maddy. They disagreed as to marriage and the result was the tragic shootings. It has been suggested Bill Price was not in fact the father of the baby and knew who was, but this was not raised at the Inquest. Both Pikes Farm and Great Cefn Farm were abandoned shortly afterwards and have only recently been sold and rebuilt.   















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