Ian Pidgeon's Genealogy Project
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Death of Thomas Fletcher Pidgeon

1878 - `1931

My Grandfather Thomas committed suicide in 1931. Below are Stockport newspaper reports and a transcription of his death certificate covering his "mad act". Thomas's younger brother Joseph had committed a similar act in 1918, and Thomas's death had a devastating effect on his family, raising questions linking suicidal tendencies and heredity - was it "in the blood"?. Fortunately, my father took no notice, and thay have since proved to be groundless.
The Advertiser



     A farewell note, found in the dead man’s jacket pocket, was produced at the inquest at the Ebenezer Chapel, Hazel Grove, yesterday, on Thomas Fletcher Pidgeon (52), a foreman bricklayer, of 60 Commercial Road, Hazel Grove, whose body was found with his throat cut in a pool of blood in the basement of the Hazel Grove Cooperative Society’s premises on Wednesday evening.

     The note read: “Dear All, Forgive this mad act. I cannot get on with my job. It’s terrible the way it worries me. I know nothing about the drain,” and it was revealed that he had been worrying over the job he had been engaged upon.

     The widow, Mary Jane Pidgeon, said her husband had an operation for appendicitis in 1924, and his health had never been good since.

     Walter Pidgeon, a brother, said deceased had latterly worried over trifles.


     Samuel Tomlinson, a joiner of Station Road, Hazel Grove, said deceased was working on a building in course of erection in the yard of the Cooperative Society’s premises. He lost Pidgeon between 1.30 and 2 pm, and a general search for him was organised when the men left at 5.30.

     “I went into the boiler house, and saw Pidgeon lying on the floor,” he said. “An open razor was near his left hand.”

     Tomlinson said Pidgeon spoke to him during the morning and said “This little bit of a job is worrying me. It is not the boss’s fault, I cannot get my mind working.”

     Joseph Smith, Pidgeon’s employer, said deceased had been on the particular job for 12 weeks, but it was easy work for a man of his experience.

     The coroner (Mr. J. A. K. Ferns) recorded a verdict of suicide while of unsound mind. “I am satisfied that his mind has not been stable for some time,” he said.

Friday, July 24, 1931



Mr T. F. Pidgeon   The funeral of Mr Thomas Fletcher Pidgeon, of 60 Commercial Road, Hazel Grove, took place at Norbury Church on Friday last.

     The Rev. H. Hooper officiated, and the principal mourners were relatives and friends of the deceased.  There were several floral tributes.

Friday, July 31, 1931

Stockport Express

     A verdict of suicide whilst of unsound mind was returned by Mr J. A. K. Ferns, Stockport District Coroner, at the inquest on Thursday 23rd inst., on Thomas Fletcher Pidgeon(52), foreman bricksetter of Commercial Road, Hazel Grove, who was found lying dead in the boiler house in the basement of the Hazel Grove Cooperative Society’s premises on Wednesday evening. It was stated that the deceased’s health was not good, and that he worried over his work. Samuel Tomlinson, joiner of Station-road, Hazel Grove, said a statement was made to him by Alfred Thatcher, plumber, of Lever-street about 5.30 pm and on going into the boiler house he found deceased lying in a pool of blood, with an open razor near him. Earlier that day deceased had told him he was worried over his job and that he “could not get his mind working.”

     Evidence was also given by Sergeant Hunt, and it was further stated that a note was found in the deceased’s pocket stating that he could not get on with the job. “It is terrible the way it worries me,” he wrote. “I know nothing about the drain.”

Thursday, July 30, 1931

Death Certificate

Registration District of Stockport, Cheshire

When and where died

Twenty second July, 1931. Boiler House, Cooperative Stores, London Road, Hazel Grove U D

Name and Surname

Thomas Fletcher Pidgeon




52 years


Foreman Bricklayer of 60 Commercial Road, Hazel Grove

Cause of Death

Haemorrhage from a wound in the throat. Deceased not being of sound mind, killed himself by cutting his throat with a Razor in the Boiler house of the Cooperative Stores, London Road, Hazel Grove on the twenty-second July 1931.   No P.M.

Signature, description and residence of informant

Certificate received from J.A.K. Ferns Coroner for Cheshire (Stockport District). Inquest held twenty-third July 1931.

When registered

Twenty-fifth July 1931

Signature of registrar

Frederick Andern

Updated:  01 Nov 2018
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