The "Laundry" Story (or the "Body in the Concrete" Story)

The house at 3 Kirk Crescent was under construction over the period that Ms Blades disappeared.

The concrete laundry floor was dug up after Tony arranged for the laundry to be scanned with a ground penetrating scanner. Tony told the Police that the scanner operator considered that the ground beneath the concrete was disturbed with unusual objects in the centre of the laundry, including what appeared to be extra reinforcing steel about 800mm down and a concrete block about a metre square and about a metre in depth.

So, the Police arranged to have the concrete broken up and a large hole dug. After digging down about 80cm and then probing with rods down a further 80cm, they found...nothing.

As the concrete floor of the laundry had been laid well before the disappearance, this came as no surprise to anyone in our family. One of mum’s photographs shows the entire laundry, not just the floor, fully erected ten days before Ms Blades was last seen.

Tony could no doubt see 15 minutes of fame as the amateur detective who solved the cold case slipping away, so he wasn’t about to give up. The following day he was reported in the media as saying that there was to be further scanning of other areas, and that current owners of the house believed that if the body wasn’t in the laundry, it might be in the stairwell.

Unfortunately for Tony, the extra scanning can’t have shown anything as we undoubtedly would have heard about it, if it had. And, the house didn’t have a stairwell at any time when my parents owned it. It had two sets of external stairs, one at the back of the house leading up to the kitchen, and one at the front – and neither of them was in place until a much later stage of the construction. Have a look at the photos.

I understand that internal stairs, and the stairwell, were added during alterations to the house made by one of the owners after mum and dad.

By the way, in case any cynic out there thinks the dates on mum’s photos might have been false, here is an email written to the Police by a former neighbour and which was on the Police file given to me. It looks as though the author of the email was himself a policeman. Refer to the Police tab at the top of this page for a copy of the email.

Just to finish things off: Tony told the Police of another witness who would say that she saw dad and another man burying something in a black plastic bag in the centre of the driveway at about the time Mona Blades disappeared, the inference being that this was Mona Blades’ body.”

The Police interviewed this lady. Here is her statement, and here is the Police job sheet. Note the following:

  1. The events she described took place at 6am-6.30am in the summer. Mona Blades disappeared on 31 May 1975 – winter.
  2. “The house was up but it was not closed in”. This is not consistent with the statement that the events occurred in the summer. The house was closed in by June 1975.
  3. Dad and the other man with him took a bundle out of the car and folded it in half. Could that even be done with a body?
  4. The hole the item was dropped in, was in the front section close to the kerb, in a grassed area.
  5. The witness says she saw dad and the other man putting concrete down the hole.

For this scenario to have anything to do with Mona Blades, it would have required dad to have an accomplice, someone who not even Tony has been able to identify, and for the two of them to have buried the body right at the front of the section by the street, in broad daylight; and for them to have been running a concrete mixer at an early enough hour to have upset the neighbours and have them looking to see what was going on. Likely? Hardly. And this is not even taking account of the discrepancy with the seasons and Tony’s conviction that the body was in the laundry. Or the stairwell.

I haven’t heard of the scanner finding anything at the front of the section. Draw your own conclusions.

 

 
  

 © COPYRIGHT 2012 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED PAULINE BARRATT