It had been a great party and Frederick Priddle, 34, was in high spirits when he walked his girl friend home after it. They kissed good night on her doorstep, then he walked home to his own lodgings in Gordon Road, Southall, west London. When he turned the key in the latch it was between 12.30 and 1 o’clock on Sunday, January 2nd, 1938.

The first thing he noticed was that when he pressed the switch the light did not go on. Then from out of the darkness a man leapt on him, stabbing him in the head and chest.

Priddle staggered screaming into the road and collapsed. Twelve days later he died of his wounds.

His killer was a burglar, for money was missing from the house and the living-room light bulb had been removed. According to neighbours, a tall man had driven up in a car that night and later he was seen running away.