Thirty-one-year-old Thomas Eames’s relationship with his common-law wife Muriel Bent was punctuated by one row after another, and she finally walked out of their Plymouth home to live with a new lover.

Eames saw her twice with the man who had replaced him, and on the second occasion he asked Muriel to call at her former home the next day – FEBRUARY 27th, 1952 – to collect a letter.

The following morning he took a table-knife to work and used a file to sharpen it into a dagger. When Muriel arrived at his home that evening he asked her if she was going to marry the new man in her life. She said this was her intention, and she was about to kiss Eames goodbye when he stabbed her twice in the back.

Then he went to the police, and three months later he was tried at Exeter Assizes for Muriel Bent’s murder. The defence tried to show that he was insane at the time of the killing due to stress, loss of appetite and lack of sleep. But the jury decided that Eames knew what he was doing, found him guilty, and he was hanged at Bristol on July 15th.