In June 2015 I was contacted by a reader of this site who asked me if I could furnish her with any details surrounding the death of her fathers cousin David Ingle. After a bit of research we were able to establish the exact causes of his death. This information was posted to my blog.  

She also mentioned that her aunt had met her death in tragic circumstances, and supplied me with the following information. It is every parents worst nightmare.

"My aunt was Doris Laura Hill and her father, my granddad, was Fred. At the time of the accident, they lived at 103 Wulfric Road. I believe Doris had followed some older children, who were on their way to school - my grandmother's gate having been left open by a neighbour. She had managed to get right down to City Road - a fair walk for a toddler. I have been told that the lorry driver was so upset by the accident that he never drove again. My granddad then had the grim and heartbreaking task of carrying her home from the scene.

Doris was buried on October 12th, 1929. She is in a communal grave. I have the grave reference number (I have visited it, but there is no headstone). My grandmother was advised by her doctor to stop visiting it in the end, as it was too traumatic for her. Doris was her first-born child. I don't have Doris's death certificate but I'm pretty sure of all the facts"

Doris Laura Hill (1927-1929)

A check on the excellent Sheffield Indexers site revealed Doris's burial record

HILL, Doris Laura (daughter of Fred, age 2).Died at 103 Wulfric Rd; Buried on October 12, 1929 in Consecrated ground; Grave Number 13527, Section Y of City Road Cemetery, Sheffield.

In July 2017 I was sent a photo of Doris as a baby. She is about three months old at the time the photograph was taken and it is the only one, apart from the one that appears in the newspaper, in exsistence


And from this I was able to access the relevant newspaper reports

The Yorkshire Post dated 9th October 1929 - I left the following paragraph attached - that young girl had a much more eventful life!  

The Northern Daily Mail dated 9th October 1929

Neither report mentioned the name of the little girl but both mentioned that she was found by her father on his way to work as a police-officer

The final report I managed to obtain was from the Sheffield Daily Telegraph dated 9th October 1929. Again no mention of the little girl's name.


The driver I believe is one George Robert Patchett - 

This is an image from the 1911 Census which shows George as a 7 year old schoolboy.

George lived to be 71 years old Deaths Mar 1974 - Patchett George Robert 23NO1903 Sheffield 2d 920

Doris's father Fred - PC551

City Road Sheffield - photograph taken circa 1935

Fred Hill - "He was a really lovely man, and a fantastic granddad to me"

A photograph  of PC Fred Hill standing in the middle of City Road just below the main Cemetery gates. The fact that he has white armbands on seems to indicate that he was directing traffic possibly a funeral through the main gates. The lack of traffic behind Fred would support this theory. I would put the photo late 1920's early 1930's. It is quite possible that the photo was taken by a professional photographer - I have a couple of photos on my site of actual funerals which seems rather strange nowadays but not so in the early C20th.

The next photo is taken at Skegness on a family holiday

Left to Right are: Fred Hill, Ivy May Hill (Doris's mother), Betty Hill, Dennis Morley (Doris's cousin), Ivy Hill, Mary Ellen Morley (Doris's aunt), and her family. 

and this is a photo of Doris's mum Ivy


This is a photo that was taken at Manor Lane Chapel circa 1947 and shows the cast of  The Village Wadding play 

Bette as May Queen - Bette was also a Sunday School teacher at the chapel

The following is a a class photograph from Arbourthorne school with Ivy Hill on it (third from right, back row), The photograph was taken circa 1948.


The back of the photo says: Arbourthorne school Class 3A, Teacher Mr Whitham.
Back row L-R: P. Copley, M. Hopcroft, S. Stott, J.Pearson, M. Naylor, J. Marsden, I. Hill, R. Beety, B. Schofield.
Front row: P. Finlay, M. Hopkinson, M. Stimpson, J. Wheatly, S. Thompson. 

And as an aside in May 1939 another young two year old child is killed on Wulfric Road, not far from where Doris died ten years earlier

Telegraph and Independent dated 27th May 1939

Leslie is buried in the same cemetery, City Road Sheffield, as Doris

Colton, Leslie (son of John (killed in City rd), age 2).
Died at 114 Windy House Lane; Buried on June 1, 1939 in Consecrated ground; Grave Number 18983, Section CC1 of City Road Cemetery, Sheffield.

Four years later his brother was also killed in the street and is buried alongside him

Colton, William Herbert (killed in St, age 8). Died at 7 Powley Rd; Buried on March 24, 1942 in Consecrated ground; Grave Number 18983, Section CC1 of City Road Cemetery, Sheffield. Parent or Next of Kin if Available: John. 

If anyone can supply me with any further information on either of these three tragedies, please let me know.

In response to my request I received an e-mail from a reader of this article who stated that he was the grandson of George Robert Patchett, the driver of the vehicle that fatally injured Doris

"I read with sadness and interest the article on your blog at the following link.

George Robert Patchett was my own grandfather, and he was deeply affected by that tragic day for the remainder of his life. 

He had two children of his own including Robert Valen (my father) who was an RAF officer killed in tragic circumstances in 1969

George has (had) 3 grandchildren, myself, my brother Mike and also a granddaughter Samantha who was herself killed in 1967 at the age of 18 months in similar circumstances to little Doris.

Smanatha had been sitting with myself and a group of young friends outside our house in RAF Little Rissington. I ran across the road to get some money from the house as an Ice cream van had just turned up, Samantha followed and was run over as the vehicle reversed back.
My Grandfather was haunted till the end of this days by this event - believing it was payback for what happened to young Doris all those years previously."

The newspaper reports of the time show that Doris's death was just a tragic accident but it clearly affected George for the rest of his life. The loss of his own granddaughter Samantha in 1967 must have been unbearable for George, given the circumstances of her death


Marriage - December quarter 1926

Surname First name (s)     District             Volume     Page 
Hill          Fred                   Chesterfield         7b           1511     

Walker    Ivy M               Chesterfield          7b          1511 

Births Mar 1966 qtr

Surname First name(s) Age District Vol Page 
Deaths Dec 1967 qtr PATCHETT SAMANTHA A age 1 District CHELTENHAM VOLUME 7B PAGE 287


1911 UK Census


Sheffield Indexers

Yorkshire Post dated 9th October 1929 

Sheffield Daily Telegraph dated 9th October 1929

The Northern Daily Mail dated 9th October 1929

Telegraph and Independent dated 27th May 1939

This page was last updated on 03/02/20 17:04

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