HERE'S what was making headlines in the Argus 100 years ago today, March 21, 1920:


Inquest and Verdict

Mr. M. Roberts Jones held an inquest on Tuesday at Newport on Lilian Maud Torrington, 26, tailoress, Alma-street, found drowned on Tuesday.

According to the evidence of the doctor, who had attended the deceased, she was very nervous but cheerful. She had suffered from sleeplessness, and had been working very hard lately. He had given her a tonic and something to make her sleep.


It was stated by the father, Alfred A. Torrington, foreman shipwright, Alma-street, that he never heard the girl threaten to do away with herself. She was treated well by her employers, and was keeping company with a young man, who was now broken-hearted. On Thursday morning witness took her for a walk in the park. She told him she did not think she would get better. She was a quiet girl. On Thursday she asked the mother to let her go and do some shopping. The body was found on Monday morning.

Evidence was also given by Philip Torrington, uncle, as to the recovery of the body from the River Ebbw, near Ebbw Bridge.

P.C. Bale said the deceased’s hat had not been found. The deceased might have tumbled in. He was told that her basket had been found some distance away. There were no signs of any struggle.

Gertrude Lennox, sister, stated that she saw the deceised on Thursday, and she was then going to Gibb’s shop, Cardiff-road. Since Tuesday she had been depressed, but witness never heard her threaten to do anything.

The Coroner returned a verdict of “Suicide by drowning, while of an unsound mind.”


Court Official Who Had to Bolt

The awkward plight of a court official who was subject to “cat asthma” was described in a recent lecture by Dr. John Freedman, reported in the current “British Medical Journal.” The official, he said, told him he was subject to this complaint, and on one occasion in the Royal presence, a cat entered the room, and he was immediately seized by such an uncontrollable asthma that he had to bolt from the apartment without any explanation or apology!

Many people who were sensitive to cat asthma, Dr Freeman continued, were also hay fever subjects, the two ailments arising from similar causes. Certain people were subject to fits of asthma through the influence of horses, goats, sheep, dogs, cattle, rabbits, guinea pigs and mice, the cause in every case being emanations from the skin or fur of the animal. Hay fever is caused by the wind-borne pollen of plants.


During a football match at Walton a spectator saw another man making off with his bicycle. He raised the alarm and scores of men and boys left the match to join in the pursuit. The man dashed across private grounds into the main road, thence into the gardens of the former New Zealand hospital. Headed off in one direction, he boldly jumped into a backwater of the Thames, but an enthusiast among the pursuers also took to the water and the man was captured, being removed saturated in a motor-car to Hersham Police Station.