A Thorn in Their Side: The Hilda Murrell Murder

 
9780473196851: A Thorn in Their Side: The Hilda Murrell Murder

In 1984, at the age of 78, world-renowned rose grower Hilda Murrell was found brutally murdered in the Shropshire countryside. She had just gained approval to testify on the unsolved problems of radioactive waste at the first British planning inquiry into a new nuclear power plant at Sizewell, Suffolk. The police theory that a lone, panicking burglar robbed and abducted Hilda in her own car for petty cash erupted into a sensational political conspiracy involving prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's plans for British nuclear energy and the controversial sinking of the Argentine cruiser General Belgrano in the 1982 Falklands War. The West Mercia police took until 2005 to secure the conviction of Andrew George as Hilda's unlikely murderer—in 1984 he was a 16-year-old truant from a local foster home who could not drive. The case spawned numerous books, plays and TV programmes as it became one of the most baffling British murders of the 20th century. Now, Hilda's nephew Robert Green—a former Royal Navy Commander who operated nuclear weapons before holding a key position in Naval Intelligence during the Falklands War—tells the story of his extraordinary pursuit of the truth. Believing that Hilda was abducted by those who wanted to find out what she knew about the Falklands conflict and problems in the Sizewell nuclear power plant, and undeterred by ongoing harassment, Green exposes the implausibility of the police theory and uncovers explosive new evidence that should have acquitted Andrew George. This is the incredible true story of Hilda Murrell—and one man's quest to find out how and why his beloved aunt met such a violent and bizarre death.

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About the Author:

Robert Green served for 20 years in the Royal Navy from 1962-82. As a Fleet Air Arm observer/ bombardier-navigator, he flew in Buccaneer nuclear strike aircraft and anti-submarine helicopters. On promotion to Commander in 1978, he worked in the Ministry of Defence before his final appointments as Staff Officer (Intelligence) to the Commander-in-Chief Fleet. Having taken voluntary redundancy in 1981, he was released after the 1982 Falklands War, and trained as a roof thatcher in Dorset. In 1984, the murder of his beloved aunt and mentor Hilda Murrell led him to examine and then challenge the hazards of nuclear electricity generation. This, plus the break-up of the Soviet Union, followed by the 1991 Gulf War caused him to speak out against nuclear weapons, the first ex-Commander with nuclear weapons experience to do so.

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