Jeremy Bamber

Information on this web site was first uploaded to the internet in December 2011.

Jeremy Bamber the Author’s view

This is not a direct account from Jeremy Bamber. It is my view on Jeremy and his circumstances written as author. I have been kindly granted access to all available evidence regarding Jeremy’s case including 130 lever arch files of papers, which has enabled me to build a picture of Jeremy during this period. I have also sourced various accounts from people who know Jeremy. It is from these documents that I have drawn my conclusions that Jeremy Bamber was an innocent man, wrongly convicted in the prime of his life. The character of Jeremy as I see it is one which contrasts with popular myth brought about by the media.

Background

Jeremy’s natural mother was 16 and lived in Scotland, and his father a young army recruit. His natural father was married at the time he was conceived and later divorced his wife to marry Jeremy’s natural mother. His father rose to be an Army General and I believe they are still married to this day, they also had more children together, Jeremy Bamber’s full brother and sister are called Justin Marsham and Sophie Marsham.

Jeremy was adopted through the Church by June and Nevill Bamber who provided a kind and loving family, and Jeremy feels very fortunate to have grown up in this environment. He enjoyed life on the farm, had his own dog and learned the skill of farming from an early age. He loved Sheila despite them going their separate ways during their teenage years. Jeremy enjoys cultivating plants and he has expressed a desire to return to farming, though I think small scale farming would be on his agenda these days.

As a young man he went to renowned Gresham College. Jeremy is intelligent, and is particularly interested in engineering, architecture, sculpture and physics. He has always enjoyed keeping fit and still goes to the gym every day he can, he is also interested in yoga and meditation. Jeremy didn’t pursue a degree after college but while in prison he has also gained many educational qualifications and spends long hours working on his case in accompaniment to attending the Brallie translation workshop.

Jeremy did not dress up as Adam Ant on the farm, contrary to popular belief, but was always smart and well presented when he wasn’t farming. He did go into London to meet up with friends and he saw Sheila every couple of weeks; he was friends with Colin Caffell and they got on well. Jeremy was definitely a ‘farmer’s boy’ who very much enjoyed that life style and wanted it to continue that way.

From 79-80 Jeremy spent time in Australia travelling. For 5 months he worked on a sugar plantation working with a family in Queensland; he really enjoyed employment for them on the farm and still speaks about their ingenious inventions of various types of machinery to harvest crops. At the end of that year he went to New Zealand and back to Australia a couple of times but for no great length of time. It has been suggested that Jeremy hated farming, if this was so then why did he work on a farm in Australia and not as a barman for example?

Last Day of Freedom

Coping with the tragedies at White House Farm

Everyone copes with trauma in different ways. Jeremy had been kept away from the house when the fire arms team were called in. He had been asked to stay in a police car on pages lane with officers who testified that he was distressed, he kept looking as though he was going to break down and they distracted him with talk of other things. PC Lay stated in his 1st of October statement:

“There were two or 3 occasions during the conversation that Jeremy appeared to be getting upset. On one of these occasions he said, “Oh God, I hope she hasn’t done anything stupid.” I didn’t ask him to elaborate on that remark as the man was getting distressed and so I steered the conversation to another subject.”

Lay goes on to say:

“The Witham Duty Sergeant came over to the car. He went to the nearside and opened the passenger door and said – I’m very sorry there’s no hope for any of them.” Or words to that effect. At that Jeremy burst into tears and the Sergeant tried to console him.”

Other officers detail in their statements that Jeremy was crying and was visibly upset and distressed. When the doctor arrived he gave him a sip of whiskey from a hip flask. This made Jeremy sick. When they took Jeremy to his home, police insisted he eat something to stop him from retching. He had little food in the house and went to the fridge, the only thing he could find was bacon which he put into the microwave and then into two pieces of bread, he ate this with the encouragement of the police officers and so is the kernel of the myth of the jolly Jeremy Bamber sitting at this kitchen table eating a hearty cooked breakfast with police officers.

Many of Jeremy’s responses have been used against him, for example, the talk of buying a Porsche was used as evidence to demonstrate that he was already planning to spend his inheritance on a new Sports car, but the truth was that Jeremy was referring to a buying a cheap kit Porsche. The case is littered with myths and circumstantial evidence. The facts are that there was no evidence against Jeremy Bamber; nothing connecting him to the scene. In court the moderator was the only thing suggesting that Sheila had not shot herself. She could not have fired one shot leaving her blood in the moderator and then taken the moderator downstairs and put it in the gun cupboard and gone back upstairs again where she was found. Even though this still did not connect Jeremy to the killings, the judge stated at court that because Jeremy said that his father had made the call to him – this would mean that it had to be either Jeremy or Sheila and not a third party. It does beg the question as to why there has been so much emphasis placed on the precarious evidence of Mugford and her hit man story which was demonstrably disproved. So, with absolutely no evidence – why is he in prison?

Jeremy Bamber let Julie Mugford and his friends and relatives take over the running of almost every part of the aftermath of the tragedy.[1] Unable to cope with entering White House Farm without experiencing trauma and severe anxiety Jeremy continued to smoke cannabis heavily, whilst drinking alcohol and taking diazepam as prescribed by his doctor. [2]

The question must have turned over in his mind a million times: If I hadn’t left the gun out on the settle would this still have happened?Had he forgotten to take the magazine out or not? No, he was sure he had taken the magazine out. Had Sheila noticed that he had left the gun like this? He had blamed himself for his own mistakes, but then the farm was full of guns, a collection of 7 weapons including rifles and shotguns were there and he knew that Sheila could have picked up any one of those at any time.

The family solicitor was later interviewed by police and confirmed that he had advised Jeremy to find out the order of deaths[3] something which was later to be used against him by this relatives and the police. Later when the City of London Police investigated, Mr Wilson told them that Jeremy was very emotional on his visits to him and that he had advised Jeremy that he should be appointed sole director of the businesses.[4] A few days after the tragedy Jeremy had to face going into the farm, Ann Eaton took Jeremy around the house after she had been in to clean it and remove valuable items she wanted for herself and her family. She stated that he did not want to go into each room and she described Jeremy as “frightened, hesitant and petrified,” a normal reaction for someone having to face where the bodies of their family had been found. [5]

The family accountant had confirmed that Nevill’s bank account was overdrawn by almost £100,000; [6] all of the estate was tied up in assets. Nevill had borrowed this money to convert his estate in Guildford into five houses. Jeremy had the responsibility of running the farm at harvest time, coping with the funerals of his family, the shock, his grief and the prospect of having little money for funerals as well as paying staff wages. He was an inexperienced farmer at just 24 years old, and Basil Cock had advised that Jeremy appoint Peter Eaton as farm manager to help. Jeremy was also advised that death duties would be high and he would have to find ways of cutting down costs. At the time inheritance duties were 40% of all monies inherited over £200,000. The financial difficulty Jeremy faced was because he was to inherit both his parent’s estates at once. The accountant told him that he would owe around £80,000 in tax.

Brett Collins, Julie and Jeremy went out drinking together a frequently after the tragedy, Jeremy Bamber recently said in an interview with the Mirror Newspaper “I am certainly not alone in turning to alcohol in sorrow – nor in seeking the company of others who cared about me.”Brett tried to keep Jeremy’s spirits high with good humour and Jeremy even joined his friend, the twins father, Colin Caffell on the 9th of August where he, Jeremy, Julie, Brett and three others went for Chinese meal and then on to a concert as both Jeremy and Colin tried to put a brave face on their grief. [7]

Some weeks later after the tragedy Jeremy attended the farm, on the 23rd August he asked both Barbara Wilson and Jean Bouttell to clear out much of the clutter that filled up the rooms of White House Farm. This included a large collection of magazines in the kitchen under which Jean Bouttell found the spare telephone. She asked Jeremy what she should do with it he just remarked it was a spare.[8] There was much discussion over this telephone which was a court exhibit.

Jeremy had cheated on Julie Mugford with her friend Lizzie prior to the tragedies and he had also felt that his time with Julie had come to an end and broke of their relationship. Her endless demanding behaviour must have become tiresome for him; he had offered to buy Julie a wine bar in London and had given her money to help her as a student teacher. Jeremy wanted to be with another woman called Virginia whom he had known for some time. He turned to Virginia for comfort away from Julie’s violent tantrums and demands. [9] Julie was becoming more and more difficult and resented Brett Collins being around and suspected that they were lovers.

Brett had said he was experienced in the sale of antiques and together with Jeremy they took some valuables to Sotheby’s for auction to raise funds to help with the impending death duties much to the horror of the relatives. During the period before he was charged with the murders Jeremy Bamber had twice headed overseas rejecting what had happened and feeling distressed at the constant press intrusion into his life.

After DCI Jones was removed as head of the investigation he worked under Supt Ainsley. DCI Jones had to arrest Jeremy Bamber the first time at Moorshead Mansions.  Almost immediately after his arrest and still at the flat Jeremy had blurted out that he had possession of Marijuana and handed some over to Jones.  At interview he easily confessed to burgling the caravan park to prove a point by using a key kept inside the letter box.  He also confessed to cultivating Marijuana in his back garden which he sold to friends.  For someone who owns up to crime so easily, it seems to me that if Jeremy Bamber had committed the killings he would not be able to stop himself from confessing.  Nevertheless, in 27 years there has never been any admission.

After his first arrest on the 8th of September, he was questioned for four days sometimes until 11pm at night. The interviews were not audio recorded but hand written each day, the first two days of questioning were done without Jeremy having a solicitor present. Police constantly pressed him on the positioning of the gun accusing him of telling some police officers that the rifle was on the table, but he was adamant the gun was on the settle.  DS Stan Jones asked him if he had or hadn’t fired the gun.  He was insistent that he had not fired the rifle.  They went over and over the telephone call from his father.  The records of these interviews span for hundreds of pages.  DS Jones told Jeremy that Julie had said that he had called her before calling the police which contradicted what both he and Julie had initially told police. The time of the call needed to be ‘fixed’ at a much earlier time for the prosecution to state that he called Julie first. This corresponds to PC West’s log having been recorded much earlier but he altered his testimony saying that he filled the log out wrong by ten minutes.

After days of questioning Jeremy gave in with confusion and said that maybe he did call Julie first.  This single discrepancy was used against Jeremy although it actually has no real bearing on the facts; whether he called Julie first or the police second the events still happened just as he had said.  Since the interview Jeremy has maintained that he called the police before he called Julie.  There are no other discrepancies in Jeremy’s accounts throughout his 27 years. This single issue was used to state that Jeremy had lied. Jeremy Bamber’s account has stood up to scrutiny over 27 years and is very robust by comparison with the testimony of Mugford, who had lied about their engagement, the end of their relationship, Jeremy’s relationship with Collins, MacDonald being the hit man, her involvement in drugs and crime independently of Jeremy and her pre-trial deal with the NOTW for 25k.

Through all of the witness accounts, many people have altered their accounts and statements contradict each other, there is only one account which remains the same to this day and it is the account of Jeremy Bamber.  This is because it is the truth and the truth does not alter, other witnesses (both Police Officers and Relatives) have exaggerated and embellished their original accounts in the media and to different police enquiries.  Jeremy has coped with the strain of the continual questioning and by comparison with other miscarriages of justice his version of accounts has not altered; he has never confessed nor altered his account under duress.

After his first arrest and release without charge Jeremy was approached by the newspapers for his story.  Naively he went to meet with one after his solicitor advised him against it.  But Jeremy was tired of being vilified by the newspapers after his arrest and wanted to tell his story.  Jeremy said that Brett Collins also advised that he should go to meet with the journalist. But the Sun journalist wasn’t interested in Jeremy’s account, and continually asked questions about Sheila Caffell and requested any modelling pictures which might have been pornographic.  Jeremy had told him that there were none and that there might have been some topless ones but Colin Caffell would have those.  The journalist ran the story reporting that the newspaper had been offered these pictures and they also went to the police. The newspaper never obtained pictures of Sheila, because they didn’t exist, further proof that Jeremy Bamber had not intended to sell any pictures to the newspaper.

Jeremy’s efforts to tell his story had gone disastrously wrong, this coupled with the burglary at the caravan park made the outlook very bleak.  Stories escalated about Jeremy’s relationship with Brett Collins and his trips abroad.  Acquaintances turned their backs on him and his often eccentric, foolish behaviour and socializing with homosexuals was amplified by local gossip.  His enjoyment of cannabis, later down classified to a class C drug and frequently used by the middle classes was also a major point of “criminality” used by the prosecution.  He was presented as having spent a lot of money on holidays but the reality was on his trip to Amsterdam he, Brett and Julie had shared the same room to economise.

After his arrest the trip to the South of France was glamorized but the fact was that Jeremy and Brett stayed in a caravan to keep the costs low.  Anything to escape the now intrusive and destructive glare of the media, Jeremy was an innocent man subjected to similar treatment as other people who are vilified in the press and subsequently released without charge.

Jeremy had continued smoking pot, taking prescribed sedatives[10] and alcohol to drown out the shock, pain and sorrow.  His arrest and high media profile prompted his new love Virginia to turn her back on him.   Julie had contrived a convoluted story to the police, and his relatives had turned against him and by their own admission, were taking belongings from his family home without permission.[11] Even Colin Caffell had become distant and had written to him saying that the relatives had insisted that Jeremy was duping him and was definitely guilty and Colin didn’t know what to believe now his beautiful twins were dead and Jeremy had been arrested and released without charge.[12]

Now Jeremy was in virtual exile in France with his friend Brett trying to support him in the only way he knew how, by leading him to drinking dens. After a short period under police surveillance the officers abandoned their suspect realizing that Jeremy was not going to do anything helpful to the prosecution’s case.[13] Jeremy found the pain was dampened by drinking until the small hours of the night and eventually both he and Brett caught food poisoning on their return journey to the UK by ferry. Jeremy was arrested and charged with murder at the port of Dover. On his arrival in a police van on his last day of freedom, there were several women  waving to him and calling out his name, he smiled back as the cameras snapped him in a dazed, exhausted blur of a mask which veiled the pain he would carry for at least another 27 years.  This was a photograph often used over the years by the press to demonstrate that he was a shallow and arrogant young man.

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“Truth cannot be found through facts alone, truth can only come through understanding” Jeremy Bamber, 2012


[1] Collective statements, J Mugford, A. Eaton, P. Eaton, B. Cock, B Collins

[2] Medical records, J Bamber

[3] 25th September, 1985, Police action 769, interview T. Wilson, Solicitor

[4] 3rd July 1991, Statement, T Wilson, Solicitor

[5] 16th September 1985, Statement, A Eaton

[6] Nevill Bamber statement of Estate & Ann Eaton Statement IBID

[7] 17th November, 1985, Statement, J Mugford

[8] Trial Transcript & Statements, J Bouttell

[9] 8th September 1985, Statement, J Mugford

[10] Medical records of Jeremy Bamber

[11] Ann Eaton Statement to COLP

[12] 17th September 1985,Letter to Jeremy from Colin Caffell

[13] Officer’s report Surveillance on JB