Friday, 5 May 2017

An Odd Fascination.

Ever since I first saw the film 10 Rillington Place I’ve been fascinated by the sickeningly sordid story of serial killer Reginald Christie. I’ve sometimes even felt an urgent desire to visit the scene of the crimes by way of some sort of bizarre pilgrimage. This is odd because I’m not generally interested in serial killers, and every time I read anything about the Christie case I go into a moderately deep depression.

Maybe the explanation lies in the fact that it’s not so much Christie who interests me, but his lodger, Timothy Evans, who was wrongly convicted of two of the killings (his own wife and baby daughter) and executed before the other murders came to light. Maybe it’s the sense of injustice which both fascinates and depresses me. But does it explain why I sometimes feel the need to visit the scene? I don’t know.

And what I find really odd is this: Rillington Place was demolished and redeveloped after Christie himself had been tried and executed, but I gather that nobody can now say where exactly it was situated. How can that be? This is 1950s London we’re talking about. Are there no street plans in the archives? And what about the younger residents who were relocated after the demolition? Some of them must have lived on for decades after the redevelopment, and some of them might still be alive today. Is somebody hiding something?

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