Exhumed body: How we reported 25 years ago on body pulled from river

Story of a body find in Olney from the Citizen of 11th December, 1986.
Story of a body find in Olney from the Citizen of 11th December, 1986.

This is how Milton Keynes Citizen reported in 1986 on the discovery of the body that was exhumed from Fenny Stratford cemetery this morning.

Even 25 years ago we were first on the scene as we reported how two workmen had made the grizzly find as they were repairing Goosey Bridge in Olney.

The two men, Peter Shine and Chris Snelus thought they could see a log floating towards them but as they fished it out they were horrified to find it was the legs and waist of a human.

Speaking at the time, Chris said: “It looked like a pair of trousers with socks and bones sticking out of the top. Then we thought it was a tailor’s dummy, but soon we realised it was a body.”

The body was discovered on December 5, 1986, at about 2.35pm and Peter, 21 at the time, described their findings as a ‘blue pair of trousers and muddy socks and a pair of underpants with bits sticking out.’

The men ran to the houses of two town police officers and after discovering they weren’t home called police from a neighbour’s house.

Jenny Bebbington, whose 14-year-old daughter answered the door to the startled pair, said: “They looked a bit white and they eventually said they had found a body in the river. So I phoned the police.”

The police post mortem revealed the body was a male, aged around 30, of average height. It also found the body could have been in there for four or five months.

Back in the present day the investigation is ongoing and after today’s exhumation police will carry out DNA tests to try and determine a formal identity of the remains.

> Do you know Peter Shine, Chris Snelus or Jenny Bebbington? If so contact the Newsdesk by calling 01908 372279 or by emailing editorial@mkcitizen.co.uk