Person:Mary Blandy (1)

Mary Blandy
d.6 Apr 1752 at Oxford, England
  1. Mary Blandy1720 - 1752
Facts and Events
Name[1][2] Mary Blandy
Gender Female
Birth[1][2] 1720
Residence[6][11][12][13] ?-1752 Blandy House, Hart Street, Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire
Other[10][11][12] Ghostly apparitions in various locations around Henley
Reference Number? Q6779079?
Funeral[4] 1:00 a.m., 7 Apr 1752 Henley Church, Henley-upon-Thames, Oxfordshire
Other[1][2][4][5][6][7] 3 Mar 1752 at Oxford AssizesTrial for the murder of her father
Death[1][2][3][4][6][7] 6 Apr 1752 at Oxford, Englandhanged on the morning
Burial[4][6] 7 Apr 1752 Chancel of Henley Parish Church, Henley-upon-Thames, Oxfordshire"between the graves of her father and mother"

Mary Blandy 1720—1752

If Love, in deep distress, can aught prevail,
You’ll prove attentive to our tragic Tale,
Our well-known Tale:—The base Deluder’s fled,
And the too-fond, too-credulous Fair is dead.
Guilty or guiltless, who can surely tell?
A spotless Angel, or a Fiend of Hell?
To heaven alone we’ll leave her dubious Case,
And strive to mend the World through her Disgrace.
—From: The Fair Parricide, A Tragedy in 3 Acts, Fetter Lane, 1752 S8, S9

... Leaving the Wargrave road, she turned in at a small gate, taking a path that led up to the hanging woods of Park Place. Of tall beech, the woods rode the hill for several miles, following the line of the Thames. In spring the trees stood knee-deep in a sea of bluebells and in autumn the hillside burned with the dark flame of their leaves. It was here that she first heard the nightingale. Above her head now she could distinguish the soft secret song of a young blackbird, and in the distance a robin scattered a cascade of small notes. … For her these woods, part of a forest that had diverted the tide of conquest and settlement, held a deeper, more primitive meaning, something that transcended the snobberies of a country town. Her father, Town Clerk of Henley; her mother, the former Miss Stevens of Culham Court; her uncles, Mr. Serjeant Stevens of Doctor’s Commons and the Rector of Fawley; herself, the reputed heiress; the respected position the Blandys enjoyed in this small corner of the world, and their acquaintance among the neighbouring gentry; the cap-touching and the limitless credit from the tradespeople; the family pew in church and the houseful of servants; the silk gowns her maid laid out for her, and her own elegant accomplishments—needlework and elocution and dancing; these things had always been hers, were as much a part of her as the air she breathed. It would only be if one of or many of them were stripped from her that she would be consciously aware of them. They were hers, part of the entity that was Miss Blandy, spinster of this parish. ....

—Excerpt from The Hanging Wood by Joan Morgan, Macdonald & Co, (Publishers) Ltd, 1950 S9 (For more excerpts from this work and for additional excerpts from other sources, see separate page: Mary Blandy)
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Ford, David Nash: Royal Berkshire History (online).

    « Mary Blandy (1720-1752) / Born: 1720 / Author / Died: 6th April 1752
    Mary Blandy was the only child of Francis Blandy, an attorney and town clerk of Henley-upon-Thames in Oxfordshire. Her grandfather was John Blandy of Letcombe Bassett in Berkshire. It was said that Francis had a fortune of £10,000 which he would be able to leave to his daughter. An avaricious officer in the marines, named William Henry Cranstoun, son of William, 5th Lord Cranstoun, proposed to marry her. The two were lovers for six years, often meeting along 'Miss Blandy's Walk' at Park Place across the Thames in Remenham. The father, however, objected, suspecting Cranstoun to be already married. He had, in fact, married a certain Anne Murray in 1745. Thereupon Cranstoun induced Miss Blandy to administer arsenic in small doses to her father. He died, after some months, on 14th August 1751. Mary was immediately detained in her room; but, on finding the door open, she went for a walk around Henley. The townsfolk were not happy and chased her over the bridge into Remenham where she took refuge with her friend, Mrs. Davis, the landlady of the ‘Little Angel’, before being taken back into custody.
    Miss Blandy was tried at Oxford, on 3rd March 1752, convicted upon strong evidence, including that of her father's physician, Anthony Addington. She was hanged on 6th April 1752, her last request being that, for the sake of decency, she should not be hoisted too high. Much attention was aroused at the time, especially by the pathetic circumstance that the father, when he knew himself to be dying by his daughter's hands, only pitied her and tried to prevent her committing herself. He appears to have thought that she mistook the poison, which she received from Cranstoun, for a potion intended to win his favour to the match. This view was suggested at the trial and solemnly asserted by Miss Blandy at her death, but is inconsistent with many facts brought out in evidence. Cranstoun escaped, but died on 2nd December 1752. It was remarked as a strange coincidence that a banker in the Strand, named Gillingham Cooper, received, as lord of the manor at Henley, the forfeiture of two fields belonging to Miss Blandy; and of a malthouse belonging to a Miss Jefferys who, on 28th March 1752, was hanged for the murder of her uncle at Walthamstow. »
    Edited from Leslie Stephen's 'Dictionary of National Biography' (1886). [See source: S7 below]
    Accessed on: Royal Berkshire History

  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Emsley, John: The Elements of Murder: A History of Poison, Oxford University Press, Oxford, New York, 2005, pp. 145-147.

    « Mary Blandy (1720-52)
    Mary Blandy was the only child of Francis Blandy, attorney-at-law and town clerk of Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire. Although it was known that she would bring a dowry of £10,000, she was still unwed at 26. Then she met lieutenant William Henry Cranstoun who charmed her and with whom she fell hopelessly in love. When the Blandy's were told that he already had a wife and child in Scotland he replied that the woman was lying and that she had no claim on him, and that this would be confirmed by a court case he was bringing against her. Indeed he even persuaded his wife to write a letter under her maiden name of Murray to the effect that htey were not married. She did this thinking to help her husband who had told her that his being married was a bar to his promotion in the army, and that for the time being he wished to appear to be single. He showed this letter to Mary and her parents who took it at face value and even allowed Cranstoun to live with them. Unfortunately for Cranstoun, the Scottish courts in March 1748 upheld the woman's claim to be married to him although he managed to keep this from the Blandys for two more years, during which time Mrs Blandy died.
    Eventually Francis Blandy decided he wanted nothing more to do with Cranstoun, who returned to Scotland, from where he sent Mary packets of arsenic trioxide, which he labelled "powders to clean Scotch pebbles" and telling her to put some in her father's food because he said it would change her father's opposition to their relationship. she may well have first done this in November 1750, putting some in his tea, but it only made her father ill; in June the following year, on receipt of more powder from Scotland, she tried again, making her father very ill but he again recovered. In August she added a larger dose of the powder to his gruel (oatmeal and milk) and again he was taken ill, this time fatally so; a servant who also ate some of the food was made very ill. Francis now realized that his daughter had poisoned him and that he was dying; he expired on the 14th of that month but not before he tried to save his daughter by saying that he forgave her.
    When the townspeople of Henley learned what Mary had done a mob appeared menacingly outside the Blandy residence and she had to flee to the safety of the Angel pub where the landlady gave her shelter. Mary was arrested on 17 August and imprisoned in Oxford Castle. She was put on trial on Tuesday, 3 March 1752, and this lasted almost 12 hours. At the end of that day the jury did not feel the need to retire to reach a verdict but delivered it there and then: guilty.
    Evidence that she had used poison was proved by having some of the white powder identified by Dr. Anthony Addington, He showed that four tests performed on a sample of the powder gave exactly the same results as tests carried out on white arsenic. The forensic evidence helped to convince the jury that Mary had murdered her father and she was duly convicted and hanged, but not before pleading for extra time in order to write her version of events: Miss Mary Blandy's Own Account of the Affair Between Her and Mr Cranstoun. Clearly she seemed unnaturally cool and calm even as she approached the gibbet, asking the hangman not to hang her too high "for the sake of decency" and indeed a large crowd had turned out to witness her execution. But hang her high he did on 6 April 1752.
    As for Cranstoun, he fled to France, first to Boulogne, then to Paris, and finally to Flanders where he stayed with a distant relative. He changed his name to Dunbar. But he had not long to live: in November 1752 he went down with a fever and died on the 30th of that month, having converted to the Roman Catholic faith, a sign perhaps that he felt the need to confess his part in the murder of Francis Blandy and the execution of his daughter. »
    Accessed on: Google Books - Limited preview

  3. The Complete Newgate Calendar, Volume III, p. 220.

    « MARY BLANDY / Executed 6th of April, 1752, for murdering her Father at the Request of her Lover
    ... At the ensuing assizes at Oxford Miss Blandy was indicted for the wilful murder of her father, and was immediately found guilty upon the confession which she had made. She addressed the jury at great length, repeating the story which she had before related; but all was of no avail, and sentence of death was passed. At nine in the morning of the 6th of April, 1752, she left her apartment to be conducted to the scaffold, habited in a black bombasine dress, her arms being bound with black ribands. On her ascending the gallows she begged that she might not be hanged high, "for the sake of decency"; and on her being desired to go a little higher, expressed her fear that she should fall. The rope having been put round her neck, she pulled her handkerchief over her face, and was turned off on holding out a book of devotions which she had been reading. »
    Full text accessed on: Tarlton Law Library, University of Texas

  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Leslie, George D. , R.A.: Our River, London: Bradbury, Agnew, & Co, Bouverie Street, 1881.

    « ... One of the most tragic events of the last century connected with the history of Henley, was the trial and execution of a young lady named Mary Blandy for the poisoning of her father. ... On her trial, Miss Blandy confessed to having administered the powder, but asserted that she did it innocently ... She made a long speech, defending herself, but as the case was clearly proved against her, a verdict of “Guilty” was returned, and on the 6th of April, 1752, she was executed at Oxford. ... In an old periodical of the time, from which I have obtained this story, her execution is described in the following curious and graphic manner:-
    “This morning Miss Blandy was executed at Oxford, in the same black petelair she was dressed in at her trial; she had on a black pair of gloves, and her hands and arms were tied with black paduasoy ribbons. * * * Her behaviour at the gallows was becoming a person in her unhappy circumstances, and drew not only great compassion, but tears, from most of the spectators. When got up about five steps of the ladder, she said, ‘Gentlemen, I beg you will not hang me high, for the sake of decency;’ and being desired to go a little higher, she did, two steps more; and then, turning herself on the ladder, had a little trembling, and said, ‘I am afraid I shall fall.’ After she had turned herself on the ladder, the Rev. Mr. Swinton, who attended her, said, ‘Madam, have you anything to say to the public?’ She said, ‘Yes,’ and then made a speech to the following purport: ‘That as she was then going to appear before a just God, she did not know that the powders, which were supposed to be the death of her father, would have done him any harm, therefore she was innocently the cause of his death, and, as she had been suspected to have poisoned her mother, she declared that she never had been so much as innocently the cause of her illness or death.’ And then, desiring all present to pray for her, she pulled a white handkerchief which was tied round her head for that purpose, over her eyes, which, not being low enough, a person standing by, stepped up the ladder, and pulled it further down; then giving the signal, by holding out a little book which she had in her hand, she was turned off. Before she went out of the gaol, she gave the sheriffs’ men a guinea to drink, and took two guineas in her hands with her, which she gave to the executioner. * * * In the afternoon her body was carried to Henley in a coffin lined with white satin, and according to her own desire, was deposited in the church there, between her father and mother. The funeral took place at one o’clock in the morning, and notwithstanding the hour, there was the greatest concourse of people ever seen on such an occasion.”
    .... » For a longer excerpt from this work, see separate page: Mary Blandy

  5. The Tryal оf Mary Blandy, Spinster; for The Murder Of her Father, Francis Blandy, Gent..

    At the Assizes held at Oxford / For the County of Oxford / On Saturday, the 29th of February, 1752.
    before The Honourable Heneage Legge, Esq. and Sir Sydney Stafford Smythe, Knt. Two of the Barons of his Majesty's Court of Exchequer.
    London: printed for John And James Rivington, at the Bible and Crown, in St. Paul's Church-Yard MDCCLII. [Price: Two shillings.]
    « On Monday, the 2d of March 1752, a Bill of Indictment was found by the Grand Inquest for the County of Oxford, against Mary Blandy, Spinster ; for the Murder of Francis Blandy, late of the Parish of Henley upon Thames, in the said County, Gentleman.
    On Tuesday, the 3d of March 1752, the Court being met, the Prisoner Mary Blandy was set to the Bar, when the Court proceeded thus :
    Clerk of the Arraigns. Mary Blandy, hold up thy Hand ; (which she did.) You stand indicted by the Name of Mary Blandy, late of the Parish of Henley upon Thames in the County of Oxford, Spinster ; Daughter of Francis Blandy, late of the same Place, Gentleman, deceased , for that you, not having the Fear of God before your Eyes, but being moved and seduced by the Instigation of the Devil, and of your Malice aforethought, contriving and intending, him the said Francis Blandy, your said late Father, in his Life-time to deprive of his Life ; and him feloniously to kill, and murder, on the 10th Day of November, in the 23d Year of the Reign of our said Sovereign Lord George the second, now King of Great Britain ; and on divers Days and Times, between the said 10th Day of November, and the 5th Day of August, in the 25th Year of the Reign of his said Majesty, with Force and Arms, at the Parish of Henley upon Thames aforesaid, in the County aforesaid, did knowingly, willfully, and feloniously, and of your Malice aforethought, mix and mingle certain deadly Poison, to wit, white Arsenick, in certain Tea, which had been at divers Times, during the Time above specified, prepared for the Use of the said Francis Blandy, to be drank by him .... »
    Full account of the trial accessed on: Google Books - full view
    It may also be found in: A Complete Collection of State Trials and Proceedings for High Treason and other Crimes and Misdemeanors from the Earliest Period to the Present Time with Notes and Other Illustrations compiled by T.B. Howell Esq, F.R.S.F.S.A., Vol 18 A.D. 1743—1753, London, 1813
    Also accessed on: Google Books - full view

  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Mary Blandy – patricide 1752..

    « Mary Blandy was 31 when she was hanged in 1752 for the murder of her father by poisoning. She was unusual in the annals of female criminals of the time - she was middle class and well educated. Her father, Francis Blandy, was a prosperous lawyer and the Town Clerk of Henley on Thames in Oxfordshire at the time of his murder. So Mary lived a comfortable lifestyle at the family home in Hart Street. ...
    She came to trial at Oxford Assizes on the 3rd of March 1752, before The Honourable Heneage Legge, Esq., and Sir Sydney Stafford Smythe in the hall of the Divinity School (The normal venue, the Town Hall, was being refurbished at the time). The trial was of particular interest because it was the first time detailed medical evidence had been presented in court on a charge of murder by poisoning. Although Dr. Anthony Addington had not been able to chemically analyse Francis Blandy's organs for traces of arsenic as the technology didn't exist at the time, he was able to convince the court on the basis of observed comparison that the powder Mary had put in her father was indeed arsenic. She defended herself with the help of three counsel, with what has been described as "intelligence and zeal" although her case was hopeless. She made an impassioned speech for her own defence in which she totally denied administering poison but did admit that she had put a powder into her father's food - she claimed "which had been given me with another intent." The servants gave evidence against her - telling the court that they had seen her administering the powders to her father's food and drink and trying to destroy the evidence.
    Not surprisingly at the end of the one day 13-hour trial, the jury swiftly convicted her of murder and she received the mandatory death sentence. She was then returned to Oxford Castle where it is reported that the keeper's family were all very upset by her conviction. Mary allegedly told them "Don't mind it," "What does it signify? I am very hungry; pray, let me have something for supper as speedily as possible." They gave her mutton chops and apple pie. She got on well, apparently, with her jailers and was well treated by them.
    She was allowed nearly 6 weeks between sentence and execution and appeared completely unmoved by her situation. The trial judge would have sent his recommendation to the Secretary of State, and this would have been considered by the King and Privy Council at a “Hanging Cabinet.” Few murderers were reprieved, although it was not entirely unknown. Poisoners stood even less chance.
    In July 1752, the Murder Act was passed which stipulated that all persons convicted of murder were to be fed only on bread and water and hanged within two days of sentence and that their body be dissected afterwards. Fortunately for Mary, she missed this new law and was able to be buried in a proper grave. ...
    There seems to be some difference of opinion as to the place of execution. According to some accounts, she was executed in the Castle Yard at Oxford (a large open space) and in other accounts the gallows was set up on a raised mound at the Westgate. Both are quite possible.
    She was hanged on Monday the 6th of April 1752 from a gallows consisting of a wooden beam placed between two trees. ... For her execution, she chose “a black crape sack, with her arms and hands ty'd with black paduasoy ribbons.” She behaved with bravery and penitence to the end and was attended by the Reverend Swinton. She suffered in front of a relatively small crowd to whom she protested her innocence before she was turned off.
    Her last request to the officials was "for the sake of decency, gentlemen, don't hang me high." She was naturally modest and concerned that the young men in the crowd would look up her skirts if she was too high.
    She was then made to climb a ladder draped in black cloth, whilst the hangman climbed a ladder beside her. Mary was noosed and her hands were tied in front to allow her to hold her prayer book. She covered her face with a large handkerchief. Her legs were not tied together.
    It had been agreed that when she had finished her prayers, she would drop the book as signal to the hangman to turn the ladder over and "turn her off" as the saying went. She passed into unconsciousness very quickly and, as reported, "died without a struggle" - presumably due to vagal or carotid reflex. She was taken down after half an hour but there was no coffin for her so she had to be carried back to the castle by 6 men. It is said that a blackbird perched on the beam during the hanging, and that no blackbird has ever sung there since.
    She was buried in the early hours of the Tuesday morning in the chancel of Henley Parish Church, between the graves of her father and mother. The church has since been restored and there is now no trace of her grave. Her ghost is said to haunt the Westgate and the Little Angel Inn. .... »
    Accessed on:, which concludes with the author's comments. The web page also shows two illustrations: one presumably of her, dressed in a hooped skirt with matching (flowery) bodice and a plain hat or bonnet, standing and pointing to one side with her hand held out with pointed index finger; the other, "A woodcut of Mary’s execution".

  7. 7.0 7.1 Stephen, Sir Leslie & Lee, Sir Sidney: Dictionary of National Biography, Vol. V, New York: MacMillan & Co.; London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1886, p. 202.

    « BLANDY, MARY (d. 1752), murderess, was the only child of Francis Blandy, attorney, of Henley-on-Thames, who had said he would leave her a fortune of 10,000l. An officer in the marines, named William Henry Cranstoun, son of William, son of William, fifth Lord Cranstoun, proposed to marry her. The father objected, suspecting Cranstoun to be already married. He had, in fact, married Anne Murray in 1745. Hereupon Cranstoun induced Miss Blandy to administer arsenic in small doses to her father. He died, after some months, on 14th Aug. 1751. Miss Blandy was tried at Oxford, on 3rd March 1752, convicted upon strong evidence, including that of her father's physician, Anthony Addington [q.v.] and was hanged on 6th April 1752. Much attention was aroused at the time, especially by the pathetic circumstance that the father, when he knew himself to be dying by his daughter's hands, only pitied her and tried to prevent her committing herself. He appears to have thought that she mistook the poison, which she received from Cranstoun, for a potion intended to win his favour to the match. This view was suggested at the trial and solemnly asserted by Miss Blandy at her death, but is inconsistent with many facts brought out in evidence. Cranstoun escaped, but died on 2 Dec. 1752. It was remarked as a strange coincidence that a banker in the Strand, named Gillingham Cooper, received, as lord of the manor at Henley, the forfeiture of two fields belonging to Miss Blandy; and of a malthouse belonging to a Miss Jefferys who, on 28th March 1752, was hanged for the murder of her uncle at Walthamstow.  »
    « [Tryal of Mary Blandy for the Murder of her Father, &c., 1752, reprinted in Howell's State Trials, xviii. 1118-1194; Annual Register for 1768, p. 77 ; Gent. Mug. for 1752, pp. 108, 152, 188; Universal Magazine for June 1752: Letter from a Clergyman to Miss Blandy, with her own Narrative, 1752 ; Miss Blandy's own Account, &c., London, 1752; An Answer to Miss Blandy's Narrative; A Candid Appeal to the Public concerning, &c., 1752: Horace Walpole's Letters (Cunningham), ii. 281, 285, 290, 306, 312, 346; Notes and Queries, 5th ser., iii. 67, 119; Douglas's Scotch Peerage, i. 368.] L. S. »
    Downloaded as a pdf file from: Google Books (p. 217 of pdf)

  8.   The Fair Parricide, A Tragedy in 3 Acts, Fetter Lane, 1752.

    This quotation from The Fair Parricide appears on the page facing the table of contents of the Star Book (paperback) edition of Joan Morgan's book, Mary Blandy, in which it is also listed in its bibliography. See next source: S9

  9.   Morgan, Joan: Mary Blandy, A Star Book published in 1980 by the Paperback Division of W.H. Allen & Co, Ltd.

    First published by Macdonald & Co, (Publishers) Ltd, 1950 under the title: The Hanging Wood.
    See separate page: Mary Blandy
    Above the title, Mary Blandy, on the cover of the Star paperback edition (an image of which may be seen at: is written: "From the chilling new BBC-tv series A Question of Guilt". Most sources give 1980 as the date for this television production. For example see: BFI (British Film Institute). While the obituary for Joan Morgan published on Saturday, 24 July, 2004 in The Independent says: "Her The Hanging Wood (1950), the story of Mary Blandy who was hanged at Oxford in the 18th century, was adapted by the BBC in 1977 for the A Question of Guilt series." There was also an earlier stage production. See next source: S10
    Besides, the book and play by Joan Morgan, there is one other 'fictional' treatment of the story of Mary Blandy. This is the book by Philip Lindsay: In Her Looking-Glass, published in London by Hutchinson in 1956. See: WorldCat And there is a newer edition published in 1976 by White Lion Publishers in London: WorldCat. For an image of the cover of the 1956 Hutchinson first edition (for as long as it remains unsold) see: March House Books.
    And there is a veritable wealth of further references to Mary Blandy online. A simple Google search (made on October 2nd, 2009) for "Mary Blandy" comes up with "about 20,100" results. And when you add 1752 to the search there are still about 4,290 results.

  10. Long, David: Curious Oxfordshire, Chapter 1, 'South Oxfordshire' (Henley), and The History Press Ltd, 2008.

    « ... A play by Joan Morgan called The Hanging Wood tells of the life, romance and death of Mary Blandy and paints a rather rose-tinted picture of the heroine. When the play was performed at the Kenton Theatre at Henley in 1969, all manner of supernatural events took place. Doors slammed in people’s faces, lights turned off and on of their own accord, a mirror jumped off of the wall, a cup leapt off of a table and a shadowy figure of a young lady appeared just off stage. .... »
    Accessed at: British Local History > Curious Oxfordshire under 'Henley'.

  11. 11.0 11.1 OXFORDSHIRE - Blandy House.

    « On 6th April, 1752, Mary Blandy was hanged at Oxford for poisoning her father, who had strongly opposed her forthcoming marriage to William Crawston, of whom he strongly disapproved. She had killed him by administering arsenic.
    At the bottom of the garden of the house, the ghost of Mary Blandy has been seen several times in recent years, standing under an old mulberry tree, silently contemplating her deed. On two occasions she has been seen accompanied by the shadowy figure of a man, who is thought to have been the man she intended to marry, and for whom she murdered her father. In 1969, the play “The Hanging Wood”, based on the story of Mary Blandy, was due to be performed at the Kenton Theatre in Henley. As soon as rehearsals began, mysterious things happened at the theatre. A large mirror was seen to literally jump off a wall, lights were switched on and off and doors opened and closed, together with other poltergeist smashing of articles, all as if by invisible hands. The phantom figure of a young woman was seen standing at the back of the theatre, watching the rehearsals. When approached by a member of the cast, the figure simply disappeared. Nobody ever actually saw her arriving or leaving the theatre.
    On one occasion, when several members of the cast were discussing Mary Blandy during a break in rehearsals, a cup was seen to rise from the table and drop to the floor, where it smashed to pieces. Several years previously, when the trial of Mary Blandy was being re-enacted at Henley Town Hall, a similar figure was seen by a number of people. »
    Accessed on: GeoCities, which site will soon be removed from the Internet as Yahoo is closing down 'GeoCities'. I have reproduced the full text from the site as it was on 5 Oct 2009. There is also an image of the front façade of the house on the web page.

  12. 12.0 12.1 Henley Ghost Tours - 'The Ghost Mary Blandy'.

    « Coming soon...The Mary Blandy tour - A slow walking historic audio tour - Mary Blandy, daughter of a prosperous Henley solicitor and town clerk in the 1700's was convicted of murdering her father Francis Blandy aged 62. Mary was hanged dressed in black from an especially lowered pole between two trees in the grounds of Oxford Castle in 1752. Over the years there have been several unexplained experiences and sightings thought to be linked with the ghost of Mary Blandy. Our walking tour is based upon a true story of Mary's life. Photo to the right (on the web page) was taken on a mobile phone in the bar of the Catherine Wheel which is now known as Wetherspoons in Hart Street, Henley on Thames, just a stones throw away from where Mary and her family lived in Blandy House. The Henley Standard has done a write up of this ghostly figure which is believed to be that of Mary Blandy. Some say she roams around Henley as she did when she was alive. ... »
    This web page also has another image: « a hand drawn picture by a night warden who worked at a hotel in Henley on Thames, he saw a ghostly figure standing by a window as he was doing his rounds, so he would remember what the figure looked like he drew this picture. He carried this drawing around with him for 2 years, showing friends and acquaintances and finally contacted Henley Ghost Tours. »
    Accessed on: Henley Ghost Tours

  13. Explore Oxford's Past - Hart Street.

    « ... Blandy House on the north of Hart Street was home to the Henley solicitor and town clerk Francis Blandy, who was notoriously poisoned by his daughter Mary Blandy in 1751. »
    Accessed on: England's Past for Everyone

For more information, see the EN Wikipedia article Mary Blandy.