Tony Martin (Norfolk Farmer)

Tony Martin

Tony Martin When Tony Martin shot and killed one of the burglars breaking into his isolated Norfolk farmhouse, “Bleak House”, he touched a massive nerve in the hearts of the English people. In fighting back he sent shock waves around the world, especially in America where it is a persons right to defend their property, including with the use of firearms. In fact in some states of America there is a bounty of several of hundreds of dollars, if the home/property owner shoots and kills his offender to protect himself or his family.

Tony Martin was convicted of murder, later to be reduced to manslaughter by the Court of Appeal. A wave upon wave of support from people of all walks of life swept the country which spread all over the world. Tony Martin without realizing it became a household name a hero to all those who believed in defending their life and property with whatever force is necessary. Even if it meant taking the law into their own hands. On 23 August 1999, Martin was charged with the murder of Barras, with the attempted murder of Fearon, "wounding with intent to cause injury" to Fearon, and "possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life".

The Jury at the trial were told that they had the option of returning a verdict of manslaughter rather than murder, if they thought that Martin "did not intend to kill or cause serious bodily harm". However, the jurors found Tony Martin guilty of murder by a 10 to 2 majority. He was sentenced to life in prison, the mandatory sentence for murder under English law.

An appeal was considered in October 2001 by three senior judges headed by Lord Lane. Submissions by the defence that Martin had fired in self defence were rejected by the appeal court. However, on this occasion the defence submitted evidence that Martin suffered paranoid personality disorder specifically directed at anyone intruding into his home, (relating to undisclosed abuse issues from the past), and suffers from Asperger's Syndrome – a mild form of autism – which hampers his ability to show normal emotions This submission was accepted by the Court of Appeal and, on the grounds of diminished responsibility, Martin's murder conviction was replaced by manslaughter carrying a five year sentence, and his ten year sentence for wounding Fearon was reduced to three years. These sentences were to run concurrently.

Tony Martin
Bill Medel
Lancastria Heros

Tony Martin Interview

Tony MartinWhilst were in Norfolk interviewing trauma victims. We contacted Tony Martin who we have been in contact with since prison and his release. After Tony had agreed to be interviewed, we met up with him just after we completed filming survivors from the Lancastria. After a long discussion on his own case and injustices of all kinds, Tony further inquired about what project we were involved with this time. We showed him some footage of survivors talking about their own personal accounts of the sinking, plus research and memorabilia about the Lancastria disaster and cover up. During filming we realized Tony martin had a passion for injustices of all kinds. We asked him if we could use some of the interview with him for the forthcoming documentary and it was met with a resounding, "yes". (Jayne Dalrymple)

Lancastria new Lancastria

Tony Martin One Of Britain's Greatest Injustices:


quote. "The tragic story of the Lancastria, Britain's Worst maritime Disaster, must be brought to the attention of British people. I feel you are doing a marvelous job in trying to get to the attention of the British media and the public. After talking to you I feel it must be one of Britain's Greatest injustices. I sometimes wonder what these old chaps must be thinking after having to live with this burden all their adult lives. I feel Your top priority must be getting recognition for all those that were lost and ultimately for all those that survived. Recognition at the end of the day costs nothing. Further more I need to express my wishes for every success in your venture and your ongoing work and support in my case-Tony Martin (Norfolk Farmer)". Un quote

Tony MartinTony Martin rear pic of Lancastria

Winston Churchill


Tony Benn

Tony Benn Anthony Wedgwood Benn is born on the 3rd April 1925. In 1941, his father, William Wedgwood Benn MP, is made a peer, 'Lord Stansgate'. The following year, Tony Benn graduates from Westminster School to New College, Oxford. On the 24th July 1943, Benn joins the R.A.F. to train as a pilot. His elder brother, Michael, an R.A.F. pilot since 1940, is killed in action in 1944. On the 10th March 1945, Benn gains his pilot's wings whilst stationed in Africa.
After the war, Benn completes his studies at New College, during which time he is elected President of the Oxford Union. He briefly works as a producer with the B.B.C. North American Service until, pursuing a political career, he is elected a Labour MP for Bristol South East on 30th November 1950. In 1959, he is elected to the Labour Party's National Executive Committee. He remains a member until 1993.

Tony Benn, was a good friend of Churchill and a much loved character in the eyes of the public, and has many qualities that people would look for in their MP:

Guide issued to solders in WAR II


retaining that rarest of qualities in politics ..... integrity;

espousing only what he firmly believes and doing so and with a passion;

bringing genuine life experiences to the House of Commons from both sides of the class divide;

remaining a political character in an era of political clones.

When we asked Tony Benn, "What is Britain's Worst Maritime Disaster", he admitted he just didn't know. and eventually after several guesses, "the Hood, the Mauritania", etc etc. When we told him, "the Lancastria, 17th June 1940", he answered, "there was so many during the war, I have never heard of it". And when we sent him some details of the disaster, and the cover up, he immediately wished to get behind us in our efforts for some long overdue recognition for survivors etc.

One of many posters about keeping secrets to yourself

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