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How a seven-year-old Beddingham girl fell from the shafts of a tractor-drawn hay wagon, the wheel of which went over her and killed her instantly, was related to the Coroner for East Sussex (Dr E F Hoare) at an inquest at Cobbe Place Farm, Beddingham, on Wednesday.
The girl was Ivy Maude Phipps, daughter of Mr Frederick Ernest Phipps, of Barber's Cottages, Beddingham. The accident occurred about 6.30 on Monday evening when the girl was playing in a field known as Park Meadow. It appeared from the evidence that the girl was swinging on the shaft of a hay wagon which was drawn by a tractor, and that after being told to get off by at least two men she got on again and fell off under the wheel of the wagon, which passed over her. She was killed instantly, death being due to a fracture of the skull.
The driver of the tractor, Frederick Chutter, of Park Cottage, Beddingham, gave evidence that he told the girl to go away, but she returned and shortly afterwards a man named Follington shouted to him to stop.
William Stanley Follington, of Dairy Cottage, Beddingham, said he was sitting on the shaft of the wagon. The girl was swinging on the shaft and he told her to go away. She did so, but came back. He again told her to get off. She appeared to drop off and fell underneath the wheel.
Henry Brian Carver of New Cottage, Beddingham, said he was riding on the near side shaft of the wagon. He heard Follington tell the girl to get off.
Evidence of identification was given by the father, who said he thought someone ought to have seen that the girl was not allowed to ride on the cart.
The Coroner said the men had done their best. He returned a verdict of 'Accidental Death' and said there was no blame to attach to anyone. The men told the girl to go away and she did not do so.
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