Digging hole in grave where Jayden was found would have taken "hours", court told

Digging hole in grave where Jayden was found would have taken

Digging hole in grave where Jayden was found would have taken "hours", court told

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Senior reporter. Call me on (01865) 425373

A FORENSIC archeologist has said it would have taken "hours" to dig the hole in an existing grave in which Jayden Parkinson's body was found.

This morning Dr Karl Harrison told a jury in Oxford Crown Court that he was asked by Thames Valley Police to go to the cemetery next to All Saint's Church, Didcot, on December 18.

He said as he examined the grave of Ben Blakeley's uncle, Alan Kennedy, he started to reveal the missing 17-year-old's body buried at a depth of 38cm.

After removing all the recently-disturbed earth from the grave, which had been marked out with green twine and screws by whoever buried Jayden, Dr Harrison said the hole was 1.67m long and 0.65m deep.

He was asked by prosecutor Richard Latham QC how long it would have taken a single person working alone to remove the earth, which had a volume of half a cubic meter.

Dr Harrison replied: "It would take a significant investment of time.
"Anyone who has dug a hole in their back garden knows how long it takes.
"It was by no means easy digging.
"It would have taken a matter of hours, rather than minutes."

He also said two different types of digging were apparent from the hole, one which appeared to have used a small amount of force, and the other which was much more forceful.

Blakeley, who admits manslaughter, is on trial and denies murdering Jayden on December 3, after it is said she told him she was pregnant with his child.

He has also pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice along with a 17-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, who allegedly helped him bury his victim’s body and denies one count  of preventing a lawful burial.

As the discovery of Jayden's body was described in court the 17-year-old defendant, who cannot be named for legal reasons, left the dock in a distressed state. His barrister said he felt "unwell".

The trial continues.

  • Our top stories: 

Update: Tribute left to Jan, Phil, and Derin and "my gorgeous boy Jed" + videos

Oxford Mail:

8:11am Sunday 24th May 2015

ARMED police have been seen in Oxford University Parks as the hunt continues for Jed Allen over a triple murder in Didcot.

The Rifles march through Oxford for first time after getting Freedom of the City

Oxford Mail:

10:39am Sunday 24th May 2015

INFANTRYMEN of The Rifles regiment are marching through Oxford this morning for the first time.

FOOTBALL: Mike Ford is relishing challenge after taking over as Banbury United boss

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Former Oxford United captain Mike Ford is relishing a return to management with Banbury United, after spending more than a year out of the game.

Jury told fire started because businessman thought best man was having affair with wife

Oxford Mail:

8:29am Friday 22nd May 2015

A HOUSE fire that forced people to jump for their lives was started by a businessman who accused his best man of having an affair with his wife, a jury heard.

UPDATE: Missing woman Rachel Selby from Banbury found safe

Oxford Mail:

3:16pm Friday 22nd May 2015

A WOMAN who went missing from Banbury has been found, police said

Person hit by train between Slough and Reading likely to affect Oxford rail services to London

Oxford Mail: A First Great Western High Speed Train

3:24pm Friday 22nd May 2015

TRAINS from Oxford could be disrupted after a person was hit by a train between Slough and Reading.

Teenagers arrested after robbery in Hythe Bridge Street

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

3:23pm Friday 22nd May 2015

TWO teenagers have been arrested after a robbery in Hythe Bridge Street.

Oxford United stepping up interest in striker Ryan Taylor

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Friday 22nd May 2015

Ryan Taylor remains firmly on Oxford United’s radar despite the signing of Kemar Roofe, according to head coach Michael Appleton.

UPDATE: Broken down van removed from near Water Eaton park and ride

Oxford Mail: Traffic Alert general

7:54am Friday 22nd May 2015

ALL LANES have reopened on the A4165 Oxford Road after a earlier incident involving a broken down van.

Quid pro quo as £10,000 grant gives children access to classics at Cheney School

Oxford Mail:

8:22am Friday 22nd May 2015

A CASH boost is set to create a classics hub so that the city’s children have better access to GCSE and A-Level Latin courses.

Park and ride usage drops by a third after council brings in new charge

Oxford Mail:

8:16am Friday 22nd May 2015

A DROP in the number of people using Oxfordshire County Council’s park-and-rides has allegedly damaged business in the city.

Race against time to return Dead Man's Penny to family of soldier killed in First World War

Oxford Mail:

8:04am Friday 22nd May 2015

TIME is running out to reunite the family of a fallen soldier with his memorial plaque before the 100th anniversary of his death in the First World War.

Thames Travel drives in to rescue threatened bus service

Oxford Mail:

7:52am Friday 22nd May 2015

EVENING bus services will continue to serve Littlemore after a new operator stepped in to replace Stagecoach’s 12C service.

Signalling problems between Didcot Parkway and Reading

Oxford Mail: A First Great Western High Speed Train

7:49am Friday 22nd May 2015

SIGNALLING problems between Didcot Parkway and Reading are causing delays to train services this morning.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree