12th August 1927

A minister was found dead at Icart Point

Walkers made a gruesome discovery when hiking through St Martins in August 1927. They stumbled across the body of the Reverend Ivan Dingley Ross, a Wesleyan minister who had formerly been a missionary in China.

He had been deputising on the Guernsey Wesleyan Circuit at the time in advance of taking up an appointment in Llangollen in North Wales at the time. A razor was found next to his body on the path at Icart Point, and it was clear that he had died from a deep slash across his throat.

Suicide, not murder

Despite his unusual and unpleasant death, the minister’s demise was ruled to be suicide. His sister gave evidence at an inquest held the following day to say that he suffered from depression and nervous strain.

Reporting his death, the Chichester Observer noted,

The distressful condition of affairs in China and the ultimate closing down of the Central China University – the interests of which he had much at heart, having been the first Wesleyan representative on the staff – preyed on his mind, and early on the morning of August 11th, he was found dead, with a self-inflicted wound, on the cliffs at Guernsey.

Contemporary newspapers put his age at between 30 and 40 years. He was married with two children. He had been a member of the Wesleyan clergy for 15 years and had left his post in China due to ill health, which had improved by the time of his suicide.

The Wesleyan Church believes that suicide is wrong.


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Other events that occured in August

The Saumarez Memorial foundation stone was laid 1st
Guernsey won double-silver at the Commonwealth Games 2nd
Earl Grey was appointed Governor of Guernsey 3rd
A boy scout fell 250ft over a Torteval Cliff 4th
Jethou tenant was rescued from an up-turned boat 5th
A tomato ship and a tanker collided 6th
Human remains were found on Lihou 7th
The Beatles played at Candie Gardens 8th
The RAF bombed Guernsey Airport 9th
Guernesiais linguist Marie de Garis died 10th
Alderney experienced a total eclipse of the sun 11th
A minister was found dead at Icart Point 12th
Guernsey steam tramway is granted its concession 13th
Police found a bomb in Bluebell Wood 14th
Hanois Lighthouse’s foundation stone was laid 15th
Charlie Chaplin played in St Peter Port 16th
St Peter Port inundated with fish 17th
A royal visit… of sorts
The Rolling Stones played St Peter Port 18th
Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society was published 19th
Archaeologist Crystal Bennet was born 20th
Mapmaking geologist John MacCulloch died 21st
St Sampson pensioner was buried in a landslide 22nd
Trident VI ran aground on its return from Herm 23rd
Queen Victoria visited Guernsey 24th
The post-Occupation military government was disbanded 25th
Wesleyans celebrated 100 years on Guernsey 26th
Oliver Reed was jailed in Guernsey 27th
Guernsey’s Reform Law was enacted 28th
Winston Churchill visited Guernsey with his wife 29th
Philip de Saumarez was discharged as a Jurat 30th
Jersey swimmers set a round-Guernsey record 31st