What happened that day

Jane Beaumont 9, Arnna Beaumont 8 and Grant Beaumont 4 were abducted from Colley Reserve, Glenelg Beach, South Australia on Wednesday the 26th of January 1966. Leading to Australias largest police investigation. This was the day Australia lost its innocence  

The children were eager to go to the beach due to the hot weather and being the lasts days of the summer holidays. Mother Nancy Beaumont insisted they catch the local Worthley’s bus. The ride took ten minutes to arrive at Glenelg.

 Nancy gave Jane eight shillings and sixpence in pre-decimal currency about 85 cents to spend on a drink and something to eat for them and Nancy. Jane placed the money in her beige clip purse into her light blue airline type bag. Nancy had also briefly heard from the children that Jane had a   boyfriend at the beach but did not think much of it at the time. The children left home at approximately 10 am and expected home around noon.

 

 

 

Jane Beaumont was dressed in her pink one-piece bathers with pale green shorts and canvas sandshoes with white soles. Taking with her a paperback copy of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women. She carried three drying towels inside a generic airways type bag. She placed the money her into a beige clip purse placed inside her airline type bag.

Arnna Beaumont wore a one-piece red and white striped bather tan shorts and tanned sandals. She sported a bright orange hairpin in her hair

Grant Beaumont wore only green and white vertically striped bathers under green cotton shorts and red sandals, no shirt 

The children arrived at Moseley Street Glenelg by bus across the road from Wenzel’s bakery by mid-morning. A short walk they arrived at Colley Reserve and the beach. A woman saw the children between 11 am and 12 noon. She was sitting on a wooden bench near the Holdfast Bay Sailing Club / Yacht Club Glenelgwhere the children laid out their towels. This location was in the shade of a secluded corner of the Colley Reserve at the back of the sideshows. This was the children’s usual spot when at Glenelg Beach. See below. They began playing, running in and out of the sprinklers according to one witness. She noticed a middle-aged man lying on his towel close by watching the children. After frolicking under the sprinkers the children went over to him and started playing games with this man. Grant, the youngest boy was jumping over him. Arnna followed and then Jane; All began playfully flicking him with their towels.    

The man at the beach with the children was in the mid-30s to mid-40s.

He was approximately 6ft to 6ft 1in tall. Clean-shaven, suntanned complexion.Thin with an athletic build. Longish face. A high forehead with wept back light brown short hair parted to the left side.Wearing navy blue bathers with single white stripes down either side.  He had with him a towel, shirt and trousers that he placed on the park bench.

NB: This man was initially described as a tall blond-haired surfy. Hair that was in need of cutting. This description has permeated for years in the media. However, this description has never been correct. A female eye witness who got up from the park bench to walk home around 11.30 am is stated the man and the children were still playing on the lawn. Later the man approached a couple close by and asked 

 “Did any of you people see anyone with our clothes? 

When asked why he said: 

“We’ve had some money taken from our clothes.”

Another witness believed the man stated; 

“Has anyone been messing with our clothes? We have had our money pinched”.

After asking the people sitting on the bench and close by the man then returned to the children. However, this couple had their curiosity aroused when they witnessed the man dress all the children. They thought this was strange especially as the elder girl Jane appeared old enough to dress. The man then picked up his towel and his clothes and walked in a northerly direction toward the changing sheds at Colley Reserve; 130 metres ( 142 yards ) away. The change sheds were part of the Glenelg Life Saving Club. The children followed walking along the cement pathway crossing the path that cuts through Colley Reserve walking passed the iconic Rondavel still located at Colley Reserve to this day. The children waited outside the change sheds before walking away with him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The last sighting of the Beaumont children was also around  12 noon to 12.20 pm approximately at Wenzel’s Bakery just off the main thoroughfare of Jetty Road. Around 150 metres/160 yards approximately from where they were last seen playing at the reserve. Where Jane bought pie & placed this separate bag ) with 5 pasties, 6 finger buns and 2 large bottles of fizzy drink. All this with a pound note.

From Wenzel’s bakery, they were never seen again

 

                                                                                                  Page created by Stuart Mullins