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Body of Ian Brady will be disposed of with 'no ceremony'

  • Brady died aged 79 in May this year but his remains have not been disposed of
  • He wanted to be buried to the sounds of Hector Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique
  • The Berlioz piece is about 'hideous monsters' who gather to 'laugh at a funeral' 
  • But judge today ruled Brady's body will be disposed of with 'no ceremony'
  • The decision was announced in London on Friday at the High Court

By Scott Campbell For Mailonline

Published: 05:46 EDT, 13 October 2017 | Updated: 07:19 EDT, 13 October 2017

Ian Brady, who used the name Ian Stewart-Brady, died aged 79 on May 15 this year but his remains have not yet been disposed of
Ian Brady, who used the name Ian Stewart-Brady, died aged 79 on May 15 this year but his remains have not yet been disposed of

Ian Brady, who used the name Ian Stewart-Brady, died aged 79 on May 15 this year but his remains have not yet been disposed of

The dying wish of Moors murderer Ian Brady to have an 'offensive' symphony played at his funeral has been refused by a High Court judge.

The sick child killer wanted to be buried to the sounds of Hector Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique - a piece the composer envisaged as a 'witches sabbath, where hideous monsters gathered to laugh at a funeral'.

But judge Sir Geoffrey Vos today said that it would have caused 'legitimate offence' and ruled that his body should be lowered into the ground with 'no music or ceremony'.

Brady, who used the name Ian Stewart-Brady, died aged 79 on May 15 this year but his remains have not yet been disposed of.

Sir Geoffrey had been asked by two local authorities to make decisions relating to the disposal of the serial killer's body so that it can be 'lawfully and decently disposed of without further delay'.

The judge said Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council and Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council were concerned that, five months after Brady's death, his executor - solicitor Robin Makin - had failed to make proper arrangements for the disposal.

'I am satisfied also that it is both necessary and expedient for the matter to be taken out of Mr Makin's hands if the deceased's body is to be disposed of quickly, lawfully and decently.

'Even after a hearing that has lasted for one and a half days, the parties have not been able to agree precisely how the deceased's body should be disposed of.'

Denying the request to play Symphonie fantastique, the judge added: 'It was not suggested by Mr Makin that the deceased had requested any other music to be played or any other ceremony to be performed.

'In those circumstances, I propose to direct that there be no music and no ceremony.' 

Brady and Myra Hindley, who died in prison in 2002, tortured and murdered five children in the 1960s. Four of the victims were buried on Saddleworth Moor in the south Pennines. 

Following Brady¿s death coroner Christopher Sumner said he would not release the child killer¿s body until he had received assurances that his ashes would not be scattered on Saddleworth Moor. Pictured are flowers left there by family members of Brady's victims
Following Brady¿s death coroner Christopher Sumner said he would not release the child killer¿s body until he had received assurances that his ashes would not be scattered on Saddleworth Moor. Pictured are flowers left there by family members of Brady's victims

Following Brady's death coroner Christopher Sumner said he would not release the child killer's body until he had received assurances that his ashes would not be scattered on Saddleworth Moor. Pictured are flowers left there by family members of Brady's victims

Following Brady's death coroner Christopher Sumner said he would not release the child killer's body until he had received assurances that his ashes would not be scattered on Saddleworth Moor.

It prompted fears that Brady, 79, had included the wish in his will in a 'sick' bid to heap more misery on the families of his victims.

At the time Terry West, 66, whose sister Lesley Ann Downey was murdered by Brady, said it was the 'final act of a twisted, evil man.'

'For the coroner to order this ban must mean Brady stipulated his ashes should be scattered on Saddleworth Moor,' he said.

'Strange sounds, groans, outbursts of laughter': 19th century funeral symphony Brady craved for burial

Banning Hector Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique, judge Sir Geoffrey Vos said: 'As to the playing of the fifth movement of the Symphony during the cremation, I need only quote the description of that movement from Wikipedia for it to be seen how inappropriate it would be:

'Fifth movement: 'Songe d'une nuit du sabbat' (Dream of the Night of the Sabbath): In both the program notes, Berlioz wrote: [The musician] sees himself at a witches' sabbath, in the midst of a hideous gathering of shades, sorcerers and monsters of every kind who have come together for his funeral.

'Strange sounds, groans, outbursts of laughter; distant shouts which seem to be answered by more shouts.

'The beloved melody appears once more, but has now lost its noble and shy character; it is now no more than a vulgar dance tune, trivial and grotesque: it is she who is coming to the sabbath ... Roar of delight at her arrival ... She joins the diabolical orgy.

'The funeral knell tolls, burlesque parody of the Dies irae, the dance of the witches...

'I have no difficulty in understanding how legitimate offence would be caused to the families of the deceased's victims once it became known that this movement had been played at his cremation. I decline to permit it.'

Brady's crimes shocked the country in the 1960s and he is still seen as one of Britain's most sickening criminals half a century on
Brady's crimes shocked the country in the 1960s and he is still seen as one of Britain's most sickening criminals half a century on

Brady's crimes shocked the country in the 1960s and he is still seen as one of Britain's most sickening criminals half a century on

'It is a sick, final twist to cause his victims' families the greatest upset from beyond the grave.'

Mr Makin has consistently refused to reveal the killer's funeral wishes, saying they would emerge in 'due course.'

But speaking at the High Court today, the judge concluded: 'Taking into account all the competing positions, the overwhelming factor in this case is the public interest.

'The deceased's wishes are relevant, but they do not outweigh the need to avoid justified public indignation and actual unrest. It was not doubted that Mr Makin could be trusted.

'The claimants were right to seek to ensure that there is a lawful and decent disposal of the deceased's body without causing justified public indignation or unrest.

Hundreds of volunteers searched Saddleworth Moor to find the children who were killed by Hindley and Brady
Hundreds of volunteers searched Saddleworth Moor to find the children who were killed by Hindley and Brady
Hundreds of volunteers searched Saddleworth Moor to find the children who were killed by Hindley and Brady
Hundreds of volunteers searched Saddleworth Moor to find the children who were killed by Hindley and Brady

Hundreds of volunteers searched Saddleworth Moor (left and right) to find the children who were killed by Hindley and Brady

'Mr Makin has not been justified in being so secretive about how he was intending to dispose of the deceased's body.

'Had he discussed the matter openly with the claimants and with Sefton Borough Council and given clear undertakings that he was not intending to scatter the deceased's ashes in their areas, these proceedings might have been avoided.

'Even now, he has refused to say what he intends to do with the ashes if he is allowed custody of them.

'Mr Makin cannot, therefore, be entrusted with the ashes for disposal.'

Tameside Council, the local authority tasked with disposing o fBrady's remains, said during the hearing that it will be done 'expediently'.

Brady is understood to have stipulated before his death that his ashes be scattered in his native Glasgow, but so far no funeral directors willing to handle his remains have been found.

Brady died at Ashworth secure hospital in Merseyside after 50 years behind bars
Brady died at Ashworth secure hospital in Merseyside after 50 years behind bars

Brady died at Ashworth secure hospital in Merseyside after 50 years behind bars

Glasgow councillors have also refused to let either of its two crematoriums take on the job.

But the taxpayer is expected to foot the bill for his funeral and cremation as Brady is not thought to have any living relatives.

In the meantime, his body has been left in a mortuary at a secret location.

When Hindley was cremated in 2002, the Prison Service tried 20 local funeral directors who all refused the job, before eventually booking a firm based 200 miles away.

Brady and Hindley were jailed for life for torturing and murdering three children in the 1960s - John Kilbride, 12, 10-year-old Lesley Ann Downey and Edward Evans, 17.

They went on to admit the murders of Pauline Reade, 16, and Keith Bennett, 12.

With the exception of Evans, all were buried on Saddleworth Moor, but despite a long-running campaign by Keith Bennett's late mother, Winnie Johnson, his body has never been found.

Brady died in his room Ashworth Secure Mental Hospital, Merseyside, at around 6pm on May 15.

An inquest last month heard that the serial killer remained a narcissist and control freak until the end – removing the nasal tube used to feed him while on hunger strike himself five days before his death.

The bulk of Saddleworth Moor falls within the metropolitan borough of Oldham, but some adjoining moorland lies within the neighbouring Tameside council area which also covers Hattersley, home of Brady and Hindley at the time of their arrest.

How Brady's five victims were snatched from markets and fairs before being murdered in the most brutal ways

  • Pauline Reade, 16, was the couple's first victim. She was on her way to a local dance when Hindley persuaded her to get in her car. They drove Pauline to Saddleworth Moor where she was raped Pauline, beaten and stabbed.
  • John Kilbride, 12, was snatched from Ashton market on Saturday November 23, 1963. He was strangled and buried in a shallow grave. He was the second of Brady and Hindley's five victims.
  • Keith Bennett, 12, disappeared on the way to his grandmother's house. Hindley had lured him into her car and driven him to the Moors where he was murdered. The method of killing has never been made clear. The pair buried his body which has never been found.
  • Lesley Ann Downey, 10, disappeared on Boxing Day. She had been snatched from the fair and taken back to Hindley's house. She was brutally assaulted with the ordeal captured on tape.
  • Edward Evans, 17, was the pair's final victim. He had just been to see Manchester United play when Brady lured in Edward. Brady repeatedly bludgeoned Evans with an axe

 


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