Corpun file 25040 at www.corpun.com
Daily Mirror, London, 21 June 1938, p.1
"I forgive him. I want to marry him," declares Phyllis Lucas, of the youth who "branded" her as you see below.
Birched youth tells how he "branded" his girl
BIRCHED yesterday for "carving initials of love"
with a penknife on the wrist of his sweetheart, aged eighteen, a
youth told the "Daily Mirror" last night:--
"She is mine. I am hers. As they thrashed me, my mind was
for her only. That's how I stuck it."
Royston Lee Blanchard, wincing as he spoke hours after the twelve
strokes ordered by the St. Helier, Jersey, magistrate, knew that
for three years he must never even speak to Phyllis Joyce Lucas.
They will wait for each other, these two, on whom the Court
imposed the silence.
Blanchard, dark, curly-headed, seventeen, knows that if he speaks
to Phyllis Lucas before she is twenty-one, he will receive
another twelve lashes of the birch
Last night Phyllis, her wrist inflamed with the "R" and
"P" scars made ten days ago, told the Daily Mirror:
"I forgive him. I want to marry him when we are old enough.
I remember his penknife biting deep into my flesh. The marks that
are there are mine and his.
"The marks that are there are mine and his," says
Phyllis. These are the marks -- the initials "R.P." cut
in her arm.
"Mother does not want me to see him, but I love him still.
Perhaps, when I am twenty one she will relent. I am sure that we
still love each other.
"This morning, when I heard that he was to be birched, I was
sad, but I felt proud, because I knew that the punishment that he
was receiving was for me, the punishment for loving me."
Did Not Want to Hurt Her
Photographed after the birching he endured "for her
only" . . . Royston Lee Blanchard, aged seventeen.
Blanchard told the Daily Mirror: "We have known
each other for nearly three years. I did not want to hurt her. I
love her. But I thought after that nothing would separate us. She
is mine and I am hers.
"This morning I was thrashed. It hurt, but not as much as I
thought it would. The doctor examined me. He said: 'You'll be all
right.' Then came the birch.
"The lashes didn't hurt until I felt the sixth one, and then
it seemed to bite into my back.
"I don't want people to think that I was cruel. People have
done this sort of thing before, only they call it tattooing. This
I thought was no different.
"While I was birched my mind was centred on Phyllis only.
"I'll Ask Her Forgiveness"
"Certainly, I shall obey the law for three years, and
then I shall go to her and ask her forgiveness. I shall tell her
that I want our friendship to go on as it was before this awful
Click to enlarge
The Court was told that Phyllis said no word to anyone about the
branding -- even wrote to Blanchard afterwards -- but her father
found out. Her mother said she had been informed at the hospital
the marks could only obliterated by grafting new skin.
Phyllis, small, dark and timid, promised the Court she would have
nothing more to do with her sweetheart.
About this website
Search this site
Country files: Jersey
Archive: Corporal punishment in Jersey up to 1975