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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
18th February 1917 Born today: Phyllis Calvert, London, actress (Man in Grey)
18th February 1901 Born today: Reginald Sheffield, London England, actor (Second Chance)
18th February 1775 Born today: Thomas Girtin, London, artist/watercolorist
Buster Edwards died here
The site of the death of one of the key great train robbers.
Location: Greet Street, Southwark
Description: This is where great train robber Buster (Ronald) Edwards died from hanging himself from a girder. This was his garage for his flower stall he operated near Waterloo Station.
Buster was one of more than a dozen accomplices involved in the robbery, and he was played by Phil Collins in the 1988 movie, Buster.
By tampering with signal lights, the robbers halted a night mail train at an isolated spot in Buckinghamshire in southern England. Buster clubbed the engineer and made off with bags containing 1,500,000 in used British banknotes. Most of the robbers were captured but only a quarter of the money was recovered.
Afterwards, he took his share of the loot and made his way, with his family, to Mexico. But the money dwindled, and they grew homesick and in 1966, they returned to London. Buster surrendered to police and was charged with participation in the robbery.
Later that year he was called a master criminal at his trial, convicted and sentenced to 15 years in prison. He was the 14th person to be convicted in the case. In 1964, 13 men received prison sentences of up to 30 years for various roles in the robbery. The prosecution was aided by the discovery of fingerprints at a farm the gang had used.
Mr. Edwards was released from jail early, in 1975, and had a flower stall at Waterloo Station until his death.