Letter: Nipper still lies in an unmarked grave

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The Independent Online
Sir: The attempted exhumation of the remains of the dog immortalised by HMV took place in Kingston upon Thames and not St John's Wood ('Bitten by the Nipper bug'; Weekend, 7 August). As the then press officer to HMV, I initiated and organised this attempt after noticing an article by Enid Barraud (a great- niece of the artist Francis Barraud) in the then still published Children's Newspaper.

In her piece, Enid mentioned that Nipper had been buried by Mark Barraud, son of the artist's brother, under a mulberry tree in Kingston where he lived. With the hope of finding Nipper's remains and having them reinterred suitably at HMV in Hayes, I contacted Mark - then an active octogenarian - and after a short search he confidently located the tree in what was then a yard behind some offices. HMV gave carte blanche to proceed and an exhumation was arranged, under the supervision of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, to which the press were invited. The occasion was quite widely reported, although no dog's bones were found.

I'm still of the opinion that Nipper's remains are there, as Mark was lucidly confident of his facts and the volume of earth needed to be moved to raise the odds of discovery was

too great for the two days' digging we allowed.

Yours sincerely,




9 August