Executioners: Taking a Life for a Life Phil Clarke
Anglo-Saxon invaders first introduced hanging by the neck as capital punishment to England, and it was used by William the Conqueror as punishment for his conspirators. Other forms of formal execution over the years were carried out by lethal injection, electrocution, lethal gas, firing squad or the guillotine. The Pierrepoints were the most famous family of executioners. They took their job very seriously and were involved in around 800 executions, getting rid of murderers, spies and Nazis. William Marwood, a 19th-century cobbler, introduced the 'long drop' method of hanging which ensured that the prisoner's neck was broken instantly, which removed all the gruesome struggling and convulsions of previous methods.