Ipswich clues to midlands mystery

IPSWICH may hold the key to unlocking the final secret of a fascinating mystery.The conundrum began with the discovery of a discarded briefcase and its contents - the memoirs of the man it once belonged to.

IPSWICH may hold the key to unlocking the final secret of a fascinating mystery.

The conundrum began with the discovery of a discarded briefcase and its contents - the memoirs of the man it once belonged to.

Now the finder is searching for the final piece of a puzzle that has overtaken his life and it may be right here in Suffolk.

Tom Fulep, 47, stumbled across the briefcase while walking near his home in the Derbyshire countryside.

Curiosity got the better of Mr Fulep who returned home to find that the case contained hundreds of photographs, personal documents and memoirs that once belonged to a man called John Brian Crisswell.

Mr Fulep felt compelled to discover more about the mystery man and immediately set about investigating his life.

Most Read

He said: “If I'd handed the briefcase over to the police, I was sure it would be put to the back of a store cupboard. I found a couple of names among all the documents, got in touch with my local newspaper and the search began. In the last five weeks I've spoken to people from all over the world.”

Mr Fulep soon uncovered that John Crisswell, who was better known as Brian, was born in Ipswich and went to Ipswich School.

He said: “Brian Crisswell was born in 1920 and we have confirmation that he attended Ipswich School for one year, September 1930 to July 1931, before moving to Perse School, Cambridge. We would like to find out which school he attended previous and more history or information on his parents.”

Mr Fulep believes Brian's father, Charles Henry, was originally a motor engineer, but became a draper in Newmarket. Further searching revealed that Charles Crisswell married Gladys Laura Hall in Ipswich in 1917.

Brian spent his working life as an Aero-engineer. He worked for Rolls Royce and as a member of the home guard, worked on Spitfire's during the war. He later travelled the world, servicing Avon jet engines, until retirement in 1985.

Not much is known about Brian's immediate family. He had no children and died in 2003.

Mr Fulep said that everyone he had so far encountered had nothing but praise for Brian and described him as a typical English gentleman.

He said: “When I found the case I didn't know this man form Adam but now, when I talk to people that knew him, they say I know more about him than they ever did.”

Mr Fulep is currently writing the first draft of a book on the subject of Brian Crisswell, charting his life and experiences here and in Derby.

Of the people who dumped the case full of memories, he said: “To them it was worthless but to me it has proved priceless.”

Anyone with any clues that might help solve the mystery can contact Mr Fulep on 01332 749658 or email tom@fulep.com.