Church warden murder: Calculating killer Ben Field 'had interest in extremes of death' before sadistic torture

David Harding
Contributor
Ben Field admitted he was interested in the "idea of killing" (Thames Valley Police)

Cold and calculating Ben Field had all the makings of a serial killer, taking a sadistic pleasure in torturing his victim.

He was just 22 when he first targeted the 69-year-old Peter Farquhar for his money.

Over a two-year period Field drugged the university lecturer and encouraged him to drink alcohol – a deadly combination that made him believe he was losing his mind - all part of Field’s plan to drive him to suicide.

And when that failed, Field killed him, shrewdly making it look like he had drunk himself to death.

By then Field had already moved onto his next victim, Mr Farquhar’s neighbour Ann Moore-Martin, a retired headmistress, spinster and deeply committed Roman Catholic.

Field and victim Peter Farquhar (Thames Valley Police)

Field later admitted fraudulently being in relationship with as part of a plot to get her to change her will.

But while professing his love for his two victims, the promiscuous Field maintained relationships with long-term girlfriends who he cheated on with other women.

He also hooked up for “edgy and dirty” sexual encounters with men he met on Grindr, having earlier been paid by men who answered his advert on Craigslist.

Asked to explain why he did it, he said: “Having done something I had not done before and try to do something I found transgressive and test myself.”

To the outside world he was caring and trustworthy but hidden from public view was a much darker personality.

A framed photo of Field (Thames Valley Police)

Field also meticulously documented his depravity in his journals, poetry and videos – leaving it all for the police to find.

He admitted he had an “interest with the extremes of death and the idea of killing” and collected books and essays about dying.

Field, who grew up in Market Harborough, later got a job in a local nursing home, providing end of life care for dementia sufferers, where he filmed himself taunting an elderly woman about loneliness, pain and death.

His mother Beverley served as a Liberal Democrat councillor.

Field started at the University of Buckingham in 2011 studying for a Bachelor of Arts (hons) degree in English literature, achieving a 2:1.

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