Skip to main content


Agatha Christie’s real-life mystery

Agatha Christie would have loved the “Wagatha” trial named in her honour, says Dominic Sandbrook in UnHerd. After all, she herself was “the central character in one of the great tabloid sensations of the 20th century”. In 1926, Christie was 36 and one of the most famous writers in the country. One December evening, she disappeared. Her husband, who’d been having an affair with a female golfer, hadn’t the foggiest where she’d gone.

Newspapers ran headlines questioning her whereabouts; police recruited 1,000 officers to search for her; volunteers hired planes to scour the local countryside. Writers intervened too: Christie’s rival crime novelist Dorothy L Sayers visited her house to look for clues; Arthur Conan Doyle consulted a medium to get advice from spirits. After 11 agonising days, Christie popped up at a hotel in Harrogate. She had checked in under the surname Neele – the same name as her husband’s mistress.