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Bronwyn

Author: The Australian

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The Teacher’s Pet creator Hedley Thomas returns with a new podcast investigation for The Australian. 

Bronwyn Winfield disappeared 31 years ago from the idyllic surf town of Lennox Head. She was a devoted mother of two little girls, and was going through a painful separation from her husband, Jon Winfield.

Jon Winfield has always maintained Bronwyn just went away and denies any wrongdoing. 

Subscribers to The Australian and registered users hear episodes of ‘Bronwyn’ first. Plus, you can read more about this case and see exclusive stories, maps, timelines, graphics, video and more at bronwynpodcast.com

If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au
11 Episodes
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Introducing: Bronwyn

Introducing: Bronwyn

2024-05-1300:434

The Teacher’s Pet creator Hedley Thomas returns with a new podcast investigation for The Australian.  Subscribers to The Australian and registered users hear episodes of ‘Bronwyn’ first at theaustralian.com.au/bronwyn. Plus, you can read more about this case and see exclusive stories, maps, timelines, graphics, video and more.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Episode 1: Jon’s Castle

Episode 1: Jon’s Castle

2024-05-3001:14:094

In an idyllic surf town, Bronwyn Winfield is a loving young mother determined to divorce her husband Jon and start again with her two daughters. She writes about her life and describes a deeply unhappy marriage. She tells friends and relatives that she fears Jon. Bronwyn discloses firm plans including an imminent meeting with a lawyer advising her about her separation from her estranged husband. Jon has a strong tether to the family home. He built it. Bronwyn calls it ‘Jon’s castle, my prison’, but the house is at risk of being sold in a break-up. When Bronwyn suddenly disappears, Jon keeps the house and the two girls. And nobody sees or hears from Bronwyn again. Jon denies foul play and says his wife went away for a break. He still surfs most days. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
It’s a toxic relationship. Friends and family recall Bronwyn’s sadness and frustrations over what appears to be coercive control and emotional violence. Bronwyn’s efforts to keep the family home ‘immaculate’ while raising children take a toll. Crumbs or soft drink spills on the floor anger Jon, who doesn’t want visitors and directs the children to play in the garage to avoid making a mess. Neighbours, friends, and their children see a woman living in fear. Bronwyn tells a friend that Jon threatens her and put his hands around her throat as if to strangle her. She is desperate for money to pay for the solicitor giving her legal advice in the marriage breakdown. Bronwyn struggles to pay the bills in a rented townhouse with her two girls while Jon stays in the house. Jon says Bronwyn’s side of the family has a history of mental illness. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Episode 3: The Lawyer's Advice

Episode 3: The Lawyer's Advice

2024-06-1201:12:0310

Jon's second wife reveals some home truths about her brief failed marriage and why she decided to file for divorce, triggering a bitter row over the house she and Jon built in Sandstone Crescent, Lennox Head. The house is close to where Bronwyn would build a house with Jon several years later. When Bronwyn decides to get a locksmith in and take her lawyer's advice to move back into the house, friends are worried for her. One reveals that she talked to Bronwyn on the day she vanished – May 16, 1993 – and insists that the devoted mother of two had made no mention of going away for a break. Jon decides to fly back to Lennox Head from Sydney, arriving on the Sunday evening after going to see police at nearby Ballina. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Episode 4: A Strange Getaway

Episode 4: A Strange Getaway

2024-06-1301:15:458

Bronwyn's estranged husband, Jon, hastily packs the family car for an unplanned drive through the night to Sydney with the two girls. His neighbour, Murray Nolan, hears the car's distinctive brakes and is surprised to see the Ford sedan quietly rolling down Sandstone Crescent with lights off and engine off at 10:40pm on Sunday, May 16, 1993. When Jon arrives in Sydney he says Bronwyn has gone away for a break, leaving him to look after the girls. Bronwyn is never seen again and friends say she had no plans to go away. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
An update from Hedley Thomas and The Australian. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Analysis of police internal running sheets and other files from 1993, when Bronwyn disappeared in Lennox Head, reveals remarkable red flags – yet local detectives still didn’t treat the case as probable foul play.   After making fundamental errors with key evidence on the timing of phone calls, documents show that the cop in charge suggests Bronwyn has left the house voluntarily and returned to Sandstone Crescent to make a call at 2.13am to check lottery results.   Bronwyn’s sister-in-law Michelle Read discovers an extraordinary police failure. Women who were questioned back then express their frustration at the tone and conduct of the 1993 investigation. Other informants come forward after hearing the podcast. Meanwhile, rallies across Australia raise a national crisis of domestic violence and the murders of women. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Episode 6: Fragile

Episode 6: Fragile

2024-06-2701:18:228

As celebrities from Hollywood stars Chris Hemsworth to Simon Baker wax lyrical about Lennox Head, locals like Scruffy speculate about Bronwyn and the whereabouts of her remains. Analysis of a missing person report made to police by her estranged husband Jon Winfield in late May, 1993, strongly suggests that Bronwyn is alive and telephoned Jon’s daughter Jodie to say she had moved to Queensland and would not be coming back. Bronwyn’s brother Andy Read describes it as a lie to try to show proof of life. In her absence, Bronwyn is described in the missing person report filed by Jon as having come from a ‘deranged’ family. The dedicated mother of two girls couldn’t defend herself against lurid claims that she was like her mother, Barbara. Bronwyn’s cousin Megan emphatically rejects suggestions that she unwittingly helped Jon. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A new witness emerges with a chilling account of seeing what she fears was Bronwyn Winfield's body wrapped in sheets in the back of a car, in a development that could change everything in the 31 year mystery. Retired nurse and former Lennox Head resident Judy Singh lived about 50m from the Winfields and says she tried to report what she saw from her upper level balcony to local police within weeks, and at Byron Bay station years later when she was accompanied by a doctor from New Zealand. The doctor verifies the account of going to the station. And Bronwyn’s daughter Chrystal speaks to police as a 16-year-old in 1999. Chrystal tells investigators she fell asleep to the sound of her Mum crying and arguing with Jon on the night Bronwyn vanished six years earlier. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Episode 8: Mea Culpa

Episode 8: Mea Culpa

2024-07-0401:07:373

Bronwyn’s friends and loved ones reel as the revelation of Judy Singh’s sighting of what appeared to be a body wrapped in a sheet, being driven away by her estranged husband Jon Winfield in 1993, is understood. Detectives fly north to take a statement from Judy. They drive her to her old home in Lennox Head as part of a renewed homicide investigation. Former neighbour Murray Nolan admits deep regret about his handling of potentially game-changing information he withheld from detectives in 1993 when he regarded Jon as his surfing mate. But as Bronwyn’s family looks forward to a possible resolution of this 31-year-old alleged murder, tensions boil over. Back in the Shire, Andy is confident he’s solved a puzzle which might provide a powerful clue to the whereabouts of Bronwyn’s body. Jon denies wrongdoing.  Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Episode 9: The Lake

Episode 9: The Lake

2024-07-1158:22

A short walk from the sandy northern beaches of Lennox Head is a lake loved by locals and visitors alike. It is deep only in a few places, but nobody can see the bottom - the waters of eerie Lake Ainsworth are always dark because of staining from the leaves of the Tea Trees which flourish on the foreshore. As a result of Judy Singh’s disclosures, Andy Read and locals including Murray and Scruffy fear Bronwyn’s body has been at the bottom of the lake since May 1993. Madi has been doing her homework on the possibilities and she wants to start searching. But a house block near bushland in the ‘Shire’ south of Sydney, where Jon was bricklaying immediately before, and after, Bronwyn’s disappearance, is also under a cloud of suspicion. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Episode 10: Mothers

Episode 10: Mothers

2024-07-1801:28:58

Distressing evidence from Jon Winfield’s first wife, Jennifer Mason, was part of the police brief which the then-Detective Sergeant Glenn Taylor believed would result in a prosecution over Bronwyn’s disappearance. A dispute over the identity of her first daughter’s father resulted in Jon challenging one man to have his DNA tested. At Lake Ainsworth, on the northern edge of Lennox Head, locals joined with volunteers and Bronwyn’s brother, Andy, to try to find her body beneath the dark, stained waters. Bronwyn’s half-sister Kim helps to discover what Bronwyn meant when she wrote that she was going “on a short break”. Read more about this case and see photographs, maps, timelines and more at bronwynpodcast.com.  If you have information which may help solve this cold case, you can contact our team confidentially by emailing bronwyn@theaustralian.com.au If you need support, Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Comments (3)

Andrew Wojciechowski

any chance that he was involved in the apron wearing goat jockey club. or friends with the cops

Jul 4th
Reply

Gary Norris

The podcast is about Bronwyn not about Lyn Dawson I just found episode 1 too slow won't be listening to further episodes too repetitive.

Jun 24th
Reply

Neatz Davis

Listening to the letter that Bronwyn wrote to her step daughter made me get teary, it was beautiful and I would love to have received that much support from anyone. Those weren't the words of someone about to leave without a word. Absolutely not. I really hope this podcast helps shine light on whatever happened to Bronwyn, and if, as is probable, it was her ex husband I'd hate to be him right now, he should enjoy freedom while it lasts.

Jun 14th
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