The Hexham Heads

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Anonymous

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#1
Does anyone know what happened to the Hexham Heads, or where they are now?

I was fascinated with this story as a child, and seem to remember reading somewhere that someone owned up to making them in the end. However, I also seem to remember that in the original story there were a range of supernatural phenomena that accompanied the Heads wherever they were taken (including a werewolf type creature that appeared and disappeared).

Can't find much about them on the net, other than the odd picture (attached).



Any further info gratefully received.
 

James_H

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#2
i think the thing about teh wwerewolf was that the researchers took them home and experienced manifestations of evil, including a spectral man-wolf that they believed to be some celtic god. :) I'll look them up in a book for you.
 
A

Anonymous

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#3
They were, apparently, made by lorry driver who had lived in the house previously. He made them for his daughter to play with.

Yeah, right. Stick to Barbie next time, Rubber Duck*.

However; the kids who found the heads also made very similar looking ones before they dug up the supernaturally empowered originals. So was something compelling people to carve Celtic style heads in order to summon a Wolf God? Or was it just Nationwide, short of a story?







*Someone please find this funny or I'll feel old.
 

mejane

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#6
Here's a couple of links to the story:

http://www.fortunecity.co.uk/roswell/fate/544/hexham.htm

http://www.jb004a9668.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/features/f_1_canine.htm

From the second link:

There was talk of an ancient curse attached to the heads, but the whole affair became even more puzzling when Desmond Craigie announced that he had made the heads for his daughter about 1956, when the Craigie family had been living in the house in Hexham where the heads were found. That this was in fact the case was shown by Professor Dearman of the University of Newcastle, who sectioned them and showed that they were artificially moulded and not carved from natural stone.
Which seems to suggest that the heads are, sadly, no longer around.

Jane.
 

stu neville

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#7
I have further info onthe heads which I'll dig out and post presently.

.......

Later: here we go. Seems that Dr Anne Ross, the Celtic scholar who studied the heads and had a scary encounter with a dog-headed entity, asked Mr Craigie to replicate the process he said he used to make the heads - the result was very poor, and nothing like the originals. There was some speculation that he made up the concrete fabrication story to put people off trying to search the area looking for further evidence.

Incidentally, the surrounding area itself had a fair bit of other Fortean stuff going on - UFO's, old sites, weird feelings, etc.

Can't help feeling we haven't heard the last of the story.

Finally, I have it on very good authority that the heads are now in private hands (but Ihave promised not to divulge further. Sorry!)


[edit]dead links squished[/edit]
 
A

Anonymous

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#8
And would your 'source' be willing to let us know if any unusual occurrences are still attributed to said heads?

Hang on, haven't we had a 'dog-headed men' thread on 'It Happened to Me'?




(Thanks for the laughter folks. It's good to know that the Convoy spirit lives on.)
 

stu neville

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#9
Apparently none at all: beyond that I haven't a clue: just know they're still in existence.

I only know that cos I was contacted privately by someone who's doing some stuff on them that may become a book, so doesn't want to give much away.

(Never heard from him again - stu 13/8/07)
 
A

Anonymous

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#10
I don't believe it!

Have just posted a message about the hexham heads at the bottom of this board (in 'General chat' for some reason - I'm new here, forgive me!) and have just stumbled on all this info! Weird...
I shan't write everything out again but would appreciate a response if anyone happens to read it...
 

harlequin2005

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#11
Tony's Thread

Text:

Hexham werewolf (1970's thing)
Does anyone remember an article on a north east BBC news programme in the mid seventies about two stone heads unearthed in Hexham that conjured up a werewolf apparition? The 'werewolf' appeared to a pretty eminent archaeologist and her family and used to appear with a sort of banging noise at various times of day.... it was passed on to another and the same thing happened. The mysterious thing is is that i looked into this story and rang a museum at Hexham who sent me some newspaper clippings and said that the heads hade been buried in a secret location due to 'trouble'. This really spooked me and sent me off trying to get in touch with anyone involved. I managed to reach an old man who told me he'd MADE the heads - something the archaeologist had disputed (she said they were celtic). As for her - one Anne Ross - I've never managed to reach her (and she is pretty well known).
Any information/memories of this story would be gratefully appreciated!
(oh - and nice, friendly intelligent site by the way!)
 
A

Anonymous

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#12
Eee ... their just like buses them Hexham Heads.

Thanks for the post Stu, it's nice to know someone knows where they are.
 

mejane

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#13
I'm glad they seem to have survived as well. Sorry for any confusion caused by my previous post - t'was just reporting what I found on the wonderful web (and we all know that's never inaccurate!).

Thinking about it though, maybe the Prof cut up the replicas of the heads that Stu mentioned; or maybe "sectioned" means something different to me that it does to people-who-examine-stone-heads.

Um, I'll slink off back to my corner now and await developments :)

Jane.

PS Welcome, Tony! Don't worry, it happens all the time. Must be a weird syncroncity (sp?) thing.
 
A

Anonymous

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#14
Sectioned

Thanks mejane! The mentioning of 'sectioning' (unless it means the heads were mad) meant that the heads could have had a ridge running around them, indicating moulding; i.e. mass production, copying of some sort. I used to dabble in Plaster of paris and so know my stuff!
-Tony
 

mejane

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#15
Ooooh, I thought it meant he cut the head into little slices :p

Just goes to show "a little knowledge is a dangerous thing" ... especially when that knowledge is gained via the web :) Now I think about it, I can't see any reason why the heads should have been subjected to such a drastic analysis... erm, I'll erm, go back into my corner (whimper). At least my dog still loves me.

:)

Back to the serious stuff, folks.

Jane.
 
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Anonymous

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#16
Nationwide and the celtic heads

I recall, when growing up in the 1970's, that the teatime TV show, Nationwide, on UK BBC, ran a story about the discovery of some Celtic stone heads.

The story then descended into true 'Tales of the Unexpected' territory when they announced that there was a curse on any who touched the heads, when they would be visited by a werewolf.

There then followed (allegedly) a bloodcurdling tale of a boy who had the misfortune to touch one in a museum and upon his return from school was confronted by a werewolf in his empty house.

This tale terrified our whole school and for weeks no one would go home after school on their own, irrespective of the fact that as far as I can tell none of use had ever seen a Celtic stone head.

The strange thing is, talking about it years later, we could all remember the story but none can recall actually seeing it on TV - so did Nationwide run this tale, and do others remember it?
 
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Anonymous

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#17
Re: Nationwide and the celtic heads

Dominic Brayne said:
There then followed (allegedly) a bloodcurdling tale of a boy who had the misfortune to touch one in a museum and upon his return from school was confronted by a werewolf in his empty house.
I believe this event happened to Dr Anne Ross, who owned the heads at the time. At any rate, there's a thread here somewhere on the subject, search for 'Hexham Heads' :)
 
A

Anonymous

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#19
I always thought it was terribly funny that there should be cursed objects connected with a place called 'Hex 'em'.
 
A

Anonymous

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#20
Yes, I remember it. I seem to recall that the encounter in the house occurred as the boy opened the front door and a werewolf jumped down the stairs and landed in the hallway in front of him.

Can't remember what it did next though...
 

zygmunt_rocks_on

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#21
It was Nationwide,

they often had a Fortean strand on their programmes. I was a kid at the time and I remember its scared the bejayzus out of me too, although I don't recall discussing it at school with anyone. I think it gets a namecheck in one of Janet and Colin Bord's fabulous books... maybe Modern Mysteries of Britain. Nationwide also did something on UFOs about the same time. I'm certain that this and the werewolf programme are the root of my interest in Forteana.
 
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#22
Re: Nationwide and the celtic heads

Dominic Brayne said:
The strange thing is, talking about it years later, we could all remember the story but none can recall actually seeing it on TV - so did Nationwide run this tale, and do others remember it?
Yes, absolutely. I remember watching it and being terrified. Wasn't helped by the fact that my parents house was semi-derelict at the time, half the lights didn't work and someone hammered on our front door just as the werewolf launched itself at the screen.

I was right off me fish fingers for days.
 
A

Anonymous

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#23
So I didn't imagine it then!

I think the whole atmosphere of the time was compounded by the fact that (and this may only be an example of false memory syndrome!) we were in the middle of the three day week, power cuts and spending evenings sat round with candles because the power seemed to switch off after the news because of the strike.

It is interesting to see how stories then become ingrained, and I often wonder if we were, even just for a few months, returning to the ways of our predecessors, and beginning to talk and tell stories again.

Certainly, something occurred in that decade that made some news items very memorable, and yes, Nationwide definitely had a Fortean edge - I lost count of how many haunting stories they covered!:eek!!!!:
 
A

Anonymous

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#24
I must dredge up this 2 year old thread, just because, holy cow, those stones are creeeeeepy.

That is all. :eek:
 

drjbrennan

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#25
I remember reading a series of newspaper articles on this topic and they mentioned a pagan god called "Manopus". Can anyone connect this name with the Hexham heads or did I just hallucinate it?
 

Stormkhan

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#26
These dinky little items turned up in The Unexplained - Vol.10, pp 2326-9

A Doctor Ross still maintained that they were genuine Celtic artifacts despite Desmond Craigie claiming he'd made them in 1956 for his kids.
Doctor Don Robins theorised that a poltergeist phenomena linked to an artifact depends not on the maker but where it was made.

Sounds like scientists with pet theories refusing to admit not a hoax but a simple mis-identification.
 

stu neville

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#27
Threads merged.

As for the continuing existence of the heads, whatever their provenance, I never heard from the author that e-mailed me about them again (can't remember who it was, even - mea culpa.)

I'm sure I came across a full account of the events online a while back, though - I'll see if I can dig it out.
 

OldTimeRadio

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#28
DanHigginbottom~ said:
They were, apparently, made by lorry driver who had lived in the house previously. He made them for his daughter to play with.....However; the kids who found the heads also made very similar looking ones before they dug up the supernaturally empowered originals. So was something compelling people to carve Celtic style heads in order to summon a Wolf God?
This can't help but remind me of H. P. Lovecraft's horror fiction "The Call of Cthulhu," wherein a young artist in a sort of fugue state sculpts impossibly old bas reliefs of pre-human gods.

The same theme also appears in Lovecraft's Commonplace Book, with a short reference to an artist whose recently-carved "ancient" relics throw archaeologists into states of sheer terror, even though they also appreciate their modernity.
 

OldTimeRadio

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#29
Stormkhan said:
A Doctor Ross still maintained that they were genuine Celtic artifacts despite Desmond Craigie claiming he'd made them in 1956 for his kids.
Can a buried item or two, especially if they have in some way been inbued with any sort of malignant power, induce people living above them to (unknowingly) sketch or sculpt them?

There's a bit of a fictional hint of that in QUATERMASS AND THE PIT.
 

GNC

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#30
There was a letter in the FT recently (last year?) outlining the continuing adventures of the Hexham Heads, so the weirdness is still going on around them.
 
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