In an old church graveyard there stands a statue. A beautiful carving
of an angel holding a book. The face is carved in such a way as to give
the impression of it possessing some kind of inner spirit. So life-like
it is. This statue has a history as mysterious as its face it seems. A
history we knew nothing about when we first saw it. A history we would
find out about though?
Me and my mate Dan were tripping on magic mushrooms. It was an autumn
night, and out walking, we stumbled upon this old churchyard. We
decided to enter it, following a well lit cobbled pathway, and turning
a corner we came upon a moorish statue. Upon seeing it, we were both
instantly overcome by a feeling of what can only be described as mystic
awe. It was so beautiful and enchanting this statue, it seemed to have
some kind of presence that drew you to it. Like a tree, still and
silent yet one could sense life within it.
" You think it's a he or a she?"
" A she." Dan says.
" I dunno, I reckon its neither cause its an angel and angels are
supposed to be sexless."
" Yeah but it definitely has a feminine feel to it." Dan says
" Yeah it does?"
Dan walks over to the statue and touches it, then closes his eyes and
seems to connect with it in some way and smiles.
I stand back and look at it sideways with lopsided grin.
Dan opens his eyes, " I wonder which angel she is?"
" Dunno, the angel of death perhaps."
" Does the angel of death have a book?" he asks
" Could do, maybe its a list of everyones names, and dates and times
when she has to come for them."
Dan goes and sits crosslegged in front of the statue. He closes his
eyes and seems to go into some kind of meditative trance.
I look around me at the surreal feel of the night; gravestones
everywhere and the old church standing in silence like a gothic picture
postcard. I see a stained glass window with a picture of fishermen
casting out their nets; and it makes me think of Jesus and the stories
we used to read at school. I feel nostalgia remembering these stories.
The wind seems to pick up around me as I think this, and I almost hear
it speaking words from those stories to me.
Dan gets up off the floor and we continue our midnight walking.
Ben is just darting about here there and everywhere, having a great
time running free. In my tripped out state he looks like a walker
between worlds. Some kind of demi-God, definitely more than just a pet.
A spiritual creature who knows the dimension we are now in, just as
intimately as the dimension of ordinary everyday reality. It's as if he
is somewhere inbetween the two; whenever I am tripping he looks like
this strong wolf with a flowing mane.
We walk out onto this huge open field. There are misty phantom warriors
walking about, old warriors from some forgotten time. I feel as if they
are trieing to tell me something, but I don't know what it is. I just
feel poetic, happy to be so connected to nature and the spiritworld.
Happy to not be so stressed by the modern world. My spirit eyes open
Dan walks aimlessly around the field, and he looks very surreal. And I
have a strange perception of distance suddenly. I walk around the field
too and it is so hard to put into words what it feels like. I guess it
feels like something out of a Salvador Dali painting.
It is two weeks later and me and Dan are tripping again and we have
someone else with us, called Neon, who is also tripping. We visit the
old churchyard again, and stand and stare at this statue. But this time
she looks sad as if she is weeping.
Neon doesn't like her and keeps wanting to go somewhere else.
We all look and we notice that one of her hands is missing. The statue
looks really sad about this. As I look at her I seem to connect with
her in some otherwordly way, and I see these violent images of a battle
between her and another angel in my mind. In this battle she gets her
hand cut off. I hear flapping of dark angel wings above us and gaze up
at the night sky. I can't see anything but I feel a bit afraid, I sense
the statue telling me that we are entering dark times now in our world.
I look at where her hand has been cut off, it has gone all mouldy and
black and looks disfigured. It looks as if some kind of cancer is
spreading up her arm to her shoulder. I feel great concern for her and
I go over to touch her.
" No don't Sam," Neon says. "Don't touch it, its evil, I don't know
what it is but I sense evil." He's really genuinely scared of her and
wants to leave the churchyard.
Suddenly the statue seems to change as Neon speaks. I stare at it and
it seems to become all horribly mutated and twisted and sinister; her
eyes turning into hag green eyes and I shiver.
Dan speaks up and says, "No she's beautiful." He places the palm of his
hand gently on her face, and whispers something to her. Then looks up
and says to us, " Its how you look at her, she can either be good or
After Dan says this she doesn't look evil anymore. I feel a bit
confused about whether shes good or evil. But I get enough courage to
go up to her and touch her. I feel a strange sensation as I do this as
if I can feel her sadness like it is my own. I feel like I want to
weep. The loss of her hand feels like a great tragedy. I suddenly find
myself whispering to her. I tell her that she will be remembered. I
feel the wind in my voice, some mighty spirit being channelled through
me. I pray for her and tell her that everything is gonna be alright, I
tell her to hold onto truth. That the spirit of truth is mightier than
the malevalent angel who cut off her hand.
Neon looks unconvinced by me and Dan, he still thinks the statue is
evil. He is scared of her. He doesn't relax until we have left the
churchyard. To him she is evil, and he is worried about us.
Me and my girlfriend Isabella are tripping, we go to the old
churchyard. She's a bit scared an I have to admit the churchyard feels
creepy tonight. She apparently knows about this churchyard and keeps
telling me its haunted.
" Its alright Isa I been here before, its safe, you have to see this
statue its out of this world man."
We reach the statue and I sit cross-legged in front of it. Isabella
sits next to me, we hold hands. Something about it tonight doesn't feel
the same though. I look at the statue and it seems like the mould and
mutation has spread way passed her shoulder and into part of her face
and body and she looks half light half dark now. Her hand is still
missing. I get a revelation that the dark angels blade has poisened her
in some way when it cut her hand off. I feel a bit un-easy in the
churchyard tonight, all my senses within me are telling me to get out
of there and go home. But because I don't wanna freak Isa I keep calm.
Somewhere in the distance I hear banshee-like wailing and the hair on
the nape of my neck stands on end.
" Oh my God.." she says as she looks at it.
" What is it?" I ask, feeling a bit jumpy.
" It's the Ipsley statue? You took me to see the Ipsley statue. How
could you take me here when I'am tripping?"
" Its ok me and Dan have been here before... the statues cool? shes our
" There is a ghost story about this statue you know." Isa tells me in a
" Yeah?" I say feeling nervous. I hear the strange wailing again in the
distance, but it sounds like its getting closer to us. Like its coming
" Yeah its in the book of ghost stories about this town." Isa says,
oblivious to the strange wailing in the distance.
" So what's the story?" I ask, feeling a bit edgy, home feeling like a
nice safe place where I wanna be.
" Well the story goes that at midnight every new years eve. This statue
comes to life and turns a page in its book."
" Really," I say smiling, and suddenly the ghost story doesn't seem
that bad. Quite a tame ghost story really. More like a poem than a
ghost story. A ghost poem maybe.
Then I look at the statue and it suddenly dawns on me why the statue is
so sad. I put my hands to my mouth, and gasping I realise why the loss
of her hand is such a tragedy.
" Oh man.. that's what it is.." I say.
" What is it?" Isa asks.
" I can't believe it, that's what it was?"
"What what was?"
" The hand.."
" She's lost her hand.. that's why she's so sad.. she can't turn the
pages in her book anymore. That's the trajedy, she can't fulfill the
purpose she was created for. Because someone cut her hand off."
" Oh my God.." Isa says, "Your right, she does look sad. I never
noticed her hand was missing before. Isn't it strange that it is the
hand which turns the page that is missing."
" I know, almost looks like someone done it deliberately.. nasty
Suddenly around the churchyard there is loud screaming and cackling
laughter, the kind that turns your blood cold. Me and Isa sit very
" What was that?" Isa whispers looking very pale and fragile.
" I don't know" I whisper back.
The laughing and screaming stops and I hear the creaking of the old
churchyard gate as it opens. Someones coming in here. I try to remain
calm and gaze at the statue.
Around the corner come two women. One tall brunette in a black cape and
one small blonde woman dressed in black leathers. Then from the other
side of us a dark-haired man walks out of the trees. I feel a bit
un-nerved by their sudden appearance on this scene. All three of them
gothic-like figures, who seem to me in my tripped out state of mind, to
be almost vampiric.
The tall long haired brunnette comes and sits down right next to me on
my left. The small short haired blonde stands somewhere behind us. And
the silent dark haired man stands leaning against a gravestone to our
right. I hope these people aren't looking for trouble. I gaze at the
statue, somehow I feel even though she looks half diseased, she will
The brunnette who is sat next to me says, "Wow you two are so gothic
sitting here. Are you guys like the secret cult of the Ipsley statue or
I turn to look at her, and she is very pretty. Her face soft and
feminine. With very delicate well chiselled features of attractiveness.
She has an enchanting vibe about her. Goddess-like candlelight
" Shes sad cause she's lost her hand." I say.
" Isn't this the statue that is supposed to turn a page at midnight
every year?" she asks me.
"Yeah," I say. I suddenly wonder how come me and Dan seem to be the
only ones in this town who don't know about this ghost story. " But she
can't turn the pages in her book anymore because..."
"Shes lost her hand," she says finishing my sentence for me.
The short blonde says from behind us, "Come on lets go, this statue
gives me the creeps." (These people are giving me the creeps just the
way they suddenly appeared and the strange shrieking, it is very late
at night. Who are they?).
The brunette spots my baccy tin on the ground. " Oh I see," she says. "
You two been smoking something."
" Oh yeah," I laugh, I decide not to tell her that I am tripping my
nuts off as well. Probably best to keep that knowledge to myself.
The brunnette stands up and stubs her cigrette out on the floor with
her foot, and says as she looks up at the empty church building, "Sorry
She smiles at us sweetly, " well come on then," she says to the others,
" Lets go.." she says bye to me and Isa, and all three of them leave as
mysteriously as they arrived. I quite liked her whoever she was.
Once again there is that strange shrieking and cackling laughter, it
sounds unnatural. Me and Isa sit there in silence and listen to it as
it gradually fades into the distance. It is a bloodcurdling sound and I
feel somewhat relieved when I can no longer hear it.
" She was very pretty." Isa comments.
" Yeah I know."
Isa nudges me in the stomach.
" What was that for?"
" Your not supposed to say things like that."
" Because Sam your supposed to say, yes but not as pretty as you
" Oh," I say, "Well she was pretty, but not as pretty as you Isa."
Feeling a bit self-conscious and stupid. She goes all gooey on me and
kisses me on the cheek and I feel a bit embarrassed.
We leave the churchyard and go to this hilltop overlooking the huge
field. I stand there silently looking out over it. Isa looks at me and
says, " Wow you look like a dark angel." I suddenly feel like I am a
dark angel as she says this. I feel old, old as time and space, as if
ancient memories and strange cosmic patterns flow through me. I wonder
about past lives, and I feel very mystical suddenly. I pull my hood
over my head and gaze out across the field, and suddenly I feel great
sadness. Isa asks me whats wrong and I tell her.
I tell her its because the human race can't help fucking everything up,
like we are cursed or something; we keep polluting the earth and we
can't seem to stop. People kill each other over childish philosophies,
imposing their ideas on others, taking away their freedom. Third world
countries are exploited by capitilist greed; some people starve through
no fault of their own, yet there is enough food to feed the world.
There is so much suffering in this world. I tell her that sometimes I
can feel the worlds suffering inside me and its sadness comes through
into my voice. I wish things could be different, that we could all stop
living for ourselves and become like brothers and sisters; I wish we
would stop polluting the earth and learn how to live in peace. I tell
her that I wish money didn't exist, and that we could all do things for
one another out of love. I tell her that I have lived for thousands of
years; and all I have seen in every re-incarnation on this unhappy
earth: is humanities suffering, war, injustice and trajedy.
" Oh my God.." she gasps
" My mobile phone it looks so weird."
I turn to look at her and sigh. She is sat on the grass fiddling with
her mobile phone; typing out a text message to her friend Marie, to let
her know she is tripping. I have been talking to myself again. But then
I wonder if maybe I've told her this many times before and she is bored
of hearing it. I go silent and feel the wind and sit down on the grass
next to her and gaze into it. Wishing that the world wasn't so
Isa puts her arm around me.
Me and Dan are tripping we make our way to the Ipsley churchyard. It is
becoming a bit of a ritual for us now. We get there but this time it
feels very eery. More eery than usual. We pause, the gate keeps opening
and closing on its own accord, in a ghostly creaking way. The
streetlight nearby keeps flickering. There appears to be a wind of
spirits around this area. A feeling of hauntings and bad omens. We walk
up to the creaking gate. By the gate pasted on a wooden sign is a
christian poster with a message. The picture is of a little girl with
two pig tails stood with her back to us, she is holding some balloons.
Above her is a perfect blue sky and underneath her are written the
words. " I shall give you life."
But me and Dan find it frightening. The back of this girls head looks
like a demons face. Horribly twisted and sinister, like a malevalent
entity. " Ugh." I say.
" I shall give you life.." Dan says in a twisted croaking voice. We
stare at this picture.
" It's definitely a demon." I say, " Look theres its eyes and nose and
mouth." I point it all out to Dan.
" I know.." Dan says. " I can see it?"
A huge ugly evil looking fly lands right on its nose.Like Beelzebub
lord of the flies? ugh it looks warped and it seems like a warning to
us not to go into the churchyard.
" You know Isa says this place is haunted." I say.
" Really "
"Yeah, an you know what else, that statue has a story behind it. At
midnight every new years eve, its supposed to come to life and turn a
page in its book."
"Wow," Dan says.
" And that would explain why the statue was so sad the last time we saw
her; losing her hand means she can't turn the pages in her book any
" I never knew that, " Dan says. He gets all excited suddenly. " Lets
go and see her."
"Ok," I say, not too sure if it's a good idea, looking at the creaking
gate feeling a little spooked. As we enter the churchyard I glance at
the picture by the gate? 'I shall give you life'? Somehow I don't feel
very reassured by that message.
We walk past the silent dull grey heads of stone.There are lights on
the ground to light up the cobbled pathway that we are following, and
they keep switching themselves on and off. It feels like something out
of a poltergeist movie here tonight. I look up at the old church
building and it gives me the creeps. It looks like something out of a
horror film. It stands there altar-like and I can imagine lightening
streaked skies and sinister chants. I imagine the people who attend the
services here are not really christians, but a secret covent of
satanists. Performing dark rituals at night over esoteric symbols
etched on the floor. I feel a bit freaked.
We get to where the statue is. It looks in a state of dis-repair. It
looks like it is crumbling a little. The mould is growing all over her
now. She looks dark and strange. She looks like a dark angel tonight.
We sit down in front of her and I feel very un-comfortable here.
I wanna weep for the statue, and wish that someone would come and clean
her and fix her hand. Give this work of art some respect. I wish I had
the power to do it. If I could perform miracles like Jesus I would give
her a new hand and clean off all the mould. I sense she is still a good
angel, even though this darkness is all over her, and all around her. I
pray for her and feel the wind pick up around me as I do, I hope God
has heard me this time.
Me and Dan stay there for a while, but the air tonight is creepy and
the whole feel of the atmosphere tense. There is definitely a strange
vibe around this town tonight. An evil vibe. The wind blowing about
this churchyard, it feels unnatural, like a poltergeist wind. We both
feel un-easy and decide to leave.
We leave the statue and the creepy church building and the flickering
lights of the churchyard and walk down the lane towards the lake. We
are both a bit dark in thought. We don't speak to each other.
We walk by some black woods and I keep looking into the trees, and they
look twisted and evil. Like gnarled pointy witch fingers goading us. I
hear strange whispering and what looks like malevalent faces watching
When we have gone past the dark thorny woods we walk by this wooden
bridge, and I suddenly hear what sounds like stamping feet. It sounds
like there are many people stamping their feet somewhere close by.
Stamping in rhythmic harmony, like my heartbeat. I look at Dan, he
looks troubled. The stamping gets faster and faster and so does my
heartbeat. Faster and faster, making everything feel tenser and tenser.
We walk faster, can Dan hear this too? Then I hear motorcycles revving
up somewhere else nearby. And they are all revving like a techno drum
beat. But it isn't the kind of techno beat I like, it sounds arrogant
evil and nasty. A hostile revving of bikes. Like they are psyching us
out. I keep expecting something bad to happen to us. I feel nauseated
with tense feelings of apprehension.
When we finally make it to the lake after what seems like an eternity.
I feel in a really dark mood. Very edgy and shaken. I gaze out across
the lake and see a lone wild goose or some kind of bird gliding over
it. The scene feels peaceful. Reminiscent of days on the isle of Mull.
For a moment the scene is comforting.
But then suddenly for some strange unknown twisted reason, I remember
something disturbing that Isabella had been telling me a few weeks ago.
Strange stories in the local paper of lone men walking around this here
lake where me and Dan are now stood. Stories of lone men walking late
at night and getting ambushed and assaulted by sick perverts. I feel
like I am choking with fear now. Fuck man I feel vulnerable out here, I
don't like it. I start planning in my head what I am gonna do if anyone
jumps us. I decide I will fight as best as I can. Kick as many of them
in the groin as possible. Take some of them down with me. I know a few
martial arts tricks and a bit of self-defence. But somehow in this
tripped out state, I don't think I would be able to keep very good
balance and hand eye coordination. My senses are all altered, I don't
think I can fight when I'am like this. Maybe me and Dan could just dive
into the lake and go under the water, become water ghosts. Anythings
better than having that fucked up shit happening to you. Bens here with
us, he'll help us. I look around me, but I can't see him anywhere. I
get worried about him. I call him, but he doesn't come. I call him
again, still no answer hes nowhere in sight. I hope he's alright. I
don't like it here, I get a bad feeling that if we stay here too much
longer, then something bad is gonna happen to us. I try and think about
something else. But these thoughts won't leave my head, they seem to
get louder and louder. As if some darkness is trieing to invade my
psyche. As if something evil is trieng to possess me. I get a bit edgy
and start walking back home.
" Whats up?" Dan asks following me.
" Er nothing, jus wanna get back home.." I say walking a bit
Me and Dan walk back. On the journey back I hear those stamping feet
again and I feel scared out of my mind. Isabelles stories of perverts
going through my head and I feel panicky and on edge. I ask Dan in a
trembling voice if he can hear the stamping feet. He says he can't hear
them. It must be an auditory hallucination. I feel relieved that
perhaps its just a hallucination, not real, just something in my head.
However I don't feel safe until we're back at the field. I feel very
nervous and freaked out. My trip is going very twisted and dark on me
and I am going into myself.
I stand in this huge open field and it doesn't feel as comforting as it
ussually does. All around I hear sound. Strange surreal sound of
machines humming. It's like all around me there is a wall of sound and
I feel trapped in it. Suddenly I have a revelation that I am in a
prison of sound. A sound I can't normally hear because it is
subliminal. This prison of sound feels so real, and no matter where I
turn my head there it is, all around me. I can't escape from it, it
surrounds this whole fucking town. I get paranoid and start imagining
its all part of some government conspiracy. That malevalent aliens are
among us and with their technology, they are cleverly keeping us all
under control, waiting for the opportunity to take over our world. (It
sounds crazy now, but I really believed it at the time). I am deeply
disturbed by this thought that we are all being cleverly controlled by
technology we can't or never will be able to understand or fight
against. I am feeling really tense and this sound is like torture and I
really want it to go away and I can't get away from it and I feel
We're walking, each step feels like an effort. I feel heavy with
despair, like I can't walk another step. Like some blackness is
surrounding me, suffocating me, mocking me with its evil laughter.
Twisted darkness consuming me.
Impulsively intuitively, sensing I need some help, I race up this
little hill to a thicket of woods and I hug this huge ancient oak tree
that stands there. I feel myself connecting with its deep green aura, I
feel the darkness subsiding, this tree protecting me. I feel connection
with the earth spirit again. The old wise mother earth. Ancient healing
energy comes into me and I feel oak strength surge through my veins. It
feels like I am safe in the womb again. The sounds and the darkness no
longer tormenting me.
Feeling very calm and relieved, I sit under this tree for a while.
Breathing slowly and evenly, with my back resting against it, like a
contemplative. In front of me there is a beautiful clump of mushrooms,
and around them leaves and twigs and raw organic soil of earth. The
smell around here is of autumnal musty earth. I feel very peaceful
here, safe. I realise how powerful nature is. How much I forget about
her, how much I need her.
I see myself as I truly am in that moment, a true picture. I see all
the things in my life which I have done wrong. I feel regret for these
things. I make a silent vow to myself that from now on I will always be
honest with people. I won't pretend to be anything other than who I am.
I see that sometimes my whole life is just a charade. That I put on
different masks wherever I go. So many masks, I have a mask for almost
every social situation I can think of. I realise that all of us do,
even being yourself is just another mask at times. But sat here under
this great oak tree, connected with the organic earth. I suddenly feel
like I know who I really am, the real me, raw powerful, wild and part
of nature. The still calm centre Buddha of me, the Sam who is timeless
and eternal, who has spirit and deep soul.
Dan climbs up to where I am and sits by me.
" You alright mate?" he asks sensitively.
" Yeah..." I say.
Me and Dan begin speaking properly for the first time since leaving the
churchyard. He tells me that he's been having a bad trip. He tells me
that earlier in the day him and one of his housemates had fallen out.
After we had left the churchyard, the whole argument kept replaying in
his mind constantly, doing his head in. Making him go into himself. I
tell him about my bad trip. About the stamping feet and the
twistedness. The wall of sound, the despair, the feeling of blackness
choking me. We share our dark thoughts with each other, and suddenly
they don't seem so dark anymore. They don't seem like the big demons
they once were. We are both suddenly connecting again. He reaches his
hand out to me and I take it. I suddenly feel a soul connection with
" You know if that ever happens again, and we are having a bad trip,
then we should talk to each other about it," Dan says.
" Yeah," I agree.
" I think what makes the bad trip worse is when you feel you can't talk
to anyone about it. You get paranoid and go into yourself. " He
" Yeah, we should be completely open and honest with each other. We're
like brothers me and you, we shouldn't feel like we can't talk about
stuff to each other. No matter how dark it is."
We shake hands on this, sealing our agreement to be like this in the
future. To not withhold anything from each other again.
" Mushrooms can be a hard teacher," he says very wisely.
" Yeah man, its not always easy the lessons that they teach."
We leave this sacred oak space and make our way back home. I feel
peaceful now and Me and Dan survey the streets around us. All the
houses are in neat symmetrical rows and all the drives have neatly
parked cars. Each household sleeping for it must be around 4 am now.
Each house seems to have its own face and personality, and each house
gives off different vibes. We can sense from the vibes and the face
what kind of people must live in these houses. These people oblivious
to me and Dan as we walk passed them with our early morning
revelations. All of them warm and tucked up, fast asleep in their cosy
"Hedges," I say. " No matter what happens. Man will always have
hedges." I say this as if suddenly seeing a great revelation. Dan finds
this very funny and laughs. Then we're both in hysterics about
" Aint hedges strange," he says.
" I know, when did they come into existence I wonder, and why?"
" Well I guess originally it was to mark the boundaries between peoples
property." He says.
"This is my garden, that is your garden. Nice neat rows of trimmed
hedges, little nature fences. It doesn't matter where you go in England
you will always see hedges. Hedges are something man will always
Then we both go on about how we have been born in the world at the
wrong time, and that no matter what, we will never fit into this
bizarre society. We will always be misfits. We promise to be friends
for life. We talk about how oneday we will be sharing a parkbench
together as old men. Talking with our pipes and grandad smiles.
Watching the world go by. Playing chess on picnic tables in snowy
parks. Friends for life. We philosophy about lots of different things
that to us seem very funny. We conclude that no matter what happens in
our lives, man will always have hedges. Hedges are here to stay.
I see my dog Ben running around?
Ah?Benson and hedges.
I visit the old churchyard on a cold misty morning with Ben. It is
mid-December and the strange picture by the gate me and Dan saw last
time we we're here, has been replaced by a different one. I am not
tripping this time. I walk around the churchyard alone, it feels
peaceful. The place doesn't feel so creepy anymore.
I walk over to the statue and she looks moorish still. Even though I am
not tripping I can still get this feeling of animated ambience from
her. There is definitely something otherworldy about her, I gaze at her
and smile. Someone has taken the time to clean her I notice, and she
looks really proud. And then I notice that someone has also fixed her
hand. I suddenly feel real happy and elated for her. I look at her
stone face and it looks as if she is smiling at me. Her head bowed
slightly in saintly halo mother Teresa fashion. Ben comes and sits by
me, panting his canine winter joy. I begin to wonder about the whole
mystery of this statue and the churchyard. Maybe she is the gaurdian of
the churchyard and of the town. The protector of it, sculptered by some
mysterious saint long ago.
Maybe an evil angel tried to take over this church but she persevered
and stayed and battled with it. Eventually her goodness winning the
day, and the church is once again a garden of goodness. Who
Because I feel blessed and humbled and also because there is noone else
around I bow silently before her, and give her my respect. Then with
Ben at my heel I leave the churchyard, feeling at peace. It will be new
years eve soon and she will be able to turn the next page in her book.
Maybe the pages symbolise the years and I wonder what the next page is
going to bring.
I go down to the local library and ask the librarian if she has any
information about the Ipsley churchyard. In particular I would like to
see any ghost stories pertaining to the statue that is there. She
suddenly looks animated in her delightfully stereotypical librarian
spectacles, and says she knows exactly where to find this information.
I follow her through the library and she pulls a book from a shelf out
for me and turns to a page, and hands it to me.
On the page I read :
' In the Ipsley churchyard there is a statue of an angel holding a
book. This statue is at the centre of a strange phenomena. According to
the locals who live near the church. Every new years eve at the stroke
of midnight, this statue comes to life and turns a page in its book.
Many people claim to have witnessed this event. The first recorded
person to have witnessed this was the Rev. Charles Harley and some of
One new years eve he was holding a candlemass at Ipsley church. It was
a fine night, so they all went outside with their candles for the
midnight countdown to the new year. At the stroke of midnight Rev
Harley and some of his congregation gasped in shock. They claim to have
seen this statue glow in an ethereal way, and momentarily coming to
life: turn a page in its book, before returning to inanimate stone
Since then locals who have wanted to see this phenomena for themselves.
Have congregated on a new years eve at midnight around this statue, and
a lot of people claim to have witnessed this strange supernatural
event. There is an aura of mystery surrounding this statue. Many claim
it has a presence and there have been stories of other hauntings around
the area of this ancient church. When one hears this story one can't
help but wonder. Which angel does this mysterious statue represent? And
what is the significance of it turning a page? And why does it only
come to life and turn a page once a year? Particularly why at the
stroke of midnight on a new years eve? It is a midnight mystery.'
Copyright ? Richard Cuthbertson2001