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SINISTER NIGHT VISITORS

It’s a common fear we all harbour at the back of our minds when we lay in bed at night – the possibility that someone could be trying to break into our home. Human burglars are scary enough, but supernatural intruders can be just as terrifying.

At a certain terraced house on Page Moss Lane in 2005, a middle-aged woman named Debbie went to bed one rainy April night at around 11.50pm. The only other person in the house was her 22-year-old son James, and he was fast asleep in bed.

Debbie’s husband was working on a night shift at a Wirral factory and was not due home till 7.30am.

Debbie was used to this routine of sleeping on her own on such occasions and was looking forward to a good night’s sleep because she’d been up since 7am.

Just after midnight, a noise woke her. She lay motionless in bed and heard strange sounds which seemed to be coming from the front room downstairs.

She slowly got up, turned on the bedside lamp, and then she went to check on James. He was asleep in bed.

She woke him and said she could hear noises in the front room and James told his mum to call the police. “I’m not sure if it’s just noises from next door,” she said, and seemed indecisive. “It sounded as if –”

The sound of something heavy falling to the floor in the front room below interrupted her, and James jumped with fright. “Someone’s broken in” he said, his eyes full of fear.

Mother and son then heard the sound of a door opening downstairs, followed by heavy footsteps across the uncarpeted hallway.

Then came the thud-thud-thud sound of someone coming up the stairs.

“Oh!” Debbie grabbed her son’s arm as she recoiled in horror. “Call the police James! Call them!”

The door of the bedroom flew open, and James picked up a large resin bust of a WWE wrestler he kept on a shelf and got ready to throw it at the burglar, but there was no one there.

The door had swung fully open, and James and his mother could see that no one was standing on the landing – unless they were hiding out of sight around the doorway – but James ventured out and saw no one there.

Stranger still, when Debbie and James went downstairs to the hallway, they saw the door to the front room wide open, and upon the window sill James noticed the imprint of a shoe in rainwater – as if someone had climbed in through the window – which was firmly locked – from the wet front garden that rainy night – and left their footprints behind them.

More wet prints – which seemed to have been made by someone wearing the Hi-Tech brand of training shoe – were found, going across the tiles of the hallway towards the stairs.

Had someone opened the window of the front room, the burglar alarm would have sounded, but the window was locked anyway. This baffled and unnerved Debbie and her son.

James rechecked the lock on the window and looked out into the rainy night, when he heard a metallic clang. Someone he could not see had just closed the garden gate.

His mother came to the window and cupped her hands around the sides of her face as she looked out the window, when she suddenly remarked, “Look at that!”

James couldn’t see it at first, but then, as his eyes adjusted to the dark, he too saw a faint cloudy form drifting across Page Moss Lane.

This eerie gaseous entity drifted up the road and went north, towards the direction of Dinas Lane.

Debbie had lived at the house for six years and she asked the old woman next door if the place had a reputation for being haunted, but the elderly neighbour said she hadn’t heard of strange goings-on at the house and she’d lived there for over twenty years.

Moving just over four miles north of Page Moss Lane, we come to the scene of another sinister late-night supernatural intruder, and this is in Westhead Avenue in Kirkby.

In August 2014, the couple - we shall call them Jack and Zoe (not their real names) – were awakened by a rattling sound which seemed to be coming from the front door of the house. The time was 4.15am and it was already getting light at that hour.

Jack opened the bedroom window and looked down, but he couldn’t see anyone at the front door because the little portico roof was in the way, so he shouted: “Hey!”

The rattling continued downstairs so Jack put on his tracksuit bottoms and went downstairs to see if someone was trying to break in.

Zoe also got out the bed in a terrified state, carrying her mobile, ready to call the police.

What they both saw in the hallway left them speechless for a moment because they couldn’t get their heads around what they were witnessing.

An abnormally long thin black forearm – over three feet in length – had somehow reached in through the letterbox, and the bony-fingered hand of this freakish limb was undoing the bolt at the top of the door.

The bolt at the bottom of the door had already been slid off.

Zoe screamed, and tried to pull Jack up the stairs, and as the girl cried out, the hand went to the handle of the door, but couldn’t open it because the mortice lock was on.

The arm then reached out towards Jack, and he turned and pushed Zoe up the stairs backwards, and she fell on her back.

The couple then heard the letterbox flap close, and when they looked at the door, the elongated black arm had gone.

On the following morning at 4am, the couple heard an eerie voice outside crying, “I want my mummy.

Mummy where are you?” but it sounded completely fake, as if an adult was pretending to be a distressed child – perhaps so Jack and Zoe would open their door to help the child – and unwittingly let the creepy mimic in.

Westhead Avenue is a stone’s throw from the recent spate of reports concerning the so-called Crying Lady – an unknown person who has been crying for help through letterboxes in the dead of night – but whether the person is a real-life Banshee – or merely a criminal hoping one of the naive locals will open their door – and render themselves open to being attacked and robbed – is another matter...

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With Matthew Ashton, Director of Public Health for Knowsley and Sefton
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