Tuesday, February 28, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.59: The Men From The Ministry

This squat brick building, enclosed with fencing marked 'No Entry', was apparently one of the 'listening posts' built by the Ministry of Defence (mentioned in an earlier post) at various sites in and around Horsingdon at the start of the Cold War. The purpose of these buildings  - in terms of exactly what they were listening for or how they were to complete this task - has never been disclosed.

This being Horsingdon, rumours nonetheless abound, one of which involves the claim that a strange low hum emanates from the buildings at certain times - and that this phenomenon appears to align with the occurance of other notable praeternatural events in the region; another holds that the government agency responsible for erecting the buildings was not, in fact, the Ministry of Defence, but another, far more secretive group only ever refered to by its representatives as 'The Ministry'.

Encounters with these Men From The Ministry were, it seems, typically marked by a distictly strange and sinister quality: one informant recounted an incident when two such individuals not only threatened to end his life should he ever reveal publicly any details of something he should not have seen, but subsequently made an even more disturbing and distressing threat of (what he described as) 'an existential character'. This individual, who died a few years ago, never did disclose what it was he had witnessed which so provoked the ire of the Men From The Ministry; nor would he ever elaborate on the exact nature of the peculiar threat that had terrified him so.

Monday, February 27, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.58: Northwich Business Park

Northwich Business Park: all that remains are crumbling, deserted high-rise office buildings, haunted by the hollow ghosts of all the businesses which rented space here only to fail and go into receivership.

The lower portions of the buildings are covered in the alien script of an indecipherable graffiti, and in one of the edifices mannequins (the type which one would typically find in the display of a local high street shop) have been positioned so that they are staring vacuously through broken windows in the direction of Horsingdon Hill. Close inspection of the mannequins over time has indicated that someone has regularly been changing their positions, as if using them to act out some complex ritual circuit.

Multiple attempts to regenerate the area have proven unsuccessful, and have largely been abandoned by Horsingdon Council after a group of council workers, who entered one of the buildings to undertake a standard safety check in preparation for another planned phase of renewal, disappeared without trace. Even so, a few years back the council sent in another team to install some kind of antennae or transmitter on the roof of one the buildings.

Some locals claim that the collapse and urban decay that has so afflicted the area is a consequence of the site resting on a spot sacred to Those Who Wait (rumour has it that robed figures can be spied in the vicinity of the park on certain auspicious nights of the year); or perhaps the Horsingdon landscape itself has refused to countenance such a large-scale intrusion of modernity within its bounds, reclaiming and reshaping bare concrete and shattered glass as part of its own bleak and despondent topography.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.57: The Bunker

Locally known as 'the bunker', this curious building stands opposite the intersection between Eastcote Lane and Hallowmere Road.

The structure contains no windows, and only a single, unnumbered door. Whilst sounds are occasionally heard emanating from within the house, for years no one has ever been seen entering or leaving the building. My own investigations indicate that the house is owned by the Boreham estate, and that at one time it was the residence of Richard Boreham, James Boreham's one-and-only child - who, it is said, was born severely disfigured and of an unknown mother. At the time the latter fact apparently led to no end of speculation amongst the local populace as to Richard's parentage on his mother's side, eliciting sinister undertones regarding the possible involvement of Those Who Wait, or someother praeternatural agency, where his matrilineal line of descent was concerned. Whilst Richard Boreham's birth certificate - listing his mother as 'unknown' - is a matter of public record, I have yet to locate any documentation concerning his death or burial.

In his published letters, Roland Franklyn briefly alludes to the fact that, during his time in Horsingdon, he was able to secure an interview with the occupant of this building. There then follows a pause of about two weeks in his letter-writing, during which time he was in fact being treated at the psychiatric ward of Northwich Park Hospital for a severe case of (what at the time was referred to as) 'nervous shock'.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.56: Shortcuts and Alleyways

This alleyway lies off a back street near Eastcote Lane. Something terrible happened here once - so terrible that the locals refuse to speak about the matter.

This story and variants thereof are told throughout the borough regarding all such socially -uncolonised spaces; sometimes the tales even offer unambiguous particulars: like Shanklin Alley, they may be haunted by the inhabitants of monstrous otherwolds which intersect with ours, or by the vicissitudes of their own blighted histories. Some folklorists might attribute the use of familiar elements of the local landscape - and the counter-intuitive character of praeternatural events associated with them - to social processes of memorialisation: a means of collectively recollecting the otherwise banal (but nonetheless culturally-significant) aspects of local history and identity, enabling the ready transmission of these socially-significant narratives through ostension and retelling.

This is rarely the case in the Horsingdon Triangle.

In the Horsingdon Triangle, such tales often turn out to be true.

Friday, February 24, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.55: Pathways

Amongst other things, Boreham Park is notable for its landscaped gardens. Formerly part of the Boreham Mansion estate, paved pathways wind around the gardens in what seems a straightfoward and easily navigable fashion; however, many a casual flaneur anticipating a pleasant stroll on a calm Sunday afternoon has found themselves confused - gripped, even, by a vertiginous anxiety - as the twists of the landscape seem to produce a sudden, unexpected topographical disarray, or strangely jumbled geomorphological entanglements that speak of a terrain born of a realm wholly unlike our own.

Supposedly created by James Boreham according to some unearthly and diabolic design, no one has been able to produce an accurate map of the pathways through the gardens - or at least no two maps produced of the area have yet managed to depict precisely the same cartography.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.54: Blackbirds

Blackbird Hill - also known variously as the witch-haunted Burn Hill and Crow Hill - has long been the habitation of a colony of crows, and is one of the points on both the Horsingdon Triangle as well as the recently-discovered Horsingdon Pentagram. Legend holds that the crows arrived soon after the ill-fated witch-burning of 1678, and that they now protect the local population from the powers that have subsequently come to haunt the hill. In return, it is said that the crows demand only that the soul of an innocent be offered up to them once each year on All Hallows Eve, so that they might renew their watch.

Local ornithologists, who have diligently documented the avian population of Blackbird Hill over the last two decades, have noted that the size of the colony has expanded by exactly one bird annually during this period.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.53: Overdue Books

Eastcote Lane Public Library. Along with Boreham Park Library, this once contained a very fine and extensive collection of esoterica, much of it detailing the occult history of Northwich and Horsingdon. The library was refurbished in the late 1970s, at which point said collection was removed to parts unknown for storage. The books were never returned after the completion of the renovations, and at the time a spokesperson for Horsingdon Council claimed that they had been misplaced due to an administrative error, and that their disappearance was 'pending investigation'. Needless to say, the collection failed to ever reappear.

Some have suggested that this formed part of a wider campaign involving the wilful erasure from public scrutiny of occult materials - especially those pertaining to the history of the borough - by Horsingdon Council itself. If that was indeed the case, it is cause for speculation as to exactly why the Council would feel the need to aggressively pursue such a course of action.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.52: Insensate Static

Curious aerials and transmitters populate the murky Horsingdon skyline, many of which appear to be without function, or are otherwise a hangover from the early Cold War period when the Ministry of Defense apparently established a number of listening posts in and around Horsingdon. If true, their purpose for doing so remains - like so much else about the region - vague and unclear.

That the landscape hereabouts is possessed of its own signal is, for most inhabitants of the Horsingdon Triangle, a given; but exactly what is being broadcast, and why, is a mystery. For my part, the soft static fry which laps gently at the borders of consciousness each night, like the comforting purr of a telephone bereft of its receiver, speaks of the insensate sound of a universe in which no-one and nothing is listening anymore.

Monday, February 20, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.51: Chapel Perilous

A while back I mentioned that the police had been called to St. Osmund's Church after the discovery that one or more of the graves in the surrounding cemetary had been disturbed. On a return visit at dusk this evening, I discovered that the entire church had bern sealed off. The official explanation is that, due to subsidence, the entire church building has been rendered unsafe. The unofficial rumours hold that, during earlier police  enquiries, something was discovered in the basement of the church, and the building has been closed to the public pending further investigations by the police and Horsingdon Borough Council.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.50: Pareidolia

Another view of the Witching Tree on Hallowmere playing fields, framed against the Horsingdon skyline. There appears to be a spherical object to the right of the photo which I don't recall seeing when the picture was taken, as well as the faint image of spectral plumes rising from the landscape. Perhaps more chillingly, just below the branches on the lower left-hand side of the image, one can just make out what seems to see the vague impression of what looks to be the tortuously-stretched likeness of the eyes, nose and mouth of a human face.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.49: The Old Ways

Evidence of ritualistic activities discovered during a recent visit to Horsingdon Woods, in the vicinity of the wych elm; indeed, modernity’s incursions into the region have had little or no impact upon the practice of witchcraft and the keeping of the Old Ways amongst some sectors of the population.  

Note the intersection of the logs into a cross-like shape. Certain traditions hold that, during the Christian era, the cross or crucifix was typically trampled upon as part of the rites of witchcraft. This was less an embrasure of the Devil and all His works, and more a political act: the rejection of a false teleological futurity which welcomed apocalypse in favour of a timeless, traditionalistic primordialism (equally problematic in its own way). Either way, these are the artificial ways and doctrines of a species which mistakenly thinks itself significant in relation to topographies which are, in fact, wholly indifferent. As far as humanity is concerned, there are no ideological victors when it comes to the Horsingdon landscape, or to the Powers that inhabit it, or to the infinite worlds with which it intersects.

Friday, February 17, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.48: The (Other) Wych Elm

My attempt to take a photo of the wych elm in Horsingdon Woods from which Mrs Bennett was hanged: the tree appears to be framed by an aura of strange light, and it seems as if the background of the photo is fragmenting or collapsing into some sort of constellation of fuzzy fractals - as if this tree and its clearing is a point of intersection with some other, terrifying unreality.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.47: The Wych Elm Pub

Haunt of dissident ufologists, heterodox folklorists, apostate ley-hunters, renegade psychogeographers, and other disreputable types, the Wych Elm pub sits along Horsingdon Lane at the foot of Horsingdon Hill - a stones throw from both the ruins of Whitton Green and Horsingdon Woods themselves, wherein stands the actual wych elm from which Mrs Bennett was hanged.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.46: Witch Steps

The name of the witch responsible for the blighting of Whitton Green is recorded as one Mrs Bennett who, it is said, made obseisance to Those Who Wait and other ancient powers at the wych elm that stands to this day in the nearby Horsingdon Woods; it is also said that grotesque clay figurines depicting such powers decorated the interior of her cottage in the days before the hamlet met its demise.

Elderly and widowed, and all of her children already gone to an early grave, Mrs Bennett had increasingly become dependent upon the charity of her neighbours. Wider social and economic changes had been sweeping through England at the time, and the hamlet itself had prospered, with most of its inhabitants pursuing opporunities to participate in new and profitable forms of mercantilism; the incursions of capitalism - even in its incipient forms - into the then-rural life of the region had, however, increasingly led to a re-evaluation of the social status quo which proved less than beneficial to the more needy inhabitants, resulting in a rash of witchcraft accusations levelled at those who were seen as a burden and a barrier to economic growth.

Where once the redistribution of goods was seen as both a moral duty and necessity, reciprocated via the less-tangible reward of affirming community solidarity, the desire to participate in the new, acquisitive economic modernity and increase one's capital (and thereby one's status) by selling surplus at the local market day had became too much of a temptation for the emergent middle classes in places like Whitton Green. In any case, accusations of witchcraft were made, the righteous indignation of the inhabitants of the hamlet was roused, and justice was swiftly and irrevocably enacted as Mrs Bennett was hanged from the highest branch of the wych elm in Horsingdon Woods.

That same night a great storm lashed the area, the fury of which causing great distress and significant damage to property in and around Horsingdon. More alarming was the fact that, the following morning, Whitton Green was discovered to be deserted. Every single member of the small community had, it seems, disappeared overnight.

Indeed, the question as to whether the demise of Mrs Bennett fully erased her baleful presence from the area remains unresolved: there is a series of steps leading from the crown of Horsingdon Hill to the clearing in Horsingdon Woods where the wych elm stands, along which a cloaked, bent and wizened old woman has often been spied, croaking evil words in an unknown language as she passes.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.45: Of Witchcraft and Whitton Green

Borders and boundaries operate according to fuzzy, uncertain logics. It is a dangerous business building at such places, incurring as it does certain debts and obligations to the landscape - and the powers which lurk therein - which are not easily fulfilled. Such was the fate of Whitton Green, a small hamlet built at the foot of Horsingdon Hill in 1751. Blighted by witchcraft, Whitton Green was soon reclaimed by the powers of the Hill; now all that remains are some old stone steps leading nowhere.

Monday, February 13, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.44: Spiritual Warfare

Despite the wide doctrinal variance between many of the churches in Horsingdon, All Hallows Church in Northwich Park has remained a stalwart of Anglican traditionalism within the borough. Between 1964 and 1969, All Hallows thrived under the guidance of the charismatic Reverend John Broadham.

Of an evangelical bent, Broadham firmly believed that Northwich and Horsingdon were the the nexus of a very real spiritual conflict; quite literally embodying the priniciple of 'muscular Christianity', he brought a rather heavy-handed approach to the matter: not only being a vocal opponent of what he considered to be the impure and demonological doctrines espoused at other places of worship within the diocese, Broadham on occasion also became embroiled in physical altercations with those ministers and ecclesiasts whose credos he deemed an offence against nature and an offence against God. Apparently Roland Franklyn narrowly avoided a drubbing at Broadham's hands.

It didn't help matters that Broadham had been in the Royal Marine Corps, and had won a number of boxing tournaments during this time in the services. Rumour has it that his religious calling also came about as a consequence of his encounters with forces of a praeternatural variety which Broadham experienced during his participation in certain covert operations whilst in the military, and that his posting to Northwich Park may not have been entirely coincidental. In any case, the spiritual warfare Broadham was engaged in quickly turned both temporal and corporeal when, in 1969 after publicly criticising The Church of Starry Wisdom, All Hallows was destroyed in a fire. Broadham was believed to be in the building at the time of the conflagration, although no body was recovered. The church was rebuilt the following year, and dedicated to the memory of Broadham.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.43: Invisible Horses

Near the summit of Horsingden Hill at dusk, reputedly the final resting place of the Saxon king Horsa, and supposedly haunted by the spectre of his horse which legend holds was buried alongside him. Other tales tell of a herd of ghostly black horses with glowing red eyes, a monstrous fire-breathing black dog (after which the Black Shuck pub next to St. Ormund's Church is named), and the sound of something approximating the neighing of a horse - but otherwise entirely alien and grotesque in character - as variously manifesting in the vicinity of the hill.

Whatever the case, the hill has a long and tragic history, being the site of numerous murders and inexplicable disappearances, such that the locals tend to avoid the area at night.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.42: UAP over Boreham House

A luminous globule (the small spherical object towards the right-hand edge the image) photographed over Boreham House, near the boundary of Boreham Park, a few nights ago. Patrons of the nearby Black Shuck pub (which overlooks the cemetary of St. Osmund's Church) who, after closing time, happened to be walking past Boreham House around the time that the photograph was taken, reported hearing a strange, ritualistic chanting emanating from the upper floor of that building.

Friday, February 10, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.41: An Ecumenical Matter

The 1950s and 1960s marked a decline throughout England of traditional forms of religiousity, with the cosmopolitanism of the time having bred a burdgeoning interest in new religious movements and alternative spiritualities. Nowhere was this more noticeable than in the Horsingdon area. This is, perhaps, understandable: strange places are, afterall, prone to producing strange creeds. Horsingdon locals have, in any case, only ever offered lip-service to the more pedestrian forms of Christianity that have attached themselves to the region,

Even so, the recent religious history of Horsingdon encompasses something of a revitalization of Christianity (even if that history is one of doctrinal non-canonicity and rampant non-denominalationism), with a significant number of evangelical churches and congregations appearing throughout the district during the 1960s.

Roland Franklyn, however, raised concerns at the time regarding the spiritual 'authenticity' of many of these churches, claiming that the espoused Christianity of these institutions was, in fact, simply a veneer overlaying other, more disquieting beliefs: beliefs which had, in fact, an unimaginably vast history in the Horsingdon area, along with very deep roots in the culture and consciousness of its local communities.

One such church was the Church of Starry Wisdom, whose congregation ensconced itself in St. Ormunds; another was the Church of the Throne of Light, which (according to Franklyn) was closely affiliated with the Starry Wisdom congregation, and which prospered to such a degree that by the mid-1960s it was able to build a dedicated place of worship along Eastcote Lane (not far from Burn Hill). For the new construction, Church elders commissioned a stained-glass window in a spectacularly-ugly modernist style as a frontispiece to their worship. In his letters, Franklyn denounces criticisms that the window - apparently depicting the very 'Throne of Light' that was central to the Church's doctrine - was nothing more than a cynical appropriation of abstract art as a means of appealing to an increasingly jaded and secularised audience; instead, he claims it is a literal representation of the Throne of Light as congregants typically percieved it whilst in the throes of religious ecstasy: a crazed and crooked morass of angles and jarring colours, roiling within vast abyssal chambers normally hidden from human sight at the centre of all creation, and the seat of a  nameless and pandaemoniacal numinosity from which all things flow.

That a nominally Christian sect should conceive of their God in such a confusing and tumultuous fashion seems remarkable - although Franklyn draws parallels with far older, lesser-known mythological and cosmological systems concerning Those Who Wait. For my part, I lack the theological authority to comment on whether there genuinely exists a link between the Church of the Throne of Light (which continues to operate in Horsingdon to this day) and older forms of local religiousity; for that, as the saying goes, would be an ecumenical matter.

Thursday, February 09, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.40: Ectoplasmic Plumes

An aerial photograph of Northwich Park, circa 1932. Strange forces coalesce about the scurrying intrusions of modernity into the primal, glacial rhythms of the landscape: note the diaphanous, ectoplasmic plumes erupting from the-newly constituted housing developments along what will become Eastcote Lane; also the ominous presence of a small black sphere toward the top left-hand corner of the image.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.39: Sealed Portals

This sealed doorway down the side of Southcote Station apparently once opened in to a storage room. According to the accepted history of the station, the archway was bricked up due to concerns about the structural integrity of the building. Horsingdon and Northwich, however, have never been constrained by the need to conform to conventionalised histories. Indeed the non-canonical history of the station – which of course many of the local residents consider to be the authentic and authoritative one – holds to a wildly differing version of events. According to this account, workmen who were clearing out the storage space discovered a locked trapdoor beneath various pieces of rusting machinery which lay in the far corner of the room.

When no key could be found to fit the lock, it was quickly forced open, revealing a flight of relatively modern red brick stairs leading down to a cellar-like aperture of apparently far more ancient construction - and whose walls were scrawled with strange symbols. Leading off from this was a tunnel – although I have heard it described as being more akin to a burrow - which bored further downward into the darkness. This is where the events of the tale become somewhat fuzzy. It was growing late by the time of the cellar’s discovery; the workmen were also somewhat perturbed by what they had found, and so decided to finish-up there and then with a view to reporting the matter to their superiors the following morning. On returning the following day, however, they made a further, gruesome, discovery: the incomplete remains of the station’s night manager strewn around the storage room, with a set of strange, bloodied footprints leading in the direction of the trapdoor. The police were called, Horsingdon Coucil became involved, the archway was quickly sealed at the behest of a council official, and night manager's demise was recorded as an accidental death.

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.38: The View From Southcote Station

Platform 2 of Southcote Station, served by both the London Underground and Overground, in the direction of Northwich Park Station. The line follows (some would say was purposely built upon) the occulted topographies of what some locals refer to as 'The Secret Alleys'. There have been at least two instances over the last decade of late-night communters having inexplicably gone missing whilst waiting on the platform for the last train. On one occasion, CCTV footage showed one individual walk unsteadily backwards from the edge of the platform - as if retreating from something - into a pool of shadow at an unlighted part of the station. Close examination of the footage seemed to indicate that they never actually reappeared out of the shadowy depths into which, apparently, they had fallen; in the second instance, a young man shown standing alone on the platform seemed to disappear mysteriously after a brief burst of static interference caused a break in the recording of the station's CCTV cameras. There have been additional reports by freight-train drivers of having to make emergency stops along the line (typically around 3am in the morning) on account of a hooded figure seen wandering about the tracks - a hooded figure which, according to one witness, possessed a glowing sphere of sickly-blue phosphorescent light where it's face should have been.

I have always found the eerie hum of the tracks along this part of the line profoundly unsettling: a resonance which, it seems to me, could only emanate from some other, more terrible world than this.

Monday, February 06, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.37: The Witch House

The Witch House stands in an unassuming street in the electoral ward of Northwich Central: dirty, crumbling, and accreted with decades of dark rumour and witch-legend. Such houses linger long after their time, maintaining a tenuous foothold on existence as signifiers of those blemished places where the world wears thin; they are symptomatic of uncertain thresholds and blurred boundaries with the Outside - thresholds and boundaries indexed by strange histories of blood, madness and a long string of unaccountable disappearances. If one tarries too long in the shadow of such places, drawn by the disquieting enchantment of their decrepitude, a gaunt, pale face will eventually be seen peering with sinister intent through a gap in the worn and ragger curtains. Were one take up habitation in such a locale, one might expect to eventually endure - in a suitably grotesque and spectacular fashion - a transition into some horrible, new state of being.

The house has remained tenantless for the last few years. No one is sure what happened to the last occupants.

Sunday, February 05, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.36: In Memoriam

Metropolitan modernity at the edges of desolation, as the eerie manifests at the foremost extremities of Greater London. Here, the rarely used A403 Southcote Road (by which one finds one's way to the villages of Dedham and Witchford in the county of Buckhinghamshire) intersects with the borders of Boreham Park: once the grounds of Boreham Mansion, now overgrown and in an advanced state decrepitude and ruination, and with a befuddled and strange history.

In his final book, Mark Fisher notes that the category of the eerie,
'Like the weird...is also fundamentally to do with the outside, and here we can understand  the outside in a straightforwardly empirical as well as a more abstract transcendental sense. A sense of the eerie seldom clings to enclosed and inhabited domestic spaces; we find the eerie more readily in  landscapes emptied of the human. What happened to produce these ruins, this disappearance?..,The eerie concerns the fundamental metaphysical questions one could pose, questions to do with existence and non-existence: Why is there something here when there should be nothing? Why is there nothing here when there should be something? The unseeing eyes of the dead; the bewildered eyes of an amnesiac - these provoke a sense of the eerie, just as surely as an abandoned village or a stone circle do...The eerie also entails a disengagement from our current attachments...[a] detachment from the urgencies of the everyday. The perspective of the eerie can give us access to the forces which govern mundane reality but which are ordinarily obscured, just as it can give us access to spaces beyond mundane reality altogether.'
Such is nature of the eerie as it is all-too-often encountered in the borough of Horsingdon.

Saturday, February 04, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.35: Water Horses

The Grand Union Canal - perhaps the greatest of England's arterial waterways - runs directly along the foot of Horsingdon Hill. If one picks up the canal footpath here in the direction of Aylesbury and Berkhamstead, after a mile or so one finds an unusual sculpture: the head and elongated neck of what some claim is a plesiosaur or even the Loch Ness Monster, looming over a lofty and overgrown garden wall. Whilst of relatively recent manufacture, the origin and creator of this monstrous carving nevertheless remain unknown. The dilapidated house in whose garden it stands is unoccupied and has been for years.

The legendry of Horsingdon is, however, replete with tales regarding the strange inhabitants of its remaining streams and brooks. Indeed, whilst it is commonly believed that Horsingdon takes its name from the spectral black horses that supposedly haunt the hill, the guardians of the Black Bowers have intimated that the palaeolitic peoples who first colonised the hilltop named it after the monstrous wyrms and 'water horses' they once worshipped: entities which lurked in and around the lost meres and hidden waterways of the region, and which were said to be extrusions into our world of Those Who Wait. There are also tales of remarkable fossilised remains uncovered during the building of St. Ormund's Church which have long been secreted away in the archives of Horsingdon Council and, even today, one occasionally encounters odd and unnerving reports of something inexplicable seen floating or even writhing in the waters of that stretch of the canal which runs past Horsingdon Hill.

How little we suspect (and how terrified we would be), as we skim insect-like across the unimaginably fragile surface-tension of the present, of the teeming and unkowable depths of deep geologic time that roil and seethe constantly below us

Friday, February 03, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.34: Old Photographs, Unseen Epochs.

A photo of St. Ormund's Church from 1911, from the collection of Roland Franklyn. The figure in the background leaning languidly on a tombstone is purportedly James Boreham. If so, this is the only known photograph of that enigmatic figure. Coincidentally, the year in which this photo was taken marked the beginning of a spate of strange occurances at St. Ormund's -  including the desecration of a number of graves in the burying ground during the October of 1911.

I remain unsurprised that reports of recent events at the church eerily mirror those of over a century ago. Virtually any book of local history one can peruse at Boreham Park Library will tell you that St. Ormund's was built on a site whose praeternatural associations reach back into deep antiquity.
Soon after the Roman invasion of Britain, sacrifice was supposedly made to the god Nodens at a temple erected at the locale; ritual artefacts of Palaeolithic origin - which found their way into the collection of James Boreham - were discovered here when the foundations of St. Ormunds were first dug; there are also other records, of doubtful authenticity, which exist within the archives of Horsingdon Council - as well as the oral traditions of those who still observe the custom of the Black Bowers - which speak of nameless rites and awful conjurations having been performed at the locality in epochs more remote and less visible than those glimpsed briefly in an old photograph.

Thursday, February 02, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.33: The Politics of the Outside

Global flows destabilise both tradition and certainty in the same moment that they claim to produce the end of history, and gentrification erodes authenticity in the act of seeking to recreate it. The gardens of Boreham Mansion embody a similar tendency, where once the classicism of the Victorian era sought to obfuscate rapid and uncontrollable social change through its attempts to monumentally reinstantiate a rigidly hierarchical moral and social order.

Conversely, the pursuit of the kind of alien magics sought by the likes of James Boreham is impelled by an actively radicalising momentum: one in which the monstrous spectres of an incomprehensible past haunt the present with the possibility of a revolutionary reconceptualising of a dead-end future. This is not an attempt to establish a new kind of order out of chaos, but to refute and eradicate entirely and absolutely any further possibility of such limiting structural oppositions. This is the politics of absolute alterity, and of Those Who Wait; it is the politics embodied in the Horsingdon landscape: the politics of the Outside.

Wednesday, February 01, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No.32: Return to St. Ormund's Church

I heard yesterday of further disturbing developments concerning St. Ormund's Church: a grave disturbed - apparently that of one of the Boreham family - and scrawled upon one of the church's exterior walls in red chalk the epithet 'grave-looting spawn of the stars'. I seem to recall that Roland Franklyn once made reference to a similar term in regard to his researches into the various occult agencies clustering around the Horsingdon area.

The Boreham family have cast a long shadow over Horsingdon and Northwich, and they have never easily or readily surrendered their dead; nor has the black loam of Horsingdon been typically disposed to offering up the secrets long-buried therein - at least not without sacrifice or a libation of blood...

When I visited the scene of the alleged vandalism late last night, the police had already cordened off parts of the church and graveyard pending their investigations; as a consequence, the above images were all I was able to collect by way of documenting the incident. Needless to say, I intend to investigating the matter further.