Clapham Wood

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Clapham Wood
Footpath in Clapham Wood - - 870296.jpg
LocationWest Sussex, England
Coordinates50°51′12″N 0°26′26″W / 50.8533°N 0.4405°W / 50.8533; -0.4405Coordinates: 50°51′12″N 0°26′26″W / 50.8533°N 0.4405°W / 50.8533; -0.4405

Clapham Wood is a woodland area in Clapham, West Sussex, England, which Fortean authors and paranormal enthusiasts believe to be a locus of UFO sightings, Satanic cult activity, deaths, and lost or sick pets.[1][2]

Clapham Wood mystery[edit]

According to Nick Brownlow's article in Fortean Times magazine, reports of UFO sightings, claims of nausea, sudden patches of grey mist, and sensations of being pushed or followed have been made since the 1960s, as well as a number of reports of pets being sick or lost in the area.[2] Four deaths have occurred either in or close to the woods. In 1972, Police Constable Peter Goldsmith went missing, and his body was found hidden in a patch of thick bramble at Clapham Wood some six months later.[3] In August 1975, missing pensioner Leon Foster was found in the woods by a couple searching for a lost horse.[3] In 1978, the missing Reverend Harry Neil Snelling's body was found by a Canadian tourist. In September 1981, the body of Jillian Matthews, a homeless individual with schizophrenia was discovered, having been raped and strangled.[2]

In their 1987 book The Demonic Connection, authors Toyne Newton, Charles Walker and Alan Brown claimed that the woods were used for rituals by a Satanic cult calling itself the "Friends of Hecate".[2] Journalist Will Storr investigated this claim in his book Will Storr Vs The Supernatural, but found no evidence beyond odd campfires and unfriendly locals. Writer Barry Stevens has also expressed skepticism, suggesting that Newton and his co-authors either invented the lurid paranormal stories in their book, or uncritically accepted urban legends and rumors.[4]


  1. ^ Robins, Danny "Danny Robins Investigates: Episode 2 - The Mystery Of Clapham Wood", Channel 4 Radio, Channel 4
  2. ^ a b c d Brownlow, Nick (2005) "Fortean Traveller: Clapham Wood", Fortean Times
  3. ^ a b Nick Redfern (2017). Secret Societies: The Complete Guide to Histories, Rites, and Rituals. Visible Ink Press, ISBN 1578594839
  4. ^ Barry Stevens. Clapham Wood: The Dark Fantasy

External links[edit]