Friday 6 April 2007

The 'vampire' of Highgate

During the late 1960s and early 1970s a tall, dark and mysterious figure prowled the vicinity of Highgate Cemetery in London. This sinister spectre was said to haunt the North Gate of the Western Cemetery, which, at the time, was a dilapidated entrance to an overgrown and gloomy metropolis where tombstones spilled unto unkempt pathways, catacombs were pallid in their expression and graves were desecrated for fun.

It was rumoured that dark, diabolical rituals were practised in the eerie confines of the foggy abode, and where on several occasions a red-eyed entity was seen hovering behind the wrought iron gate. This particular graveyard fiend was to become known as the Highgate 'vampire'. At times it drained passers by of energy, psychically sapping from them the air they breathed, whilst other rumours circulated that several female residents within the village had been attacked in the night, and, whilst during slumber had their blood drank from their necks via puncture marks allegedly left by the invader.

Unfortunately, during the time of the sightings of the malignant shade, hordes of reporters converged upon the cemetery, and hysteria reached a climax on several nights when hundreds of members of the general public bombarded the area, in search of the night stalker. These panics resulted in several bizarre events which make the tale of the Highgate apparition one of, if not London's most spectacular yet unsolved mysteries.

Did satanists raise the seemingly evil psychic apparition ?

Was the 'vampire' responsible for several fox deaths in the cemetery ?

Was the spectre simply a dark spirit roaming the ivy-strewn pathways ?

Does the phantom still haunt the darkness in the present day ?

Much of the case has been regurgitated in paranormal-related books over the years, but something very strange went on all those dusty decades ago. Theories range from a real-life king of the undead, to a soul-draining shadow, others claim a hoax, some believe that the spectre was a manifestation that grew stronger as more and more attention was paid to its murky presence.

Today, the Highgate anomaly still remains obscenely overlooked when you consider just what exactly went on. The cemetery itself now exists in gothic splendour, in a state of manageable neglect, a wonderful abode that looks like a Hammer Horror film set. It's just a shame the mystery itself remains dormant, because somewhere amongst the thickets, the mist and the fiction there lurks a very real horror.

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