Thursday, 19 April 2012

An Official Statement (and a warning).

The Farrant's have now released a statement concerning both BSM's and one 'Arminius Vámbéry's' unfounded and untrue allegations. It has the full endorsement of the Jacob's. I would like to add that David and Della on behalf of both Christine and Jacob and themselves would respectfully request that debate on this subject is discontinued so as not to encourage the libellous remarks of the perpetrator; which are causing great offence to his intended victims. With this in mind I shall be moderating posts to this blog to avoid any more unpleasantness. So would you all please ensure that your contributions remain relevant to the Highgate case and refer only to those directly involved. 

Official Statement by David and Della Farrant regarding libellous statements about the identities of Christine Moloney and Della Farrant.

In recent months a fabricated claim has been circulated on the Internet concerning the marriage in Normandy last November between Christine Moloney and Isaac Ben Jacob.
This claim has been made by a particular person posting under his usual aliases ‘Steatoda Nobilis’ and ‘Arminius Vambery’.
Whilst this was and remains a legitimate marriage, the person in question has been persistently maintaining that Christine herself is, in reality, my wife Della Farrant. To this end, this claimant has also published a series of photographs of Christine and Isaac which he obtained in an underhand manner from the Internet. He has reproduced these without their permission and these pictures remain their copyright and personal intellectual property.
This individual has also reproduced photographs of the real Della and myself, without permission, which remain our copyright and personal intellectual property. By the use of these photographs, including captioning pictures of Christine Moloney as Della Farrant and vice versa, which is erroneous and libellous, he has also attempted to convey that Della and Christine are the same person. They are not. May we also stress that at no time has Christine ever posed for photographs pretending to be Della.
I should like to state unequivocally that this highly defamatory allegation is unfounded, malicious and totally untrue. Neither Della nor myself have ever stated or implied that Christine Moloney is Della, either before or since her official marriage, and the person repeating this false allegation is perpetrating a serious libel against Christine and her husband Isaac, and against ourselves. We would both like to apologise sincerely to Christine and her husband for all distress and embarrassment this false statement has caused them.
We would request that the person posting these statements and photographs online remove them with immediate effect, and desist from further libellous remarks to avoid the need for further action to be taken.
This request is endorsed by both Christine Moloney and Isaac Ben Jacob.
Signed by David Farrant and Della Farrant, April 18, 2012, to be circulated to all appropriate parties and reproduced online including Facebook where appropriate with the full consent of all parties hereby given.

Monday, 9 April 2012

Cemetery Spectres and Pub Spirits.

As I mentioned in my first blog entry I had learned that there were two main protagonists in the Highgate Vampire case. I have already discussed Sean Manchester so now I must turn my attention to David Farrant. His account differs somewhat from Manchester's and it is one that I first got to hear about via an encyclopaedia on the occult and supernatural that was sitting on the shelf of my school library (of all places). Unfortunately I cannot recall the title of the book but the entry on the Highgate Vampire struck a chord with me nevertheless and memories of my visit to the cemetery and my father's stories had come flooding back.

In essence the book referred to a vampiristic spectre that was reputed not only to be haunting the cemetery but other locations within its vicinity. It was where I first heard about 'Thornton's' (a pseudonym adopted to protect his identity) cemetery encounter. Thornton was a local accountant who decided to visit the west cemetery (the oldest of the two cemeteries) one late afternoon so he could view the varied architecture of the mausoleums, gravestones, and the elaborately carved tombs of the Egyptian avenue and the Circle of Lebanon.

In those days you could freely walk around unsupervised so he explored the cemetery at his leisure. So when he had finally seen what he wanted to see, and with dusk fast approaching he decided to make his way back to the exit. Only he couldn't seem to be able to retrace his steps and in fact appeared to be going in circles. Quite understandably he grew increasingly anxious and it was not before long that he started to feel that he was being followed by someone or something. This feeling intensified to the point that he felt that he had to turn around to see just who or what it was. To his horror he saw a tall, black and amorphous humanoid shape rise up from the ground to the point that it towered well above him.

Two glowering red eyes met his and Thornton felt that he could no longer move or even cry out for help. He was not sure if it was either from fear or whether he was in the hypnotic thrall of the spectre, but he slowly felt his vitality leave him. He then passed out only to come to some time later, but he found to his relief that he was now quite alone. Gathering his wits, this time he managed to find the exit and sometime later was to recount his experience to Farrant. As it was, the encyclopaedia’s author had surmised that the vampire tag had probably originated from the eyewitnesses’ descriptions of hypnotic red eyes and a feeling of being drained of energy.

Though it has been alleged that there has been a long standing local legend of a cemetery haunting, it would appear that it had been considered to have been just a ghost – albeit a malevolent one by some. Certainly it was first described as a ghost by the local press and TV reports. It is therefore much more likely that Manchester’s theory of a ‘King Vampire’ from the continent being responsible is the real origin of the subsequent vampire tag.

The book went on to describe another attack - this time a very physical one in which the victim – a young man who was walking along the adjacent Swains Lane, was knocked to the ground by a tall dark figure that appeared to glide along the ground before disappearing through the solid, twelve foot high wall that backed onto the cemetery. This same apparition was also reputed to haunt the local Flask public house and again was witnessed phasing from and into solid brick walls. On many of these occasions the local bells of the nearby St Michael’s church were said to toll at precisely the same time.

I cannot recall just what the author's conclusions were as it was too long ago, but nevertheless I had found it very intriguing (at the time) that there was absolutely no mention of a vampire hunting priest in his narrative!

Thursday, 5 April 2012


To all those aficionados of the now world famous (or should that be infamous?) Highgate case, those others with a fortean or supernatural inclination, or just the plain curious I bid you all a very warm welcome! I have had a long interest in the case - ever since my first visit to the crumbling west cemetery way back in the late seventies. I was still only a child and my father would recount to me stories of a reputed vampire that had earlier in that decade stalked it's overgrown tombs and shadowy vaults.

Barely a few months into the nineteen seventies and already there were reports of dead foxes found completely drained of blood both in the cemetery grounds and in the neighbouring Waterlow Park. And eye witness accounts of dark spectral figures and strange occult practices occurring both in and around the cemetery were soon making headline news. So when some local women claimed to have been attacked at night while they slumbered, a young catholic priest called Sean Manchester fast came to the conclusion that one of the infernal undead was responsible and vowed to track it down.

He first encountered it in the Wace vault located in the bowels of the old cemetery and after an initial attempt to exorcise and stake it failed, various vampire repellents were left within and the vault was bricked up and sealed. Manchester hoped that would be the end of it but it was not to be. The supernatural occurrences continued which prompted him to return to the vault to find that it had been reopened and the creature now gone.

Undaunted, he and and two of his assistants managed to locate it's new lair - a neo-Gothic ruin on the outskirts of Highgate that came to their attention through local reports of strange happenings occurring within. The vampire and his coffin was found in the basement and before dusk could fall Manchester this time found the courage to complete his mission and staked it through the heart. The cadaver quickly turned to a putrefying slime; but not before his faithful assistant managed to take some photos of the gruesome process. The remains together with the coffin were then dragged outside and burned until there was nothing but ash. This then was scattered to the four winds. And so at last Highgate was free of this marauding fiend and the cemetery itself returned to a state of peace and tranquillity.

Or was it? As I matured my interest in the case deepened and with the subsequent television and radio appearances of the two main protagonists over the following decades, I resolved to try to get to the bottom of it all and discover just what was true and what was plain fiction. My journey so far is what I will be sharing with you here so be prepared and strap yourself in tight - because I can assure you now that it's going to be a very bumpy ride!