Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A Hexham Heads Appeal

The strange saga of what have become known as the Hexham Heads is legendary within British Fortean circles.

Not only that, it's also a tale with definitive werewolf-style overtones attached to it.

And for those wishing to learn more about this curious story - that began in 1972, or much earlier depending on with who you speak - check out an excellent paper on the subject by Paul Screeton, which can be found in his book I reviewed a couple of months ago, I Fort The Lore.

But, there's more to come - and it's great news too!

Paul is in the process of writing a full-length book on the Hexham Heads, which is to be published next year.

And, of course, whenever an author digs into a decades-old saga, there are inevitably leads to chase down, and people to find.

Which brings me to the point of this blog-post - an appeal from Paul, which I will let him relate in his own words.

Over to Paul:

This appeal is self-contained but stems from a posting on the 'Forteana' forum. It featured a 1982 foray into New Scientist by Dr Don Robins, an inorganic chemist associated with The Dragon project. Anyone know where Don is in 2011?

Ah, earth energies and the mystery that dare not speak its name - ley power!

Dr Don Robins, a blast from the past. I'm researching the Hexham Heads mystery and the role this inorganic chemist played in the saga. I knew Don quite well and after a The Ley Hunter mag moot, had a drink with him and his buddy at Jack Straw's Castle pub, Hampstead.

We also corresponded and at one stage Don requested a sliver from a pseudo-archaic head which had been made by a local Hexham man, Des Craigie, in response to Celtic scholar Dr Anne Ross's challenge that if he, Des, had made the original Hexham Heads, as he claimed, she wanted to see him repeat the feat.

Oddly the three demonstration models only resembled the originals in the later form (after a geologist had butchered their tenons for analysis).

When everyone else believed the originals had been sent back to Newcastle University Museum of Antiquities and from there returned to their owners, the Robson family, who (re?) discovered them, Dr Ross pulled out a box in her study and handed them over to Don Robins, who she had just met. Ross and Robins went on to collaborate on a book and subsequently fell out big time.

Don never sent a report into his findings and wrote in an Alpha mag piece that he had loaned the idols to Frank Hyde, an astrologer, for tests and Hyde had been involved in a car crash and seriously injured.

I have been unable to trace Hyde nor the whereabouts of the original heads. I am also trying to track a mysterious figure called Wild or Wilde, supposedly married to an African princess, who collected Celtic artifacts and who met Dr Ross 30 or so years ago.

Lastly, I have lost touch with Don, who I believe may now be in the US? I would appreciate any leads to find any of those mentioned (except Dr Ross, with whose son I have been in recent contact), particularly Don.

Paul Screeton.

Note from Nick: If you can help Paul re the above (and, indeed, on just about any aspect of the Hexham Heads puzzle), he welcomes your emails. You can reach him at:

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