An ever-deepening mystery surrounds the death of ufologist and conspiracy theorist Max Spiers, who was found dead while preparing to expose politicians and celebrities linked to a global conspiracy…
In July 2016, a 39-year-old UFO researcher, conspiracy theorist and father of two, Max Spiers, was found dead on a friend’s sofa in Warsaw, Poland. Originally from Canterbury, England, Spiers was due to speak at a conference in Warsaw that month, where it’s believed he was set to lift the lid on a global black magic conspiracy and a paedophile ring inside the US Army.
Just days before his death, Spiers sent a text to his mother, Vanessa Bates, saying, “Your boy’s in trouble. If anything happens to me, investigate.”
His mother, an English teacher, told newspapers, “I think Max had been digging in some dark places and I fear somebody wanted him dead.”
Polish authorities concluded that Spiers had died from natural causes, despite no post-mortem examination being carried out. After Spiers’ body was returned to the UK, British doctors at Margate QUQM Hospital in Kent did a post-mortem but were still unable to determine how he died. To this day, Spiers’ cause of death remains a mystery.
However, an inquest into Spiers’ death, which opened at Canterbury Coroners’ Court in December 2016, has added some disturbing clues to the mix. The inquest is ongoing, but it’s already been revealed that Spiers was puking up a mysterious black liquid shortly before his death. (Makes me think of the black oil—that nasty alien virus in The X Files!)
Several young children have recently claimed that they were there at the World Trade Centre on September 11th 2001, when terrorists rammed two passenger planes into the two tallest buildings in New York City. How can that be?
When Rachel Nolan’s son, Thomas, was 3 years old, he was asked what he wanted to be when he grew up. He replied, “I don’t just want to be a firefighter. I have always been and already am a firefighter.”
This surprised and confused his family, but Thomas then went on to say, “I used to get up in the morning, go to work, and in the evenings I would come home and take off my fire proximity suit.”
Strange. Thomas also mentioned having to use an axe to check if there was fire behind the walls, and having to flee if the site was too dangerous. Though perplexed by the level of detail in his answers, Rachel figured Thomas’s ramblings were just the product of a child’s imagination. Just fantasy. However, when Thomas saw a picture of the World Trade Centre in a magazine, he said:
“The bad men burnt these buildings, and people had to jump, and I couldn’t help. There were people waiting for firefighters, waiting for me, but I could not get there to help them.”
Thomas also gave details of the model of the trucks used by the firefighters in New York that day, a Ford Johnson R8. Rachel concluded that her son was recalling a past life, that he was the reincarnation of a firefighter who died on 9/11.
Forget stockings and presents and candy canes this Christmas. What about a bottle of bone discharge from the body of the “right jolly old elf” himself?
The miracle of manna, it’s called. Manna is the name of the sweet-smelling liquid supposedly coming out of the bones of Saint Nicholas, the gift-giving, 4th-century Greek bishop on whom the legend of Christmas Eve’s busiest man is based. It’s a liquid that apparently has robust healing powers. Every May 9th, the “Santa Manna” is removed by priests from St Nick’s tomb at the Basilica of St Nicholas in Bari, put in glass bottles and sold to pilgrims. It is then consumed as a drink or poured over an injured body part.
Firstly, eww. Secondly, for real?
The original mince pie scoffer earned a reputation in the 4th century for secret gift-giving. Legend has it that he famously helped a poor man with three daughters, who couldn’t afford a dowry for them to get married. Nicholas delivered 3 bags of gold coins to the poor man by dropping them down the chimney (so that he couldn’t be seen). One of the daughters had just washed her stockings that evening and hung them over the embers to dry, so the bags of coins ended up falling in the stockings.
Mmmm. Sounds familiar.
This week I’m getting in the spirit of Halloween by investigating the mysterious Meon Hill, on the edge of the Cotswolds in Warwickshire. It’s a place of Satanic legends, phantom black dog sightings, alleged witches and shadowy pitchfork-wielding killers. Anyone fancy pitching a tent there on October 31st?
Meon Hill is nestled between the sleepy Cotswold villages of Mickleton, Upper Quinton and Lower Quinton. An 8th century legend says that it was actually formed by the Devil. Frustrated by the growth of Christianity, the Devil chucked a large clod of earth at the recently built Evesham Abbey, intending to destroy it. However, the bishop spotted him and prayed for the clod of earth to miss its target. It did, landing and forming Meon Hill.
Another legend from Celtic Welsh folklore says that Meon Hill is haunted by the phantom dogs of Arawn, king of the ‘otherworld’. For centuries, numerous sightings of stray black dogs have been reported in the area. Black dogs are said to be nocturnal apparitions, bringers of death and agents of the Devil (think the Rottweilers guarding Antichrist Damien Thorn in The Omen).
But it’s what happened on 14th February 1945 — Valentine’s Day of all days—that really put Meon Hill on the map. This is when 74-year-old Lower Quinton farm labourer Charles Walton was murdered on its slopes.
Walton’s murder was brutal, gruesome and unusual. He was killed with his own instruments. His head was smashed in with his walking stick. His throat was cut with the trouncing hook he’d been using to trim hedges, which was found buried in his neck. And he was impaled and pinned to the ground with his own pitchfork.
There was a conspicuous further detail: a cross-shaped symbol was carved into his chest.
The vanishing crew of the Mary Celeste is one of the biggest maritime mysteries in history. The Bermuda Triangle’s been blamed before, but is usually dismissed because the ship’s route didn’t pass anywhere near it. Could it be that whatever’s been swallowing ships and planes in the Triangle… moves?
On November 7th 1872, the cargo ship Mary Celeste set sail from New York City to Genoa, Italy, carrying 1701 barrels of raw commercial alcohol. The captain was 37-year-old Benjamin Briggs. His wife Sarah and 2-year-old daughter Sophia were with him, along with a crew of 7, making a total of 10 people on board.
On December 4th 1872, the Mary Celeste was discovered adrift near the coast of Portugal by the British Empire vessel Dei Gratia. It was still under sail, but not a single soul was on board.
The reason this empty ‘ghost ship’ has become so famous is that there were no real clues as to where the crew had gone and why. The ship was still stocked with 6 months’ worth of food and water. The cargo of alcohol was intact (but for a handful of barrels that were thought to have leaked). And everybody’s personal belongings, including valuables, were undisturbed.
Henry VI, the real ‘Mad King’ of England
One of the main inspirations for the plot of Game of Thrones is the Wars of the Roses, a late 15th-century dynastic struggle that was fought between the houses of Lannister and Stark—no, sorry, Lancaster and York. The wars began during the reign of the Mad King Aerys Targaryen—no, sorry, the Mad King Henry VI, whose mysterious death in 1471 continues to befuddle historians…
Henry VI was king during the final years of the Hundred Years War between England and France. The war concluded with a French victory in 1453, which caused Henry to go completely bananas. For more than a year, he suffered hallucinations and was unresponsive to everything around him, including the birth of his son.
Historians believe that he may have been suffering from a form of schizophrenia. It’s also possible that he inherited the illness from his grandfather, Charles VI of France, who experienced intermittent bouts of insanity in the last 30 years of his life (as did his own mother, Joanna of Bourbon).
Henry VI was a Lancastrian. It was during his breakdown that the rival House of York gained power, after years of growing discontent throughout England. In 1460, civil war broke out. Three major battles culminated in Henry being kicked off the throne by Edward of York, who became Edward IV. By this point, Henry’s madness had returned. Apparently, at the Second Battle of St. Albans on 17th February 1461, Henry was singing and laughing hysterically as the battle raged around him.
John White returns to Roanoke to find the colony missing
Born August 18th 1587, Virginia Dare was the first English child born in America. However, she was also part of the ill-fated Roanoke Colony, which mysteriously disappeared around the time of the Spanish Armada and thereafter became known as the “Lost Colony”…
In 1584, Queen Elizabeth I instructed Sir Walter Raleigh to establish an English colony in an area of North America to “discover, search, find out, and view such remote heathen and barbarous Lands, Countries, and territories… to have, hold, occupy, and enjoy.”
Raleigh’s initial voyages discovered Roanoke Island on the eastern coast of North America. His first attempt to establish a colony failed, but in 1587, he dispatched a second group of colonists led by John White. They arrived on Roanoke Island on July 22nd 1587. A few weeks later, Virginia Dare — John White’s granddaughter — was born to White’s daughter Eleanor and her husband, London tiler and bricklayer Ananias Dare.
Tensions were high between the colonists and several Native American Indian tribes. One colonist, George Howe, was murdered by Indians while fishing. John White ordered a retaliatory attack, but ended up killing or wounding a bunch of friendly Croatoan Indians by mistake.
Madeleine McCann, aged 3, and how she might have looked aged 9
In May 2007, Madeleine McCann disappeared. A few days later, Dutch shop assistant Anna Stam had a disquieting conversation with a little English girl called “Maddie”, who came into her shop and claimed the woman she was with had snatched her…
On 3rd May 2007, the still unexplained disappearance of Madeleine McCann sparked the same kind of obsessive media coverage as Princess Diana’s death. The 3-year-old was on holiday in Portugal with her parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, and her two younger siblings, and vanished from their apartment while the parents dined at a nearby restaurant with friends. The apartment was unlocked, but the McCanns checked on the children throughout the evening. Then Kate McCann discovered at 10pm that little Maddie was gone from her bed.
Initially the Portuguese police believed Madeleine had been abducted. However, after misinterpreting a British DNA analysis of the McCanns’ holiday apartment, they came to believe that Madeleine had died in the apartment, so suspicions fell on the parents. It was said that Madeleine had died in an accident, and Kate and Gerry McCann had covered up the incident by getting rid of the body. Even though the McCanns have now been exonerated of any involvement in Maddie’s disappearance, some conspiracy theorists continue to point the finger at the parents.