Apeman sightings around the county

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You see some strange things in and around the county, but perhaps this could be the weirdest yet, after claims a British Bigfoot has been spotted in woodland near Tunbridge Wells.

Dubbed the Kentish Apeman, it is claimed he towers eight-foot tall, is covered in hair and has red demonic eyes.

And while that may sound like lots of people after a night on the town, what’s intriguing many is the fact a recent sighting ties in with one nearly 70 years ago on the same spot.

The most recent sighting is believed to have taken place last month on Tunbridge Wells Common – the 200-acre wooded site which sits in the centre of the town and is one of its most picturesque features.

But after it was reported, it jogged the memory of another local resident who went online to reveal how it tallied closely with a story he had heard years ago.

The author, who billed themselves as Graham S from the town, revealed how when he was working as a painter in the house of an elderly lady, she regaled him with a tale of coming face to face with the apeman on the Common during World War Two.

The post read: “One particular day she went to the Common with her husband and was sitting on a bench when they became aware of a shuffling noise behind them.

“Upon turning around both her husband and herself saw what she described as a tall, hairy ape like creature with eyes that were burning a reddish colour and it was moving towards them at a slow pace. They observed this creature for some time until they became afraid and they both fled – terrified.

“She went on to say that they told the police and members of their family, thinking that a gorilla had escaped from a zoo, but were laughed at and were not believed.”

Sceptics may say the incidents could be down to a trick of the light, but Neil Arnold, a paranormal expert from Rochester, said he has received numerous reports of the apeman over the years.

One of the sightings took place in Dartford by a girl named Charlotte who was heading home in her car from the University of Kent. She said she saw a creature with long arms and knees which came up under its chin as it walked. She was so petrified she nearly crashed her car.

Other sightings, according to Mr Arnold, include five members of the Territorial Army in 1991 spotting the beast on Blue Bell Hill, near Maidstone, and throwing stones and shouting at it before running away.

Another sighting in Chatham by a young girl with her partner saw the apeman appear then run off into the bushes.

Mr Arnold, who doesn’t believe the apeman to be a flesh and blood ‘monster’, but a paranormal figure, has also had reports from Maidstone and Hythe. In each example the figure appears the same and Mr Arnold said tales of an apeman date back decades.

He said: “It’s a very touchy subject in the sense that these things are really not normal. I get some unusual reports. There have been reports all over England, but we can never prove something paranormal.”

Mr Arnold said he believes the reports could be similar to folklore tales which described ‘wild men of the woods’.

He also compared the apeman to fictional children’s character Stig of the Dump, which could have been inspired by a sighting as the author, Clive King, grew up in Kent.

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