The reason I had not paid it a visit was because of its reputation for being such a site of paranormal activity and, I hate to say, it was known to have been abused in the 1970's -1980's by Satanists. That is more than enough reason to stay away, in my book.
I have visited all the surrounding churches, quite happily, on my own. Last week I felt that I wanted to visit St Botolph's - but only if George would come with me. I deliberately didn't discuss the history of the place with him as we drove there. I didn't want to build up the fear factor or anticipate atmosphere.
|Credit to Leigh Cade, his photograph is far superior to mine|
We entered the building and got a big shock as a couple of very large, black crows flew around and up making a loud noise as they went. The church was icy cold and I wanted to turn tail. I followed George inside and realised that the church felt icy cold for a very good reason, all the glass has gone from the beautiful windows, there are no doors, and a cold, bitter, easterly wind was blowing in and around.
It is a magnificent, lonely building which filled me with great sadness.
It receives lots of visitors. Most of them are desperate to have some sort of paranormal experience. They come in the dead of night and scare each other silly. Some come with ill intent.
Luckily there is a group formed from local people who keep watch and they inform the police if they see any odd happenings, or notice groups of people heading down the road. Of course, they can't watch it 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, etc. You tube is plastered with lots of footage making lots of claims about strange lights, noises, orbs, figures, you name it and it has probably been seen by someone, or so they claim.
I don't think those are the groups which particularly bother the Friends of St Botolph's.
I still feel sad that such a beautiful building which dates from 12th century and has seen so many hundreds of years service - baptisms, weddings, burials, worship - now stands stripped and naked, isolated on the marshes and always vulnerable to misuse by a few people.