Guest writer PAUL S HUGGINS reveals a horrific legend that haunts the former air force base in Alconbury, Cambridgeshire…
In the heart of Cambridgeshire, only a couple of miles outside of Huntingdon, is the former RAF and USAF base of Alconbury.
It was initially set up in 1938 as a satellite airfield to nearby RAF Wyton about five miles away. When war broke out it became a launch site for Blenheim Bombers.
In 1942 the Americans took over the base to despatch Liberators then later on B17 bombers.
After a brief period of non-operation, it was reopened in the 1950’s with the advent of the cold war.
As of 2017 the base is now non-operational and has been non-flying for a few years, part of the area has already been built on and commercial enterprises run from other parts.
Considering its length of operation as a staging point for war it is not without its ghosts and even a legend.
The Alconbury Beast
The legend in question has been doing the rounds for many years, not just within the confines of the base itself.
I heard it myself in the early 1980s when I was a boy scout. It was a campfire chiller.
The story goes, it was not uncommon for engineers to work solo into the night working on some of the aircraft.
Alconbury had many secret USAF operations, for a period in the 1980s the spy plane known as the TR1 was based here.
One morning, in the early 1970s, as the crew arrived at a hangar, they found an engineer huddled in the closed cockpit of a Phantom jet.
Rumour has it he had died of fright as he had turned almost white including his hair.
Just to make matters worse there were deep claw marks on the outside as if some beast had tried to get to the hiding man.
There are some deviations of the tale, but only generally that the man survived but had gone insane, the rest pretty much always stood. There had been the occasional report of some sort of wolf man who would disappear into the woods at the north of the airfield, which is where the maintenance hangers were situated.
Ghosts of Children
There have been a number of accounts, generally by serviceman on the nightshift and security, of the sound of children late at night, again to the North of the site.
Interestingly there may be a little truth to this one.
Just a few hundred yards from the North-East end of the Airfield runs the main railway line between Peterborough and Huntingdon.
During the Winter of 1876 there was quite a high-profile rail disaster.
The train on the route, later to be that of the flying Scotsman, had a collision with a coal train in blizzard conditions.
It was very serious with 13 deaths and over 50 people injured. It is said that around half the deaths were children.
Numerous members of the US forces have witnessed and reported these occurrences over the years.
Whether any of the above still occur remains to be seen.
PAUL S HUGGINS lives on the Essex Coast, and says its rich heritage of witchcraft and smuggling make the area a perfect base for any writer. To date he has had 14 short stories published in various anthologies and self-published seven books, including two novels. His writing takes in such subjects as zombies, ghosts, witchcraft and all other things ethereal. Check out his website www.paulshuggins.com