Friday, 15 July 2011

Post Script

“I have spent most of my life studying accounts of vampirism, and have indeed visited Highgate Cemetery on numerous occasions. How it has changed over the years! I am interested in research into any accounts of actual vampirism, from the writings of Dom Augustine Calmet through to modern day accounts. I have a copy of The Highgate Vampire [by Seán Manchester] which I found very interesting. I remember the events at the time they happened and the various newspaper reports. It was then that I first came across the name ‘David Farrant.’ I met him once in a pub near Highgate and found him to be a compulsive liar and there was something shifty about his mannerism. I have since warned many people to stay clear of him.” — Andy Pryce, Paranormal Researcher, (19 February 2001)

"Mr P J Bucknell, prosecuting, said Mr Farant had painted circles on the ground, lit with candles, and had told reporters and possibly the police of what he was doing. 'This appears to be a sordid attempt to obtain publicity,' he said." — Hampstead & Highgate Express, 24 November 1972

“But for the results of his actions, this scruffy little witch could be laughed at. But no one can laugh at a man who admits slitting the throat of a live cat before launching a blood-smeared orgy. Or at a man who has helped reduce at least two women to frightened misery.” —  Sue Kentish, News of the World, 23 September 1973

“The wife of self-styled occult priest David Farrant told yesterday of giggles in the graveyard when the pubs had closed. ‘We would go in, frighten ourselves to death and come out again,’ she told an Old Bailey jury. Attractive Mary Farrant — she is separated from her husband and lives in Southampton — said they had often gone to London’s Highgate Cemetery with friends ‘for a bit of a laugh.’ But they never caused any damage. ‘It was just a silly sort of thing that you do after the pubs shut,’ she said. Mrs Farrant added that her husband’s friends who joined in the late night jaunts were not involved in witchcraft or the occult. She had been called as a defence witness by her 28-year-old husband. They have not lived together for three years.”The Sun, 21 June 1974

“All he talked about was his witchcraft. He was very vain.” — Julia Batsford (ex-girlfriend quoted in the Daily Mail) 26 June 1974

“I cannot believe for one moment that he is a serious student of the occult. In fact I believe him to be evil and entirely to be deplored.” — Dennis Wheatley, Daily Express, 26 June 1974

“I think he’s crazy.” — Canon John Pearce Higgins, Daily Express, 26 June 1974

“The jury were shown folders of pictures of naked girls and corpses, and told about a black-clothed altar in Farrant's flat with a large drawing of a vampire's face. When questioned, Farrant said: 'A corpse was needed to talk to spirits of another world'.” — George Hunter & Richard Wright, Daily Express, 26 June 1974

“The judge [Michael Argyle QC] said any interference with a corpse during black magic rituals could properly be regarded as a ‘great scandal and a disgrace to religion, decency and morality’.”   The Sun, 26 June 1974

“Judge Michael Argyle QC passed sentence after reading medical and mental reports. He said that Farrant — self-styled High Priest of the British Occult Society [sic] — had acted ‘quite regardless of the feelings of ordinary people,’ by messing about at Highgate Cemetery.” Hornsey Journal, 19 July 1974

“The programme [for the Fortean Times Convention 1996] came up with ‘His investigations had far reaching and disturbing consequences’ which I said meant he’d been arrested a lot. Strangely enough, this is more or less what he said. God, I felt old being the only member of [my] group who could remember this nutter being arrested every few weeks.” — Maureen Speller (April 1996)

"Our enemies should not be the people of this world, but rather the spirits of evil that have entered this world. He is a lost soul who has very likely attracted something spiritually malevolent early in his life which has ever since influenced him and darkened his thoughts. I first met him four decades ago when he contacted his local newspaper after making vague claims about an apparition he had sighted. It soon became clear he was more interested in the limelight than anything genuinely paranormal. He also developed a fascination with me which quickly turned into an obsession — by which time he had taken to emulating me to no small degree. When I distanced myself a few months later, he turned unpleasant and court cases ensued. This was followed by his fraudulent adoption of my title and the name of the research society I then presided over. Things began to spiral downwards at an alarming rate as he turned to what ostensibly appeared to be diabolism, but in truth was just further attention-seeking for the sake of the media. I prefer to deny this man the oxygen of publicity where I am concerned and advise others to do the same. Those who feel enraged by his behaviour should remember he is still one of God's creatures, and if possible they should pray for him. Pray for his state of mind and endangered soul. Otherwise, please just ignore him." — Bishop Seán Manchester (November 2009)