“It was 1972, and at the Robson family home in Hexham, only ten minutes walk away from where the legendary Wolf of Allendale had roamed the woods, the two young Robson brothers dug up two small, carved stone heads whilst they were tending the garden. Several nights after the discovery of the stone heads, neighbour Ellen Dodd and her daughter were sitting up late one evening when both of them witnessed a “half-man, half beast” entering the bedroom. The pair screamed in terror but, the creature seemed indifferent to them and simply left the room, heard to be “padding down the stairs as if on its hind legs”. Later on, the front door was found open. It has been thought that the creature had been in search of something, and had left the house to continue searching elsewhere”
“The stones, which were called the Hexham-heads, represent two different types. The first was similar to a skull and seemed to bear male traits; it was called “boy”. The stone was of a greenish grey and glittered with quartz crystals. It was very heavy, heavier than cement or concrete. The hair seemed to run in stripes from front to back. The other head, the “girl” was similar to a witch. It had wild pop-eyes and the hair was tied back to some knot. In the hair, traces of yellow and red colour could be found.
“After they have dug up the heads, the boys took them into the house. Thereby, the whole disaster commenced. The heads turned round without reason, objects broke to pieces without evident cause. When the mattress of one of the two daughters of the Robsons was dotted with broken glass, the girls moved out of the room. In the meantime, a mysterious flower bloomed at Christmas exactly on that spot, where the heads were found. Besides, a strange light was glowing there.”
Well just after that the heads were given to Dr Anne Ross, who was a Celtic expert of one type or another. She said the heads were around 2000 years old. Almost as soon as the heads arrived – Ross got a visit from the wolf too. Here’s her account according to a site called GoArticles.com:
“In her own account Anne Ross described how, one night shortly after their arrival, she woke up suddenly at 2 a.m. feeling chilled and extremely frightened. At the instant of awakening she saw a tall, jet black wolf-headed figure standing against the faint white of the open door. It then moved out into the corridor and she felt an irresistible urge to follow it. This she did, seeing and hearing the figure clearly as it made its way down the darkened staircase and along the corridor towards the kitchen. Anne Ross described the figure vividly, reporting not only its blackness and tallness but also its distinct part animal, part human appearance. As the creature neared the kitchen the spell broke and Anne Ross felt fear overwhelm her and so she rushed upstairs to awaken her husband. Together they searched the house for intruders but found no-one and nothing disturbed by any forced entry and eventually concluded that she must have suffered a particularly vivid nightmare…
“[Later, as Ross' daughter] recounted, she had returned to the empty house at 4 p.m. and opened the front door with her key. As it swung open she saw something large, dark and inhuman rushing down the stairs (which faced the doorway) toward her. Half way down it had suddenly stopped and vaulted over the banisters, landing with a soft thud like a heavy animal with thickly padded feet…”
Several nights after the discovery of the stone heads, neighbour Ellen Dodd and her daughter were sitting up late one evening when both of them witnessed a "half-man, half beast" entering the bedroom. The pair screamed in terror but, the creature seemed indifferent to them and simply left the room, heard to be "padding down the stairs as if on its hind legs" . Later on, the front door was found open. It has been thought that the creature had been in search of something, and had left the house to continue searching elsewhere.1
Interest in the local legend of The Wolf of Allendale was rekindled by this event and the stone heads became associated with the possible re-appearance of the wolf.
The two stone heads, each about the size of an orange, were thought to be Celtic in origin and collector Dr Anne Ross took possession of the heads, as she had several other stone heads in her collection and wished to compare them to the Hexham pair. A few nights after taking possession of the heads, Dr Ross awoke at 2am one morning, feeling cold and frightened. Looking up, she saw a strange creature standing in her bedroom doorway:
"It was about six feet high, slightly stooping, and it was black, against the white door, and it was half animal and half man. The upper part, I would have said, was a wolf, and the lower part was human and, I would have again said, that it was covered with a kind of black, very dark fur. It went out and I just saw it clearly, and then it disappeared, and something made me run after it, a thing I wouldn't normally have done, but I felt compelled to run after it. I got out of bed and I ran, and I could hear it going down the stairs, then it disappeared towards the back of the house."
Living and working in Southampton, Dr Ross knew nothing of The Wolf of Allendale legend and the association of The Hexham Heads with the possible return of the wolf and, she attributed the experience to a nightmare. Dr Ross came home with her archaeologist husband Richard Feacham one day, only to find their teenage daughter Berenice in a distressed state. Berenice explained that she had used her key to unlock the front door and entered the house that afternoon to witness a large, black shape rushing down the stairs; halfway downstairs the creature vaulted the bannister, landing with a soft, heavy thud like a large animal with padded feet.
Believing the presence of the stone heads to be responsible for these events, Dr Ross passed on her whole collection of stone heads, along with the Hexham pair to other collectors. The Hexham Heads found their way to the British Museum for public display, though were soon removed from display and mothballed, amid reports of unsettling events associated with the heads.
There have been claims that The Hexham Heads were not Celtic in origin and had simply been carved as toys by the previous occupants of the Robson family home only twenty years previously, and had subsequently become lost in the garden. It has also been said that the heads were examined by the Universities of Newcastle and Southampton for dating. For now, the current whereabouts of The Hexham Heads remains unknown. Despite this, the legend of The Hexham Heads and its association with The Wolf of Allendale has become a cornerstone of the local folklore of the area.