SHUCKLAND       Introduction        Alphabetical List of Locations
Location: Cromer, NORFOLK
Encounter: Two witnesses, J. H. Harrison and Gooley Craske, then schoolboys about 12/13 years old, were on the A148 road near the old railway bridge [at c.TG20474113] when they glanced at the opposite side of the railway bank and saw a "great black animal...sort of jumping and gliding quite fast" towards the bridge. Convinced it was coming across after them, Harrison shouted "Look out!", but it disappeared before reaching the bridge. They hurried home, told of what they had seen, were told about 'Old Shuck', and realised that this was what they had encountered.
Source: Letter from J. H. Harrison (witness) to Ivan Bunn, 4/5/1976
Comments: This event occurred in c.1917/18, early summer evening.
Place Name: Cromer - OE 'crows' mere or lake'
Other: The Cromer/West Runton parish boundary runs along the road and over the bridge.

Location: On A149 road, southern edge of Cromer
Encounter: The witness, after finishing night-work in Sheringham, headed for his home at Sprowston, driving through Cromer and onto the main A149 Norwich road, on a late January night in the 1970s that was very cold, with rain, sleet and a hard wind. Soon after hitting the road he suddenly saw a big black dog on the road in front of him. He jammed on the brakes, feeling he was so close that he must have hit it, but he felt no impact, and despite several searches of the area, found nothing. He looked again the following week, but found no traces on the road.

He knew nothing of the 'Shuck' tales at the time, but later learned of the phantom hound, and heard that all who see it die within two years. He was very worried by this, and changed jobs to avoid any risk, but later had a bad accident in which he nearly died. Afterward he had many accidents, all at the same time of year, and attributed this to being under a kind of 'curse'.

Source: Letter from Mr. David M. Kemp (witness) to me, 15/9/1983.

Location: On beach, Cromer
Encounter: In 1905, the author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle stayed at the Royal Links Hotel in Cromer with a friend, Bertram Fletcher Robinson, and Doyle recorded that on a cold Sunday afternoon during the stay, Robinson started telling him stories about ghostly dogs. It's quite possible that this was a contributory factor to Doyle later coming up with perhaps the most famous Sherlock Holmes story of all, 'The Hound of the Baskervilles.'

"It is said that a chance remark by one of the waiters working in the Royal Links Hotel, commenting that it was on such days that 'Black Shuck' was known to run by on the beach, prompted the two visitors to begin a conversation on the topic. According to this version, the waiter's father had actually seen the dog running along the sands, and he knew that it was the creature of legend because it had huge, flaming red eyes."

Source: Peter Haining: 'The Supernatural Coast' (Robert Hale, 1992), p. 37.

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