SHUCKLAND       Introduction        Alphabetical List of Locations
Location: Salthouse, NORFOLK
Legend: "He [Sam Rudd, a fisherman nearly 90 years old in about 1915] sat quiet for a short spell, then asked, 'Ever heard of Old Shuck, the ghost dog?' 'Yes, I have', I said, 'but several places claim they have an Old Shuck.' 'They may do', was his reply, 'but there is only one ghost dog, and he is only seen between here [Salthouse] and Cley-on-Sea'." (1)

An old fisherman of Cley, named Pinchen, claimed that in a shipwreck nearly 200 years before, all the crew perished, but the captain grabbed his per dog, a large wolf hound, by the collar and leapt into the stormy sea. Eventually they were both washed ashore dead, still gripping tightly to each other. While the dog was buried on the beach, the captain was interred in Salthouse churchyard, and soon afterwards, people heard and saw a large dog running about, howling and seeking for its master. (2)
Source: (1) W. H. Barrett & R. Garrod: 'East Anglian Folklore & Other Tales' (Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1976), p. 103.
(2) Ibid, p. 105.
Place Name: Salthouse - OE 'house for storing salt'

Location: Salthouse
Encounter: The fisherman Sam Rudd, then a young man, had been out bait-digging, but as darkness began to fall, he started out on his four mile walk home along the beach at Salthouse. A heavy sea mist came down just as he reached the beach road into the village, then heard the loud baying and howling of a dog some way behind him. Afraid, he started to run, but the howling kept getting nearer, all the way to his house. Once inside he bolted the door quickly behind him, and with his father, listened to the terrible noise outside.

His father took his fowling gun down, and going upstairs, opened the window to see the big dog sitting on its haunches in the yard. Although he fired half a pound of swan shot straight at the beast, it wasn't affected at all, and kept on howling for a long time. "It's Old Shuck right enough", he told his son, "and you were lucky to get indoors before he caught you."
At dawn they went outside to look, but only found the privy door riddled with shot holes.

Source: As above, p. 103-5.

Location: Between Salthouse and Cley
Encounter: "'As years passed away, my great-grandfather, my grandfather, my father and I [a fisherman of Cley named Pinchen] have both seen and heard the dog'."
Source: As above, p. 105.

Location: Between Salthouse and Kelling
Encounter: "In 1933 the BBC broadcast 'The Dark Shore', a radio programme concerned with ghosts and witchcraft in East Anglia. The producers heard several accounts of Black Dogs, one from a young farmer from Sheringham in Norfolk, who stated that one clear Summer evening he had watched Black Shuck cross the road in front of him and walk through a closed five-barred gate." (1)

"Tom Stirling of Sheringham says he saw it one moonlight night between Salthouse and Kelling. It passed straight through a closed gate." (2)

This all seems to be the same incident related by the witness on film in 1961 as an item on BBC East. There, he is named as Leslie Goodwin, but on a later DVD featuring the film he is called Tom Starling. Some confusion may have arisen as the original source, the author James Wentworth Day, mentions a Leslie Goodwin as the witness of a Shuck sighting on the very same page that he talks about Tom Stirling. (See under Walberswick).

The film shows the witness (whatever his name) saying that about 30 years previously, he had been pushing his bike on the road from Salthouse going to Kelling, on a night of full moon, when he heard the sound of rattling chains getting ever closer. He thought at first it was just a horse straying off the marshes, and stepped aside to let it pass. But as it did so, it went past him as "a great big black shaggy dog". It passed through a gate that was opposite, but when the witness went to see where it had gone, he found the gate still firmly closed. Speaking about it next day to people in Kelling, they told him it was only Old Shuck, who roamed the roads quite frequently, and had been seen many times. (3)


(1) G. McEwan: 'Mystery Animals of Britain and Ireland' (Hale, 1986), p. 126.
(2) James Wentworth Day: 'Black Shuck', in East Anglian Magazine, Vol. 21, No. 11 (Sept. 1962), p. 640.

(3) University of East Anglia Film Archive, Cat. No. 681.

Place Names: Kelling - OE 'Cylla's people'

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