Alice Cooper asked a question on his Facebook page concerning the recent Yorkshire werewolf sightings - 'So there are suddenly several reports of a werewolf like creature near a small town in the UK. Do you think it could be real?'
Always careful to get their facts straight, the Daily Mirror translated that simple query into the headline: ROCK LEGEND ALICE COOPER LAUNCHES HUNT FOR MASSIVE WEREWOLF RUNNING FREE IN HULL.
The Sun ‘newspaper’ went with: WEREWOLF NOT WORTHY. ROCK LEGEND ALICE COOPER JOINS THE HUNT FOR A SUPPOSED MYTHICAL BEAST IN HULL. SCHOOL’S OUT SINGER IS OUT TO CATCH 8ft CREATURE.
Needless to say, Alice won’t be conducting any werewolf hunts or going within a hundred miles of the Yorkshire Wolds. He probably doesn’t even remember mentioning the creature, but some odd people are definitely searching for it and over summer we can look forward to the tabloids printing their sensational stories and shite blurred pictures of dogs. Here’s what they’re looking for. As you can see, werewolves may devour your children and tear you apart, but at least they have the common decency to wear trousers.
This should have stayed a local tongue-in-cheek story, similar to UNEMPLOYED FAMILY DEMAND COUNCIL REHOUSE THEM AS HOUSE IS INFESTED WITH DEMONS. It would have soon faded away, but with celebrities like Alice Cooper boosting it, this werewolf flap is gearing up to emulate the Beast of Bodmin Moor, the huge panther that was terrorising Devon and Cornwall back in the eighties. Even the Royal Marines were armed and sent out on night patrols looking for THAT beast.
Perhaps the military will be involved here too, and dispatched to Barmston Drain on the next full moon like in the horror movie Dog Soldiers. Here are a couple of pictures taken on Bodmin Moor at the time showing dangerous big cats, or maybe cats.
One of the British tabloids - I'm pretty sure it was the Express - offered a large cash prize for conclusive photographic evidence of the Bodmin Beast, and hoping to claim the money, I travelled to the moors with my friend Ray Sherwin in 1984. We set up camp in an isolated area with a high number of panther sightings and dead livestock. Some half-eaten sheep had been found in trees. Ray was, and still is, an expert on aromatics and pheromones, and the plan was to lure the creature with feline scent and film it with his video equipment.
I still remember the fear on hearing the huge cat growling in the darkness outside the tent, or it may have been a cow coughing. Toilet visits in the early hours were also terrifying, as you stood near the tent looking around for prowling panthers, but seeing only sheep resting peacefully.
I’m afraid we failed in our cat hunt, partly because we couldn’t get the pheromones right, but mostly because there’s no such thing as the Beast of Bodmin Moor. Our Loch Ness, Cottingley Dell, and Borley Rectory expeditions weren't too successful either, and I could be wrong, but I’ll wager the people currently searching in the Yorkshire Wolds won’t find any werewolves.
Beware the moon.