Thursday, 3 February 2011
The 'beast' of Blue Bell Hill seen several times!
It's always corny when local 'big cat' sightings are giving such outrageous headlines and legendary names. The so-called 'beast' of Blue Bell Hill has never been tied to the village, and combs a territory stretching far into Maidstone, also towards Sittingbourne, and the outskirts of the Medway Towns. Over the Christmas period and colder months of 2011 the animal - a black leopard - has been observed on several occasions around Wigmore and Gillingham. Some may scoff at such reports near a busy town, but many fail to remember that Gillingham harbours a lot of woodland, particularly towards Bredhurst and Hartlip, and also a large nature reserve on the Lower Rainham Road which is flanked by marshes. Recently a fox was found eaten in the lower Gillingham area in the vicinity of a farm where a male witness, on two occasions, has seen a large, dark-coloured cat. A smaller black leopard was also seen recently in Wigmore by a couple who were awoken at 3:11 am by their security light which overlooks the back garden. There was no sign out the back of what triggered the light but when the male witness noticed the front security light come on he rushed to the window and was shocked to see a very large, black cat in the road. When the witness opened the window the cat faced him and moved into a crouching position which unnerved the witness even though he was some forty-feet away and safe upstairs. The animal then ran off down a neighbouring driveway.