WELCOME to Haunted Wirral, a feature series written by world famous psychic researcher, Tom Slemen for the Globe.

In this latest tale, Tom explores the mystery of the Merlin of Bidston Hill...

On the evening of 17 August 1951, a 10-year-old girl named Olwen and her best friend Gwen strolled by the light of a full moon towards Bidston Hill, hoping to bump into Phillip Maddox and Jimmy Morgan, two young lads who were always playing games on the hill.

Olwen had a crush on Phillip and Gwen had a thing for Jimmy, and the girls walked in a dream up the hill.

They took the left fork in the path before them – to Ashburton Road – then crossed into Bidston Road before turning left to enter the footpath of the Wirral Ladies’ Golf Club.

The meandering track the girls took wound through the gorse and led them between the fairways. By close on 10 o’clock the girls reached the windswept plateau of Bidston Hill.

They could not see their crushes anywhere so they went to the ridge between the windmill and the old observatory, and even at night the view from this vantage point was spectacular.

The huge August moon silvered the distant Clwydians in North Wales and in the other direction the keen young eyes of the lovelorn girls could make out the sand dunes of Formby, and further down the coastline was the dull yellow eyes of the Liver Buildings’ clock and the silhouetted hulk of the unfinished Anglican Cathedral – and Olwen and Gwen noticed another silhouette – a tall stocky square-shouldered man coming up the slopes – and he was heading in their direction!

Olwen’s mother had repeatedly warned her about roaming the hill after dark and there were claims by some that a prowler had been seen skulking about on the hill, but Olwen had dismissed the rumours as scare-stories to get the kids home before darkness fell. Other people were attacked as far as Olwen was concerned – but tonight a stranger was rapidly closing in on her and Gwen, and the latter asked her friend, "Should we run?"

"I’ll scream if he tries anything," said a nervous Olwen.

The man had something in his hand – it looked like a knife, and the moonlight glinted off its blade. The girls clung on to one another, both of them weak with fear.

There was a burst of light behind the girls, as if a searchlight had been turned on, illuminating the knife man. He shielded his eyes with his hand and squinted through splayed fingers at the weird sight. The girls turned too and saw the figure of a man made from light. It looked like a hooded monk who had been soaked in some glow-in-the-dark paint, and he rushed past the frightened girls, seized the tall, thickset man by his arm and the scruff of his neck.

In one swift movement the glowing figure pushed the knifeman with such a tremendous force, he rolled down the stony slopes of the hill into the darkness, crying in pain as he went. Olwen and Gwen backed away, yelping in terror, and the hooded man’s luminosity dimmed to a bluish aura as he hurried towards the teenagers.

"Fear not young maidens, for I am Merlin," he said in an accent with a tinge of Welsh in it, "and Olwen, you are of the blood of Arthur and I will always protect you and those you beget! Now, take heed and get thee home girls, for there lurkest grave and unnatural dangers on this night! Home!"

The girls fell over one another in blind panic as they fled from what they assumed to be a ghost. When Olwen told her mother Anna what had happened, Anna’s old mother said, "I saw him when I was a child. That was Merlin, King Arthur’s wizard!"

"What did I tell you about gallivanting of a night on that hill, eh? What did I tell you?" Anna roared at her daughter, "May as well talk to that wall!"

Many years later, when Olwen grew up and became a mother herself, she lived not far from Bidston Hill, and after having three children there was a gap of ten years – and suddenly, at the age of forty-eight, she found herself pregnant again. In 1989 she had a baby girl and called her Morgan. In June 2005, 16-year-old Morgan was walking her dog on Bidston Hill.

There was a full moon illuminating the hill and the girl felt safe because her dog was a large German shepherd. When Morgan was about twenty yards from the windmill, her dog started to whine and act strange.

A dark-haired man in a leather jacket approached, and seemed to be carrying a large air pistol. Morgan’s dog started barking and there was a reoccurrence of the very same supernatural incident which had taken place back in 1951; the hill lit up and a glowing figure appeared.

What looked like a bolt of ‘straight lightning’ hit the gunman. He screamed, dropped the gun and his hands flew up to his eyes.

His body made a sizzling sound and he collapsed with a strange glow around him.

The light from the shining man ceased and Morgan saw it was a bearded man dressed in some monk’s cowl with ‘kind eyes’ who told her: "You will give birth to the second Arthur! The troubled times are drawing near and Albion must have a leader!"

The charismatic man wore a huge amulet with a gemstone resembling amethyst. He escorted the girl from the hill then vanished. Morgan’s mother had never told her daughter about the encounter with Merlin in 1951.

The last I heard of Morgan, the girl had become the mother of a baby boy...

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