A man has said he felt like he was being watched in a chilling encounter with what he claims was a Big Foot-type ‘beast’ in Surrey.
Andy McGrath, an amateur athlete who also happens to have written a book about ‘cryptozoology’ called Beasts of Britain, was training in Box Hill when he believed to have seen a 6ft ‘ape man’.
The supposed chilling encounter happened, he says, when he was having a rest period on some steps – which was after he had heard wood knocking.
He said he felt like he was being watched after hearing footsteps and breathing, and later turned to find the ‘beast’ staring back at him.
He said even as it walked away, he could smell a lingering stale farm animal stench.
Andy told the Daily Star: “During my training session I had heard wood knocking. I can’t say how many knocks because at the time my focus was on training and I did not know that wood knocks have been linked to what I was about to see.
“I just remember thinking to myself, ‘what’s that noise?’, as it was loud, but distant and seemed to come from several directions.”
A good 25 minutes of resting on some steps with a recovery drink passed before he says he heard the noise get closer but first dismissed it as a dog walker.
He continued: “It was still daylight and I could hear footsteps coming down the hill. I didn’t look around at this point as I was sat to the side, out of the way and expecting a dog walker to go by.
“I then realised that the person walking down the stairs had stopped. I could hear breathing and I had an unsettled feeling, that I was being watched.”
He went on: “I turned and looked over my right shoulder and there, stood about 10 metres back, to my right-hand side and up the steps, was what I honestly believe to be some sort of ape.
“Its fur was a brown colour, with patches of grey. The face was very human-like, with a flat nose, but the jaw was big, it looked out of proportion to the head. The head was domed at the top.
“The animal stood on two legs, but appeared to slump forward and the arms were long in proportion to the body.”
Andy added: “The animal was very thick built. I can only say solid muscle. It was frightening the build of this thing. I’m not sure the height from the angle I was at. I could only estimate 6ft plus, but I’m not sure.
“The animal stood staring at me for about 30 seconds, before turning around and walking off, but still watching me. As it left, I could smell a stale farm animal type smell, which lingered.”
Andy admits people might find it hard to believe his claims. He said: “What most people find hard to fathom of course, is how such an animal could escape detection in a land such as ours, that is, ostensibly, one of the most thoroughly explored in the world, and to that I would say, simply that it is difficult to discover something you are not seeking to find.”
As a researcher, Andy admits he used to laugh at the idea of Britain being home to such creatures, but now thinks reports such as his Box Hill “ape man” should be taken seriously.
The Beasts of Britain author followed up on the report from summer 2012 and investigated the scene where an unknown creature allegedly approached a member of the public.