The Slindon Growl 86/87

  • Witness Account:My late Grandpa and Grandma had a pumpkin farm in Slindon, near Arundel in West Sussex. We visited them 6-8 times a year and from a young age myself and 3 siblings helped out with harvesting, chopping wood, serving customers and we used to explore the village and surrounding area. I was 7-8 at the time so would have been 1986-1987 at the start of autumn. I was the youngest at 7-8 and the eldest was 12-13 at the time. All 4 of us were in a patch of woods opposite the local college playing with sticks, sword fighting with them and using them as walking sticks and looking for squirrels. We were very nature orientated kids and were very sensible children. While playing with our sticks we heard what I could only describe as a Lions roar at the time and at that age. It came from the right of us from where we were stood, it sounded close between 15-20 foot away. I still remember the sound to this day and can describe it in more detail than I could then. It was very very loud, it had a gruff raspiness to it. A lions roar changes tone and level and is quite prolonged but this sound didn't change tone or have a change in tone at the end. It was one continuous sound and tone in a brief gruff, one exhale.
  • Asthmatics have a tool that they puff air into to measure lung function, they expel the air in one short sharp deep blow, I liken the sound length and deep huff to that action but with a very deep RAA sound.
  • We threw our sticks and ran as quickly as we could back to our Grandpas house. He said the local college bred and kept wallabies and that some has escaped so the noise was probably that and dismissed it. At the time I didn't know what a wallaby was really, let alone what sound they make. I obviously now know Wallabies don't make any sound that we all heard that day. It happened in the little wood opposite Slindon college, my Grandpas pumpkin farm was on Top Road.
  • Thank you Sonny Upton for this account. 19/8/16