In 1975 a young couple Barry and Elaine are returning from a Christmas party in the early morning with their two children asleep in the back seat and driving towards their home in Slitting Mill (Staffs).
The car stalled and Barry, then in his twenties jumped out to check the engine, while he was returning to his wife she saw ‘something’ that the then young couple later described as ‘trolls’.
At that point, however, their plans were thrown into complete and utter disarray. According to Barry, Elaine let out a loud scream, terrified by the sight of a small figure that ran across the road in front of them at a high rate of speed. She explains: “I just about saw it at the last second, and then another one followed it, and then a third one. The best way I can describe them to you is like a hairy troll or something like that. We had some moonlight and they were like little men, but with hunchbacks and big, hooked noses and not a stitch on them at all. Not a stitch, at all; just hair all over them. I’d say they were all four-feet-tallish, and when the third one crossed by us, you could see them at the edge of the trees – wary, or something, anyway.” Things became very hazy indeed, says Barry: “We both know from memory that they came forwards, towards us, very slowly to us, and I’ve thought since that they were interested in us or wanted to know who we were. They came very slowly, and it was a bit like we were being hunted, to me. Elaine was hysterical; and with the kids with us, I wasn’t far-off, either. Did we see a little wildman ???
Also 1995 a brief sighting was made by a woman named Jackie Houghton, who saw a huge and lumbering hair-covered creature in the early hours of the morning near the small, picturesque village of Slittingmill, which is situated in the heart of the Chase. Similarly, in 1998, the following account surfaced from another witness:
"It was a star filled night, clear, but dark and we were all in the car driving home, happily chatting and joking. Suddenly we all fell dead serious, the people in the back sat forward and we all pointed to the same shape. It was a tall man-like figure, sort of crouching forward. As we passed, it turned and looked straight at us. In my own words I would describe it as around six feet eight inches tall, legs thicker than two of mine, very strong looking and with a darkish, blacky [sic]-brown coat. I just could not explain it and I still get goose bumps thinking of it."
As we know Staffordshire itself is home to many a strange creature, we only have to look at Cannock Chase and the surrounding areas to see that something is being seen and reported on a regular basis. Although i feel Cannock is researched out, hundreds of cryptozoologists and paranormal groups abound at the Castle Ring i do think the areas just a little way out, the smaller woods where there are also many accounts of creatures and beasts galore, is more than likely the place to be looking for signs, many of the accounts mention road crossing creatures or creatures alongside the car, so if your bored this weekend maybe a drive will relieve the boredom, and get the blood pumping if your in the right place at the right time