The Mawnan Church Birdman Sightings of Cornwall
St. Mawnan and St. Steven, a remote church located a mile from the sleepy old town of Mawnan Smith, is said to be the home of the birdman creature. According to Cornish folklore, this church giving a breathtaking sea view has been haunted by a human-size owl that has been terrifying people since the 1920s.
The church is surrounded by dark, creaking forests and on its yard lies gravestones and lay lines, which add to its spookiness. However, there is nothing physically related to the residence of the avian cryptid, the Owlman of Mawnan.
Nevertheless, the blood red-eyed, owl-like humanoid with silvery grey feathers has been witnessed by several locals and holidaymakers. Here are some of the Owlman of Cornwall sightings
Owlman of Mawnan Sightings
On June 4, 1926, the Cornish Echo newspaper published the story of two boys who were chased by what they describe as “a very peculiar, very large, and very aggressive thing.” According to the newspapers, the two boys ran while screaming only to take refuge behind a massive steel grating. Adults managed to kill the man-size bird, but no one could identify what kind of creature it was. They were also unable to confirm if it was an avian.
If this was the only sighting of the weird creature, it could have been deduced that those were overactive imaginations. Look at what happened 50 years later.
On April 17, 1976, two girls witnessed the terrifying creature. The two girls – 12-year-old June and 9-year-old Vicky Melling – were on the Easter break with their parents in Cornwall. When touring through the forest to make their way past the Mawnan church, the pair saw what they described as “bird-man” flying over the tower of the parish church. The two sisters immediately ran to tell their father. Upon realizing how terrified his daughters were, Melling cut their vacation to three days and immediately went to Preston in Lancashire, their home.
This story would have remained known to the family had it not for Melling identifying paranormal researcher Tony ‘Doc’ Shiels.
Only three months later, the half-man half-owl creature visited another pair in the same wood where Melling’s daughters made their sightings. On July 3, 1976, Sally Chapman was camping with a friend, Barbara Perry, near the 13th-century parish church when an unusual hissing sound attracted them. The two girls went on to investigate only to meet the beast that would haunt them eternally. According to the two eyewitnesses, the giant owl had red, glowing eyes, claws like blacksmith pincers, and had grey feathers.
1976 was unforgiving. The next day on 4th July, another pair of holidaymakers, Jane Goodman and her sister, was spooked by the Owlman. She later wrote to Falmouth Packet, describing what she encountered. It was standing like an adult man with legs bending back, had red eyes, a huge mouth, and silvery grey feathers and legs.
The Owlman was quickly branded a hoax after realizing that the reports originated from one man – Tony ‘Doc’ Shiels. However, it is alleged that the mysterious man saw the Loch Ness monster and took its photo.
On August 2, 1978, the Owlman was also seen by three unidentified female French students. The landlady of the house where they were residing informed Shiels about it and had a similar description.
In 1989, Downes reported the first case regarding Owlman that didn’t involve the famous ‘Doc’ where he interviewed a man named Gavin. The two, Gavin and his girlfriend, Sally, claimed to have seen the beast.
Five years later, after Downes’ report, the strange Birdman appeared to a student from Chicago right outside the Mawnan church. The student -requested to remain anonymous – wrote a letter describing her experience and send it to the night editor of Western Morning News. This was in 1995.
The most recent Owlman of Mawnan sighting was in September 2009, when a 12-year-old girl saw the beast.
Owlman has been compared with Mothman, where many associate it with a similar alien. The fact that almost all Owlman eyewitnesses are teenage females raises many questions. There are many speculations regarding the Owlman of Cornwall. But the question remains, “What is the Owlman of Mawnan?”. If you visit the Mawnan forest and discover more, let the world know.