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Saturday, 1 April 2017

Black Anna's Bower

This is not the first spate of disappearances in the area. A similar series is recorded in the Parish Records for 1760 when five children disappeared from forest dwellings in an area known as Black Annis Bower Close where the Lord Mayor's celebrations took place each Easter.

Black Annis Bower Close, where Leicester forest once bordered the old city along the Dane Hills, is now covered by the Dane Hill Estate but there are no records of this.

Black Annis is another name for the Celtic earth goddess Danu, wife of the sky god Ludd. She dwelt in a round cave about ten to twelve feet across and five feet high. Known as Black Anna’s Bower, she is said to have dug it out of the sandstone Dane Hills with her own fingernails.

There Black Anna waited in the branches of an old oak growing over the mouth of the cave waiting for children to come past. She would then scratch them to death and drink their blood, hanging their skins out to dry.


1 Black Anna’s Bower is an entrance to subterranean caverns inhabited by the descendants of the ancient Druids. They once used the cave for their sacrifices to Danu, and tended to the Children of Danu – Dark Young of Shub-Niggurath.

They normally sacrifice their own young while saving a breeding stock of their hardiest children but, occasionally, run short of sacrifices. They are then forced to risk their secrecy and raid the surface world through Black Anna’s Bower which is hidden in the Dane Hill Estate rubbish dump.

2 Black Anna’s Bower is located directly under 17 Shakespeare Drive, the home of Stephen Johnson. Since moving in he has been possessed by a malign dryad trapped in the Bower since the tree over the cave was cut down. It has grown weak and forces Johnson to sacrifice children so that it can leave the cave for a new oak in the field beyond the estate. If it is not stopped children will regularly go missing, and their skins found hanging in the branches of the oak.

3 The Bower is a gateway to the land of the faerie, renowned in legend for stealing human infants for their own. Only the innocent are allowed there, those that have not been corrupted by the adult world of humans. All three children were maltreated by their parents and have been granted sanctuary by the faeries. The Bower is guarded by Black Anna against the evils of the outside world.

© Garrie Hall

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