Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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A Terrible Fright


People should be careful as to the figures in which they cut the plants in their gardens.

On Monday evening a young girl going through the somewhat dark and lonely street, Bellevue-road, saw as she thought, a huge man, with outstretched arms, leaning over a wall to grasp her.  She was so frightened that she screamed and fainted.  The occupants of a neighbouring house ran out to see what was the matter, and found the girl insensible on the pavement.  They took her indoors and it was some little time before she recovered.

It seemed a tree in the garden had been trimmed in the manner some people affect.  A round ball of foliage at the top looked not unlike a head, and two branches at the side presented the appearance of outstretched arms.  The swaying of the tree by the wind, and the girl’s vivid imagination, did the rest.

By the way, the Corporation are to a certain extent responsible for the poor girl’s fright, for the town has been badly lighted during the past week, many streets being left in total darkness.  To be sure the moon was expected to shine, but, with her proverbial inconstancy, she declined to do so.

Sources: IW Observer 8 October 1887
Image: Bytes Extreme Topiary
Article: Ann Barrett