The following took place somewhere in north-west England in the summer of 1971. Steven Dundley was 16 years old at the time, and a promising young Royal Air Force Cadet. It was a Saturday night, which saw Steve and the other Cadets restless on the. Steve and his fellow cadets lived on the base, and there was always little to do that didn't involve chores or physical training.
The time was approaching midnight. Having admitted defeat, most of the cadets had given up the search for adventure and headed off to bed. Steve and a few of the more determined cadets however had other ideas. As they all sat around talking, one of the boys offered up a means to end their boredom. A few months back, an older cadet had revealed a rumour surrounding an old abandoned house that was visible from the base, high up on a hill. This house was the supposed gathering place of Witches, where Satanic rituals and other acts supposedly took place. On hearing this, the boys scoffed. Of course, they exclaimed, the senior cadet was taking the younger for a fool, having a laugh at his expense.
Wanting urgently to re-gain his standing amongst his peers, the young cadet, named Paul, suggested a late night excursion out of the base and straight up to this purported house of horrors. A plan was quickly devised and so, before they had any time to reconsider, the young cadets sett-off on their daring mis-adventure. It was decided that Paul would set off up the hill alone, and that once he had made it to the house, he would flash a torch beam twice to signal his arrival and to prove he had made it up to the house.
Paul’s attitude at the time as Steve recalls was almost blasé. Not only were the boys sneaking off-base, they were also effectively trespassing. However nobody could have cared less than Paul seemed to at that moment. The wind was blowing. High up on the hill, the house loomed. No-one seemed to be occupying the house, there was no lights, sounds, indeed nothing that would indicate that anybody was living there.
The cadets stood gathered at the bottom of the hill with more than a little trepidation. Quickly and without so much as a word, Paul took the torch from Steve and set off up the hill. It seemed he wanted this challenge he had volunteered himself for over with. The boys quickly lost sight of Paul in the darkness. They stood and waited. A minute passed. Then two. No sight of Paul, nor any torch beams. Slowly a feeling of dread crept up on the boys. Steve being the oldest of the group, he started to feel that something was wrong about what they were doing.
Suddenly, a torch beam flashed on the hill. Again, a second flash, clearly coming from right up next to the house. Excited and relieved, the boys waited for their friend to return. It wasn’t long before they heard footsteps coming down the hill heading in their direction. Squinting in the darkness, they could just make out the figure of a person. Once it got closer they were relieved to see that it was Paul. Hurriedly they questioned him on what he had witnessed. But something was wrong. Paul wasn’t saying a word. Steve took the torch from Paul’s hand and shone it on his friend to check him over. He appeared fine apart from a few leaves stuck to his jacket. Again they asked him what he saw. Receiving no answer, Steve pointed the torch towards Paul’s face, and shock stopped the boy’s questions dead.
His face was pale as snow, his expression blank. It became clear that Paul was in no shape to be answering questions, they had to get back to base right away. When they arrived back they went off to their own bunks and not another word was said. The young cadets awakened the next morning to find Paul was gone. An enquiry to head office revealed that Paul had left the RAF Cadets that morning. He was never heard from again.