...From building up to burning down...
The Curse Of The Crying Boy - the supernatural story first told in The Star almost 30 years ago - is to be thrown back into the media spotlight this summer.
London-based Raw TV is producing a new documentary which will examine the tale that this painting was behind a series of house fires across the region.
It was something first suggested in The Star in September 1985. Then, reporter John Murphy - a man, one suspects, with more space to fill than news to report - wrote about a chip pan fire which badly damaged a house in Pagenall Drive, Swallownest, but left a Crying Boy print unharmed. Fire crews apparently said they had been to more than 50 homes where the same picture had survived a blaze.
Now, Raw will feature the mystery in a new series for Sky’s Discovery Science Channel.
“We are taking a forensic look at what happened,” says assistant producer Olivia Isaacs.
They might want to start by reading this page. Six years ago The Diary reported how Sheffield spooks investigator David Clarke, of Hallam Uni, found the painting was printed on compressed hardwood which didn’t burn easily. Still, curse victims are asked to contact firstname.lastname@example.org