“Stories of witches haunt England’s enchanted New Forest” – by Kristin Henderson posted at the WP blog



Yesterday I was at The Wild Hunt’s “Unleash the Hounds” weekly post where they give links and a synopsis of stores they were not able to cover in full in the past week. There I found a travel post by Kristin Henderson at the The Washington Post blog entitled “Spring Travel Issue: Stories of witches haunt England’s enchanted New Forest” which is about her travel through the New Forest and the village of Burley where Sybil Leek once had her antique shop. The story goes into her a little and into the people of the area and interestingly enough the writer keeps running into wild ponies roaming there in what is now a National Park.

Kristin is not a witch per se, but part of her quest as a spiritual person was to track down any remnants of witchcraft that may be there from old timers to modern witchy tourist shops. To quote her below:

“This “witch hunt” is the latest leg of what you could call my spiritual journey. Currently, I’m a Quaker by choice —it runs in my family. During my religious wanderings, I’ve also chosen to be an atheist, a devotee of the Paramhansa Yogananda, a born-again Christian and a Lutheran. I’ve considered being a Buddhist. I can understand why people choose to be all those things. ….. I do know witchcraft has something to do with nature — eye of newt and toe of frog and so forth. I’m partial to nature myself. I garden, I hike, I have a dog. If nature can help me understand witches, I’m hoping the New Forest, which is known for its natural beauty as well as its witches, can provide the common ground.”

So it is a nice travel story and mentions the grandmother of our Coven of the Catta, who was Sybil Leek. I am not going to go into her life since i have posted on her many times before with many links, so you can just go to this or the COC blog and type in her name in the Search field.

But what I found to be most interesting is the fact that the New Forest has these herds of wild ponies, and Sybil’s coven there was the Coven of the Horsa aka horse/pony animal totem, and that she learned a lot from the Gypsies there who revered the horse in magical and practical ways. So this article put together two things for me – Sybil Leek and the ponies of the New Forest as possibly the reason for the naming of her coven there. Enjoy and Blessed Be!

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