~ Written By Gerry Dixon ~

So here is the scene, imagine walking down a familiar road, one that you have walked down many times before. You know the line of houses, familiar trees and bushes and perhaps even peculiarities such as gravel drives, iron railings and ornate doors. Then on this one particular day, you happen to take the same route and although things appear normal you, somehow you feel ‘different.’ Maybe there is a peculiar feeling to the atmosphere; it might be unusually cold or warm for the time of year. You do not hear the usual sounds of passing traffic or birds singing, there is a strange and eerie silence. Suddenly, you look around and everything appears to have changed. Houses have vanished; there may be unknown buildings and where there were streets and modern houses, now there are green fields and maybe even old cottages or farm buildings.

You suddenly catch a glimpse of people, but they are not like the people you are familiar with. Their clothes are maybe ten, twenty, thirty or even one hundred years out of date, or even more peculiar, they are wearing clothes and materials as yet, unknown. There maybe distant voices and noises, but somehow everything sounds muffled and muted and there might be a feeling of oppression and strangeness. As quickly as this phenomena happens, it vanishes and again there is the comfort of familiar sights and sounds. So what on earth has happened? Well to those who have an interest in things supernatural or paranormal, you might just have encountered a time-slip, a ‘blip’ or ‘loop’ in time, which has allowed you to either experience the past or in some cases, the future. It doesn’t happen to many people, but to those who have encountered a time-slip it is both a frightening and an amazing experience.

Nobody really understands what a time-slip is and just as there are numerous theories about time itself, so there are various time-slip hypotheses. For centuries, scientists and theorists have debated the subject of time and the great men of understanding such as Newton and Einstein both tried to explain their ideas regarding time, but as they are heavily wrapped up in physics and philosophy, it is often beyond the understanding of the man in the street. But as humans, we are physically aware of time, as seconds turn into minutes, minutes into hours and so on. Looking back on photographs taken throughout a lifetime, a person rapidly becomes a living witness to the relentless march of time. From the baby to an old person, human beings are the evidence of what time can do. Once smooth and flawless skin gives way to wrinkles and hair turns grey as the years march on regardless. Nobody can seemingly stop time; we are governed by it, so is it possible that some people can witness the past or the future without the aid of any man-made ‘time machine,’ such as the one portrayed in H.G. Wells’ science fiction book, “The Time Machine”? Or are time-slips just the figment of somebody’s very ripe imagination?

One of the most famous time-slips occurred in the summer of 1901, when Charlotte Anne Moberly and Eleanor Jourdain two English women, travelled to France in search of the Petit Trianon, a small chateau in the grounds of the Palace of Versailles. At some point during their visit, they report that they encountered a feeling of gloom and dreaminess and suddenly their surroundings changed and they believe that they met the figure of Marie Antoinette who was sitting in the gardens of the Palace of Versailles. They also encountered people who were dressed according to the 1700’s, including servants and commoners. Nobody could prove or disprove their account and as they were very distinguished scholars themselves, it is highly unlikely that they fabricated their story purposely, but maybe they became confused or as has been suggested, they encountered French nobility or high society and this would account for the elaborate dress. These are all feasible possibilities, but nobody can account for the changes to the landscape, which the two women remarked upon.

A more recent time-slip, made famous by a television programme on the supernatural called “Strange but True”, (video can be accessed on YouTube), retells the story of two British couples driving through France on their way to a holiday in Spain, who stop off at a very old fashioned and quaint rural hotel. On their way back from their holiday, the couples decided to revisit the hotel, but to their amazement, there is no earthly sign of it, it had completely disappeared. Both couples testified that they were puzzled by many irregularities that occurred on their first visit.

Another remarkable time-slip was experienced by Alice Pollock, who visited Leeds Castle in Kent, UK. Alice experimented by touching objects in a room to try and recreate or experience events from another time period. For a while, nothing happened but then suddenly, the room changed, becoming cold and bare and a small log fire burned in the fireplace. Alice noticed a woman dressed in a white dress, walking up and down the room and the woman appeared to be deep in thought. Then as quick as it happened, the room returned to its original state. Later it was discovered that Queen Joan of Navarre, stepmother to Henry V, was imprisoned in the castle’s rooms as she had been accused of witchcraft.

So, was Alice Pollock’s mind recreating past history or did she actually encounter a loop in time caused by her intense desire to recreate the past? Are human beings able to manipulate time through objects, by touching them and absorbing their past energy? Dr. Joseph Rodes-Buchanan, of the Covington Medical Institute, was convinced that objects carried their history photographed in them and he wrote, ‘the past is entombed in the present.’

The art of touching objects and having a psychic link with them is called ‘psychometry’ and many believe that ‘standing stones’ such as Stonehenge, are in some way endued with psychic power and are able to connect us to the past and the present simply by touching them. Can this act of psychometry allow us to form a link or bridge between past and present?

Maybe time is like the sea, ebbing and flowing, never quite still and always restless. Perhaps every now and then when a small eddy appears in the sea of time it allows humans to be caught up in a gentle whirlpool, where both past and present become one…Nobody can quite give us a plausible answer and nobody probably ever will. But for those who encounter a time-slip, it will always be a mysterious encounter, never quite understood and never quite proven to be true or otherwise, but nevertheless, an encounter that will always be remembered.