Back in the 1990s I lived on Beech Avenue in Oldham Lancashire in the UK. When I moved into the house with my wife and four young daughters, things seemed to be working out quite well for us. But after a while strange things started to happen every morning. The house alarm would go off at 5am and it was always the same sensor in the kitchen that was tripped. Sometimes I put the TV on upstairs for the children but when they went up to watch TV it had been switched off!
One time when we were playing with the children outside I saw the figure of a man just for a second at the window. I said to my daughter, "I thought I told you to lock the back door and windows before we went outside." I rushed in, thinking it was an intruder but there was no one inside. All the doors and windows were locked so no one could have got in or out.
A few week's later we got a little Yorkshire terrier called Richy and he would come upstairs at night and sleep on the bottom of our bed. One night after we had finished watching TV, we decided to go to bed. I opened the door to the stairs and my wife and children went up to bed while I turned everything off and locked up. I went to the foot of the stairs and called Richy but he didn't move. He stayed under his blanket. I called him again but he just wouldn't move, so I went over to pick him up and he started to growl at me! As I put my hand closer to him, he snapped at me. I made a grab for him and managed to get him to the stairs but when I put him down he crouched down on the floor and wouldn't go upstairs, so I threw his blanket onto the living room floor and he ran to it and stayed there all that night.
Then one day my brother came to stay for the Christmas holiday. We were talking and having a good time! My brother excused himself to go to the bathroom. A few minutes later he came down and took me to one side and said, "I've just come out of the bathroom and I saw a man in your bedroom looking out of the window." I asked him what did he look like and my brother said he could only see the back of the man but the man was bald, he wore a shirt with the sleeves rolled up, trousers and braces! I asked him not to mention it to my wife as I didn't want her to be scared as I sometimes had to work at night.
A few weeks passed without anything happening and then our niece came to visit and again she went upstairs but before she had got to the top she came running down screaming! At first she was too upset to speak but when she had calmed down she said that she had seen a man standing at the top of the stairs and once again he was wearing a shirt with rolled up sleeves and trousers with braces.
I decided to ask my neighbours about who had lived in the house before us and one neighbour told us that a man had lived there and that he worked for the local council driving a dustbin van! She said that he would get up at the same time every day to make his breakfast before going to work, which was 5am, and when I asked her to describe him she told us he wore a shirt with the sleeves rolled up, trousers and braces most of the time as he loved tending his garden. And he would often chat to anyone who came by, as he was a very easy going man and would help anyone out if he could!
She told us that one day he went out to work and when dinner time came she knew something was wrong as the man would come home for his dinner at the same time every day But on this occasion he didn't come home! It was only later that she found out that he had died while he was at work.
I couldn't believe it, but it was true. I was so dumbfounded that the man had shown himself to members of my family. But I came to the conclusion that he meant no harm to me or my family. It didn't make it any easier sharing our home with him, but after all it was his home first!