|Theories|| · Ghost|
· Homeless man
· Deformed humanl
The Ratman, also known as the Ratman of Southend, is a local legend originating in the town of Southend-on-Sea, Essex. Centering around an underpass, the legend has two main variants, the commonality between them being the presence of a rat-like creature who appears in the pedestrian walkways at night.
The most commonly told story of the Ratman involves an old man who used the underpass to escape from the rain and the cold at nights. The story goes that he was old and barely able to walk. One night a group of teenagers beat him half to death and stole his blanket, the only real source of warmth he had. Dying from his injuries and the biting cold of the night, he succumbed to hypothermia; his stiffening corpse nibbled and gnawed on by the numerous vermin who inhabit the area.
The other origin story claims that the mayor of the town was a known adulterer and was eventually cursed for his infidelity in the form of a grotesque child with the elongated snout and worm-like tail of a rat. The child grew and developed tastes for flesh. The Mayor had the underpass constructed to conceal his monstrous child. The Ratman escapes at night via hidden doors, scaring off any visitors who disturb his rest.
The Ratman is either described as a ghost or a mutated human, but there is no real consistent physical description of the entity.
There are several explanations as to what the creature could be. Theories include:
- A ghost or spirit
- A normal homeless person
- A deformed hermit
There are no notable encounters that we could find.
- This legend could potentially be classified as a Haunting, assuming the ghost theory is correct.
- Ghost tours in the Essex area have been known to include nighttime visits to the Ratman Tunnel in the hope of seeing the creature.