Denizen of the Dead is a protest against property speculation and a new take on the genre of haunted house horror fiction — in which investors’ ghosts homes really are haunted and those who buy them come to horrible ends. The book itself is a talisman that defends our communities against developers and it also features Spell Series by the w.o.n.d.e.r. coven. The symbols of this living spell are a lock and key designed to dismantle the neoliberal project and overdevelopment as represented by Clarendon Court — a block of 99 luxury flats on Golden Lane in London EC1 that replaced 110 social housing units for key workers and with absolutely no social or affordable housing on site. All the stories in the anthology are set in this ‘City fringe’ safety deposit box in the sky, which is nearing completion and should be ready for ghost flat owners to take ‘possession’ of within a few weeks.
Tag: Golden Lane
Feng flew into Heathrow to spend a couple of days shopping in northern Europe. He was staying in his investment flat in Golden Lane, which he'd bought several years before and which lay empty for most of the year. He just had the odd night in the place when he was holidaying in London. After a hard day at Harrods, Feng returned to Golden Lane to get a good night's sleep. However when he reached the spot where the luxury apartment block had stood when he'd left in the morning there was nothing there. He starred slack jawed into empty space.... there was no more Denizen, not even a trace or shadow of a ghost home....
I was dead. I should not have been walking through Fortune Street Park and across Golden Lane. Drawn to Taylor Wimpey's luxury apartment block Clarendon Court AKA The Denizen by the siren song of Plague Pit Annie. I should have been in the underworld preparing for my next incarnation, not being lured to an investment flat I'd bought but never seen. I was dead and I had no use for any of my worldly possessions. But the siren song of Plague Pit Annie drew me through the entrance of Clarendon Court and up the stairs to my apartment. I'd never collected the keys to this flat and I didn't need them now. The concierge didn't see my long finger nails and longer hair as I passed right through him. The concierge didn't see me at all. Plague Pit Annie knew I was close by and drew me in with her song. She greeted me, informed me I was to take her place in my apartment, and then she disappeared into the medieval plague pit beneath the building. Now for all of eternity I am damned to reside in an investment apartment I'd bought off-plan sight unseen.
Little Sonia was playing in Fortune Street Park shortly before she vanished recently. The lost child was last seen running across Golden Lane towards the site of Taylor Wimpey's The Denizen. We've just finished pouring concrete to create the shell of this luxury apartment block. I've now found Sonia's name written in remembrance on the living room floor of every flat. Clearly the inscriptions were made before the concrete set. The name was written in reverse and from below...
Some will remember that inexplicable affair in Bunhill Fields eight weeks ago, where permission for a burial was obtained by a businessman whose wife had committed suicide. Getting approval had cost a fortune. On each occasion the coffin was found in the course of a few days again protruding from the ground. After the third attempt, in order that the thing should not be talked about, the body was buried elsewhere in unconsecrated ground. Where it was secretly buried was just inside the iron gate of Fortune Street Park. This was the body of the woman who had committed suicide in the ground floor apartment I’d been given in The Denizen. Her name was Julia Li.
As I returned from round the back of the Jewin Welsh Church which abuts part of the west side of The Denizen, I caught the hooning whistling of Chan's luxury apartment, coming down strangely through the stillness of the night. It had a queer note in it, low and constant, queerly meditative. Once I'd climbed onto the balcony I was able to see the floor in the middle of the living room was puckered upward in the centre into a strange soft-looking mound, parted at the top into an ever changing hole, that pulsated to that great, gentle hooning.
I slipped out of my room and made my way to The Denizen. Keeping my revolver handy, I made my way up to the floor on which Jason’s flat was situated. I hung a protection belt of garlic around my neck and the smell of it seemed to fill the corridor and give me assurance. It is a wonderful protection against the more usual Aeiirii forms of semi-materialization, by which I supposed the whistling might be produced. Though at that period of my investigation I was quite prepared to find it due to some perfectly natural cause, for it is astonishing the enormous number of cases that prove to have nothing abnormal in them. In addition to wearing the necklet, I had plugged my ears loosely with garlic and as I did not intend to stay more than a few minutes in the luxury apartment, I hoped to be safe. When I reached the door and put my hand into my pocket for the key, I had a sudden feeling of sickening funk. But I was not going to back out if I could help it.
I have been spending the last few weeks at The Denizen, a luxury apartment block built by Taylor Wimpey in Golden Lane, just inside the border between the City of London and Islington. I got an email about a month ago from a Mr. Jason Chan, who it seemed had bought an investment property in the building, and on staying in it for a few days while holidaying in London, found that he had purchased a very peculiar piece of real estate. His flat in The Denizen has got a most infernal whistling in it, sort of haunting it. The thing starts any time, you never know when, and it goes on until it frightens you. It's not ordinary whistling and it isn't the wind. Wait till you hear it.
"Then there is The Denizen," said Meagle, "full of luxury apartments available at absurdly low rents and nobody will take them. It has taken toll of at least one life of every family that has lived there - however short the time - and concierge after concierge has died there. The last caretaker died just a few weeks ago."
We are in a three-bedroom flat in Taylor Wimpey’s The Denizen development. We aren’t far from the ancient heart of the City of London, although we are outside the original city wall, and those selling the flats rather bamboozled investors about The Denizen’s actual location. We have chosen this luxury apartment block for our ghost hunt because it has a truly terrible history. Since it was built last year there are records of no less than thirty suicides in or from it, and there may well have been more.