On the night of the biggest full moon since 1948, something was stirring in deepest, darkest (well maybe not so dark that night) Peckham that chilled you right down to the marrow and made the hairs on your neck vibrate and tremble!
The evening actually started in 137 Copeland Road. We were shown into the front room of a damp, dark and derelict house just a few minutes’ walk from busy, vibrant Rye Lane. The walls were covered with photos of a woman and her two sons, maps of the area and lots of scribbled pages of information – the type of room you’d see in most conspiracy theory films and TV shows. We were then addressed by Michael Coggins, an earnest young man who said he worked for Peckham council and had done all the research that was on the walls. It seems that in 1974, there had been a bad fire next door at number 139 where Mary Collins and her two young sons, William and Martin had perished – but their bodies were never found! After Michael had told us all about the mysterious fire of Copeland Road (and also plied us with pretzels!), we were led next door to number 139 where we were handed over to Lesley Blake a renowned psychic who was going to conduct a séance. We sat at a candle-lit table where we all held hands as the soft voiced psychic tried to contact Mary Collins.
To tell any more would give away too much about what was about to be revealed. Suffice to say we did seem to contact Mary and she made her presence felt in the room and scary things led on from there. We visited the bedroom where the boys perished and felt their energy in the room. In fact, we visited the room twice – which was very relevant to events as the evening unfolded!
There were a couple of very good twists as the evening went on and we left the house after just under an hour literally shaking as the house rocked on its foundations and we were just a little bit stirred!
139 Copeland Road is subtitled “When Halloween ends, the nightmare begins”. Is it a true story? Are Michael the council worker and Lesley the physic real? That’s up to the audience to decide but they should be prepared to be a little bit alarmed – even if the moon isn’t full!
Review by Alan Fitter
In 1974 a huge fire engulfed 139 Copeland Road, with its inhabitants still inside. Guided by a renowned psychic, we will invite intimate audiences of 15 to take part in a unique immersive experiment, and conduct a séance to discover the dark secrets that lie hidden within the house. What happens next we cannot predict or apologise for.
Venue: This is a site-specific production, and takes place in two ‘derelict’ houses (these are in fact managed properties). The address is 137 and 139 Copeland Road, SE15 3SN – near Peckham Rye.
139 Copeland Road
Author: Richard Johnson
Director: Christa Harris
Strictly over 18+