Part-1 of this article focused on a clandestine conversation that English cryptozoologist, Jon Downes, had a number of years ago with a retired member of the British military. Specifically of the Royal Marines. Downes’ source revealed startling data on his alleged secret knowledge of how, in 1983, the Marines came to locate and kill several so-called Alien Big Cats. And on the private land of an influential, powerful figure living on Exmoor, England. Downes’ informant had another, somewhat related, story to tell. It was an eye-opening and controversial story that involved the late Diana, Princess of Wales.
Jon Downes’ caller confided in him that in the mid-1980s, and during his career with the Royal Marines, he was part of a unit that was assigned to keep careful and secret watch on the activities of Princess Diana. This makes a great deal of sense, as rumors circulated at the time that she had been targeted for kidnap or assassination by terrorists. This particular surveillance coincided – time-wise – with the period in which Diana’s affair with Major James Hewitt began, in the summer of 1986.
It seems very likely that Downes’ confidante knew a great deal about Downes and his background. Unlike me, my good mate Jon is an ardent supporter of the British Royal Family, and actually went to school with James Hewitt. This is something which leads me to believe Downes was specifically chosen to be the recipient of the story. Given Downes’ history, it could pretty well be predicted he would follow the story and publish it. Which is exactly what he did. And maybe that was the goal of Downes’ source.
As Downes listened carefully, the anonymous voice at the end of the phone said that on one particular occasion, the Royal Marines were keeping secret watch while Diana spent a night at Hewitt’s home. In the Devon village of Bratton Clovelly. It’s a place Jon Downes knows well. The surveillance continued all through the night, with one and all on high alert for potential attacks by terrorists.
As the team kept a careful watch with night-vision equipment, they were amazed to see nothing less than a large, black, Alien Big Cat prowling around Bratton Clovelly. And perilously close to Hewitt’s home. This placed the Marines in a deep quandary. Should they shoot and kill the animal? Downes was told that such an action was contemplated but quickly rejected.
Primarily, it was rejected because if the ABC was shot and killed, there was a good chance that any accompanying noise might awaken the people of Bratton Clovelly. And if that happened, and the media got hold of what was afoot, the reason why the Marines were in the village on that night would come tumbling out. And the truth of the Hewitt-Diana affair would possibly come tumbling out, too. And the Monarchy certainly didn’t want that. So, the Marines took the only step they felt they could. Which was to carefully watch the ABC until it finally wandered off to pastures new. Eventually, it did exactly that.
So, a 1980s saga involving an Alien Big Cat – one whose presence in Bratton Clovelly might have exposed the existence of the Marines’ surveillance and even led to the press learning of the Diana-Hewitt affair – was hushed up and everyone involved was sternly reminded they were bound by the British Government’s Official Secrets Act. Now, I will be the first to admit that we can’t say for sure that Downes was not the victim of some Walter Mitty-type fantasist. Downes himself admits that such a scenario cannot be entirely dismissed. There is, however, one very important factor that strongly suggests otherwise.
It was in 1995 – and on British television – that confirmation of Diana’s affair with Hewitt surfaced. And surfaced from Diana herself. On the matter of the timeline in this controversy, Downes notes something of significance regarding his informant: “It must be said in his defense that he told me this long before the liaison [between Diana and Hewitt] became public knowledge. It was certainly the first time I had heard of the scandal that was, years later, to rock both the nation and the monarchy.”
Both Jon and I have looked into, and mused upon, this story time and again. So far, it has gone no further. Unless, that is, someone reading this can fill in the blanks…