Forteana

Mike worked for nearly 20 years for Fortean Times, the celebrated ‘Journal of Strange Phenomena’, which he joined as a contributing editor while still at university.

More than a decade later, after the title was acquired by John Brown Publishing, he became FT’s publisher for several years, launching numerous spin–offs including the acclaimed academic annual Fortean Studies (1994–2000); three of the 'original investigations' he contributed to the latter journal can be downloaded from this section of this website. Mike was also briefly editor of FT in 1988–89 and was also launch publisher of FT's sister title, Bizarre, which launched in 1997. This material links to selections of material from both titles and also to a minisite devoted to Mike's Fortean classic, Borderlands (1997) - memorably if blasphemously described on one bulletin board as "the New Testament to Fort's Old Testament".

A Fortean in the Archives Mike's Fortean blog. Plenty of brand-new research; updated two or three times a month
Borderlands Mike's acclaimed book-length survey of the evidence for strange phenomena
The Devil's Hoofmarks An 80-page paper dissecting the Great Devon Mystery of 1855, from Fortean Studies 1
Spring-heeled Jack (1996) The ground-breaking paper from Fortean Studies 3, published in 1996
Spring-heeled Jack (2008) One-hour lecture from Unconvention '08 outlining more recent findings (external link - new window)
Spring-heeled Jack (2009) Mike accompanies new best friend Gyles Brandreth on a Hallowe'en walk through Barnes Cemetery to discuss the elusive bogeyman. Clip from BBC One's The One Show, 31 October 2009. (External link – opens in new window.)
Spring-heeled Jack (2013) Long (1hr 20 mins) podcast from the Monster Talk series. Mike discusses his research with skeptics Blake Smith and Karen Stollznow. (External link – opens in new window.)
In Search of Dr MacRae The results of Mike's decade-long investigation into the mystery of the so-called "McRae films" - lost 1930s movies supposedly showing the Loch Ness Monster and a sea serpent in detailed close-up. One-hour lecture from Weird Weekend '08. Stunning research. (External link - new window)
An abandoned lifeboat at world's end Mike investigates the mysterious discovery of a battered lifeboat and equipment on Bouvet Island – the most isolated spot in the world. How did it get there? Who was in it? And what happened to them?
The Emperor's electric chair Award-winning essay explores the popular story that Emperor Menelik II of Ethiopia ordered three electric chairs in 1890, only to discover his kingdom did not actually have electricity. So as not to let the investment go to waste, he turned one of the chairs into his imperial throne. Tracks this unlikely tale to its origins, proposes a solution. Recognised in the 2010 Clios, awarded by History News Network.
The Vanishing Lighthousemen of Eilean Mór A reinvestigation of a classic disappearance around Christmas 1900. From Fortean Studies 4
The Disappearance of Benjamin Bathurst A fresh look at a renowned historical mystery, originally published in Fortean Times.
The Monster of Glamis Hour-long lecture from Weird Weekend 2010. A thorough examination of the well-known Scottish legend – lots of brand-new research; the most complete version of the story ever assembled (external link – new window).
Dances with Chickens A Bizarre investigation of family incarcerations
Ask Bizarre 1 Questions and answers from the long-gone – but legendary – Ask Bizarre web 1.0 site (1998-1999)
Ask Bizarre 2 More of the same - not for the fainthearted
Virgins, nipples and shrunken heads Excerpts from Mike's column for Maxim UK
Top 10 Stupid Names for Hairdressers Bizarre's listing of the nation's most cringeworthy chop shops
From Stag's Tears to Rat Kings From Time Out: a call for a museum collection of Fortean artefacts