Suranne Jones plays mother Eve, whose child with whom she shares some kind of psychic bond with disappears when she falls asleep while he’s playing in a park. A young woman, Nancy Linnet begins teaching there and soon uncovers the abuse that the children are subjected to at the hands (or cane) of Augustus, and beneath that expressionless face is a sadistic bully. The past begins to bleed through to the present as ghosts of children begin running around and the ghost of Augustus makes his presence felt by whipping Eve, Cally and Loren. Check here to Subscribe to notifications for new posts Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Enter your email address to subscribe to the latest updates and receive notifications of new posts by email. The Secret of Crickley Hall Chilling ghost story adapted from James Herbert's novel, telling both the story of the modern day haunting of a troubled family and the dark events buried in their new home's past.
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Get the best gaming deals, reviews, product advice, competitions, unmissable gaming news and more! The horror genre is not often represented in British TV with the last notable series being ITV’s Marchlands, which aired in February 201.
Back in the present Eve and the family visit the church where the graves of orphans who perished in a flood are being attended to by Percy, played by David Warner who appeared in the horror classic The Omen. The scene where Loren gets into bed and is whipped by Augustus’s apparition will probably induce a few nightmares.


Meanwhile, in 1943, Nancy Linnet accepts a job at Crickley Hall, as a teacher for the orphans housed there and almost immediately runs into trouble with the Cribben siblings, the owners of the home… VERDICT The Secret of Crickley Hall impresses from very nearly the first time anyone opens their mouths. You can unsubscribe at any time and we'll never share your details without your permission.
So this is a welcome series especially with Christmas approaching the perfect time for ghost stories. The pair with daughters Cally (Pixie Davies) and Loren (Maisie Williams, Arya Stark in Game Of Thrones) arrive at Crickley Hall early on in the episode so we get straight into the haunted house the event the viewer is waiting for. We see Percy as a young lad (played by Iain De Caestecker) back in 1943 and he is the only character from the past who appears in the present and will probably be the key to unlocking the secrets of Crickley Hall. Any normal family at this point would leave but they are tied to the place because Eve is adamant that this place may hold the key to them being reunited with Cam. The Secret of Crickley Hall is certainly not for those who revel in being truly terrified, but if, like this writer, you favour an engrossing plotline which occasionally raises the heart-rate, to the sort of true horror which leaves you sweat-drenched and sleepless, Ahearne’s offering will appeal. In the present, Suranne Jones and Tom Ellis do the near impossible and make you care for Eve and Gabe within minutes of meeting them. Throughout the remainder of the episode we flash back to 1943 where we learn that the house was used as an orphanage during the war run by the creepy Magda (Sarah Smart) and Augustus (Douglas Henshall). This is a clever move as it gives the family a good reason for staying there whilst there are ghostly goings on. Their sleepy, very funny, breakfast routine has the look of something that’s been done a thousand times before and you feel like you know this couple, or at least know people like them. Eve and Gabe argue but the shouting and anguish isn’t at Eastenders level even at the beginning when Cam goes missing. It makes what follows all the more horrifying, and Jones in particular sells the empty-eyed, dead-inside limbo halfway between denial and grief effortlessly.Eve is an open wound, and one of the most affecting moments comes early on when she screams at an empty street on finding a Missing Cat poster stuck over the poster of her missing son.


There is abuse but that mostly happens off-screen and its pretty tame for a post watershed show.
Cribben savagely caned the children in his care for the smallest of infractions, supported wholeheartedly by his equally unpleasant sister.
Those of you expecting a Nick Cutter do-over will be both disappointed and amazed at Henshall’s excellent 1940s upper-class pronunciation, clenched teeth and ever-on-the-verge-of-breaking-down civility. I particularly liked the revelation that the area is called Devil’s Cleave, which would be more than enough to get me throwing my things in the car and heading anywhere but there. The cast is uniformly great, the setting is suitably menacing and there are some genuinely surprising turns in this first episode as well as some great scares.
However, it also offers a rich storyline which juxtaposes a sensitive contemporary portrayal of the loss of a child with a disturbing exploration of child abuse before it was formally recognised. Just hopefully not a noisy one, after all, we don’t want to disturb Mr Cribben do we?
It may not be as terrifying as Kubrick’s The Shining, to which one of its characters comically alludes, but it is gripping from start to finish. CREEPIEST MOMENT A toss up between the sudden appearance of the cane (Twice!) and the moment where Gabe noticed the plaque about the flooding in the local church, then notices how many people died in it… UNANSWERED QUESTIONS Why did Percy take Clyde the dog?




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