Woman's claim to £10,000,000




An extraordinary story is related by Mrs Lilian Kirtlan, the wife of a railwayman, of Wetheral, a pretty Cumberland village on the outskirts of Carlisle, who has made a claim on the Treasury to an estate estimated at from £7,000,000 to £10,000,000.

Mrs Kirtlan is now in London instructing her solicitors, and the case is likely to come before the courts in the course of the next few weeks.

She claims to be a direct descendant of Sir John Jeremy, who was Governor of Sierra Leone, and who died there in 1841, leaving a large fortune. These estates have been waiting the rightful claimant for upwards of fifty years.

Mrs Kirtlan, the claimant, has often heard her mother and grandmother both speak of a large fortune which they said rightly belonged to them, but to which they could not prove their title owing to a gap of some considerable time in the family tree, which they could not fill without documentary evidence.

Mrs Kirtlan had never troubled herself upon the matter. However, a couple of years ago she had two remarkable dreams in succession.


In her first dream Mrs Kirtlan found herself in a country lane late at night. She did not know the place, but remembers there was an old castle nearby, and a gateway leading from the lane to what was apparently an old water mill.

As she stood contemplating this an old man appeared, and pointing to the gateway, said, in a deep voice, “Seek at Langharne” (Mrs Kirtlan says it was pronounced Larne). Mrs Kirtlan woke with the voice ringing in here ears, “Seek at Larne.”

The second night, however, she had another dream. This time she was seated in a room, and an old Bible was brought to her and placed in her lap by an old man with silvery white hair, who said, “Look, my child.” The book was much the worse for wear, and the back of its binding missing. She took the book and remembers turning the pages over and looking for entries on the front flyleaf, where family history was wont to be written, and finding nothing at all she was in the act of replacing it on the table when she accidentally lifted the back cover and saw there was some writing on the back page. Very much startled she reached forward to read and .... wakened.


From now onwards Mrs Kirtlan was to have no rest. She says some unseen force seemed to be pushing her forward to seek an old Bible. Day and night this haunted her, until at last she started off to look up the family history. She travelled hundreds of miles in her quest, visiting London, Bristol, and many other places gleaning information. Eventually she found her way to Carmarthen, and after some days' diligent search discovered some distant relatives living at Langharne (pronounced Larne, as Mrs Kirtlan had heard it in her first dream).

On stating her errand, and relating her dreams, the relatives were astounded, as they had in their possession a Bible with the back binding missing, and answering in every detail the description given by Mrs Kirtlan as seen in her dream.

(It is odd that the newspaper report ends here - just as it is getting interesting - but end it does, with no obvious conclusion!)

Ref: The Sunday Express, 1 February 1925