Somewhere in Rendlesham Forest could be found an S-shaped pond with a very sinister reputation. Children in the 19th century were warned to stay away from it 'lest the mermaid should come and crome you in'. Crome was a long-handled rake.
Some folklorists believe that these legends of water bogeys are, in fact, distorted memories of water spirits that were worshipped by our pagan ancestors. Others suggest that such tales were simply invented to deter children from playing near water.
John is a producer, TV/Radio presenter and writer living in Suffolk