Half a century ago, Belgian Zoologist Bernard Heuvelmans first codified cryptozoology in his book On the Track of Unknown Animals.

The Centre for Fortean Zoology (CFZ) are still on the track, and have been since 1992. But as if chasing unknown animals wasn't enough, we are involved in education, conservation, and good old-fashioned natural history! We already have three journals, the largest cryptozoological publishing house in the world, CFZtv, and the largest cryptozoological conference in the English-speaking world, but in January 2009 someone suggested that we started a daily online magazine! The CFZ bloggo is a collaborative effort by a coalition of members, friends, and supporters of the CFZ, and covers all the subjects with which we deal, with a smattering of music, high strangeness and surreal humour to make up the mix.

It is edited by CFZ Director Jon Downes, and subbed by the lovely Lizzy Bitakara'mire (formerly Clancy), scourge of improper syntax. The daily newsblog is edited by Corinna Downes, head administratrix of the CFZ, and the indexing is done by Lee Canty and Kathy Imbriani. There is regular news from the CFZ Mystery Cat study group, and regular fortean bird news from 'The Watcher of the Skies'. Regular bloggers include Dr Karl Shuker, Dale Drinnon, Richard Muirhead and Richard Freeman.The CFZ bloggo is updated daily, and there's nothing quite like it anywhere else. Come and join us...

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Saturday, December 05, 2009


Many of you who are reading this will have met Marjorie at the 2006-8 Weird Weekends. She was always to be found in the front row, often engaging in discussions of a seriously esoteric nature with the likes of Peter Robins.

She has been very ill with multiple cancers for a year now, and she finally died at 6:30 this morning. Corinna and I have visited her daily for several weeks as she struggled bravely through what was to be her final illness.

Since I first arrived in this village in July 1971 she has been like a second mother to me. During my bitter conflicts with my own parents she loved and supported me. When my father died she was there for me, and when I married Corinna I asked her and Corinna's mother to sign the register as witnesses.

When people die the obituary writers invariably say what a dear, kind person the deceased was even if they were actually a nasty piece of work. However, (and this is not obituary writer hyperbole) Marjorie was the sweetest, kindest and most loving person I have ever met. I never saw her angry. I never heard a cross word. I have always loved her dearly, and you don't stop loving someone just because they are dead.

I usually conclude obituaries by saying that my heart goes out to her family. However, in this case, though we have no biological connection, I truly feel that she is part of my real family, as are her daughters Kaye and Lorraine, her son-in-law Roy and her three grandchildren David, Ross and Greg. I love you all, my dears, and share in your immeasurable loss.


G L Wilson said...

My condolences to all of you.


Kithra said...

My heart goes out to you, Jon, as well as to her family. My very deepest condolences to all of you.

Richie said...

It saddens me to hear of your great loss Jon. I pray that you may find peace knowing she is in a better place.

Tabitca said...

condolences on your loss. my thoughts are with you all at this sad time. much love
L xx

Syd said...

I know Marjorie meant so much to you and I offer my deepest condolences to all of her family and to you on this sad loss.

Like so many others associated with the CFZ, I was privileged to meet her a time or two at the Weird Weekends and found her to be a really lovely lady.

Andrew D. Gable said...

Very sorry to hear this -- deepest sympathies to all.

Dr Karl Shuker said...

I was privileged to meet Marjorie at WW 2008, and after just a short time chatting with her my mother liked her so much that she considered her to be a new friend. So we are both extremely sad to learn of her passing, and we offer you and her family our sincerest condolences.

Naomi said...

I am so sorry, Jon. I am glad her struggle is over and I believe she is alive and well in Heaven. I teared up reading how she truly was a wonderful person, not just in the wake of her death. I am sorry for your loss.

Lanette said...

Sorry about loss :(