In 2003, fourteen gnomes appeared mysteriously in gardens across Brattleby, Lincolnshire of the UK. They just appeared overnight making people wonder how they appeared, and who was behind it.
And it continued. Every year or so, a new batch of gnomes would appear somewhere around the small village. In gardens, at bus stops, anywhere a gnome might fit, it could theoretically appear.
But while there was no direct evidence of his involvement, there was one obvious suspect. Ron Broomfield.
Broomfield lived in a distant village within Lincolnshire. There was no feasible reason to suspect him based on evidence, with one exception: Broomfield collected gnomes.
He collected them over the course of fifty years, amassing more than 1800 of them. He had ones as tall as four feet, and as small as a cake topper. He called his home Gnome Cottage. He answered to “Ron the Gnome”. And he dressed like a gnome almost every day.
He began collecting the little figures after a divorce, feeling an affinity for them because of their expressions of constant joy. That feeling grew, and so did the gnome collection. Eventually it took up the majority of the retired window cleaner’s house.
In 2015, Ron Broomfield passed away. His gnomes were, per his wishes, auctioned off for charity. His gnome suit, however, was not. He was cremated in it.
Luckily, he’d gotten cleared of the mystery gnome deliveries two years prior, when retired civil servant Peter Leighton’s kids, following his passing from prostate cancer, admitted to the world it had been their father behind the prank… and they had pictures to prove it.
Question of the night: what’s your favorite mythological creature?