Did “Ken Thomas” ever speak publicly about finding the jewel?

Yes. In addition to a few newspaper interviews and some very brief direct quotes in the May 1982 issue of Smithsonian magazine (download a 7MB PDF version of that article here), Harold Benney says he gave an interview on the UK TV show Omnibus in 1982, much of which Paul Harkin transcribed and sent in:

KEN THOMAS: (Referring to the ‘one of six to eight’ clue) It led me to Kimbolton Castle, which is where she lived and died. The next thing I saw was the picture of this little man’s hand – pointing to the date – which is the Vernal Equinox. So, of course, I tried to work out where the Vernal Equinox came in at Kimbolton. And, er, I was having a lot of difficulty until I wrote down another word, which is at the end of the book – ‘culmination’, and this gave me clues to the meridian, and shadows, and high peaks. And then I thought I’d look at it another view and investigate Kit Williams and find out where he lived and areas he’d lived in. And I went to Steppingley and Millbrook and all round that area – couldn’t find anything though that was relevant. And on my way back from there I stopped at Ampthill Park to let the dog go for a run. Now, as you know, there’s two lovely crosses in Ampthill Park and, erm, there’s this stone which indicates, ‘the riches in the earth’, the sign on there.
INTERVIEWER: How did you actually find the stone?

KT: Well, my dog went over and weed against it. I followed him over, and then I turned and looked at the crosses and…things came together. So I investigated one of the crosses, and it turned out to be Kate’s Cross…Catherine’s Cross – apparently she was imprisoned there. And I just transferred all my clues to Ampthill.

KT: I dug rather a large hole, I might add. It was eight foot long, and about two foot six across, and about three foot deep.

INT: A fair amount of work.

KT: Yes, a whole night. A whole night. I told him that someone else had dug twenty-three foot away from the cross out to twenty-five feet, and he said, ‘No, he’s too far away’. And I said, ‘Well, I’m twenty foot’, he said, ‘Well you must be there’.

KT: It took me ages to sort out, erm, the numbers on the football field. They turned out to be atomic numbers, and it tells you to ‘think again’ – so it was all a waste of time.

INT: How do you mean – it tells you to ‘think again’?

KT: Well, when you change the atomic numbers over to the atomic letters – the numbers transfer to letters which make up words, and it’s: “FALSES NOW THINK AGAIN”.

INT: Weren’t you somewhat irritated by that?

KT: All the time, every red herring you find, you do – but I must…other people must be the same.

INT: When you found other people, searching, did you, sort of, chat with them?

KT: Oh no, oh no. No – you keep yourself to yourself.

INT: Fairly competitive?

KT: You’ve got to, yeah. You could give a clue away that would…could be a main clue, and you might not realise.

INT: What has tonight been like – an anticlimax?

KT: It’s been an anticlimax since I found it. Erm, you look for something for fifteen months and when you find it, it’s all over. Er, it’s all gone, hasn’t it? Finished now. So we’ve got to look for another jewel to find. I shall put it in the bank and leave it in safe hands.

INT: And in the end, I suspect you’ll sell it?

KT: Well, I might not. I have children – I might leave it to my children.

INT: Do you think it’ll be worth a lot of money?

KT: Maybe, one day. Depends who wants to buy the thing.

INT: You were lucky, really, weren’t you?

KT: Very lucky. My dog is the one. Without my dog, I don’t think I’d have bothered. If I hadn’t stopped to, er, let him have a look, you know, have a run, and have a wee – might never found it. I’d still be digging at Kimbolton – along with the others.

INT: Did you… did you enjoy the whole process?

KT: Oh yes, very much. On reflection, yes.

INT: But now you don’t like the publicity?

KT: No…no.

No indeed.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: