Older readers, cast your mind back a bit and you may remember the "Maxi Mart" pages in the Liverpool Echo where you could buy and sell quite a range of miscellaneous items, including the kitchen sink! In February 1977, a Knotty Ash housewife named Chrissie Bradley saw a three-piece suite in beige vinyl advertised in the Household Goods column of the Maxi Mart. The three-piece suite was said to be in very good condition and the asking price was £25. Chrissie phoned the man who was selling it and he said he would actually bring the three-piece suite to Chrissie's house so she could see how good it was. The man - a Mr Posterway - turned up with the furniture and invited Chrissie to see it in the back of his transit van. Chrissie was impressed and immediately paid Mr Postaway the £25.
Not long after Chrissie had put the settee and two armchairs in her living room, weird things started to happen. Chrissie's 12-year-old daughter was sitting on the settee when she said her back felt damp. When she got up off the settee, the girl had bloodstains on her white school shirt. There were ruby beads of blood condensing on the settee.
Mr Bradley wiped down the settee, but the blood returned later on in the night. Chrissie telephone Mr Postaway and asked him why the settee was oozing the red sticky liquid, and he said he didn't know what she was on about and hung up. He took his phone off the hook and Chrissie couldn't get through.
On the following day in the afternoon, Chrissie and her two friends were having a cup of tea - when the impression of a hand appeared on the beige vinyl of the settee. It just looked as if someone had dipped their hand in blood, then pressed it onto the settee. Chrissie wiped it, but the hand returned later on. Two oter family members also reported seeing the spooky silhouette of a man sitting on the sofa when they entered the living room at night. As soon as they switched on the light, the figure vanished. In the end, Mr Bradley thought there was something weird about the settee, and he decided to dump it in the alleyway, along with the two armchairs.
When the binmen called, they saw pools of what looked like blood under the settee. The ganger of the binmen was suspicious and he ripped the settee open, but it was dry as a bone inside. Years later, Chrissie Bradley learned that Mr Postaway had bought the settee from the wife of a woman whose husband had committed suicide on the sofa in 1972. The man slashed his own throat as he lay down on the sofa because he mistakenly thought he had cancer. The sofa was cleaned and sold, but the bloodstains kept reappearing on it. If you are thinking of purchasing something second hand - buyer beware…

©Tom Slemen 2004