The legend of the Catman of Greenock?

The legend of a man with skin as black as coal and who eats rats with his bare hands has been used to scare Greenock children since the 1970s.

Known as the Catman of Greenock, he is usually spotted at night, hiding in bushes and under cars and buses, identifiable by his supposedly glowing eyes that stare back from the darkness.

Local legend says that he was a Russian sailor who abandoned his ship that was docked in the harbour in the 1970s due to poor mental health and fighting with other crew members.

Stranded, the sailor began begging on the streets before being attacked by local youths who broke his legs and jaw, leaving him unable to walk and struggling to talk.

Reports say that he physically resisted medical treatment or being taken to any kind of shelter, which meant that he had to crawl on his stomach for mobility.

He earned the nickname of the Catman due to rumours that he lived with a group of wild cats, caring for them, some believe that he thinks he is a cat.

The area where most sightings have been made is in the east end of Greenock, near Scotston lane.

This area is where the first videos and photos were taken in 2007, they show a man with skin covered in what appears to be motor oil lying prone on the ground with a dead rat in his mouth.

Catman of Greenock allegedly captured on camera
Catman of Greenock allegedly captured on camera

Some locals think these images could be of a copycat and that the real Catman died long before they surfaced.

Despite being reported to authorities, the local council were never able to find anyone who matched the description in the area and deny that anyone matching that description has ever lived in the town.

Sightings have become rarer over the years with no new footage or images surfacing since 2015.

The Catman even has its very own Facebook fan page, where a small group of devotees post sightings, rumours, and custom-made Hallowe’en costumes in tribute of the strangest resident in their town.

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