Cambridge Coincidences Collection

Well I Never!

Professor David Spiegelhalter of Cambridge University wants to know about your coincidences!

old friend

I had lost touch with a friend I trained with in '69, She was in the Channel islands I was in Hampshire. (we trained in London) Seven years later I got on a crowded train at Winchester with my small daughter, there were not a lot of seats & I searched for someone who looked as if they wouldn't mind a small child next to them-I saw a lady who I thought looked kind & sat next to her. It was my lost friend of seven years earlier, we have stayed in touch ever since. Meg

Would we have married anyway?

Just before I was born my mother's eldest sister married a widower with two sons. Douglas was 4 years older than me and Gordon 8 years. We did not live very near to each other but were brought up as cousins Soon after the war started Gordon, by then engaged, went into the Royal Engineers but soon after being sent out to the Middle East he got a "Dear John" letter. Later Douglas went into the RAF and I wrote to them both. In 1942 Douglas was killed over Germany and perhaps that made me write to Gordon a little more.

Surely thats very strange.....

Back in 1975 I was working in an office in Regent Street.

Examination coincidence

On Friday 13th January I had taken my Merchant Navy Officer of the Watch oral examination at the Maritime and Coastguard Agency building in Southampton. I passed the exam, and then set off on the drive home to Formby, near Liverpool, a 250 mile journey. When I arrived in Formby I stopped for a pint in my local pub. I was at the bar talking to my friend about my exam, when a man approached me asking if I had just done my OOW oral exam as he had overheard me talking about it. It turned out that he was an MCA examiner who knew the person who examined me by name.

Saved from being a matching pair at interview

In 1972 I travelled overnight to attend a job interview. There was to be only one other candidate. On the morning of the interview I was annoyed to discover that I had forgotten to pack the bold striped jumper that went with my outfit and I had to make do with another one. On arriving for the interview the other girl was wearing the same bold striped jumper I should have been wearing - how silly would we have looked - a lucky escape from a strange coincidence (I got the job.)

Digital clock numbers

Often when I awake in the night my bedside digital clock shows times with repetitive numbers e.g. 2.22 or 4.44 etc. I canot detect any associated sound which could cause me to wake. I never win raffle ticket draws or any other chance. I do have a good sense of time of day and time span. I can usually correctly assess a persons character within five or so minutes of meeting them: worryingly so. Would I go up the side of a mountain with this person? Rarely is the answer yes.

Multiple coincidences

In 1966, two years after I married my wife, Anne, we ended up one day visiting a village called Knot End on a day out with Anne's parents. Anne's mother said that her cousin Lottie lived in the village having retired there and bought a bungalow with her husband Jack. We decided to look them up. I did not know them at all but after the initial welcome, during the conversation ( about family naturally), it turned out that my mother-in-law's cousin Lottie was married to my father's cousin Jack.

Loads of different coincidences

1. I'm adopted - found out that sister I'd never met had an abortion on exact same day I had my first child. 2. I grew up in Lancashire and moved to Worcester in 1982. Discovered neighbour 5 doors away in Worcester used to live opposite me in Lancashire. 3. My Dad had physiotherapy treatment in Lancaster. Physiotherapist had relative who had previously lived in my house in Worcester. 4. As a student I worked/travelled in USA. In San Francisco I was watching street dancing then went to tourist office and signed visitors' book.

Mr. David Laverty

Decided to drive about 12 miles north to do a bit of birdwatching Chelmarsh reservoir Shropshire).wore my Plymouth Argyle beany. Man (who I do not know)and boy getting out of car in carpark..boy left car door wide open so I haIled them to let them know. "Blimey" saId the man .."there are only two people I know in the West Midlands who support Plymouth Argyle..my wife..and a history teacher in her school called Dave Laverty". That's me !!!! Not an earthshattering coincidence...but a nice little one.

teacher in jungle

In 1989 or 1990 I was serving as a staff sergeant with the Queens Gurkha Signal in Hong Kong. I was training a section of Gurkhas jungle warfare skills and i it was coming up to 4pm. 4pm is late in the jungle and we were tactically setting up up our end of day observation base. We heard the noise of a group of people talking. Through my night sights I could tell they where tourists dressed in t shirts and shorts on the path we were observing. I called out to them. All British all elderly and all lost An elderly lady heard my Scouse accent and asked where I was from.

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