Cambridge Coincidences Collection

Well I Never!

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

Same Birthday

We have three generations but four people with the same birthday in my family. My mother: Winifred Smith (nee Jennings (born Hereford, Herefordshire) 7th August 1933 Myself: Paul Andrew John Smith (born Hereford, Herefordshire) 7th August 1955 My eldest daughter: Natasha Alison Dawn Smith (born Truro, Cornwall) 7th August 1986 My son: Simon Ian John Smith (born Truro, Cornwall) 7th August 1987 I also got married (now divorced) on 7th August 1984 Neither myself, or my two children were planned! My daughter was born late and my son early and all of us were natural births!

Car plates match

I live in one of three similar houses in a village. Without collaberation, each family owns a dark blue car with the registration beginning WG07.

Prayer answered or Coincidence ?

As a newly converted catholic in the 1990s, when my father needed a serious operation, I decided to have a mass said for him. The operation was due for February of that year and so in early February I requested a mass be dedicated to my father, rather hoping that it would be at one of the February masses. My father was not religious and would not have welcomed or understood this request. I said in prayer, " I know my dad is very anti God but please let me know you are with him " The date of the mass allocated to my father was 26th March of that year. My father's operation did not take place in February - it was rescheduled for - 26th March at 6 p.m - the very time the mass was being said.


My son has two children by two different partners, both children were born on 14th February, five years apart. My son shares his birthday with his neice, 34 years years apart.

Old Friend

My name is Beryl. I attended Holly Lodge High School in Liverpool. Whilst in sixth form I had 2 close friends, Shelagh and Pat. We left school in 1956. We three attended different Universities and lost touch for many years. We were all aware that we had married but because we were no longer close we neither attended weddings nor knew the nanes or professions of the three husbands. During the academic year 1986-87 I studied for a Master's Degree in Manchester University. One of my tutors was Professor Tom Christie. A man for whom I had great admiration. Following an inspiring lecture one morning I was discussing the content with a friend, at that time she was a lecturer in the Shcool of Education, and the conversation turned from the professional to the personal. This lecturer mentioned the nickname of Professor Christie's wife, Boz, in respect of something totally unconnected with the matter in hand. I did not immediately invest this name with any importance. However, much later in the conversation, I asked (apropos of nothing) the lecturer if she was aware of the proper name of Boz.

Coincidence Squared?

For the past week I have (for the first time in my life) been researching psychopaths on the internet. I am doing this because of a piece of writing I want to do and have never done research of this type before. This morning I heard an article on Radio 4's Today programme about the analysis of coincidence and less than five minutes later there was a trailer for the programme "Saturday Live" on which Jon Ronson, the author of "The Psychopath Test" was to be interviewed. </p> <p>Coincidence squared?

ex-colleagues, same event

While working at our local theatre costume hire last Sunday, I encountered an ex colleague whom I hadn't seen for many years. She was hiring a 1940s costume for a 'Secret Cinema' event in London the following weekend. While she was looking for her costume, a second woman came in to hire a similar costume for the same event. She turned out to be another colleague from the same workplace. None of us had been in touch since we left about 15 years ago.


I have a neighbour who shares my birth date (not a big coincidence), BUT we have discovered that we were both born, (22 years apart) on Easter Sunday 21st April, 1935 and 1957. There were only four or five Easter Sundays on 21st April in the last century.

Same people

We were in Dartmouth, Devon walking through the town which is having major road closures. The road from the lower ferry was particularly affected with a road which is normally one-way now open to traffic both ways. A gentleman with a huge caravan had come off the ferry and his sat-nav failed to tell him that the one-way road was now two-way. After he had gone round the block twice ! my husband stopped him and explained that he needed to switch off his sat nav and turn left instead of right. Approx two weeks later we pitched up at a campsite in Devon and went for a walk. When we returned we had new neighbours - the same people with the huge caravan who we had helped in Dartmouth.

Funeral music

After my father died I stayed with my mother and we planned the funeral etc. One piece of music we chose was Geoffrey Burgon's Nunc Dimitis, famous from the television series "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy" which my father had enjoyed. It is a very emotional piece and my mother and I discussed the effect this would have on us during the funeral. I suggested that we listen to it repeatedly before the funeral to get used to it but before doing so it was time for bed. Between the time of my father's death and his funeral I wasn't sleeping well so kept the radio on all night. I went to sleep but woke up in the middle of the night to hear the end of one programme on the World Service and the introduction of the next: "Meet The Composer" with Geoffrey Burgon. I listened to the programme which included Burgon talking about his own father's death and played his Nunc Dimitis. I then went back to sleep. At breakfast the following morning I told my mother about what I assumed had been a dream.