Share

Sunny spells

Sat

12°C | 7°C

Thunderstorm

Sun

13°C | 6°C

Light showers

Mon

17°C | 7°C

Home   Sheerness   News   Article

Schoolgirl Leisha Barnard gets response to her message in bottle from Sheerness... from the Netherlands 15 years on

11 December 2013
by Lewis Dyson

Leisha Barnard, of Medway Road, Sheerness, and cousin Emma Lambkin read a magazine article about pen pals and thought it would be a good idea to try to find one.

They each released a letter about themselves off the coast of Sheerness in 1998.

Leisha Barnard had 15 years to wait for a response from her message in a bottle

Leisha Barnard had 15 years to wait for a response from her message in a bottle

Although they were a little bit upset when they did not get a reply, they soon forgot about it.

Little did Leisha know that about 200 miles away on the island of Texel off the coast of the Netherlands, an 11-year-old boy named Joriam Jubbega found her message while beachcombing with friends.

He tried writing back but water had faded some of her address, so it never got delivered.

The bottle travelled all the way to The Netherlands... and stayed there for 15 years

The bottle travelled all the way to The Netherlands... and stayed there for 15 years

It was only last month when Mr Jubbega, now 26 and living in Harderwijk in the centre of Holland, saw the original letter again and wondered if he could finally reply using modern technology.

He sent her a Facebook message, in English, saying: “You don’t know me, and I don’t know if you are the right Leisha Barnard but several years ago I found a message in a bottle that was written by a girl that has your name.”

The message Leisha left in the bottle all those years ago

The message Leisha left in the bottle all those years ago

He went on to say: “It’s not like this is my life quest. I just always wondered if this letter could have travelled that far.”

In a later message he joked: “When I read you liked the Spice Girls I was like blurgh. But I don’t think I wrote that in the letter I sent to you.”

After initially not seeing the message because it was sent to her “others” folder, Leisha discovered it recently.

“I was actually jumping around when I got this message. I got really excited and then a bit emotional because things like this never happen. It’s crazy” - Leisha Barnard

She said: “I was actually jumping around when I got this message. I got really excited and then a bit emotional because things like this never happen. It’s crazy.”

The 23-year-old, who works at Lamborn and Hill Estate Agents in Sittingbourne, added: “I don’t think there would have been another way to find me. I know I’m the only Leisha Barnard on Facebook – not that I ever search for myself.”

She joked she studied drama and would love to make a movie out of these events one day.


Stories you might have missed 

Children devastated after intruders butcher pet hens at primary school 

Fatal knife attack on young DJ 'lasted minutes, not seconds' 

Jail for 'dangerous' robber who groped victim at knifepoint

Mum's shock after son, 7, runs up £365 bill in 24 hours


 

Click here for more news from Sheerness.

Click here for more news from around the county.

Comments 
Sorry, comments are not enabled for this article.

Login or register to post commentsPost Comment

Forgotten Password?

Forgotten Username?

Don't have an account? Please Register first!

The KM Group does not moderate comments.
Please click here for our house rules.

Thank you. Your comment has been received and will appear on the site shortly.

 

Terms of Comments
We do not actively moderate, monitor or edit contributions to the reader comments but we may intervene and take such action as we think necessary, please click here for our house rules.. If you have any concerns over the contents on our site, please either register those concerns using the report abuse button, contact us here, email multimediadesk@thekmgroup.co.uk or call 01634 227989.