I tried to secretly dump mum's creepy doll - but it went viral

A picture of Hannah the doll
Pictures of the doll went viral after it was spotted for sale in a Morningside charity shop

A woman has revealed how she secretly tried to get rid of her mum's "hideous" doll but was rumbled when the story went viral.

Nathalie Ramirez thought she had managed to make the figurine, named Hannah, disappear by donating it to an Edinburgh charity shop.

But the doll was soon spooking passers-by as it gazed out of the window, becoming a "creepy" social media hit before it was snapped up by a celebrity psychic.

Nathalie said her mum was not pleased to discover Hannah's fate but was starting to see the funny side and "smiling through gritted teeth".

Nathalie told BBC Scotland News her 74-year-old mother, Angela Henderson, had long been an avid doll collector, and had more than a hundred mini-figures in a glass cabinet at the family home near Oxgangs.

But Nathalie found the realistic child-like doll, originally called Hannah, "hideous" when her mum bought it 12 years ago.

Her mother has now moved to the Isle of Mull to live with her daughter, so Nathalie, 51, took the opportunity while clearing her house to "accidentally" slip the doll into a package bound for the St Columba's charity shop in Morningside.

“I always thought it was horrifying and that she would never notice if I just stuffed it in a box,” Nathalie said.

“St Columba’s came round to take stuff off to the shop and the doll was in the first box I gave to the guy. But I did think whoever opened it, I would give them a heart attack."

Doll in shop window
Shop manager Simone Varga put a note on the doll saying "I am not creepy"

Her cunning plan was foiled when the doll, by now renamed Annabelle, started to attract attention on social media for its eerie human-like appearance.

Manager Simone Varga said she “wondered if the doll would come alive” before it was sold.

The shop reduced the price from £180 to £90 and gave the doll a sign saying "I'm not creepy" in a bid to move it on.

But as the story went viral, it was eventually bought for £200 by celebrity psychic Deborah Davies.

“I thought I had managed to get away with it and the next thing is it is on the front page of the paper," said Nathalie.

“Poor mum was not amused, although I think she is coming round to see that she has actually done something good by raising money for charity.”

One consolation is that another very lifelike doll owned by Angela - called Baby Emily - did make the journey to her new home without any mishaps.

Nathalie has revealed that the dress worn by the doll belonged to her younger sister Michelle when she was a child.

Hannah – a name picked “at random” by Angela – is also wearing a pair of Clark’s baby shoes and is supposed to be about six or seven years old.

Michelle has also moved to Tobermory from the capital and is living with Nathalie and Angela, meaning there has been little chance of avoiding any awkward conversations about the doll's mysterious disappearance.

“With the three of us in the house at the moment, every time it comes up, me and my sister just start laughing,” Nathalie said.

“Mum was initially quite annoyed. But I think now she is having to smile about it, but through gritted teeth.

“She volunteered with St Columba’s for many years and the doll has raised much more for them than we would have sold it for, so I think it has worked out.

Meanwhile psychic Ms Davies, who has appeared on Unexplained: Caught on Camera and Real Housewives of Cheshire, told BBC Scotland she plans to keep it on display at her home.

But like others, she is a little apprehensive about the doll's appearance, and will place it "under 24 hr surveillance".

She said she planned to speak to the doll and carry out an "investigation" because she believed it had a human soul attached to it.