The 10 Most Haunted Castles In The UK
Ancient forts and castles are steeped in history, each with its own tale of bloody battles, betrayal, murder, execution and torture. So it's no wonder that so many castle across the United Kingdom are said to be haunted. Below are the ten castle across the country with the most famous reputations for their resident ghosts and spirits.
10. Edinburgh Castle, Midlothian
The Scottish capital is said to be one of the most haunted cities in the world, and the castle which overlooks it also has its fair share of spooks, many tourists have reported plenty of paranormal activity over the years.
There are several ghosts who are said to haunt this historic fortress, the most commonly sighted are an old man in apron, a piper who mysteriously lost his life after getting lost in the tunnels below the castle and a headless drummer boy.
9. Warwick Castle, Warwickshire
The castle as it stands today was built in 1068, but settlements on the site date back more than 150 years before this. The castle saw its fair share of battles, it was attacked in 1264, besieged in 1642 and damage by fire in 1871. And of course with an interesting history comes interesting spooks.
Probably the castle's best known ghost is that of Sir Fulke Greville, who is said to haunt the tower. Greville is a former resident of the castle who was murdered within the castle's walls in 1628 by a servant. There's also said to be a negative entity that resides in the dungeon, poltergeist activity has been witnessed, as well as extreme temperature changes, light anomalies, and the sensation of being physically pushed or grabbed.
8. Pengersick Castle, Cornwall
This fortified Manor House located between the villages of Germoe and Praa Sands is sand to be one of the most haunted buildings in Cornwall. It's been occupied by the Pengersick family since the 12th century and boasts quite a haunted past with over 20 resident spooks.
Sightings include the ghost of a monk who has been seen wandering around the medieval gardens, guests have reported seeing a woman standing at one of the windows staring out at night. There's also the ghost of a young girl who haunts the basement, strange light anomalies have been caught on camera, electrical equipment inexplicably fails, and there's even said to be the ghost of a cat and a dog.
7. Muncaster Castle, Cumbria
Muncaster Castle, located near the coastal town of Ravenglass, is said to be haunted by Tom Fool, AKA Thomas Skelton. His spirit is rarely seen, but is blamed for poltergeist activity in the castle, he plays tricks on staff and visitors in the castle.
One of the most haunted area is the tapestry room, where people have reported hearing footsteps, seeing the door handle turning, and even witnessed doors opening seemingly on their own. Other guests have reported hearing children crying in the dead of night, as well as the sound of a woman singing as if to comfort a poorly child. Could these sounds be connected with a young girl called Margaret Pennington who died as a child in the castle.
6. Glamis Castle, Scotland
Glamis Castle is situated in the village of Glamis, Angus and is the home of the Earl and Countess of Strathmore and Kinghorne, the Bowes-Lyons family. The category A listed building is said to be haunted by many ghosts, including the ghost of the woman with no tongue who's been seen walking around the grounds.
There's also said to be a Grey Lady, thought to be the ghost of a former resident who was burned at the stake for being a witch in 1537. The spirit of a young boy has also been spotted sitting on the stone seat by the door of the Queen's room, he's believed to be a former servant at the castle.
The 4th Earl of Crawford, Alexander Lindsay, is also said to haunt the castle. He was said to be cruel man in life, but since passing has been sighted as a dark figure standing over beds in the dead of night.
5. Windsor Castle, Berkshire
Windsor Castle dates back to the reign of William the Conqueror and is said to be home to many ghost, as well as plenty of monarchs throughout British history.
The notable ghosts that haunt the castle include that of King Charles I who haunts part of the castle. Elizabeth I haunts the royal library and has been spotted by many members of the royal family. The groans and dragging footsteps of King Henry VIII have also been heard around the castle, the face of King George III has also been seen peering out of the window in the room where he was often detained.
An area of the castle known as the Deanery is said to be haunted by the spirit of a young boy. The Norman tower is said to be haunted by a former Royalist prisoner. In the kitchen the ghost of a man with a horse has been seen who walk straight through a solid wall.
The long walk is also supposed to be haunted by the spirit of grenadier guard who killed himself here in the 1920s, he's been spotted at least twice since his death.
4. Castell Coch, Cardiff
The 19th-century gothic revival castle was built above the village of Tongwynlais, surrounded by protected beech woodland containing rare plant species and unusual geological features and even today. It does look like something out of a fairytale, although 30 years on, I'm not sure if the claim of 13 ghosts was an exaggeration or a forgotten local myth but either way the castle is clearly home to many ghosts.
Castell Coch was designed by the architect William Burgess as a country retreat for the Third Marquis of Bute, John Patrick Crichton-Stuart and his family but none of these haunt the building, in fact after the the Marquis died, his widow, Lady Gwendolyn was quick to leave the castle after complaining about a ghostly woman in white. She is said to be a servant who lived in the castle and has been haunting the building since the death of her son. He drowned in the castle grounds in a pond.
Another regularly sighted ghost at the castle is the spirit of a man dressed in cavalier uniform. It's believed that the man had been lucky enough to lay his hand on a large amount of treasure, which he buried somewhere in the grounds of Castle Coch.
It's said that even to this day he comes back to the castle from beyond the grave to check that his hidden riches are safe. The treasure is also watched over by three ghostly eagles.
3. Dover Castle, Kent
Records show that a settlement has existed on the site of Dover Castle since Saxon times, it has a history of involvement in pirates, Napoleonic battles, and even housed a secret underground command centre in the Second World War.
The battlements are said to be haunted by a the ghost of a headless drummer boy who's believed to have been decapitated when he was attacked for the riches he was carrying while on an errand for his master. The castle is also said to be the home of a woman in red who has been spotted around the castle, as well as a cavalier.
Meanwhile below ground in the WWII tunnels, the ghost of many soldiers have been seen and their presence felt. Visitors have reported hearing disembodied voices, loud screams, and doors slamming, as well as experiencing sudden drops in temperature.
2. Dudley Castle, West Midlands
The ruins of the castle stand in the town of Dudley, fortification on this site dates back to 1071 following the Norman invasion in 1066. The castle is said to be home to many spirits including the Grey Lady who is believed to be the ghost of Dorothy Beaumont, who once lived in the castle and died there following complications after giving birth to her daughter. Her ghost is most often reported at the castle's keep in the form of unexplained sounds, and icy blasts of air which are often accompanied by a strange blue mist.
However, the most haunted part of the castle is the chapel undercroft, where you'll find a stone coffin which is said to have once help the body of one of the castle's most infamous residents, John Somery. His ghost has been spotted as disembodied legs legs beside the coffin. Others have reported feeling him tug at their clothing as they walk through this part of the castle.
Like Dover Castle, Dudley also has the ghost of a drummer boy who was said to have been killed by a stray bullet during the Civil War. He's mostly heard at night beating out drum rolls as if in battle. People have also reported seeing dark shadowy figures, hearing strange sounds throughout the castle, and even witnessed a chair flipping over during a paranormal investigation.
1. Chillingham Castle, Northumberland
The medieval castle in the village of Chillingham, was the seat of the Grey and Bennet families from the 15th century until the 1980s when it became the home of Sir Humphry Wakefield Bt. Sir Humphry has spent the last few decades restoring the Grade I listed castle, it is now a hotel.
The castle's haunted reputation is well known and it has played host to the 'Most Haunted' team as well as other paranormal television shows. The most prevalent at the castle include the ghost of a Spanish witch who is said to have put a curse on the castle which is said to bring bad luck on anyone who steals from the castle.
There's also the ghost of Lady Mary Berkeley, she was a former resident of the castle whose husband had an affair with her sister, she died of heartbreak in the Grey Apartment. There's now a painting of her in the room which guests have claimed to see her come out of, other visitors to the castle say they have heard her grey dress rustling in the dead of night.
You might also want to look out for the ghost of a little girl who has been caught on camera in the castle's great hall. And the ghost of John Sage, a soldier who served under King Edward, but after taking a spear to his leg in battle with the Scots, was forced to retreat from the frontline and took up the role of the castle's torture in its fully equipped dungeon.
The castle's most famous ghost is the Blue Boy, it's said that guests see blue flashes of light above their beds or coming from within the castles walls. It turns out that these flashes are the ghost of a boy who was bricked up alive inside one of the walls.
During renovations at the castle the skeleton of a boy with blue clothes was found inside a three meter thick wall, the bones on his fingers were worn away from his attempts at scratching at the wall in a desperate bid for freedom.
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