Saturday, October 31, 2009

Spooky Stories From Medieval Castles On Halloween!

If you've been reading our Medieval Castle Blog during the month of October you will know that we have been recounting 'white lady' ghost stories at some of Britain's medieval castles. Well, for those of you who haven't had enough and want yet more spooky stories for your Halloween bedtime reading, let us point you in the right direction ....

Haunted Castles In England
Haunted Castles In Scotland
Haunted Castles In Ireland
Haunted Castles In Wales

On a personal note, one of the most 'spooky' castles I have ever visited has to be Hermitage Castle in Scotland. It is difficult to explain but the moment you set eyes on the castle it really grips you and holds your attention. It has a powerful, eery appearance and when you see it close up and then enter inside the ruins the atmosphere is very intense. Hermitage Castle is set close to a river, in open countryside and with views to distant fields and hills all around. It has to be one of the most distinctive of medieval castles I have ever seen - though not one that I would relish revisiting. There was a coldness to it that even now is clear in the memory as I write this post. See our dedicated page on Hermitage Castle and read about 2 of its ghost stories.

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Sunday, October 11, 2009

A Haunted Castle For TV's "Most Haunted"

It's October again with Halloween just around the corner. So we're going to discuss all things 'spooky' this month on our Medieval Castle Blog. From legends to true, live witness accounts we've got some great medieval castle ghost stories to share with you!

First we will look at Carlisle Castle - a fabulous piece of medieval castle architecture in Britain in the county of Cumbria. With no less than 900 years of history to its name, Carlisle Castle has seen some truly turbulent times and has associations with many famous people. These include King David I (King of the Scots) who died there, William Wallace who once tried to attack the castle, Mary Queen of Scots who was imprisoned there for a time at the behest of Queen Elizabeth I, Bonnie Prince Charlie who also attacked the castle, and, in the 20th century, Rudolf Hess who during WW2 made an overnight stop at the castle on his way South having been taken prisoner in Scotland where he landed his plane. One can well imagine the intensity of some of those historic visits! It's not surprising then that Carlisle Castle is rumoured to be haunted. So much so that the TV series "Most Haunted" visited the castle this summer to film one of their shows (due to be aired some time this month). The shows producers are giving little away but have admitted during their stay, the team experienced mysterious footsteps in the gatehouse, strange phenomena in the Keep and something very unusual around one of the cherry trees in the castle's grounds. If you think it might not be genuine, think again ... staff at the castle have reported seeing mysterious figures on many occasions, especially on the top floor of the Keep.

Having visited Carlisle Castle myself I can honestly say that it has an intense atmosphere about it. The dungeons are particularly eery. See our photographs of the castle dungeons and you will know what I mean!

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Friday, October 31, 2008

Haunted Castles On Halloween

For some people Halloween is just another day; for others it's a special occasion when they might go to a Halloween party or watch a scary movie with friends. For some people though it's the opportunity to try and witness first hand the 'paranormal'. According to many websites there are special haunted castle trips available in Britain and of course Halloween is a popular time for booking these.

I can't say I would ever go on such a trip but apparently many people do and they really enjoy it. They don't all get to see ghosts of course but at the very least they can say they've visited a castle that's reputed to be haunted.

Chillingham Castle is one of Britain's most haunted castles and offers public tours of 'haunted areas of the castle and grounds'. It's also in one of Britain's most notable counties - Northumberland. If you're ever in the area it's well worth considering. For more information go to the castle's own official website and page.

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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Haunted Castles - Chillingham Castle

The second of our features on haunted castles in the lead up to Halloween and all things ghostly is about Chillingham Castle in Northumberland. Even the castle's name has 'chilling' in it - how spooky is that?!

A 12th century monastery and Norman stronghold, Chillingham Castle only became a fortified castle some 200 hundred years later. It has a rich history tied to key events on both sides of the England/Scotland border. King Edward I of England stayed there when he was on his way to do battle with William Wallace in Scotland. Side-tracking for just a moment, anyone interested in Scottish history and particularly the life of William Wallace should pay a visit to the marvellous Wallace Monument in Stirling, Scotland. Having been there myself I can vouch for it being a worthwhile experience - you even get to see what is claimed to be Wallace's broadsword that he used in battle.

Back to Chillingham Castle ... stories abound about it being haunted. Two of the most notable ghosts claimed to have been seen at the castle are that of the 'Blue Boy' and that of Lady Mary Berkeley. Both are said to date back to events from the time of King Charles II of England. To read the full detail of both 'ghost stories' read our haunted Chillingham Castle page.

There are a number of haunted rooms in Chillingham Castle including the Great Hall, Minstrels Gallery and Chapel. Indeed, a good friend who once stayed overnight at Chillingham Castle said they were convinced the castle is haunted and that parts of the castle definitely had an eery feeling that they could not explain. Coming from the friend in question who is not given to flights of fancy and having read other accounts, I am more than a little inclined to believe that Chillingham Castle is possibly one of the most haunted places in all of Britain!

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