GHOST ENCOUNTERS ROYALS & ROGUES
For many centuries kings and queens have assumed their responsibility is ordained by God, so spiritual leaders insist when placing crown upon forehead at the coronation. History remembers good royals, mediocre royals, bad and the rogue; but do royals receive special protection by way of privilege of position, from becoming a ghost, even the worst rogues? Is Divine Right any protection against the supernatural?
Available in ebook or print version
Carisbrooke Castle, Newport, Isle of Wight
The Ghost of the Battlements
A ghost is often seen roaming the battlements of Carisbrooke Castle, and some people believe it to be the sad lost soul of doomed King Charles I who was imprisoned here in the mid 1600s. But those who have seen the ghost up close say it seems to be from an earlier period than the 17th century.
Old Grammar School, Newport, Isle of Wight
The Not-So-Great-Escape #2
Newport has some fascinating hauntings, for ghosts of all variety roam its venerable buildings and streets. Ghostly candlelight is seen at the windows of the Old Grammar school on St James’ Street; nearby the Sun Inn building on Holyrood Street is the scene of terrifying supernatural dramas; and some people have encountered a sinister dark shape who stalks the old church yard – now Church Litten park – where once stood the town’s archery butts.
Quarr Abbey, Ryde, Isle of Wight
The White-petalled Coffin
Quarr Abbey near Ryde, once was the Island’s greatest house of God, among the first Benedictine monasteries in England, dedicated to the Virgin Mary. It was torn down during the 1500s on the orders of Captain Worsley ‘The Fortifier’; the tombs of the Wight’s great Norman lords were cracked open and plundered, though that destruction caused a curious karma for the Worsleys.
Sometimes a ghostly funeral procession can be seen near the old abbey ruins, following a coffin scattered with white petals, which may be a clue.
Appuldurcombe House, Godshill, Isle of Wight
The Power of Love
Appuldurcombe House was the principal seat of the Wight Worsleys, the most powerful, most royally-favoured family on the Island. This beautiful house suffered enough destruction as to leave it uninhabitable to the living. The dead, however, seem still to be enjoying its former comforts and grandeur. A blighted house may keep away the quick, but has no effect, it seems, upon the dead.
Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes, Isle of Wight
The world-famous Royal Yacht Squadron in Cowes was originally a Tudor gun platform built during the time Sir Richard Worsley was Captain of the island. It was designed to repel French warfleets, so irksome to big king Henry VIIIth. A Tudor ghost had not vacated the building; one of two ghosts separated only by architecture and class, but they shared an unexpected commonality and problem: murder. And there’s a body in the basement.
Yarmouth Castle, Yarmouth, Isle of Wight
The Ghost Gunner’s Woe
Yarmouth Castle was another gun fortress built on the orders of big Henry VIII to defend the town against French invasion marauding. Some say that once built it was redundant as there never was another attack. But the ghost of Yarmouth Castle had seen action somewhere.
The ghost of Yarmouth castle terrified the troops stationed here during WWII.
Needles Old Battery, Alum Bay, Isle of Wight
Last of the Lamp-wick Trimmers
The Needles Old Battery is among the most spectacular of fortresses built high atop the Needles. It was designed as part of the Solent defenses, which with the Hurst Castle gun battery across the water, created a deadly trap for any would-be invader. The trouble was no one invaded once it was built, and those charged with defending it, got bored and caused trouble; like the ghost who haunted the battery.
Shanklin Chine, Shanklin, Isle of Wight
The Spy Who Stayed Out In The Cold
Shanklin Chine is among the many natural wonders of the Wight, inspiring poets and painters, but its picturesque qualities were best appreciated by the Allied commanders planning the Normandy Landings for D-Day. The problem, as it ever was and has been, leakage – damned spies informing the enemy, as the ghost of Shanklin Chine discovered all is not fair in love and war.
Osborne House, Cowes, Isle of Wight
On Her Majesty’s Secret Disservice
Osborne House in East Cowes was the lair of the great queen Victoria, ruler of an empire so great the sun never set upon its land. How much bigger would it have been if not for the confounding efforts of underlings in her majesty’s secret disservice?
The ghosts of Osborne House remembered the queen, good and bad.
Tower of London
The World’s Most Haunted Castle
This exact location pictured above was once described as the “saddest sight on earth,”. Outside the old chapel of St Peter in Chains, is the site of celebrity’s end. Some say the ghost of the block-site on Tower Green is the ghost of Queen Anne Boleyn, murdered on the orders of Henry VIII and Archbishop Cranmer. But others were murdered here, cruelly so in some unlucky cases. Most were buried hereabouts, too; in bits and pieces. Some who did the murdering were proud of their skills, and still are. Ask the ghost of the block in the Tower.
The Queen’s House, Greenwich, London
The Rogue & The Royal
Some say this beautiful palace stands on this site where dashing Sir Walter Ralegh layed down his best cloak for Her Majesty to cross the puddle. Known by the Puritans as the “House of Delight”. The Queen’s House and the old Royal Naval College which stands on the site of Placentia, a Tudor manor house favoured by Henry VIII and Elizabeth I, who was born there. Two ghosts, two confessions; one rogue, one royal.
Windsor Castle, Windsor, Surrey
St. George & the Dragon’s Curse.
England’s most famous fortress, home of the monarchy since mad Edward the 3rd. Not the first or the last to have gazed into the storm and gone mad while living here on Windsor Hill. The Windsors some might say inherited a curse with the castle. Historic records seem to prove something’s off the normal. The ghost of the chapel had his own thoughts on normality; and one ghost recalled unknown horrors committed where now this castle stands.
The Queen’s Hamlet, Versailles, Paris, France
Adventures In Time.
One theory to explain ghosts describes them as ‘atmospheric photographs’, emotionally-charged moments captured within the electromagnetic atmosphere of a location. Queen Marie Antoinette experienced a trauma sufficient to imprint herself into the curious ‘peasant-village’ playground in the palace of Versailles. Others have seen her here too, Oxford academics who published an account of all they saw, ghosts included; then probably wished they had not.
Swainston Manor, Swainston, Isle of Wight
Time Travel Chapel
Swainston Manor, near Newport once was the summer palace of the bishops of Winchester; and the venue for an argument between the King of England, Edward I, or ‘Longshanks’ and the bishop John di Pontiserra; an argument which seems to have echoed down the ages, for sometimes the medieval party reappears in the old chapel where it happened.