Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Ghost stories from Penrhyn Castle

Here is a taster of some of the stories I have collected so far from staff and volunteers at the castle:

Tea Rooms
Simon works in the tea rooms.  He told me that experienced something strange in the tea rooms a couple of years ago. He was locking up for the day and was on his own when he sensed that someone was standing behind him and saw a shadow out of the corner of his eye. It made him jump and he thought it was the man he had been working with who had gone to the office earlier. He turned round to speak to him and there was nobody there. When the man came back Simon told him what had happened and he assured him that he had been to the office and had only just come back into the tea room. He also told me about a chef who had worked in the kitchen a couple of years ago who saw a girl walking into a store room in the kitchen followed by a man. He went to see who they were and what they were doing, but they had vanished into thin air!

Trisha (former Room Steward) told me that when she was working in the Servants’ Hall a couple of years ago she was bending down near the door of the baggage store room on a gloomy Autumn day, when the back of her neck suddenly felt “prickly” and she became aware of someone standing right behind her. She stood up and turned around and there was nobody there. She said that she has spoken to other stewards who have had similar experiences in that room.
Railway Museum

Railway Museum

I have spoken to some of the engineers who work in the museum and they have had several experiences of seeing people who disappear when approached, especially as they are locking up for the day. This happened only a couple of weeks ago to a man who only works there on Sundays. He made sure that all the visitors had left as he was locking up at the end of the day, when he noticed a man in the far right hand corner of the museum. He went towards the man to ask him to leave but he could not see him. He assumed that he had walked to the other end of the museum near the carriages, so he went across the yard to try and meet the man as he came out. There was nobody there. He checked all around the exhibits and the man had disappeared. The engineers also mentioned seeing small child sized figures, which they often glimpse out of the corner of their eyes, moving around the stable yard.

David (manager of the Railway Museum) told me that he made a video in February 2005 when there was a heavy snowfall. He filmed himself walking around the museum with the newly fallen snow and them went up to the dung tower to film the view from the top. When he passed the Clock tower he noticed that there was a bright light coming from under the door and that he could hear muffled voices from inside the room. He could see shadows moving inside the room. He said that he room was always dark because there is no natural light coming into the room as the windows are blocked up. He continued to film as he went past the room but he did not pluck up the courage to open the door to see who was inside. When he went downstairs into the yard he said that his were still the only footprints in the snow. He had the key for the clock room so nobody else could have got into it. He says that he will find the video and bring it for me to see. I will put it on this website if he gives me permission to do so.

The Dinorwic Carriage
When Iorworth (former manager of the railway museum) worked there a man came out of the museum and said that there was a mannequin in the coach, which looked too realistic. His son was crying because he said that it had frightened him. He said that it was a man in period costume sitting in the Dinorwic Carriage. Iorworth checked and it was locked. He had the key so nobody could have got into it. When I visited the museum with a psychic friend she could see the man very clearly wearing a top hat and a jacket with shiny buttons on it. She said that he looked very authoritarian and had a hard stare. She could understand why a small child would be frightened of him.

Dinorwic Carriage

Inside the Dinorwic Carriage

Dafydd (engineer in the Railway Museum) has seen a small boy with dark hair running near the Charles Engine. He has seen him at least three times. This area used to be where the carriages were stored. He has seen him twice at the front of the engine and once at the back. He is running away from someone or something and disappears into the wall.
Area by Charles engine where small boy was seen 

David (Manager of the Railway Museum) told us that a girl volunteer in the museum had seen an American family go into the coach store area, only to run out a few minutes later screaming, saying that there was a man standing by the Beckton engine. She went to check but found nobody there. They were terrified and refused to go back into the museum. He also said that several people have mentioned a mannequin in the Dinorwic carriage. A volunteer called Billy has seen a man through the windows whilst locking up the museum. He was standing in a corner. He went back to check because he thought he was a visitor and that he had locked him in, but found nobody there. Dafydd was locking up with him but he did not see the man.
Beckton Engine

Education Offices

Mike (Head Gardener) said that when he lived in the apartment in what is now the Education Department a few years ago, his bedroom was in the Education Office. He was in bed one night when his dog started howling. He listened, thinking that there might be somebody outside, when he heard noises coming from above him, as if somebody was in the roof space above his bedroom. It sounded like heavy footsteps walking about up there, but one foot was dragging heavily, as though the person had a “game leg” as he described it. He wondered if it could be something like a bird that had got into the roof space, although it sounded much heavier. The next morning he looked up into the roof space through the hatch door but there was nothing there. He said that it was a low roof. The space would not have been high enough for anyone to walk about in. They would have had to crawl through it! 

Education corridor

He was in the kitchens a few seasons later when he heard one of the kitchen staff ask the cook where a certain cooking implement was. She replied that it was on the worktop as she had just put it down after using it herself. The assistant could not find it. The cook said that it must be George up to his old tricks again! Mike asked who George was. The Cook replied that he had worked at the Castle in the 1920’s to 30’s and that he was always playing tricks on other staff. He had a bad leg and walked with a limp! Mike wondered if it was George who had walked over his bedroom ceiling a few months before.

Catrin (Learning and Communications Officer) has heard footsteps in the corridor many times, but she does not go to see who it is. She just hides behind her desk! She has only seen something once when she was coming out of the ladies toilets and a dark shadow went past the glass panels in the door. She went out to see who it was and nobody was around at all. She was all alone in the department.
Stairs to the Education offices

More stories later.....

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