Haunted castles in the UK

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The UK is well known for its beautiful landscapes, historical places, and artistic culture. The UK really is a shining example of where history meets modern day. There is one more thing the UK is known for; haunted people and places.

With such a rich history, it is no wonder there are tales of hauntings. Some of the most famous and beloved places in all of the UK are said to have a ghost or two. Castles are tourist attractions, past homes and physical reminders of the history of a region. Those castles may also be home to wandering spirits.

Muncaster Castle in Cumbria

This castle is said to be haunted by the ghost of “The White Lady” and a Tom Foolery jester. The jester reportedly worked at the castle four hundred years ago and now likes to play tricks on visitors. Muncaster is said to be one of the most haunted castles in Britain.

Small parties of six to eight people can stay overnight and hold a ghost vigil in the Tapestry Room. This room is reportedly the most haunted room in the castle. Scientists and paranormal researchers conduct field experiments here, and people can arrange to participate in these experiments.

Glamis Castle

Located near the village of Glamis in Scotland, this castle was made famous by being the setting for William Shakespeare’s Macbeth. There are many stories regarding hauntings of Glamis castle. One such story tells of the Earl of Glamis playing cards with the devil in a secret chamber.

There is another tale regarding this secret chamber. In this story, Scottish clansmen sought refuge in the castle. The card-playing Earl led them into the secret chamber. The room was then sealed and the clansmen were left to starve to death.

Chillingham Castle

This time-worn castle has stood since the 13th century. It has witnessed many border battles between England and Scotland, numerous deaths and even withstood cannon fire. Chillingham Castle has retained its appearance for the most part, since 1348.

One of the most enduring hauntings is referred to as the “Radiant Boy”. The story goes that at midnight, heart-wrenching cries can be heard echoing through the corridors near the Pink Room. Shortly after the cries, a bright vision of a boy dressed in blue could be seen. A boy’s remains were discovered behind the wall and were given a proper Christian burial. This ended the haunting until the Pink Room was once again rented out.

Appropriately named, this castle has many scary stories about its history. Some of these stories are told during the ghost tours held here each evening, all year long. Chillingham has been featured on paranormal television shows like “Most Haunted”. Special events are held here, like ghost-themed dinners where ghost hunters relate some of their experiences in the field.

Tutbury Castle in Staffordshire

This castle has been featured on various paranormal television shows. It has also been host to a “Most Haunted” convention. Tutbury is a popular destination for ghost hunters and curious tourists.

One of the most famous reported hauntings is of a queen. Mary, Queen of Scots, spent much of her imprisonment here and sightings of her ghost have been reported on the grounds. Mary was imprisoned at Tutbury four times by Queen Elizabeth I. Mary’s ghost has been most commonly noticed between 10:15 and 11 pm.

Another ghost sighting frequently reported by castle visitors is of a man dressed in full armor. He is seen as behaving in an authoritative manner and calls out to visitors, “Get thee hence!” This apparition has been dubbed “The Keeper”.

Windsor Castle

This regal castle has stood for nearly a thousand years. It is home to English royalty, both past, and present. Windsor Castle has witnessed its share of joyous and grievous occasions in its long and sordid existence.

Windsor is said to house many famous ghosts including Henry VIII and his wife, Anne Boleyn. Visitors and residents alike have reported seeing Anne peering sadly from windows. Henry VIII’s ghostly form has been reportedly seen walking the halls and even occasionally shouting angrily.

Berry Pomeroy Castle in Devon

The once-great castle is now little more than romantic ruins surrounded by lush woodlands. However, it is considered by some, to be one of the most haunted spots in Great Britain. Pomeroy castle has a long and troubled history. There are many ghosts said to wander the castle and grounds, but two, in particular, stand out.

The White Lady is said to be the spirit of Margaret Pomeroy. She is said to have been imprisoned in the castle dungeon. The story goes that Margaret was left to starve to death by a jealous sister. Margaret’s sister Eleanor was supposedly jealous of Margaret’s beauty and man. Eleanor locked Margaret in the dungeon until she died.

The identity of The Blue Lady is believed to be the daughter of a Norman Lord of the castle. One version of the story says that the Blue Lady was raped by her father and the resulting child was strangled in one of the upper rooms of Pomeroy Castle. Another version states that she strangled the child. Her ghostly apparition has been seen beckoning to visitors. Some see the Blue Lady as a death omen.

Edinburgh Castle in Edinburgh

Considered by some to be the most haunted castle in Scotland. Edinburgh castle has stood for over two thousand years. It has its share of ghosts and ghost stories.

One such story involves Janet Douglas, Lady of Glamis. Janet was accused of witchcraft and conspiracy to murder King James V. She was imprisoned in Edinburgh castle dungeon. Evidence was obtained and Janet was found guilty of all charges and burned at the stake. Her ghost is said to haunt the dungeon.

The other is the spirit of “The Lost Piper” who disappeared while exploring the tunnel under the castle. He went into the tunnel with his bagpipes and played as he walked. People above ground could track his progress by the sound of the music. About halfway through the tunnel, the music stopped. The search party never found a single trace of the piper. The music can still be heard today echoing from the tunnel under the castle.

Castles have captured the imaginations of modern-day people around the world. It can be rather difficult to imagine living in such enormous structures. Some castles have fallen into severe disrepair through the centuries and others are currently being occupied by descendants of the original builders.

The UK’s landscapes are dotted with these beautiful and magnificent castles. The hauntings only seem to make the histories of the castles even more fascinating to visitors. The next time you are planning a little ghost hunting adventure, consider some of these haunted destinations.

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