WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

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WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby GhostInTheMachine » Mon Nov 16, 2015 10:08 am

So, I will now reveal that we have been doing an investigation of.... Woodsford Castle, Dorset.

What an absolutely amazing building it is, owned by the Landmark Trust and rented to any good people who wish to spend some time there. So, Spirit Bear, myself and Chatelaine hired it for 4 nights and days' holiday, and what better way to enjoy the stay than to invite several other forum members and friends to come along and join us for some vigils and investigations on Tuesday night. After this, we stayed for another two nights and continued some more investigations and just chilled and relaxed in this huge, ancient building with its many rooms, great hall, turrets, a chapel, passages, hidden stairs and rooms.

It dates from the 13th Century, and was once a castle of a sort, a fortified large manor house with a guard room, solar, great hall and many chambers. It is said to be the oldest inhabited building in Dorset, and the only thatched castle in Britain.
It sits a few miles from the birthplace and home of the poet Thomas Hardy, deep in Dorset just outside Dorchester and not far from Maiden Castle, but in a tiny hamlet in lonely rural countryside.

Here it is, one I took while we were there:

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I will be putting my own report on here later on, probably tomorrow, but I wanted to kick off with just this picture and a comment or two, that we had an incredible time there, and I can say from my view it is one of the most active haunted buildings we have investigated. We had less occur on the vigils than during our stay while we were relaxed or doing our usual business, but we had a whole set of phenomena, and it is so intriguing I cannot take my attention off. Both Chatelaine and I are intent on investigating more, researching the history behind the building to see if we can explain some of the phenomena we witnessed.

In the meantime, please feel free to put your reports, pictures, feelings and ideas about this building or the investigation we did. Those who were there, please do. Other members are also welcome to comment with any input they may like to add.
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WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby Kitty » Mon Nov 16, 2015 2:44 pm

Sounds really exciting ! :smile: Can't wait to hear how you've got on.
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WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby karen » Sat Nov 21, 2015 6:54 pm

It should be named 6 Go Mad in Dorset.

It is a wonderful building Image
The log guest book was full of interesting stuff and ghostly experiences.

Kim, Louise and I arrived a day after the main party arrived (Chatelaine, Spirit Bear and Ghostinthemachine). Kim and I where shown to our rooms, when GTM announced that it was one the most haunted rooms in the house. Where an apparition was seen floating or sitting on the bed. Images of the Woman in Black play/film/book came to my mind so I elected to either sleep on the sofa in the lounge or somewhere else. Being the big coward that I am GTM elected herself to sleep in that particular room for the night and Spirit Bear would stay in the other haunted room that Kim was generously offered. Louise stayed in the bedroom above which was located in the oldest part of the house. So Chatelaine, myself and Kim stayed in the newer part which was just three - four centuries old but apparently had the ghost of a small person who liked the stairwell and toilet. After we settled and night fell the investigation began.

The Queens Room had the most horrible picture that I personally totally disliked and found it rather creepy.
Image

We started off in what was known as the queens bedroom, hence the creepy pictures. It was a room that I found particularly creepy. But we received nothing much their. I was sat near the door (quick getaway?) but had a good view of the lounge. Tom and I noticed that the light coming from the room was ever changing. It was a blue-ish light sometimes. At first I thought it maybe the log fire or the moon but that was discounted as the log fire gave off a yellowish/red glow. The moon was in the wrong direction. At one point the room became pitch black like someone was stood in the doorway blotting out light, then the blue light would flicker then it would be the log fire. We then progressed (I think) to the under croft,which was surprisingly warm,after we had a break in the kitchen. One of the rooms I felt a little uncomfortable in..a little on edge to be honest, but once again nothing happened.

It became apparent during the course of the evening/morning that any spirits where staying away from us. I felt that as soon as we relaxed our guard that would be when things would happen. We did hear a woman's sigh or singing when we where chatting in the lounge. We also felt that when we were in chapel bedroom that the gausse meter was a means of someone trying to communicate and some responses to questions where answered.

The castle itself has layers and layers of history so trying to pinpoint a specific moment in its long history was difficult. At various times in its history it has stood during all major events. The Dday landings it housed officers. The English civil war on a route between the siege at Weymouth. Plantagenet feudal lords used as courts of justice for the land owners. A fantastic history regarding Thomas hardy who surveyed the castle during its restoration and gave birth to a poem about the castle. So much history that it was hard to decipher who or what is the spirit or spirits that remain. It's a place that when your not expecting something to happen it will creep up on you. Unbidden.

It's not a place I would care to be alone in. I know I must jinx all our investigations as nothing much happens until I leave the room. I know I am well protected by my Dorset ancestors.
Last edited by karen on Tue Nov 24, 2015 10:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby Spirit Bear » Mon Nov 23, 2015 5:55 am

karen wrote:It should be named 6 Go Mad in Dorset.


We didn't go mad, Karen, we were already there! =)) 8-}
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Re: WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby Spirit Bear » Mon Nov 23, 2015 12:25 pm

This is my report on our investigation in Woodsford Castle, Dorset from Monday, November 16th to Thursday the 19th. I, along with Chatelaine and GiTM had rented the place out and had it to ourselves for 3 of the 4 nights, being joined by our fellow EG teammates Karen, Kim, and Louise on the 17th.

This must rate as one of our best investigations ever, and one of the most active properties we have ever done. The sheer volume of acoustic anomalies we heard, both as a group and as individuals, was almost beyond belief. I will try to keep the events as they occurred in chronological order. My thanks to GiTM for sharing the notes she made of times we heard or experienced anything.

The fun started almost the minute we three entered the building. After unpacking and wandering around exploring all the rooms, GiTM and I were sitting in the lounge, or King's Room, while Chatelaine was busy in the kitchen preparing the evening's meal. As we were relaxing, we distinctly heard a woman's voice that sounded like singing, which seemed to come from the Queen's Chamber rooms, the oldest part of the building, which were behind us as we sat. There was no mistaking it, it was fairly loud. GiTM heard it repeated a couple of more times, but I did not hear them. At first we thought it was Chatelaine, but when we went into the adjoining kitchen, she said she had been singing, but the voice we heard was not hers, it came from a completely different area of the house.

Later that evening, after dinner, the ladies decided to investigate some of the bedrooms, while I conducted a solo vigil in the undercroft, which was a series of 4 connecting rooms that had once done duty as a kitchen and pantry when the castle was first built in the 14th century. GiTM set up a locked-off camera in the area and then left me there, armed with only my REM EMF meter and a torch. But the vigil was a limp lettuce-I got no reactions on the EMF meter, or any reaction to my calling out. We have not yet listened to the audio of that vigil, but are hoping something was picked up. I packed it in after about 45 minutes, and rejoined my teammates in the main part of the building. I conducted two more short solo vigils in a pair of disused garderobes off the lounge, but these two were devoid of results.

The next day, our friends arrived. They were not happy to learn that all the bedrooms were haunted, so they decided to camp in the less haunted bedrooms on the King's Wing, along with Chatelaine, while GITM took over the Queen's Chamber, Louise was in the room at the very top of the building, while I moved into the Haunted Chapel, the most active room in the building from all accounts. :o

Before commencing the 2nd night's vigil, GiTM decided to take a nap in the Queen's Chamber. She smelled a strange scent, which she thought was something left by the custodians cleaning the house, but this scent was not to repeat itself. We started the vigil in the lounge, where we were bombarded by numerous raps, taps, voices, doors slamming. That night the wind was brisk and non-stop, we could hear it outside the building, but what we all heard indoors was not the wind. We then all headed for the undercroft, where we spread out thru the various rooms. Not much was encountered again in this area, tho Karen felt the presence of what she described as a "small person", very mischievous, but not really nasty. There are also stories of the area being haunted by a headless woman, but we picked up no sign of her.

Our next location was the stairwell leading to the King's Bedroom. We spread out on those stairs from the bottom to the top floor, while I took up station in the small bedroom, just outside the kitchen. Once again we heard voices, singing, raps and knockings, while GiTM, who was sitting on the stairs next to my post, was convinced someone was sitting on the stairs next to her.

Our next location was the Queen's Wing, and here it really started to kick off. The ladies assembled in the Queens bedroom, while I sat in the Haunted Chapel, where I could keep an eye on both the door to the Lounge, and the door to the outside. I also set up a laser grid on the stairs leading to the upper floor, as shadow figures have been seen there. After dispersing all their meters and getting themselves in tune, GiTM commenced calling out. After a few minutes, the ladies claimed to hear a door latch being jiggered, tho I did not hear it myself. Then I got a whiff of a flowery scent, like gardenias. I asked my teammates if any of them had smelled it-they all did, altho it was only for a second or so. I then heard what sounded like the rustle of skirts. I asked the ladies if they had crumpled paper or something, but they denied it. At the very end of our vigil in this area I again smelled a strange aroma-this time of some spicy element, maybe raw ginger, again for just a second.

We finished up with a session in the darkened lounge, and got our most incredible result here. During the calling out, the impression was of a man, not a noble, but a sort of reeve type, in charge of the house while the masters were away. This man came across as a domineering, misogynist, abusive type, who had done some wrong to a woman closely connected to him, possibly his daughter or wife. GiTM got the feeling that this woman had been made pregnant by this man, and locked in the Queens chamber until she died or was murdered. This man refused to go near any of our meters when we requested, considering us to be necromancers in league with the devil. However, during the time we attempted contact with this man, GiTM's Gauss meter started to chirp, getting louder and faster as we tried to make contact. We got the feeling that this spirit stayed in a locked room at the top of a winding stair in the corner of the lounge. After awhile the energies seemed to die out, and we turned on the lights. While the ladies discussed what had happened, I wandered over to a nearby bookcase, and saw a volume of Thomas Hardy's poetry, and took it out. There was a slip of paper in it, and I opened the book to that page. I was stunned, as were my teammates, to see a poem that Hardy had wrote about Woodsford! In it, a newly married woman asks her husband why she hears the voice of a woman, he tries to explain it away as the wind, tree branches, etc, but she refuses to accept that explanation, he finally tells her that she is indeed hearing the voice of a woman that he had once loved, but then had betrayed, the implication being that of a rape that led to a pregnancy and then a murder of the woman. The man then accuses his wife of being a witch, and why had he married her! He then leaves, never to be seen again. The next day, a woman's body is found nearby in a place called Rocky Shallow.

I have no idea why I was drawn to that book, nor what made me take it down from the bookcase. Was the spirit woman trying to get thru to us?

The next day, after our friends had left for home, it became obvious that I was to be the next one affected. After dinner, I took some ice cream down to the basement to put in the freezer. While I was doing this, I distinctly heard someone say "Tommmmmmmmm" in a high pitched, sing-song voice. The voice seemed to come from behind the door leading to the undercroft. It was either the voice of a young woman, or a small boy. I responded: "Yes, what do you want?", but got no answer.

That night, after we retired to bed, about 1 AM, it kicked off again. There is a small window in the Queen's Chamber that looks down into the Haunted Chapel, where I was. I could see the light from their room, as GiTM stayed up late reading some of the Log Books from the site. Chatelaine was on a mattress on the floor in GiTM's room, as she refused to stay, sleep, or go by herself, anywhere in the building. I was partially asleep when the ladies heard a door latch being tried. GiTM came into my room to ask if I had heard it, but I didn't. Now, I'm one of those people who, if disturbed from slumber, can't get back to sleep for a long time. As I was lying there, I distinctly heard one solid knock on my bedroom door. "What the hell!" was the only printable comment I could make as I fumbled with the light and to open my door, but nobody was to be seen outside my chamber. [X(] I asked the ladies, who had been disturbed by my reaction, if they had heard the knock, but they didn't. I then doused the light and tried to get back to sleep, but it was only a few minutes later that someone, or something, rattled my door handle with great vigor! After once again getting up and finding no one, I went back to bed and finally fell asleep, undisturbed by anymore nocturnal hi-jinks. However, GiTM told me that Chatelaine had spent a very restless night.

On Thursday, our final night, we were forced to cut short our trips off the site, due to heavy rain and hurricane winds, tho the latter had died down to almost nothing by evening. Once again, as GiTM and I sat in the lounge, looking thru the log books for other guests encountering the para-normal during their stay(and there were many of these!)we both heard my name being spoken, this time coming from the area of the Queen's Chamber. GiTM wasn't sure if she heard "Tommmmmmmmmm". or 'Ommmmmmmm", but I heard my name clearly. That night we finished up with a vigil again in the Lounge, including again a locked off camera aimed at the Queen's Chamber. Once again, the woman-hating male showed up, but he again refused contact, especially when Al was calling it. He probably felt insulted that a woman would dare to question him, so I took over, and we started getting results. When I asked this man if he had ever abused or raped a woman, GiTM's Gauss meter speeded up, telling us I was getting close to home with my questions, he really seemed to be getting very angry. As this happened, I started to feel very nauseous, and thought I was going to throw up, so I ran to the upstairs bathroom. Now I had been the last to use that toilet and was sure I had closed the door, but the door was partially open when I got there. I stayed there for several minutes trying to not to retch, and asking that the condition that was affecting me be removed, tho it was some time before I started feeling better. But while I was in the loo, I again heard my name called, just outside the door. This time tho, the voice was male, thick and guttural. When I got back to the lounge, I was no longer sick, but pretty damn mad at this ignorant, macho, Puritan idiot, so I broke the rules, and really let him have it. I called him a coward, and a few other choice names, and dared him to do something to me, if he was so big and bad. However, it appeared that he had had enough of us, and the energies in the room dissipated.

We are only now going thru our audio and video recordings to see if any other phenomena occurred. We will have that up-loaded to the thread ASAP. If we get anything, it will be corroboration of what we ourselves had heard with the naked ear.

This was a fabulous location, and we will be returning here again, for sure. My thanks to GiTM, Chatelaine, Kim, Louise, and Karen for making this a great vigil, as we all were affected at one point or another, and could vouch for what had happened, either alone or with the group.
Last edited by Spirit Bear on Wed May 25, 2016 8:52 pm, edited 8 times in total.
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Re: WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby Pequisto » Mon Nov 23, 2015 9:30 pm

Amazing investigation. Can't wait to hear the results. :smile:
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Re: WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby GhostInTheMachine » Tue Nov 24, 2015 2:19 am

Thanks Spirit Bear!

But, I would differ on some things there, - some of the sequencing was different, and we had very little actual phenomena while the whole group were there, most of the audibles and voices we heard later when just me, SB and Chatelaine were in the building alone.

The man in the King's Room was very subjective for me, a sense, and I wouldn't yet go so far as to say such a being was definitely there, and it remains to be found if I was right, albeit a genuine perception from my view of a presence in the room and a more general presence around the house, - of course I had no idea if I was just getting it from my mind. But, the interesting thing - as SB describes - is our discovery of the poem by Hardy which depicted same sort of character at this site ( his poems and works were often based on original local history and folklore). We had no idea at all about that poem, and coincidentally discovered it just after the vigil. The time period was right - 1700s, it was a farm, a dominant male who had treated a woman badly, possibly resulting in an infant and her death, and her ghost haunts.. Etc.

Also a few of the occurrences... as far as my notes go most of the phenomena of hearing the voices, singing and woman's chatter was after the vigils had finished and only SB, me and Chatelaine were present. I have to agree this was absolutely indisputably a woman's voice, loud and clear and right there in the house. We heard it about 9 times in all, most of the time when we were all together! No one else was in the house and there are no dwellings nearby. Lonely place in the middle of nowhere.

We also discovered in the visitor logbooks around 40 different guests had witnessed the same over a 13 year period - heard it, singing, chatter, moans, and seen her too. Usually one witness every few months, and nearly always in winter, often around November. Amazing. We had no idea of these accounts and didn't read the logs til we had experienced the same stuff all over 4 nights.

I'm still assimilating all that happened, there was so much and it was so profound, it will take me a few days before I do a report due to this. Also, there is literally around 60 hours of audio and video footage to go through, which will take some time...Will be fascinating to see if we captured any of those calls or audibles, or even videod anything. So we have to put the time in to go through it all!

The high winds SB mentions occurred on the first two nights we were there, including the vigils we did with our guests and team. The following two nights including our last one were very still, no wind at all (sorry to contradict SB again on that one), which is all the more interesting as this is when we heard most of the noises, moans, singing and chit chat...
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Re: WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby Rhapsody » Thu Nov 26, 2015 1:31 pm

Hi folks! Here are my pictures. Sorry I didn't cover every single room, I will try to be more methodical next time.

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The beautiful thatched exterior.

I've labelled a floor plan (from the Landmark Trust website) to help you orientate. There wasn't one for the undercroft part, those rooms run below the main living quarters. I haven't resized these pictures so you may have to click on them to see the full image. I'll make more than one post in case all these pics are too long for one or if it crashes and I have to start all over again. ;)

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1. The lounge. Very atmospheric with a fire going.

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1. Another one of the lounge. A voice was heard from the Queen's bedroom wing whilst in here.

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2. The kitchen.

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3. The stairs from the bottom landing by the bathroom. The light pictured flickered on two separate occasions when people sung on hummed whilst alone on the stairs.

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3. The stairs from the middle landing (kitchen level). Thumps and bangs were heard in response to questions from the bedroom on this level.

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3. The top of the stairs, where a presence was strongly felt by two members of the team.
Last edited by Rhapsody on Fri Nov 27, 2015 1:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby Rhapsody » Thu Nov 26, 2015 1:41 pm

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4. The Queen's bedroom looking towards the hall area (7.). This is the room where an apparition has been seen leaning over the bed.

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4. The Queen's bedroom looking over towards a garderobe in the corner.

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5. A beautiful bedroom at the top of the haunted staircase.

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6. The small bedroom I stayed in. One visitor reported seeing a face outside the window despite the fact that the room is not on the ground floor!

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6. A detail of the headboard of my bed. Not strictly relevant to this ghost investigation as the furniture that the Landmark Trust use is usually sourced from auctions and doesn't necessarily belong to the original bedroom. Perhaps it comes with it's own history though?

I'm out of time for posting photos right now. I'll get some more up this evening.
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Re: WOODSFORD CASTLE INVESTIGATION

Postby Spirit Bear » Thu Nov 26, 2015 4:42 pm

Great pictures, Rhapsody, keep them coming!
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