Scottish Ghosts

Scottish Ghosts and Phantoms - The Haunted History

Apparitions and Phantoms M- R

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Mary King's Close, Edinburgh

Mary King's Close lies beneath the City Chambers, which was designed by John and Robert Adam in 1753.  This narrow old Edinburgh Close is alleged to be haunted, and is actually believed by many to be the most haunted location in Edinburgh.  In 1645 the close was devastated by the plague, the buildings had to be abandoned and sealed off for a period of time.  Some years later, the close buildings were once again occupied, but it was not long and the whispers started to travel through the old town that the buildings in the close were in fact haunted.  Various apparitions were allegedly seen frequently and included a girl in a dirty dress, a dog, a severed arm, a disembodied head of an old man, a childís head and even headless animals.  The close was abandoned again, and the upper floors were demolished and the lower floors were sealed up and the City Chambers constructed on the site.  Mary King's Close is once again open to the public and during some tours the spirit of Annie the young girl, a dog, a tall thin woman and other manifestations are alleged to have been witnessed.  Other disturbances include cameras and torches loosing power very quickly.

Moncrieffe Arms, Bridge of Earn, Perth and Kinross

The Moncrieffe is said to be haunted and manifestations have included sounds of footsteps and weeping coming from unoccupied areas of the hotel.  In the 1970s it was reported that a bathroom door was locked and sounds could be heard of someone having a bath, only to find some seconds later that the door was open and the bathroom was empty.

Montrose Air Station Museum, Montrose ( RAF Montrose)

In 1912, the Government planned twelve "Air Stations" operated by the Royal Flying Corps. The first of these was at Montrose, which became operational on February 26th, 1913, with No 2 Squadron in residence, firstly, at Upper Dysart, to the South of the town, then at Broomfield, Montrose from January 1914.  When No 2 Squadron moved to France in 1914, the first to land there, the aerodrome was inactive until the Royal Naval Air Service and then the Royal Flying Corps took up residence again in May 1915. It then became a major training base with even the Americans arriving in 1918 to train for the Western Front, and Canadian and British Squadrons forming  When the RAF started to expand, the aerodrome was re-opened for training purposes. Later, during World War II, many fighter squadrons and the RNAS served at RAF Montrose.  Commonwealth, Polish, Czech, American, Russian, Turkish, Free French and other Allied Nationals all trained and served at RAF Montrose during this time.  In 1983 Montrose Aerodrome Museum Society was formed and through their very hard work, now is a very interesting museum with a fabulous collection of RAF memorabilia from both World Wars..  The alleged ghostly phenomena at RAF Montrose includes: Footsteps heard passing the old hangers and on the Waldron Bridge. A figure in full flying gear seen around the area of the bridge and hangers and also seen walking towards the main door of what was the headquarters.  The main building which now houses the museum is also a focus of the following alleged activity: phantom footsteps heard in the corridor approaching and then appearing to go into a room next door, the handle of the front door being rattled, (the sound is similar to an old fashioned handle being rattled), closer inspection shows the handle on the door is very modern.  Shadowy figures have also been seen walking in and out of rooms in the museum and present staff have refused point blank to spend the night in the building.  Voices have also been heard at the start of the runway and the sound of a phantom plane has been heard roaring over the Airfield.

In 2004, The Ghost Club, investigated the main museum building and reported a very interesting and active night.  During the 6 hour vigil the following activity was recorded: Footsteps, the sound of scurrying on the floor, a misty figure in a doorway, bangs, a door in a corridor which kept opening itself although it had a yale lock on it and was securely closed and very strange trifield meter readings which seemed to respond to questions which were being asked by the investigators.  In 2005, The Ghost Club conducted a second investigation, however this seemed to be a much quieter night.  To read the 2004 and 2005 Investigation reports please click on the following links:

2004: www.ghostclub.org.uk/montrose.htm

2005: www.ghostclub.org.uk/RAF%20Montrose%202.htm

Museum of Transport, Glasgow Updated

 In the 1960ís Glasgow crowds waved goodbye to the beloved tramcar.  No trams now operate the streets of Glasgow except one which is still believed to travel up Sauchiehall Street. For some time now there has been the odd report of a double decker tram, with driver, slowly and silently travelling up the centre of the street then slowly fading away. Today the only trams which you can visit are housed in the Museum of Transport, on display as part of the Kelvin Hall complex in Bunhouse Road. The Museum of Transport is owned by Culture and Sport Glasgow, and is housed in Glasgow's Kelvin Hall which was built between 1926-27.  The area which houses the Museum was once used for the Annual Christmas/New Year Carnival.  It is also known that this area of the building was used during World War II as a Morgue.  Today the Museum houses many exhibits relating to transport in the Glasgow area.  Among these are Railways Engines, A Royal Carriage, Trams, Cars, a recreation of a 1930's street and underground station, recreation of an Arnold Clark Car showroom and many other prize exhibits.  This museum also claims to be the scene of a number of strange occurrences. The focus of alleged activity has been recorded in the museumís prize exhibit, the re-created Glasgow street that visitors can walk down, visiting the Regal Cinema, the Underground and viewing the reconstructed shop fronts. Museum Staff have catalogued a series of incidents which have baffled them, firstly being reported in the 1990ís by a security guard who worked on nightshift. The guard known as Bill, started to report seeing balls of light moving at great speed in the street and also sighted the tall figure of a man wearing a trilby hat standing outside the entrance of the Clyde Model Dockyard shop. Following these sightings, Bill then reported hearing various noises in the street, including footsteps walking, a foot being dragged and feet running down the cobbles. Bill then left the museum but the new night staff continued to report unusual happenings, these varied from childrenís voices in the street, the figure of a man sitting in one of the cars and a headless figure in the Regal Cinema.

In recent years The Ghost Club have conducted four investigations to date and one incident stands out. During a controlled experiment in the cinema, seven seats in the auditorium went into the down position by themselves, the seats were examined and all had a return spring action. On enquiring with staff, the team discovered that this was becoming a regular occurrence, cleaning staff would report that after leaving the auditorium in the morning, they would return to dust the surfaces in the cinema and find the average number of  four seats or more in the down position. Interestingly, on a previous GC investigation in the Regal cinema a recording was made of the seats banging down one after the other Everyone was accounted in another part of the building at the time and beam barriers were in position outside the cinema. Other phenomena in the museum include the figure of a man seen in the car showroom, the sounds of children screaming around the steam train display and visitors who report a chilling, unnerving atmosphere in the Underground. Other areas of the Kelvin Hall are believed to be a focus of alleged activity one being Elephant Walk, the former Circus backstage area. This is now a maintenance workshop for Glasgow's Museums Collection Dept. It is here where staff have reported sudden cold spots and dark shapes which seem to lurk in the backstage corridors.

During the 2007 investigation a door appeared to opened by itself and strange thuds were heard coming from an old dressing room corridor. Some believe this area is still a stage for the old circus performers who refuse to take their final bow.  The Ghost Club are still continuing to conduct research into the alleged hauntings of the Museum and very much appreciate all the help and support from Culture and Sport, Glasgow, Glasgow City Council and all the Staff at the Museum of Transport.

You can click on two the Museum of Transport Reports here:

www.ghostclub.org.uk/MusTrans07.htm

 
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National Museum of Flight (Former RAF East Fortune), Edinburgh
 
This ex RAF Base, now a museum is steeped in history in 1919 the R34 Airship took off from East Fortune on it's record-breaking first east-west transatlantic flight. Here you will discover some of the most extraordinary machines in the world that reveal the story of our ambition to take to the skies and find out how flight has changed our world."  The aeronautical collection dates back to 1909 when the Royal Scottish Museum acquired a model of the Wright Brothers' Model A biplane. A collection of engines, models and parts, but no full-sized aircraft, was built up in the following years. Following the acquisition of a complete Supermarine Spitfire in 1971, the collection was moved from Edinburgh for display at East Fortune airfield in East Lothian .

The Museum of Flight opened to the public in 1975. The site occupies part of a former RAF airfield now scheduled as a historic monument. It was the departure point of the airship R34 which made the first east to west crossing of the Atlantic by air in July 1919; the collection includes a number of R34 relics. The aviation collections comprise aircraft, engines, rockets, photographs, a reference library, archives, models, flying clothing, instruments and propellers.  Memorabilia in the following hangars include:

Hangar 1  represent some of the developments in naval and military aviation since the last years of the Second World War. From the Messerschmitt Komet and Spitfire through to the Phantom, the role of aircraft in war is examined. Amongst the other aircraft on display include the Armstrong Whitworth Meteor which brought the Royal Air Force into the jet age and the RAF's first supersonic fighter, the English Electric Lightning.  Hangar 2  houses the collection of commercial passenger aircraft. Here, you will be able to find out more about these hard working planes and their remarkable careers. You will have the chance to see the pioneers of passenger travel like the De Havilland Dragon and the Avro Anson and learn of Scotland's contribution to aviation. Amongst the other aircraft on display in the hangar are a De Havilland Dove, a Beech E-18, and Scottish Aviation's own Twin Pioneer. Outside the hangar you can visit the world's first passenger jet, the Comet 4c.  Hangar 3  offers the visitor the chance to glimpse the reserve collection of the Museum of Flight. Guided tours offer the visitor the chance to explore the hangar and look at a variety of civil, military and pleasure aircraft.  Hangar 4  is the home of Concorde G-BOAA, you can see her being reconstructed after her epic final voyage by land and sea from Heathrow. G-BOAA became the first of the British Airways fleet to fly commercially when she flew from London to Bahrain in January 1976.

For a number of years now Staff and visitors to the museum have complained of very strange incidents which have included sightings of an airman in flying gear, a plane in Hangar 3 moving of it's own accord during the night while the Hangar was locked and alarmed.  Other phenomena include witnessed sightings of a face in a plane cockpit, footsteps, cold spots, draughts and shadowed figures moving about Hangar 3.  In 2005 and 2006 The Ghost Club carried out investigations in all the Hangars and Building 28 with some interesting findings.  These included cold spots, icy cold chills, possible shadowed figures moving around the planes and footsteps.  To view the Ghost Club reports, please click on the following links.

2005 Investigation - http://www.ghostclub.org.uk/nat_mus_flight.htm

2006 Investigation - http://www.ghostclub.org.uk/fortune.htm

 
New Lanark Village, Lanark
 
Beautifully surrounded by woodlands and beside the Falls of Clyde, New Lanark Village and cotton mills were founded in 1785 by David Dale, and made famous world wide by the social pioneer and spiritualist Robert Owen.  The village is said to be haunted by a number of spectres and apparitions are alleged to have been witnessed in the Institute Building, Robert Owen's House, The Village Shop, The School Building and The Mill Workers House.  Recent manifestations have included sightings of Robert Owen sitting behind his desk in his office and a male figure going up the staircase in the Owen's house which was witnessed by a tourist and when questioning the guide, he discovered that the staircase area was roped off and not to be viewed by the public.  Sightings of a lady have been witnessed in the Mill Hotel and guests have reported a television which switches itself on, other manifestations include, loud banging and crashing sounds coming from an empty flat and an old lady dressed in a tartan cloak and black hat.  In the Institute Building the sounds of feet running across an upper floor, a tall grey figure entering the River Room and a gentleman with blonde hair have been reported. 
 
In 2004, The Ghost Club conducted two investigations, one in the River Room and Reception area of the Institute Building and the other in Robert Owen's House.  In the Reception area of the Institute Building, orbs and a very loud unexplained bang were reported and in Robert Owen's House the investigation team reported a strange light anomaly in the main hall at the foot of the stair and in the basement area of the kitchen and servants quarters, a dull constant thumping sound which was likened to a spinning wheel.  Numerous trigger object experiments were set up in all the different locations, but no movement was recorded.
 
 
 
 
Nivingston House Hotel, Kinross, Perth & Kinross
 
Standing in 12 acres of secluded and landscaped gardens is Nivingston House Hotel, a mansion dating from 1725 with later extensions.  The hotel is said to be haunted, and there have been three sightings of an apparition of an old woman dressed in night clothes since 1980.  The ghost is said to leave a bedroom and enter another chamber, now a bedroom but formerly a bathroom.  It was in the room which the ghost leaves that a former owner shot himself in the early 1900s.  Other manifestations include the sound of heavy footsteps and doors closing when nobody is about and these sounds always come from the same part of the building.
 
Norwood Hall, Aberdeen
 
Set in seven acres of wooded grounds, Norwood Hall, now a Hotel was built in 1887 for the Ogston family and stands on the site of Pitfodels Castle.  Pitfodels which had been owned by the Reid family was passed by marriage in the 16th century to the Menzies family.  The building is reputedly haunted by two ghosts.  One is said to be the apparition of the wife of James Ogston, this poor woman for many years had tried to force Ogston to leave his mistress but to no avail and the other ghost is allegedly Ogston himself.  A possible third apparition has been seen twice in the dining room in recent times.
 
 
 
 
 
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Old Post Horn Inn, Crawford
 
The Inn which dated from 1744 and closed down some years ago and is now derelict, is said to be haunted by three ghosts.  One was said to be a young girl, who was accidentally killed by a coach in the Main Street and who was the daughter of a former innkeeper.  Her apparition had allegedly been seen in the dining room, which had originally been the stables, it is said that she was responsible for the movement of chairs around the room and the ghostly sound of her singing to herself.  Another alleged phantom was reportedly that of a coachman who wore a dark cloak and it was believed by the locals that he had died in 1805.  A third ghostly sighting was that of a five-year-old girl who was said to have been hanged for stealing bread.  Ghostly Roman legionnaires are also said to have been seen marching up the Main Street of Crawford.  Various reports described them as only being seen from the knees up as the level of the road in Roman times was much lower than it currently is today.
 
 
 
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Pannanich Wells Hotel, Ballater
 
The hotel, which dates from 1760 and the neighbouring area are said to be haunted by a 'Grey Lady', a young woman dressed in a grey blouse and long dark skirt.  The ghost is said to have been seen quite often.  Other disturbances include some unexplained noises and the movement of furniture and opening of doors when nobody appears to be present, along with these disturbances a sweet smell of scent has also been reported.  It is believed that the latter manifestation may well be from a seperate spirit, this smell of scent has also been reported around the general area of Room One.
 
 
Pittodrie House, Aberdeen
 
Pittodrie House, set in 200 acres in the foothills of the impressive and foreboding hill of Bennachie was once the property of the Erskine family, and incorporates an old tower house.  This building was extended many centuries later when becoming a hotel.  The former nursery of the house is said to be haunted by a ghost, which is believed to be the spirit of a servant.  Legend has it that this ladies duties included looking after the children and in 1640 she died after falling down the staircase during a fire.  There have been recent reports of other ghostly activity which includes unexplained footsteps, cries and screams and the strong smell of burning, these manifestations are believed to be centred on an old staircase.
 
Pitlochry, Perthshire
 
On the road leading out of Pitlochry heading northwards, a grim spectral figure has been reportedly seen.  People who know of the existance of the ghost known as the Death Bogle are very anxious to avoid it, for it is said that those who have come across it and have been touched by its icy cold white fingers will meet their death before long.  At the turn of the 20th Century, legendary Ghost Hunter Elliott O'Donnell spoke of witnessing the sighting of the Death Bogle himself.  Whilst a young man, Elliott O'Donnell spent many hours in Pitlochry and regularly took lodgings with Flora MacDonald.  During one particular stay O'Donnell, a keen cyclist, after travelling back from Loch Tay arrived in Pitlochry just before 10 pm.  Keen to admire the last moments of light, he stopped at the old crossroads and started to soak in the atmosphere, when quite suddenly he became aware of a strange presence which appeared to him as a ghostly column of light in the middle of the road.  As O'Donnell by now very frightened, watched the apparition, he also became aware of a horse and cart coming down the road with two passengers.  O'Donnell realised very quickly that the apparition and the horse and cart were going to meet.  On seeing the phantom, the two passengers, a farmer and boy became very fearful and from O'Donnells description, would appear that the two passengers very clearly recognised what was standing blocking their path.  O'Donnell watched as the boy pleaded with the farmer to keep away from the spectral figure, by now the horse had halted infront of the phantom, then suddenly it turned and galloped down the road with the phantom in hot persuit.  As O'Donnell watched the horse and cart being chased by the phantom he could see that the spectre was becoming shapeless and that it seemed to be reaching out to the two passengers.
 
O'Donnell in a state of fear jumped back onto his bike and cycled back to his lodgings as quick as he could.  When arriving back he immediately told Flora MacDonald of what he had witnessed.  She then warned him of the spot and told him that the spectre had been seen several times.  She said that if any person was touched by the thing would die shortly afterwards.  In the early 20th Century there were a few reported sightings of  the Death Bogle but not in recent years.
 
Princes Street, Edinburgh
 
In the West End of Edinburgh you can find Princes Street, it is this street that is alleged to be haunted by a weeping woman, one Moira Blair.  It is believed that her husband had been murdered in the area of Princes Street and that poor Moira found his body, and in distress she stumbled into the road and was killed by a coach and horses.  Stange sounds of her weeping have also been reported in Princes Street Gardens and in nearby St John's Church, and her apparition is said to have been reported a number of times.
 
 
 
Provanhall House/Blochairn House, Easterhouse, Glasgow 
 
"Built in the 15th Century, this is probably the most perfect pre-reformation mansion house in Scotland."  This description of Provanhall House and its surrounding gardens, by the National Trust for Scotland, has not been bettered.  The House is still in use and stands on its own grounds on the edge of Achinlea Park.  The building dates from before 1460 and is one of the oldest in Glasgow.  Original doors lead into the kitchen, a dairy and a hallway.  The Kitchen boasts a fireplace capable of roasting an ox and has one of the finest examples of a vaulted ceiling in Scotland.  Cross-vaulting in the dairy shows medieval design and construction at its best.  On the upper floor, the dining hall contains an ancient oak table and a primitive dumbwaiter (hoist) used to convey food from the kitchen below.
 
Provanhall House sits within a boundary wall existing in 1647.  Sitting opposite the house in the courtyard is another later building - Blochairn House- which today is occupied by Greater Easterhouse Environmental Trust.  Build by a Tobacco Lord, Blochairn House was remodelled in 1760 to resemble the plantation house on his Jamaican tobacco estate.  The house was privately owned and after the death of two brothers who were the last occupants, that property, and Provanhall House were handed over to the National Trust for Scotland and leased to Glasgow City Council.  The alleged phenomena centres on different areas of both houses, there have been regular sightings of an apparition all in black wearing a hat in Blochairn House and members of staff have heard various noises which have alerted them at first to believe that they are being burgled.  Provanhall house has two alleged apparitions which have been seen on the upper floor and out in the courtyard, it is believed that the two apparitions are of a mother and child who were brutally murdered in the master bedroom of Provanhall.  Members of staff have also had the feelings of being touched or followed, and the prestigious Ghost Club investigated the two buildings in May 2005 and are returning soon.  A report of their investigation can be read from the Scottish Investigations page on this site. 
 
 
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Ravenswood Hotel, Ballater
 
Set in large grounds by the River Dee, the Ravenswood Hotel dates from around 1820 and was a private residence until the 1970s when it became a hotel.  The Ravenswood is reputedly haunted, one ghost is said to be that of a woman, this manifestation is apparently heard over the intercom when babies are staying at the hotel, it is believed that the ghost may have been a nursemaid.  Another apparition is said to be that of an old man with white beard, dressed like a sailor, sightings of which have been reported on the stair and in two of the bedrooms.  There have been more sightings of this man in recent years.
 
 
Ring Croft of Stocking, Auchincairn
 
This well documented case of Poltergeist activity is known as the haunting of Ring Croft and can be found in many pieces of Scottish Ghostly Literature, the story concerned the house of Andrew Mackie and was recorded in 1695 and witnessed by many people.  According to the records the activity did not last very long but was very intense.  Manifestations included an unseen force leading the cattle out of the cow shed, stones and other objects being thrown at the family, various items disappeared only to be found later.  When the disturbances became more intense, members of the family were beaten with an invisible stick and dragged off the bed and onto the floor, stones and other items were thrown at various people, thumps and bangs were heard, a rough voice was also heard,  Different fires broke out in various areas of the croft and cow shed and a dark shape was witnessed which seem to move around the shed.  The house was alleged to have been built where a body had been found, believed to be a victim of murder.
 
Rosslyn Chapel, Roslin
 
Situated in the wooden Roslin Glen and overlooking the River Esk, Rosslyn Chapel, dedicated to St Matthew and once a Collegiate Church was founded by William Sinclair, Earl of Caithness and Orkney, in 1446.  The chapel is richly carved with Biblical stories, and has the largest number of 'Green Men' found in any medieval building.  In the burial vault are ten of the lairds of Roslin and their kin, said to be laid out in full armour without coffins.  Ghostly flames were said to be seen here when one of the Sinclairs was about to die.  The Chapel is also reputed to be haunted by the ghost of the apprentice, who carved the famous Apprentice Pillar and traditionally was murdered by his teacher.  The apparition of a monk has also been witnessed at Rosslyn in recent times, both in the chapel and the vicinity.
 
 
Roxburghe House, Kelso
 
Situated in a peaceful location in 200 acres of gardens and wooded parkland, Roxburghe House, formally known as Sunlaws, dates mostly from 1853 after the previous house was destroyed by fire.  The house was used to hold German Prisoners of war during World War II, aquired by the Duke of Roxburghe in 1969, and now is an exclusive hotel.  The building is said to be haunted by the apparition of a woman, a 'Green Lady', seen late at night crossing the entrance hall of the house from the stair, through the lounge and conservatory up to the chinese bridge.  Another ghost is reputedly that of a soldier, possibly one of those imprisoned here during the war, which has been witnessed on the top floor of the house.  Other areas of the building with alleged activity include the administration offices and the area of the laundry.
 
 
Royal Hotel, St. Catherine Street, Cupar, Fife,
 
Some guests staying in this 150 year old building and using the Functions Room for meetings have been puzzled by the occasional drop in temperature but have usually ignored the cold sensation accepting that radiators and central heating thermostats are not always reliable. However, one evening in October 1978, Mr. Watson of Dunfermline who was a regular guest at the hotel, passed the empty room and purely our of interest, peered in. The room was icy cold and what intrigued Mr. Watson even more was seeing a figure of a tall hooded monk walk slowly and silently across the floor. The guest stood in the doorway for about half a minute puzzled by the appearance of another visitor in the empty room, especially as it was quite late in the evening. Still wondering about the incident he walked on to his bedroom and went to sleep. A few weeks later one of the assistant managers of the hotel was switching off the lights prior to closing down for the night when he reached the Functions Room noticing that one of the lights was still on, he began to open the door wider to go in, but was shocked by the freezing metal of the handle. So intense was the feeling that he was unable to move but through the partially opened doorway he saw the identical figure seen earlier by Mr. Watson. When the apparition reached the outer wall it vanished and the light suddenly went out. There is only one door way to the room and that was occupied by the assistant manager. This was the third occasion when the mysterious monk has been seen in the same locality and has been associated with the inexplicable movement of cutlery when the room was used for a special gathering. A brief comment from a local provides the probable answer to the haunting. `The hotel is built on the abbey's burial ground`.
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