TOTALLY HAUNTED


 

GWRYCH CASTLE

 

Gwrych Castle, commissioned by Lloyd Hesketh Bamford-Hesketh, was built between 1812 and 1822 in memory of his mother's ancestors. The castle which now stands in ruins replaced an Elizabethan house on the site which had fallen into disrepair. By the time Lloyd was married to his wife Emily in 1825 the main building was complete.  In 1840 the castle was extended to include a new wing to be used as bedrooms. The castle was passed down to Robert Bamford Hesketh and his wife Ellen when Lloyd died.

From 1894 until 1924 the castle was home to the granddaughter of Lloyd Bamford Hesketh, Winifred. She was the sole heir to the estate and became the Countess of Dundonald. She lived here with her husband the Earl of Dundonald. When the Countess died in 1924 she stated in her will that the castle was to be bequeathed to King George V and the Prince of Wales. The bequest was refused and the castle was passed to the Venerable Order of Saint John. In 1925 the Earl of Dondonald, the husband of the late Countess, bought back the castle for £78,000 and had to sell the contents of the castle three years later to recoup some of the costs.

During World War II the castle was requisitioned by the government and was used to house two hundred refugees.

In 1946 the castle had begun to decline and the 13th Earl of Dundonald sold the castle. It was again sold to Leslie Salts in 1948 who opened the castle to the public for the next twenty years. The castle gained the nickname The Showplace of Wales and received over ten million visitors. The famous boxers Randolph Turpin and Bruce Woodcock trained here and many came to see them.

The castle had many uses between 1968 and 1989 when it was used as a bar and restaurant. In the late 70’s they held jousting tournaments and had medieval markets at the castle. Then in 1985 the castle was closed to the public and was never reopened.

The castle was then sold in 1989 to a Californian business man who had plans to open it as a five star hotel but this never happened due to legal issues. However the castle still had a use, as in 1996 the film Prince Valiant was filmed there.

The castle was just then left and vandals and thieves along with the elements have left the castle in the derelict sight you see today.  It was then sold again in 2006 to Clayton Hotels and after spending a few years and nearly half a million pounds on the site the company folded and the castle was sold.

The site is now in the hands of Edwards Property Management and they intend to turn it into a five star hotel. 

Alleged paranormal activity includes a photo taken by a company boss while inspecting the castle. The picture shows a young girl stood looking out of a glassless window in a room where the floors no longer exist. This part of the castle is inaccessible so it's unlikely that there was someone in the room while the photo was being taken.




 


Our investigation took place in June 2013

The investigators were Becky K, Wayne and myself, Lorraine.

This was our first investigation which was conducted mostly during daylight. Although we were there until around 10.30pm it had been light for most of the investigation being midsummer.  We were investigating two locations that night so did not spend as much time as we would have liked there.

We arrived around 6pm and we made the long walk up to the castle. The sun was shining and there was a pleasant atmosphere when we arrived. We walked around the castle getting a feel for the place and tried to imagine how it may have looked when it was occupied. The castle is not actually as big as it seems as the large towers that soared above us were in fact fake.  We also could not access a lot of the interior as it had been bricked up to preserve it.

We started our investigation in what we thought might have been a small courtyard. 

We sat and started calling out but we got no response. We continued calling out for some time and we still got no response. We then decided to move and try somewhere else, so we made our way down the hill back to the front of the castle. We had decided we would go to where the photo was taken of the young girl. We could not get inside the building but we stood by the window she was seen in and called out. 

                                                

The atmosphere seemed to change as we were calling out and I started to feel a bit uneasy. Although we had no response to us calling out it felt like something was about to happen.

After getting nothing by the window we decided to go back up to the courtyard to try again there. As we walked back up the hill we all agreed it had lost the pleasant atmosphere we had felt when we first arrived. Despite this we were still getting no response to anything we asked. Then all of a sudden we could hear the rain coming in the distance and we decided to quickly take shelter in one of the arches in the wall opposite us. 

We stood in there and as we called out I heard a deep sigh come from behind me. I froze for a second and then asked if anybody else had heard it but they had not. They had been stood close to the entrance and I was stood more to the back.

Once the rain had passed we came out from where we had stood and continued to call out but got nothing. We could all feel that something was there but it was not making its presence known. We decided we had to leave so we had enough time in the next location. We all agreed that if we had stayed there longer we may have experienced some activity. 

Unfortunately other than the deep sigh and the change in atmosphere we never experienced any other activity. Nothing was picked up on our equipment either. 

Our conclusion is that the place might be haunted, however we are yet to be convinced.  

 


 

 

 

 

 
























 

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