We first heard of Racton ruins through research done by Richard and Rachael on the internet.
Racton ruins is in West Sussex. It is an 80 foot tall folly built in 1772 by the Earl of Halifax. It is thought to have been designed by Henry Keene, an architect who supposedly died before the completion of the folly. Original purpose is uncertain, but it might have been intended as a summerhouse to complement the main Stansted House. Or other suggestions is that it was built as a view point for the Earl. Somewhere he could watch the return of his merchant ships in the Solent.
Constructed of brick and flint the monument consists of a two-storey triangular structure. It has a tower at each corner and a large, tapering, circular central tower rising to approximately 25 metres. There are three floors of the central tower and it's roof is no longer remaining.
From a birds eye view it looks like a triangle symbol (that was used by devil worshippers) The folly has been reported to have been used by cults and devil worshippers for over 100 years. The last report we found of this was in 2007 but we have heard it has been as recent as 2009.
We also found reference to it being used as a brothel back in the 1800's.
There are many reports of paranormal activity at the folly. There have been reports of bricks being thrown from the top of the tower and a ghostly woman walking around the building. Also of a ghostly face looking out through a window of one the top floors. The most disturbing report is of people being physically grabbed and pushed. But oddly the most popular story is that of a "ghost tractor" in the fields that comes right up to you then disappears.
Racton has also been a place for suicides.
A watercolour drawn in 1782 by S.H. Grimm
We visited Racton Ruins in October 2009
Helen, Richard, Rachael and myself Lorraine arrived at about 8pm
We parked the car near to the ruin and as we walked over and could see the silhouette of the tower against the night sky.
It looked quite spooky as we made our way up to the building. The place is indeed a ruin and it is quite a state. With graffiti everywhere and loads of rubbish inside the building. But the building itself is a magnificent sight.
We started to walk round the ruin to just get a feel for the place. We then heard a car coming up the lane towards us and slow down. We then realised it was just a bunch of mindless idiots. As they turned their car around and drove back past us they threw a banger/firework out of their car. Whether it was meant to scare us or the fact that they were just imbeciles we will never know as they drove off.
We were just about to carry on looking round the ruins when we heard another car coming towards us. This time we decided to go out and have a look in case it was them again. But we soon realised that it wasn't them it was the police. We walked over to them and one of the officers got out. He came over to ask what we were doing there but he saw my jumper with Totally Haunted on and realised why we were there. I asked if it was ok for us to be there and they said that it was. They carried out their usual checks on us and the car and everything was fine.
They started chatting to us about the place and told us a few things we didn't know. One of the police officers seemed to be quite enthusiastic about it all and told us of a few experiences he’d had. He also suggested a few locations that we could possibly try.
Then back up arrived!
Another police car arrived to check that the other officers were okay. And after showing us their cool new loud siren on the car they left!
The other two officers decided to come with us for a walk around the ruin. We all walked round together with our torches. One of the police officers seemed a bit apprehensive as we were walking round and I noticed he kept touching the back of his head. After a minute or so he said that he kept feeling something on the back of his head. He said that he felt like he was being touched. By the look on his face he wasn't really pleased about it either. It was then that he said that he thought that they should go.
They were really nice guys and a real credit to their profession. Chichester Police Force should be proud to have them both.
After they had gone we made our way in to the ruin to start the investigation. We stood in the middle of the building amongst all the debris on the floor and started calling out. Nothing much happened other than hearing a noise coming from one of the little rooms off the main room we were standing in. So Helen decided to go into the room by herself with the camera. We continued calling out in the main room while she was in the room by herself. She did hear a few faint noises but nothing that could be picked up on camera. She then decided to walk around the outside of the ruin with the camera by herself. We carried on calling out inside. I asked if there was anyone there could they effect the EMF meter but we got nothing at first. But as Helen was climbing back in through the window the EMF meter which Rachael was holding on to went off briefly. Unfortunately the camera was off as Helen was climbing through the window with it on standby.
Next we decided to all go into the little room where we had heard the noise before. We sat and called out but again we got nothing. Then Helen decided to stand back in the main room. Rachael and Richard stayed in the small room and I stood between the two rooms with the camera. Suddenly I felt what felt like someone breathing on my ear. I wasn’t sure because I was stood next to an open window so I moved away from the window and carried on filming. Then I heard whispering just behind me. I looked round at Rachael and Rich and asked if they had just spoken but they said neither of them had. I had definitely heard something whisper near me.
Helen decided to take a walk around the building again as she had heard noises coming from outside. We stayed where we were and I filmed her walking around from inside. She had just gone out of view of the camera when she let out a cry and came running back inside the ruin with us. She said that something had touched her on the arm while she was stood outside. She is not scared easily so I know she wasn’t imagining things. Then just after that the EMF meter went of again just for a split second. Rachael was still holding it and she said that when it went off in her hands she felt like was being touched on the fingers. Also Richard was sure he was hearing whispering in his ear too.
Helen said prior to being touched outside she could hear whispering noises all around her. She shone her torch - saw nothing so turned it back off. It was when she turned the torch off she felt someone or something had stood right next to her.
We decided to call out one last time before we went. We stood in the main room and asked for anybody to show us a sign that they were there. We then all heard music in the distance. Thinking that it could be from a car we waited but we heard no car. The music only continued for a short while then completely stopped. We decided to call it a day then packed up our stuff and head back to the car.
The conclusion I have come to is that there is definitely something there but maybe not as much as people say. Or maybe they just did want to make themselves known to us.
I am sure we will make a return visit for another investigation at Racton Ruins one day.
More photos of Racton Ruins