Archive for Ghost

The Mystery Room, Cupar, Fife

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on September 6, 2015 by gstewartauthor

Spent some time today in the Mystery Room in the County Buildings, Cupar. It has jail doors, but why would a jail from the 1800s have fine stonework and 2 fire places? Why does the room have 2 fire places….it doesn’t need them? Why does the room have 2 doors from the same corridor? No evidence that it was ever 2 rooms. Found some answers today, but every answer raised more questions!!

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The Haunted Tower of St Andrews Cathedral

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on March 21, 2015 by gstewartauthor

As part of the research for my new book ‘Supernatural St Andrews’, one of the key things I wanted to do was to gather as many photographs as I could to allow the reader the be able to visualise the locations behind the stories. A picture is worth one thousand words, as they say. Unfortunately repairs have been ongoing at one of the key sites, the Haunted Tower, home of the infamous White Lady of the cathedral, and where a secret chamber was discovered containing coffins with well preserved bodies, giving the appearance they had just been buried, despite the fact that in the two hundred years of earlier records available, there was no mention of the tower ever being used for burials. A request for the fencing around the tower to be removed to allow me to take a photograph was granted, although one section had to be left due to shuttering around a tombstone making it difficult to move.

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While seeking permission, I also asked if I could view inside the tower, which is kept locked and is not open to the public and, after some form filling, Historic Scotland said yes! The chambers inside are far smaller than I ever thought they would be, and it is difficult to see how up to twelve coffins could have fitted inside, but I am reliably informed they were placed in a standing position lining the walls. In such a small, cramped space it was also difficult to take decent photographs, but I managed to get a couple, with the one below being the alcove that Dean W.T. Linskill, the recognised authority of his time in local ghostlore and author of the 1911 book ‘Haunted St Andrews’, stacked the coffins after he had the crypt, which had been bricked up, opened in the late 1800’s.

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The coffins, which had been found to be empty at that time, had started to disintegrate. What happened to the bodies in the twenty years that had passed since the chamber was last opened remains a mystery. Despite the difficulties their size caused, I really did feel quite privileged to stand in these tiny chambers, where so few have ever stood before me and where so much mystery still lies, to experience the atmosphere for myself. The full story of the tower will be in Supernatural St Andrews, available for pre-order very soon.

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Cyril the Haunted Doll

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on November 11, 2014 by gstewartauthor

After introducing Cyril in my last post, I have now started to carry out some tests on him to see if the doll really does have the spirit of Cyril attached to it. Initially I left the doll beside the EMF meter and waited, after a few minutes, the meter activated, showing there was a change in the electro-magnetic field. This lasted about a minute before all went quiet again. I waited a bit longer and again the meter measured an increase in the electro-magnetic field for a short while.

Cyril making his presence known?

After the emf meter had been activated a few times, I switched it to communication mode and waited again. Once it found a connection, I started to ask questions, asking that the needle is activated once for yes and twice for no.

Cyril, test 1

In the above video you will note the meter does register a positive response to the question ‘is your name Cyril’. An earlier test gave a negative response. To try to rule out a fault in the meter, I repeated similar questions several times, but switched between asking for the meter to be activated once for yes and twice for yes. Every time the same negative or positive responses came up for the same questions, including the name.

Cyril, test 2

I can’t say 100% that the doll does have the spirit of Cyril attached. What I can however say is that in repeated tests, the meter indicted the same answers to the same questions with me varying the number of times the meter was to be activated for the responses. Interesting times are ahead!!

New Release

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on September 2, 2014 by gstewartauthor

After a successful launch event at Waterstones in Kirkcaldy, Haunted Kirkcaldy is now available in book stores and online. This was the first time I have done a launch night, and the nerves were kicking in, but the audience were great and all seemed to go well. The staff at Waterstones in Kirkcaldy were also very supportive, even setting up a spooky theme in the shop!! I can’t thank everyone enough.

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It’s back to work now on the next title. I have several started, but need to now focus on getting one finished!

Haunted Kirkcaldy

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on August 14, 2014 by gstewartauthor

Due to other writing commitments It’s been a while since I have had time to update the blog, but I am now planning regular updates. Lots of information to follow, but I was delighted to get the following great piece written about the forthcoming book ‘Haunted Kirkcaldy’ in the regional press today:

Ghosts in public houses, playful poltergeists and phantom footsteps are just a taste of the spooky goings on in the Lang Toun’…

And they’re all chronicled by paranormal investigator Gregor Stewart whose book ‘Haunted Kirkcaldy’ debuts this month at Waterstones.

But in advance of the August 31 event, the father-of-two told the Press just how deep he had to dig to unearth the town’s darker past.

“I was surprised but it took a lot of effort to pull the stories together, “ he said.

“I thought it would be a case of poring over dusty old books in the library but, although there’s been an awful lot of stuff reported in the area, little has been documented and passed down.”

He explained: “There was a story about a ghost in the late 1800s who had been terrifying women going to work at the linoleum factory. He was described as eight feet tall and floated, but rather than document this, men went out with clubs to destroy the fiend!”

Recorded ghostly hotspots include Betty Nichols and the Feuer’s Arms, while readers might be more surprised to learn of the ‘strangling monk’ of Buchanan Court or the poltergeist of Oak Tree Square.

But Gregor’s investigations also unearthed tales of Kirkcaldy’s tragic past.

“There have been a couple of figures seen in the Old Kirk but nobody knew why they were there,” he said.

“But then I learned in 1828 hundreds of people went to the Kirk to hear the well-known preacher, Rev Edward Irving, deliver a service, resulting in the church being filled to, if not beyond, capacity.

“As he entered, the people surged forward to see him and this caused the north gallery to collapse, killing 24 people and injuring around 150.”

Gregor’s interest in paranormal stories was instilled in him as a youngster by his grandfather, a decorator who specialised in gold-leaf work in historic buildings such as Falkland Palace.

Nevertheless Gregor, who works as a building control surveyor with Fife Council, describes himself as an “open minded sceptic.”

“If I’m asked if I believe in ghosts, I answer no,” he said.

“But, equally, if I’m asked whether I think ghosts don’t exist, the answer is still no.”

On an overnight visit to Pittenweem Tolbooth Tower, Gregor and his son felt “distinctly uncomfortable” but that’s as far as he’ll go.

Leonard Low , author of Weem Witch, said: “Many people have asked to stay in the tower and it was worse than Scooby Doo! What I like about Gregor is he’s sensible and nobody’s fool.”

The story can be read here

The book can be pre-ordered on Amazon here

 

Haunted Scottish Castles and Houses

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on August 10, 2013 by gstewartauthor

The cover has arrived for the new book, and I’m really happy with it. I have decided to extend the ‘haunted’ books that I have written so far into a series which will be called the Haunted Explorer series. Haunted Scottish Castles and Houses will be book 3 and I will be going back to re-name the earlier books as book 1 and 2 in the series. Book 3 specifically looks at some of the castles and grand mansion houses, ranging from the fully restored to the ruinous. Not all were possible to visit as some of these remain private homes.

Meanwhile the exploring continues! Book 4 is in the pipeline as there are a few places I have already visited but didn’t make it into this book as they did not fall into the ‘castles and houses’ category. I have a long list of places still to visit, mainly in the south of Scotland.

Anyway, here’s the cover, hope you like it as much as I do;

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Dunnottar Castle

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on July 11, 2013 by gstewartauthor

Dunnottar Castle lies a few miles away from the town of Stonehaven on Scotland’s north east coast. As soon as you catch a glimpse of it, it is easy to understand why the rocky outcrop on which the castle stands has been considered of such strategic importance that a castle has stood here for over 1300 years. The first castle would have been a timber fort, built by the picts. Unfortunately, as the picts left almost no written records little is known about the original fort other than it was of significant importance in defending against attacks by the vikings and the Angles. The fort is believed to have finally been defeated and destroyed in the 9th century by the vikings during an attack which it is said also resulted in the death of King Donald II of Scotland. The fort was rebuilt, and continued to play an important defensive role.  

The first stone building on the site was the church, constructed in the 13th century. The castle continued to be seen of such strategical importance that some of the heavyweights of British history are directly associated with it. King Edward 1st of England successfully took the castle during the wars of independence, but a year later the castle was taken back by the Scots, led by none other than William Wallace, who allegedly burned the English forces alive in the church.

In 1651, Oliver Cromwell led a force against the castle after learning that the Scottish Crown Jewels were being held there. His army attacked the castle for over 8 months, yet, due to it’s natural and built defences, a group of just 70 Scots managed to hold it. It was not until Cromwell brought in heavy guns and shelled the castle for 10 days that it was finally surrendered, but by then the crown jewels had already been smuggled out so it was a pointless exercise, other than the castle was destroyed and never fully rebuilt.

With such a long and bloody history, it is not surprising that there reports of hauntings in the castle, the most common being screams of agony and despair. This is associated with the building being used as a prison many years after Cromwell’s attack. 180 men and women were held prisoner in the cellar of one of the buildings for 2 months due to their opposition to the Stuart kings. They were kept with no natural light, ventilation or sanitation in the crammed room. The conditions were so bad, 37 swore and oath to the Stuart kings in return for their freedom, 25 attempted to escape, with 15 being recaptured and 2 falling to their deaths, and 5 died from the conditions inside the vault. Those that survived were shipped to the West Indies, but they were by then in such poor health many did not survive the journey.

The castle is a truly fascinating place to visit and, as for future uses, well I know where I’m heading if there is ever a zombie apocalypse!

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