Most haunted in Kent: 9 of the scariest places to visit
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Being so rich in history, it is hardly surprising that Kent is also a hub for hauntings and ghostly activity. We have gathered 9 of the spookiest locations in Kent to visit if you dare!
Named the Guinness World Records’ most haunted village in England, the pretty village of Pluckley is said to be home to between 12 and 14 ghosts including the “Watercress Woman”, a hanged schoolteacher and a screaming man who reportedly fell to his death. This sleepy hamlet’s picturesque beauty and traditional charms contrast its label as most haunted village – which may be why it is so unsettling.
The most prominent paranormal events that happen at Rochester Castle surround the ghost of Lady Blanche de Warenne, “The White Lady of Rochester”. In the 13th century, when the castle was under siege, a soldier – Gilbert de Clare – who had taken a liking to her dressed up in similar armour to that of her betrothed Ralph de Capo. Dressed as Ralph, Gilbert entered the castle and accosted Blanche but when Ralph saw this he fired an arrow at him. The arrow, however, bounced off Gilbert’s armour and struck Blanche who fell from one of the castle’s windows, dead. This scene is re-enacted every Good Friday at the castle, but visitors and staff have claimed to see the White Lady walking the castle.
Chislehurst Caves is actually a network of underground tunnels with a fascinating history. Among other uses, it was used as an air raid shelter and then a town during WWII. It was a trendy place to hold parties and concerts during the 60s and 70s with artists such as The Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin all playing in the tunnels. Among its exciting history are reports of hauntings such as the sounds of children’s laughter, footsteps and sightings of an apparitional woman dressed in white. Take a tour through the dark corridors by oil-lamp which is bound to spark the imagination.
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The gorgeous Bilsington Priory is used as a fairytale wedding venue because of its stunning grounds and gardens, but its long history hasn’t always been so cheery. With reports of knocking on the walls that are suspected to be those of the Black Cannon who was put behind a wall in the priory. Other reports include hooded monks floating around the building and grounds too.
Mote Park in Maidstone is a 450 acre park that is visited as a major attraction in the city, seeing more than a million visitors per year. The tunnels running under the park are supposedly haunted and there have been reports from people claiming to have seen a little girl in a white night dress standing in the park at night time.
Hever Castle was once home to Anne Boleyn, the second of Henry VIII’s six wives. She was thought of disdainfully by many people who cited her as the reason for the King’s departure from the church. Eventually Anne was executed at the Tower of London after vicious rumours were spread and Henry lost interest in her. With this treatment from her husband and country, there’s little wonder why the vengeful spirit would be stalking Hever Castle. People have reported seeing her wandering round the castle her family home.
Ghosts have been spotted around the grounds and inside Dover Castle, which is a popular spot for ghost hunting – there are even overnight ghost hunting events hosted there. There are several reported ghosts including a headless child, a woman wearing red and a soldier who prowls the underground tunnels. Used in WWII as a command centre by Winston Churchill, links to the military aren’t surprising. Everything from whispers, sudden and drastic changes in temperature and blood curdling screams have also been experienced. Would you stay a night in Dover Castle to find out for yourself?
Fort Amherst is an underground network of tunnels and military buildings that was originally built in 1756 to act as a defence to a French attack. There are regular tours of the creepy underground labyrinth which include stories of its hauntings and ghost tours during which visitors can use state-of-the-art ghost-hunting equipment to make contact with the other side. There have been countless reports of people experiencing the presence of spirits and strange noises including screams and whispers.
Blue Bell Hill
There is a lot of mystery surrounding Blue Bell Hill, a chalk hill that lies between Rochester and Maidstone, overlooking the River Medway. Several incidents have occurred in which drivers have hit phantom pedestrians. One such story attracted national attention in 1974 when a man supposedly struck a young girl with his car before leaving her covered in a blanket to find help. When he came back with an ambulance, the girl wasn’t there and there were no traces of there ever having been an accident. Another driver in 1969 claims to have driven straight through two people, thought to be ghosts. Drive carefully if you are heading past Blue Bell Hill!