Investigated in 2009 and 2013
On Saturday 11th April 2009, some of the Twilight Shadows
Paranormal/ Phoenix of Wessex Paranormal team members joined
Paranormal Devon at an overnight investigation at Woodchester Mansion
Woodchester Mansion is situated in rural Gloucestershire, in a
secluded spot within 400 acres of beautiful countryside. It is a
Victorian Gothic Mansion and has 27 rooms, all unfinished apart from
one room - the drawing room. In 1868, after 12 years of hard work
constructing the mansion, the workmen mysteriously downed their tools
and 'walked out' leaving the mansion in its unfinished state.
Woodchester Mansion was a dream of William Leigh who decided to build
his Gothic Mansion at the site of a previous house. Reclaimed stone
was used from the original Spring Park House so it is uncertain
whether the ghosts of Woodchester are all from this mansion or are
connected to the reclaimed stone of SpringPark.
The site of the Gothic Mansion has extensive history and was
previously used over 2500 years ago by the Anglo Saxons. The Romans
also used it and there are stories of Roman soldiers marching up the
driveway towards where the mansion is now situated. The site of the
mansion was visited by several Kings and Queens of England.
This spot was the site of bloody battles and it is thought that
satanic worship was practised here.
Woodchester Mansion is home to a rare species of bat. The Lesser
and Greater Horseshoe bats live here.
Sightings of a hooded Monk figure
A headless horseman
Strange blue lights
Unexplained banging sounds
Apparition of a man in military uniform
Voices (including children's voices and laughter)
Voice saying "I want to go home"
Sound of woman sobbing
Hair pulling and touching of people
Large black dog growling in the cellar
Electrical equipment being switched off
Poltergeist activity (things being thrown)
Sightings of a ragged dwarf-like creature
We drove down the seemingly never-ending lane to the Mansion. As I
saw the Mansion for the first time I was taken aback by its sheer
beauty. The huge windows and stone masonry were awesome, with
beautiful (I thought so) gargoyles. Some which looked like wolves
were probably hunting dogs as the mansion stands upon the site of an
old hunting lodge.
We gathered in the drawing room (the only room that was finished)
and left our belongings. This is a beautiful room with magnificent
windows and an open fire which had been lit. As tempting as it was to
spend time in this room we were eager to explore the rest of the
mansion. Gloucestershire Paranormal were there and gave us a tour
round the building advising us on safety as there are sheer drops
with no floor in places (luckily barricaded across). We were informed
of many interesting facts as well as ghostly tales upon our tour.
Unfortunately we were told of the cave spiders which dwell in the
cellar which made Loretta determined not to go into the cellar again!
We split into small groups and my team started in an upstairs
corridor. There were two wooden coffins in this hallway which had
been left there by ITV from when they filmed Dracula, approximately
two years ago. (Loretta and I have since watched this production of
Dracula and it is strange to watch, recognising the building where we
spent the night). The ceiling of the corridor was amazing with
majestic archways. We settled down and eventually started to 'call
out.' There were several flashes of light but I was unsure that the
flashes had a paranormal origin as I wondered if they could be
attributed to camera flashes somehow reflecting off walls from other
teams' cameras elsewhere in the building. Some people said that they
could see blue pin-pricks of light darting about on the walls. I did
not see this but I have since read that these strange, tiny, blue
lights are recorded paranormal phenomena connected with Woodchester.
We could hear owls hooting and sheep bleating outside through the
glassless window. Someone from another team radioed on the
walkie-talkie and asked if we had heard a woman scream as they
thought that the scream had originated from upstairs where we were.
There is a record of a young servant girl who was strangled in this
corridor. Nobody from my team had heard a scream but a second earlier
we had all heard a lamb bleating loudly outside. We wondered if the
other team had heard the lamb or perhaps an owl screeching.
After a while we heard a door slamming. We went towards the noise
but all the doors were shut with nobody near them. They had been shut
firmly when we first entered the corridor. This happened several
times. We wondered if the sound originated from doors on a different
level being slammed (although it definitely sounded like they were
the doors near us). We radioed the other teams and asked if doors
downstairs were being slammed by the teams or even by unseen hands.
The answer was "No!" It really did sound like the doors
were in our vicinity but we could not work it out.
At one point we were standing near the top of the stone stairway
and we heard a stone (or some small object) being thrown down the
stairs away from us. It bounced down the stairs until it reached the
bottom. I was going to run downstairs and see if I could find this
object but someone from another team ran towards the bottom of the
stairs and shouted up to us "Did you just throw that, down the
stairs?" I can honestly say that nobody from my team had done
this as I was standing nearest to the stairs. This happened again a
little while later but this time the downstairs team were not close
enough to acknowledge this occurrence.
One thing we all agreed on, we all felt as if we were being
closely watched in this corridor, something (I later learned) that
most people experience in this area.
This was an interesting room and apparently very paranormally
active. There have been sightings of a man in military uniform here
which is not surprising as this room was used by the American armed
forces in WW2 for training purposes. Twenty of the soldiers stationed
here were killed in a doomed D-Day exercise, when a pontoon bridge
collapsed drowning the soldiers.
Some people actually experienced paranormal phenomenon in this
room but I didn't experience anything. I actually liked the feeling
of this room.
As soon as I walked into the cellar I became aware of a strange
chemical smell. I was surprised to learn that the smell is actually
from a chemical source. This room was used as a laboratory and was
apparently connected to experiments with animals. The chemicals used
have seeped into the stone flooring and can still be smelt
There were some more coffin props in the cellar (also left by the
makers of Dracula) and they looked far more eerie than they did in
the upstairs corridor. I half expected them to slowly open revealing
a vampire who wanted to come out to play. Wishing I had worn a scarf
to cover my neck I sat upon a ledge and tuned in to the atmosphere.
After a while I became aware of a gentleman spirit who was clearly a
workman who liked to whistle while he worked. I think he said that
his name was Joseph, (my interpretation as it was not clear and I
could detect an accent). I asked him questions but instead of
answering me I was given the impression that he would show me what
had happened to him. I thought this meant that I would be shown in a
clairvoyant manner, like a visual recording. But suddenly I got an
excruciating pain in the left side of my head. I felt weak and dizzy
and felt like I was going to collapse. I asked my spirit guide to
make this spirit take these physical conditions from me which he did
immediately. I asked my spirit guide if I was feeling physical
symptoms akin to what this spirit man experienced and he said "Yes!"
I assumed that he had collapsed due to natural medical causes but I
later discovered that someone had been hit on the head with a large
piece of stone. I wondered if this was accidental but was informed
that a medium (previously at the mansion) had said that a spirit man
had been murdered in the cellar. I am unsure if we had connected with
the same man.
Someone thought that they felt the presence of a dog with us in
the cellar. There is a legend that there is a dog connected to
Woodchester which is a 'death portent.' Basically, anyone who sees
the dog will die. Luckily the dog did not appear.
The cellar is reputed to have stones thrown and groans heard. It
has a few chambers attached to it and although we investigated all
areas of the cellar, we did not experience either groaning or stones
thrown at us.
GROUND FLOOR CORRIDOR AND TOOL SHED
This was interesting as bats were flying around. Although I love
bats, I must say it looked eerie, the way that they were flying
around the corridor. It went along with the Dracula theme.
Mysterious lights on the walls are also experienced in this
corridor but I didn't encounter anything on a psychic level.
We looked at the tool room. All the tools which were suddenly laid
down and abandoned have been stored here. We all wondered what had
happened to make the workmen suddenly abandon their tools and leave
the mansion unfinished. Most people felt that it was connected to a
murder. It has been said that the murdered man was a French
William Leigh had converted to Catholicism and the stonework
inside the chapel illustrates this. That is apart from a Pagan, Green
Man stone carving upon the ceiling.
Jacky, Dave, Loretta and I went to the chapel. This room has
scaffolding insitu. I did not feel like we were alone in this room.
There were no other team members anywhere near us but I felt as if we
had been joined by another person just on the peripheral. We 'called
out' for a while and although the atmosphere started to build we
became distracted and started chatting about the stone masonry and
the skill of the stone masons. We were looking upward to see if we
could see the carving of the Green Man on the ceiling. Suddenly a
stone was thrown near Jacky. We all jumped and although we were
really shocked, we were very excited. It was thrown quite high up and
Jacky actually saw it arc before it started to fall. It seemed to
have been thrown from above our heads. We carried on chatting as it
felt like the stone had been thrown to get our attention. Another
stone was thrown from nowhere (there really was nobody there). It hit
hard into the scaffolding and made a 'chinking' sound.
A previous medium has said that the spirit of a French man haunts
this area. He was a French Glassblower and he is lonely. EVP's of
French voices have been captured in the chapel but we did not capture
any EVP. Mediums have said that this is a male spirit who is
responsible for the throwing of stones etc., whether to scare people
out of the chapel or to merely get their attention. I feel it is the
latter and when Jacky said "Right, you have my attention,"
I felt mirth in the atmosphere as if he was laughing.
We told the spirit we were leaving the chapel and going into the
The kitchen is reputed to be a very paranormally active area.
Things are thrown and it used to contain a clock (which was
originally moved from the main tower) which would start and stop by
itself. The clock is no longer in the kitchen.
We walked into the kitchen and chatted to each other. It really
felt like a male spirit had followed us in. We had not been in the
kitchen very long when a small but significant stone was thrown at us
(we feel mainly at Jacky). It was hilarious. I was filming with my
Camcorder and Jacky fled from the room omitting a few choice but very
funny words. In Jacky's panic, Loretta did not know what to do and
she made a grab at me, nearly climbing on top of me. I think Dave
went to see if Jacky was OK. (This camera footage is very funny and I
will upload it onto the website at some time). I am sure the spirit
who threw the stone found this whole spectacle extremely amusing.
We did not have any more phenomena occur and as it was morning we
decided to end our investigation and start the long journey home.
We would like to thank Paranormal Devon for arranging this
investigation and Gloucestershire Paranormal for the interesting
information they provided.
Written by: Maria Williams
On Saturday 14th December, Twilight Shadows Paranormal
joined Bristol & UK Supernatural (BUS) for a paranormal
investigation at Woodchester Mansion in Gloucestershire. There were
only ten of us to investigate this huge, amazing old mansion. Using
the drawing room as a hub, we decided to start our investigation in
Jacky started to 'call out' to any spirits that were present with
us in the cellar. As she was filming with her Camcorder, she said
that she was capturing lots of light anomalies. Something was thrown
towards us and Dave and I heard footsteps nearby. It sounded like a
woman's footsteps walking towards us. We checked to make sure the
other team were not nearby. We were definitely alone down there.
Something else was thrown. We all noticed that there was a strange
mist in the room that we were in. Two more small items were thrown.
The cellar was divided into separate, small chambers. We decided
to move into another of the chambers. Jacky said that she felt scared
in this room. We heard footsteps again. We decided to conduct a
séance and obtained the following information.
(We could hear a sound like water emptying. We could not work out
a rational explanation for this. Dave heard some footsteps and we all
heard some large banging sounds. We could hear movement behind us).
(Something was thrown behind us).
(There was further movement near to us and Andrew went to
Andrew put the K2 on the table and Jacky 'called out,' The table
tapped. Jacky said that she could feel a breeze swirling around her
fingers and her face. We all heard a voice. There were no words
spoken, just the sound of a voice. We all heard a strange noise
behind us. We asked if it was George but we received a negative
response. The table started moving about. I heard a noise right by my
head. It was like a wheezing/buzzing sound. Jacky heard it also.
Neither Dave or Andrew heard it which really surprised Jacky and I.
The table moved and I became aware that the area around me was
freezing cold. The table suddenly shot across the room and we heard a
Jacky asked, “Are you friendly?”
There was a loud knock on the table.
“Was the strange sound that Maria and I heard, you?”
“I can't believe that the boys didn't hear the noise you made.
Was it just for us girls?”
“Can you speak to us?”
I heard a loud intake of breath.
There was an air of expectancy. The table was rocking backwards
and forwards and there were strange breezes. The table lifted
suddenly, followed by three large knocks. The table started twitching
and knocking. We started to discuss what sort of spirit we had with
us. Dave wondered if it was an elemental spirit. We wondered if the
strange buzzing sound was the sound of the spirit coming from its
realm into our earthly realm. There was movement by the entrance to
this part of the cellar. Jacky said, “I feel afraid of this one.
George did tell us to be careful.” Jacky asked the spirit if 'it'
liked us and it knocked the table. I decided to leave the table at
this point to check my Camcorder and the table lurched over to me as
I walked away.
We stood still for a while and a small stone was thrown. It landed
in the middle of the table. The table started moving again but it
felt like a different energy had joined us. This went on for a while
and despite us 'calling out' this was all that happened.
As soon as we entered the kitchen, a pebble was thrown at us.
Jacky asked if 'they' could throw another one. They did and again.
Dave and I heard footsteps. Dave went to investigate. There was
nobody there. Dave walked to the right of me and said that it was
like walking into a freezer. At this moment a loud groan was picked
up by our recording equipment. Jacky said that she could see black
smoke/mist going across the room. Jacky asked the spirit of Agnes (a
known spirit who is said to reside in the kitchen) to rattle the pots
and pans for us. We heard movement from some of the ornamental dishes
on the shelves within the recess of the wall. A pebble was thrown and
landed at Jacky's feet. Another pebble was thrown shortly afterward.
W e heard a sound like a child laughing. Another stone was thrown.
The door started to rattle. This may have had a rational cause but it
was the first time it had happened. A big stone was thrown at us and
another stone which landed near Dave that made him jump. We heard a
strange whooshing noise just outside the door, then we heard
footsteps. We checked the area and again, there was nobody there. We
all heard a deep rumbling sound. We had no idea what it was.
W e went to the chapel. Almost immediately, a stone was thrown and
we heard footsteps. We decided to walk up to the balcony. I was the
last person up the stairs and when I got to the top, I turned around
and went back down several steps as I wanted to take a photo of the
spiral staircase from the top. As I went to take a photo, I heard
footsteps running up the stairs. They ran right up to me and then I
ran back to the others rather quickly.
We assembled on the third floor. It felt very spooky. We stood in
the middle of this long room so that we could see both ends equally.
Dave looked around quickly and he said that he had seen a foot. We
could hear strange music playing but it was very faint. As the
mansion is in the middle of its own grounds and we were locked in, we
knew that the music was not from a passing car. Jacky 'called out.'
We could still hear the music. A stone was thrown which Jacky caught
on her Camcorder. It materialised mid-air. Dave jumped and started
rubbing the back of his neck. Jacky said that she could see a figure
at the top of the room by the window. She was looking through her
Camcorder. We shone our torches and we couldn't see anything. But we
could see it again every time we looked through our Camcorders. We
thought that it was probably pareidolia until Andrew moved forward
and 'she' seemed to turn her face to look at him. Jacky named her
'Raggedy Girl.' We stayed here for a while and we heard a growl
behind us. After this, all was quiet.
We returned to the hub and met up with the six members of the BUS
team. We decided to all go to the cellar and conduct a séance
together. The details of this séance are written in Jacky's report.
Twilight Shadows Paranormal would like to thank Claire Stevens of
Bristol & UK Paranormal for arranging this amazing paranormal
investigation. We look forward to working with you soon.
Written by: Maria Williams
On Saturday 14th December 2013 we found ourselves at the
wonderfully spooky and Gothic, Woodchester Mansion. This is a
personal favourite location of mine and it had been a while since our
last visit. The previous investigations I had attended here had been
some of the most para-normally active investigations I have ever been
on and I hoped this evening was going to be the same. I was truly
Not only were we at my favourite location, we practically had this
place to ourselves. Our team for the night consisted of Maria, Dave
Andrew and I and 6 team members from B.U.S. We split into 2 groups
and we chose the cellar as our first area to investigate. The cellar
is made up of several small chambers and 1 large chamber.
We started our investigation in the largest chamber. We called
out to see if we could get some paranormal activity starting. I
quickly saw a light anomaly on my camera and we did hear something
like a small stone being thrown in the far corner. Being conscious
that this may just be falling from the ceiling we asked again.
Nothing much happened for roughly10 minutes but then I felt like I
was touched on my right side. I said this to the team and then asked
if it was a spirit, could it do this to another member of the team.
I saw a light anomaly move towards Maria on my camera and she then
said she felt like someone was playing with her hair. I asked if
this spooked her at all but she said she felt fine and it was not
freaking her out at all. We also heard what sounded like footsteps
which sounded like it was coming just outside the door near the other
smaller chambers. This did not sound up on the video though. I said
to the others that I felt safe in this room but I did not feel very
comfortable about leaving this larger chamber. Maria agreed that she
felt the same.
We decided to confront this feeling and left the chamber. As we
rounded the corner I noticed a mist show up on my camRera in one of
the smaller chambers. This was not our breath. We seemed to all
make our way down to the end chamber and were delighted to find that
there was a small table in there. We decided this would be an ideal
opportunity to try out my new spirit board. We set the board up and
started to ask out. We soon seemed to get a response which was very
slow. We made good communication with this spirit which seemed sad
about his passing. As we continued to communicate with him he seemed
to get stronger and more animated.
We were aware of some noises coming from the corner of the room
and we also thought the other team had come to join us. This was not
so. We continued with the séance and it seemed to us that the
spirit was tiring. It was confirmed that the spirit was tired so we
decided to try some table tipping. We asked if the spirit would stay
with us and he said he would. We moved the board and stood around
the table. We didn’t have to wait long for things to start
happening. The table started to pulse under our fingers which we
find usually happens when energy is building up. We got the usual
taps, creaks and knocks that you get but then Maria and I heard
something very strange. It was like an electrical buzzing sound just
behind Maria. This made her jump. Dave and Andrew did not hear it
at all. We were just talking about it when the table really shifted
position. We usually get warning before this happens and it is really
rare for the table to move so drastically and so suddenly in such a
short space of time. We asked if this was the spirit that we were
talking to via the board. Nothing. We asked if this was another
spirit and we heard a loud tap on the table, then the table shoved
over towards Andrew and tilted up on 2 legs. It then moved over
towards Maria and tilted up on 2 legs again. It was hard not to feel
a little alarmed at such forcefulness that the table was being moved.
We tried to ask questions by saying tap once if (and then we asked a
series of questions). This was a little hit and miss so we didn’t
really learn much about our ghostly companion but he was sure a lot
of fun to have around.
Dave needed to take a natural break so we continued to go with the
table. However, things changed once Dave left. First, a stone
seemed to be flung at Andrew which hit him on the foot with quite a
bit of force. I have experienced stones being thrown at Woodchester
before from seemingly nowhere so this was not a surprise to me. We
did learn a little later that this phenomenon had not been
experienced for a while. We concentrated back on the table and it
appeared our ghostly guest had left us. I said that maybe he had
gone with Dave. This made us laugh and the table seemed to knock in
response. It then seemed to rock from side to side. The energy
around us felt different. More gentle that the last. We felt this
was female and tried to communicate with her. The table constantly
rocked from side to side. I stopped the table and said I was just
trying something. I tried rocking the table just to make sure it was
not on an uneven floor. It was not. It did not rock when I tried to
recreate what was happening. We went with the table for a while,
however nothing else was happening and we could not encourage this
spirit to communicate with us in a different way. We thanked her
and decided to move to another area. On our travels we bumped into
some of the other team who had just come from the 3rd floor. They
had not experienced much so we suggested they went to the cellar
where we had just been.
We decided to try the kitchen area. We were told that a spirit
called Agnes liked to hang around in this area and that she liked to
rattle the pots and pans. We got ourselves comfortable and started
to call out. I had just started to film when I saw a black shadow
disappear into the scullery. Playing the footage back this was more
like black smoke. You can see the video footage on our Facebook
page. I also captured a lot of light anomalies. It was not long
before we heard the familiar sound of a small stone hitting the
floor. This made us jump a little. Dave and Maria also heard
footsteps coming from outside in the corridor. On tape I do not hear
the footsteps but I do get an audible female voice which murmurs
something indecipherable but you can clearly hear her say,
“Shhhhhhhhhhh”. We also heard what at the time sounded like a
plate or pot lid being chinked and a few more stones were thrown at
us. This is all available to view on our Facebook page.
After a short break we decided to stop off in the chapel area. It
was here on a previous visit that I had witnessed a stone appear out
of nowhere, shoot across the chapel and hit the far wall. The spiral
staircase which was not accessible on our last visit was open and it
led up to the gallery. We climbed up to the platform above and took
a few pictures. Maria went to take a picture of the stairs and came
darting back in clearly spooked. She said she had just heard
footsteps coming up with staircase but no-one was there. We stood
there chatting and we heard footsteps coming from just beyond the
corridor, where the hub room was. Expecting Claire or one of the
B.U.S. team we stopped and looked. No-one came through but at the
time we didn’t think anything of it. We later found out this was
none of the other team. We heard a stone hit the scaffolding which
is in the chapel. We called out to see if we could get any other
type of response. We felt not quite spooked but not welcome where we
were so we decided to try up on the 3rd level.
The last time I visited the Mansion, the upper levels were in
quite a rough state and you had to be careful with the loose floor
covering. I was relieved to find that the floors had been improved.
I noticed that my tummy had started to feel a bit funny so I told the
other team members. They all then said that they felt the same.
Deciding to go with it we got ourselves comfy and focused on the
upper level. During our last visit on this level Dave and I had
experienced a little girls voice which sounded like it was under
water, a scream, a dog growling a not so nice older gentleman and big
band music. We started to call out and I quickly saw light anomalies
on my camera. It didn’t take long before the stones started
appearing and we were just trying to see if they could have fallen
from the ceiling when I realised I could see a figure on the camera
right up in the far corner of the corridor. Thinking it maybe
Pareidolia, I called the others over to have a look. They could all
see it on screen but if you looked to where the figure was standing
you couldn’t see anything. There wasn’t any shading on the wall
to create this affect and when we shone a torch on the wall the
figure stayed. Andrew went up to see and on the screen it looked
like the figures head moved to watch him. To us the figure looked
like a girl dressed in rags. I called her the Raggedy Girl. Andrew
came back down to see on the screen again and Maria said she could
now see her on her camera too. It was here that Dave let out a yell
and Maria lurched forward and grabbed my arm. They had heard a very
nasty guttural growl which Dave said was right in his ear. I did not
hear this but you can hear something on the video footage. This is
available to view on our Facebook page.
We went back down to the hub where the others were. After quite a
long chat we decided that as the other team had not got much in the
way of paranormal activity, we thought it would be a good idea for us
all to do something. I suggested the cellar again as this is where
we got most of our activity.
Again we seemed to be drawn to the larger chamber. We stood in
here for a while but didn’t really get much in the way of activity.
We then decided to try in the little room with the table tipping.
It was a good decision. We very soon got the table moving like
before. Some of the team members now with us had never been on an
investigation before and none of them had tried table tipping. I
could see they were a bit sceptical and probably thought we were
manipulating the table. I told one of them to push down on the table
if it tilts up on 2 legs. The table did this and they tried to push
it down. They really struggled. With table tipping it usually seems
to favour one side which was happening now however as the experiment
progressed the table did rise on both sides and we also got it to
copy our taps and to tap out the end to 'shave and a haircut.' (We
love it when they do that).
Simon from B.U.S seemed to get the most response from our ghostly
companion who said he was in the military. Simon was also from a
military background so he and the spirit seemed to forge a bond
during this experiment. Chris who is responsible for most of the
investigations at Woodchester was amazed. He said that he had a team
of nurses coming to the Mansion the next day and the spirit seemed
very pleased to hear this. We continued in the cellar for a while
though I do not have this on camera as my batteries and film had run
out. We decided to move to the Kitchen though not much happened.
As it was getting late, we decided to call it a night.
I would like to thank B.U.S. for including us in this
investigation and also Dave, Maria and Andrew for making this
investigation one of the best yet.
Written by: Jacky Wicheard. ©