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Your First Haunted House

Tempest63

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Dec 19, 2009
Messages
3,174
I was listening to the latest episode of “The Tape Library” podcast tonight which covered the Amityville Horror. At the beginning the host explains that for him Amityville represents THE haunted house story, being the first instance of a haunted house story he recalls reading as a child.

For me it would be Borley Rectory, that was THE haunted house story of my youth, and as my mother wrangled me access as a child into the adult section of our local library I read everything by Harry Price and a few more on top if memory serves me correct.

I don’t know the age of the host on the The Tape Library but I would guess at mid-late twenties, I’m 60 in March so I am curious as to what was THE haunted house story of the ages between? Would it be one of the famous poltergeist cases, Enfield or Pontefract. Would it be a different haunting on the opposite shores of the Atlantic for similar age groups?

For youngsters nowadays would they have a first haunted house story or is it all Cryptids and UFO’s with hauntings being “So Yesterday”?

I must admit this particular podcast has piqued my curiosity.

https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podca...-the-unexplained/id1634948563?i=1000587268936
 
The house opposite me when I was a child.


No idea if it had a ghost.
But I was always disturbed by this story.

In one of the upper floor bedrooms, there was a wooden platform between the bed and side window.

It had a square shaped piece of wood, about 1M by 1M, which was hinged and could be opened.

I am not sure what was below it to any great extent, as it was just a small cavity used for storage, about two feet deep.

But the child who lived there, who was my friend, I guess we were aged about 10 or 11 at the time, told me that it was actually a filled-in staircase that led downstairs.

The man who lived there before had a wife, who one day "vanished."

Her husband assumed she had run off with someone else.

But one day had gone into that staircase and found her dead body.

He had the staircase blocked off, and promptly sold the house.

Or so my friend claimed....
 
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I'm also British and a similar age to you, @Tempest63. I'd guess that our first exposure to haunted houses depends on our access to books at that formative age, because I read a lot of 'children's ghost stories' from the library and got hold of all the Harry Price books from library sales and second hand bookshops. So, like you, Borley Rectory, Gef, and the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall were probably my formative tales.

Depends on age, background and country of origin though.
 
Assorted stately homes whose stories were told in IIRC "Look and Learn" or "Finding Out" magazines. Borley, Raynham, 50 Berkley Sq and the deserted house on the way to school which was rumoured to be haunted by various classmates with no foundation in fact.

I can't remember the story but the one that freaked me out was a ghost which followed someone home (May have been a Hans Holzer) up to then I'm sure we all thought that once you'd escsped the haunted house you were OK.
 
Borley Rectory was the first haunted house I read about when I was a child. As I got older I was fortunate to be able to buy a number of books about Borley including the Harry Price titles at a local book fair. I got to know one of the stall holders well and he searched for old Ghost books for me and found some great old titles.
 
I do remember my mum telling me about the 'talking mongoose' (which will have been Gef) when I was young too. I can't remember if that came before my first reading about haunted places and ghosts and all things Fortean (and therefore might have inspired my interest) or whether it was because of my interest.

I only know that it was quite odd for my otherwise very down to earth mum to be interested in such things. She never talked about any other weird happenings to my recollection.
 
When I first started reading books about ghost it was Borley and Glamis that stuck with me. But before that there were some houses in the village that were supposed to be a bit ’strange’. One of them was build sideways to the road and was then owned by people who were very rarely there. The gates were always locked. A misty shape was supposed to be seen gliding through the wall facing the road and across the street. I even thought I saw it once.
My best friend’s house also felt ‘odd’. There was a corridor that ran behind the bedrooms and no windows on that side so it was always gloomy and cold. When I visited we’d often chat in her bedroom if the weather was poor and I hated that landing. She did make some comments about it herself. Then the house we moved into in town which was dim and uncomfortable and just not nice.
While I do have an enduring interest in the more ‘classic’ stories like Borley and Glamis etc I’m always a lot more fascinated by more ‘normal‘ houses that have that strange feeling or are supposed to be haunted.
 
I'm old enough to have read about the Enfield Poltergeist, more or less as it happened, in my parents' Daily Mirror every day. :cool:

Thought it was tosh and still do. :chuckle:

Gave me what I hope is a healthy scepticism. :bthumbup:

Thank you for the tip-off about the The Tape Library podcast. I'll give it a listen. :hoff:
 
Amityville, Borley Rectory, and 50 Berkley Square would be mine, and I'm 53 in Nov. 2022.
Same as me MrRing. Borley, Berkley Sq etc. Anything remotely spooky interested me.

There was a house around the corner from where I grew up, where the locals said an old witch lived in there (even the adults). The local kids would dare each other to walk up to the front door, and play knock down ginger– I don’t remember too many taking up the challenge though.

Although I do remember that nobody had ever seen this elderly woman leave the house. All she seemed to do was sit at the window staring out onto street for hours on end. What she did about groceries is anyone’s guess. When the old lady died, the council moved a young family in there, but they only lasted a few months before moving out again. Then another young family moved in, but moved out shortly after, then the house lay empty for years.

I do vaguely remember the Nationwide broadcast on the Enfield case. I certainly remember that piece of footage where the WPC that was called to the house by the Hodgson family, telling the camera crew that she couldn’t find any explanation for the disturbance at all.

I’ve just turned 52 btw
 
I was listening to the latest episode of “The Tape Library” podcast tonight which covered the Amityville Horror. At the beginning the host explains that for him Amityville represents THE haunted house story, being the first instance of a haunted house story he recalls reading as a child.

For me it would be Borley Rectory, that was THE haunted house story of my youth, and as my mother wrangled me access as a child into the adult section of our local library I read everything by Harry Price and a few more on top if memory serves me correct.

I don’t know the age of the host on the The Tape Library but I would guess at mid-late twenties, I’m 60 in March so I am curious as to what was THE haunted house story of the ages between? Would it be one of the famous poltergeist cases, Enfield or Pontefract. Would it be a different haunting on the opposite shores of the Atlantic for similar age groups?

For youngsters nowadays would they have a first haunted house story or is it all Cryptids and UFO’s with hauntings being “So Yesterday”?

I must admit this particular podcast has piqued my curiosity.

https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podca...-the-unexplained/id1634948563?i=1000587268936
Broadly speaking, also Borley.

But in terms of everyday life - my own house! It was a "famously" haunted house in our village. People would waylay you, when they knew you lived at X House, just to tell you about the ghost in your own house! (That someone else, years before had seen, usually, IIRC).

Thing was, none of the stories the house was known for, matched up with our experience. I was told it was haunted by the ghost of an old lady - in a certain room, in particular. In fact it was an old bloke we all saw or heard - and almost everywhere but that particular room!

Can't recall whether I put them right or not. Maybe not.

But was quite unusual probably, to be the person living in the infamously haunted house and have people tell you all about it...

I do wonder if some of this came about in the 1940s, when my grandad moved into the house, after he lost his farm. He was a recluse. My mother was the opposite. She ran the local Guides and Brownies from the house, at points in the 1940s, so many villagers of the previous generation had been in our house although my grandad would hide in one of the rooms away from them and they weren't allowed to disturb him, I've been told. And so I now wonder whether my reclusive grandad plus the general creepiness of the house itself, didn't lead to the rumours...
 
Hi skargy re first ghost. I was about 9 years old and at my friends birthday party lovely summer day and we were all in the back yard/garden when I decided I needed the loo so shot off inside.
Going up the stairs i was kinda on my hands and knees like kids do when I heard a door slam.
I looked around the stair post and saw a man wearing a hat with a walking stick under his left arm and putting a glove on his left hand a open jacket and a waistcoat then his legs to the knees then nothing.
I ran downstairs and out of the kitchen door and would not go back in the house again
 
The Holy Ghost, Methodist Church, Cummins SA, every Sunday from 1976-1982.
In popculture, probably Amityville. We weren't allowed exposure to spooky stuff as kids. Apart from Enid Blyton.
 
The one I grew up in between the ages of 9-18!

There was also one along the ''top road'' of the village I grew up in,it was unlived in and there was a rumour it was haunted,it used to creep us kids out big time,we explored it quite a few times and it did have a ''feeling'' to it. It's since been renovated but every time I go past it,it still gives me the heebie jeebies.
 
When I was about 11 years old we visited family friends who lived in East Devon, about 30 miles from where we lived in North Devon. It was in the Autumn or Winter as the drive there and back that evening was in darkness and so my imagination was already fired up after a journey along unlit, winding roads through the Devon countryside during which I was glued to the window in the hope of seeing a UFO...!

They lived in an old house with a lot of atmosphere and during dinner they remarked that the upstairs was haunted and it became a topic of conversation amongst the adults as I sat there wide-eyed with excitement. There was no mockery or skepticism from my family but rather a keen interest in the goings-on (sorry, cannot remember exact details but I seem to remember it was poltergeist-type activity). Straight after dinner everyone decamped to siy=t around a blazing log fire in the lounge with the exception of 11-year-old me who spent the night creeping up up staircase and scaring myself silly :)

Alas no ghosts or UFOs but even at that young age I was a fired-up Fortean...!
 
This was my first haunted house, in the 70s I think. I loved that book.
Screenshot_20230304_141415_Amazon Shopping.jpg
 
Have you posted about it @Grumpyoldwoman. I’d love to read about it if so.
No,I haven't.But here goes.
I remember feeling really ill one night,I felt as if there was someone in my room,stood over me in bed - next thing I know - (step)mum came in,she's been woken up by someone shaking her quite roughly -dad was sound asleep as were my brothers and sisters - I hadn't been able to get out of bed to go to her,It really shook her up,she could feel a hand on her shoulder,the shaking wouldn't stop until she actually got out of bed and she said it felt as if whoever it was grabbed her wrist and pulled her to my bedroom. This happened more than once and to my sisters too. we believe this was my birth mum who died when I was younger.

Often I'd smell flowers in my bedroom-we never had flowers upstairs or in the garden - we weren't a gardening family,the garden was laid to lawn with a few bushes dotted about.

Walking along the landing to go to the loo during the night,I often saw a woman about my height with dark hair,cuddly,friendly person-once again,I think it was my birth mum.She never lived there,we'd moved house a couple of years after she died so we think she followed us.

Many times,I saw a shadow of a man at the top of the stairs just outside the toilet - he had a strange feel about him-never worked out who he was.The house was built just after the second world war,so had many occupants before us.

There were cold spots-mostly on the landing right at the top of the stairs - a really unpleasant spot,none of us stayed around there too long-we'd end up running along the passage to our rooms.In fact the whole house had like a ''brooding'' type atmosphere,very strange. Even now if I go past it,I get goosebumps and shiver.
 
House I grew up in had a rep as being haunted and indeed, was.

Just last night drove past and spotted a For Sale sign in the window. Shall I do a viewing? (It's a wildly expensive house and I couldn't readily present as someone who has that kind of £s, truthfully). Parents paid £1000 for it because it was falling down and also got an acre of land which is now under a housing estate, for their money. Nobody else wanted it, they were the tenants, and got it cheap as my mum did spud picking for the farmer who owned it. £350,000 now and not even got the acre of land or outbuildings standing any more.

Estate agents' photo'd every room though and Jesus. it's utterly unrecognisable - both house and garden, as our beloved home (my dad sold it because second wife never liked it and needed to fund a retirement but it was supposed to be left to brother and me).

The "most haunted" room I could only recognise from the view out the window. There's now a whacking big walk in closet covering where the ghost was. So if he still appears he is now amongst someone's clothes...

The bathroom (where my mother died) is totally unrecognisable. Looks like summat out of a newbuild.

I'm tempted to make an appointment but another part of me thinks, maybe it would be a better choice to knock on the door or drop in a note, explain that I'd love one last look at my childhood home, and see if they think I'm a nutter.

Will probably not be on market for long and in 20 odd years I've lived back near it, have never seen it come up for sale.
 
I was listening to the latest episode of “The Tape Library” podcast tonight which covered the Amityville Horror. At the beginning the host explains that for him Amityville represents THE haunted house story, being the first instance of a haunted house story he recalls reading as a child.

For me it would be Borley Rectory, that was THE haunted house story of my youth, and as my mother wrangled me access as a child into the adult section of our local library I read everything by Harry Price and a few more on top if memory serves me correct.

I don’t know the age of the host on the The Tape Library but I would guess at mid-late twenties, I’m 60 in March so I am curious as to what was THE haunted house story of the ages between? Would it be one of the famous poltergeist cases, Enfield or Pontefract. Would it be a different haunting on the opposite shores of the Atlantic for similar age groups?

For youngsters nowadays would they have a first haunted house story or is it all Cryptids and UFO’s with hauntings being “So Yesterday”?

I must admit this particular podcast has piqued my curiosity.

https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podca...-the-unexplained/id1634948563?i=1000587268936
I don't remember any famous haunted house stories as a kid. I did read a book of ghost stories and my cousin used to tell us "scary" stories sometimes. The stories I remember from the ghost stories books made me laugh, one guy was going to get money for spending the night in a haunted house. He picked a bedroom that had the bed facing the door and a window behind the bed. He woke up startled and saw two white eyes staring at him. He had brought a gun and the eyes just stared so he shot at them, and the screamed because the "eyes" were the moon reflecting off his toenails. :p The other one was weird. A guy got caught in a storm walking down a dark road. He saw a house with lights on so he knocked. The door opened but no one was there. A cat was sitting by the fire so he came in and sat by the fire to dry himself. A bigger cat came and sat by the first cat and said "What do you think?" The first cat said "Wait until Stu comes". They guy was unnerved that cats were talking but decided to ignore them. Then a 3rd, bigger cat came and the same thing was said at which point the guy jumped up and ran out shouting "Tell Stu I couldn't wait".

I lived in a house that seemed to be haunted when I was a child. Weird stuff like something unseen jumping on my brother's bed when he was trying to sleep, my dad hearing voices, me seeing someone sitting by my bed. But I don't think we had anything moving around and no one got hurt.
 
House I grew up in had a rep as being haunted and indeed, was.

Just last night drove past and spotted a For Sale sign in the window. Shall I do a viewing? (It's a wildly expensive house and I couldn't readily present as someone who has that kind of £s, truthfully). Parents paid £1000 for it because it was falling down and also got an acre of land which is now under a housing estate, for their money. Nobody else wanted it, they were the tenants, and got it cheap as my mum did spud picking for the farmer who owned it. £350,000 now and not even got the acre of land or outbuildings standing any more.

Estate agents' photo'd every room though and Jesus. it's utterly unrecognisable - both house and garden, as our beloved home (my dad sold it because second wife never liked it and needed to fund a retirement but it was supposed to be left to brother and me).

The "most haunted" room I could only recognise from the view out the window. There's now a whacking big walk in closet covering where the ghost was. So if he still appears he is now amongst someone's clothes...

The bathroom (where my mother died) is totally unrecognisable. Looks like summat out of a newbuild.

I'm tempted to make an appointment but another part of me thinks, maybe it would be a better choice to knock on the door or drop in a note, explain that I'd love one last look at my childhood home, and see if they think I'm a nutter.

Will probably not be on market for long and in 20 odd years I've lived back near it, have never seen it come up for sale.

Can you provide a link to posts about your haunted house? I've seen you reference it but not read the actual story. Thank you.
 
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