Tuesday, 9 November 2010

The terrible ghost of One Hand Boughton finds a new home

Just north of the town centre of Rugby the modern dual carriageway of the A426 follows a route through industrial estates, by passing completely the old Leicester Road with its houses and the grand edifice of Brownsover Hall. This monumental pile was erected in 1857 by the famous architect Sir George Gilbert Scott on the orders of Sir John Ward Boughton-Leigh.

The Leighs acquired their double-barrelled name when they inherited the much haunted Boughton estates of nearby Little Lawford. But if they thought a new house at Rugby would put an end to the terrifying ghostly manifestations of One Hand Boughton, they reckoned without the determination of that colourful Tudor squire. Only a few days after Sir John moved into his grand new home, the ghost came calling.

A  footman heard a carriage approaching the house up the sweeping drive from what was then the main road to Leicester. Thinking some late night guest was arriving, the man roused a maid and opened the front door. He was startled to be confronted by the towering figure of the ghostly one armed squire, apparently surveying with some satisfaction the new home of his descendants. Several times since then the phantom coach has been seen driving from Little Lawford down the lanes and over to Rugby. Strangely, it has not been seen returning. But return it must for One Hand Boughton is a very active ghost on the wide acres that were once his.


This is an extract from Haunted Places of Warwickshire by Rupert Matthews

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