Thursday, 6 October 2011

Ghostly White Ladies in Herefordshire

The haunted bridge at Middelton
If there is one type of ghost that is quintessentially English, it is the white lady. And Herefordshire seems to have more of these enigmatic spectres that most counties. Perhaps there is something about the gentle hills and attractive villages that draws these ladies - and they are always ladies never women.

Take for instance the white lady of Middleton. She is a quiet, gentle soul who likes to drift around Gravenor’s Bridge just outside the village. Who she might be and why she feels such an affinity to the bridge is unknown, but there must be some reason why she keeps returning. The white lady who haunts the lanes near Court Farm outside Snodhill is similarly anonymous and enigmatic, as is the white lady of Eardisland.

Snodhill has a second white lady, the one who haunts the old manor house and its grounds, but she at least has a purpose. The manor house was built in 1660 by the Proser family, who continued to live there until 1878. This lady is thought to foretell a death in the Prosser family, or at least she was when the Prossers lived there. Whether or not the doom laden purpose still holds true is unclear. In any case she seems to be linked to a torchlit funeral procession that passes down the lane outside the old manor house from time to time.

Also visiting the mortal world to announce a death is the white lady of Hampton Bishop. She comes to announce the death, not of a member of a particular family but a member of the family of the person who sees her. Sometimes the death she foretells is that of the witness himself. She is a dangerous phantom.

From Haunted Herefordshire by Rupert Matthews

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