Gwrych Castle ghost: Is the Welsh castle haunted?

WITH the freezing Welsh climate and gruelling challenges, this year's I'm A Celeb is set to be tough – and it's about to get scary.

For 2020 the show will be held in a creepy Welsh castle, and fingers crossed the new contestants don't get easily spooked, becuase Gwrych Castle is notoriously haunted.

Is Gwrych Castle haunted?

Gwrych Castle website says that "Real life ghost encounters by visitors to Gwrych Castle are commonplace".

One castle worker said: “A few people have claimed to have seen a floating woman in white.

“Ghost-hunters have also claimed to have felt the presence of her and gamekeepers. We think the Countess might be unhappy as her husband stripped the castle of valuables.

"They certainly didn’t have a happy marriage.”

Some locals also believe that the spirit of a servant girl who died falling off a horse haunts the land.

Others have said ghosts of former caretakers have been seen around the 200-year-old castle, which boasts 250 acres. 

Paranormal investigator Gemma Williams told the Daily Mail that she was "chased by a glowing woman wearing a red dress" when she stayed overnight there.

She said: "My friends and I stood there in absolute shock looking at her.

"She had an old fashioned red dress on, a white shawl going over her arms and curly blonde hair.

"We heard an almighty scream from her, it was really, really loud, which made us run again, it broke the trance. We ran down the front of the castle at full pelt.

"We all got to the bottom and said one by one that we had seen a lady in a red dress. There was no explanation for it at all."

What happened in the Countess’s Tower?

The ruins are said to be haunted by the ghost of the previous owner, the Countess of Dundonald.

The Countess Winifred Cochrane was an extremely wealthy heiress who had a "not entirely happy" marriage with the Earl of Dundonald.

Winifred was a patron of Welsh art, music and literature during the early twentieth century 

The locals know her as the Woman in White, and she is said to be angry that her husband stripped the castle of her valuables and sold them.

The castle's website states that "The Countess’s Tower is one of the most paranormally active areas in the castle, and is situated within the gardens which are said to be haunted by the Countess herself.

"Venture from the gardens up the stone Nant-y-Bella steps – all fifty one of them, so do be careful in the dark – and you will find yourself at the main building, where the family and the household staff lived."

Who was the Earl of Dundonald?

General Douglas Mackinnon Baillie Hamilton Cochrane, the 12th Earl of Dundonald, who lived from 1852 to 1935,was a British Army general.

Although Douglas was married to the Countess, he spent most of his time in Scotland, while Winifred stayed in Wales with their three children.

He is described on the castle's website as a "tyrannical husband".

When the Countess died in 1924 she left the castle in her will to King George V and the Prince of Wales.

In 1928, the Earl purchased back the castle for £78,000, selling all of Winifred's contents to meet the cost.

Is there a photo of the Countess of Dundonald's ghost?

A chilling photo taken there ten years ago shows a pale young woman in what used to be a banquet hall – you can see it below.

However, the floorboards beneath the window had rotted away, making it impossible for her to have been standing there…

… unless she was floating!

Are there ghost tours at the castle?

The castle is currently closed, but say they will be running ghost hunts in 2021.

Ghost Hunts run from 8pm to 1am and involve walking the grounds of the castle.

Booking for tours in 2021 has already gone live so book while you can!

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