The photographs were taken in January of 2008. My husband went out in the garden to try to photograph a full moon, without much success. The first photograph shows how clear the night was. The second speaks for itself. My husband says there was absolutely nothing there and then suddenly something white and big came out of nowhere and lunged at him. He snapped off a picture and fled in doors.
We moved into the farmhouse in 1994. It was situated within ten miles of Perth (Scotland) on the Perth side of The River Tay. We never actually asked our lawyer to show us the deeds, but it was a very old house. It had been empty for a number of years so it had to be modernised and refurbished and we continued working on it for months after we moved in.
The site was even older than the house, though. We believe it was once the home farm of the Earls of Gowrie, the last of whom, John Ruthven, was killed in his Perth (Scotland) town house, along with one of his brothers, for trying to kidnap/murder James the sixth of Scotland (James the first of England, Mary Queen of Scots' son) in 1600. After that, the Earl's estate was claimed by the crown and broken up and the family had to flee. One brother was caught and spent the rest of his life in the Tower of London. The Perth town house still stands, but how much of the original (walled) home farm was part of our farmhouse and outbuildings is unknown since both were built from local sandstone and whinstone.
From the start, the farmhouse felt 'lived in'. It was as if the house had a personality - and moods. We had always lived in old houses and liked that kind of atmosphere and history and at first everything was fine, especially when all the family came to visit.
The house seemed to like having guests, and everyone commented on how they felt welcomed, as if the house personally liked them and was glad to have them there, some said it felt haunted – but by 'good ghosts'. We found out from a nephew of the family who had lived (and died) there before us that it was where the whole extended family had gone to celebrate special occasions going back three generations. We didn't actually believe in ghosts but the atmosphere did definitely change and it was nice to think the house remembered.
The first time any of us saw a full blown apparition was in 1995 the year after we'd moved in:
My husband (the biggest sceptic on the planet) up early one morning and downstairs around 6 am, looked out of the family room window and saw three young men dressed in old fashioned shirts and kilts (that were worn to leave tartan cloth that came up their backs and over one shoulder). He was only a few feet from them and they seemed as real as you or me. He shouted but they didn't react at all.
They were chatting to each other as they walked through the garden and walked straight through the garden hedge and fence as if it wasn't there (there was no gate at that side). They were heading in the direction of Perth. One of them had looked right at my husband but showed absolutely no reaction. My husband ran outside to see if they were in the horse field but no one was outside at all. He even came upstairs to check the field from a height and woke me up, but the men were gone.
When he was in Perth that weekend there was a pipe band and all sorts of shows going on and he found out they were celebrating the 250th anniversary of the 1745 Rebellion Gathering of the Clans in Perth. That rebellion ended in a huge massacre on Culloden field (reputedly haunted) and most of those men that went to fight for Bonnie Prince Charlie never returned home. We were aware of the date 1745 but that was all and if my husband hadn't had reason to go to Perth that weekend, we should never have connected the two occurrences. We had never discussed anything paranormal with our children but they did overhear us discussing that and immediately decided the men my husband had seen were Jacobites on their way to Perth to join their comrades.
The house was by itself, set on top of a rise, surrounded by farmland and at least a mile and a half from nearest neighbours. It stood at the end of a long, private drive, but we'd hear, or catch sight of someone outside in the garden or stable yard and go out to find no one anywhere on the farm. Out in the stables and outbuildings alone, it often felt as if there was someone else there.
Little things began to happen but gradually more and more unexplainable things started to occur. I'm not the nervous sort, but I often felt as if someone was watching me when I was alone. I'd see a shape in my peripheral vision but when I turned to look no one was there. I'd hear voices in a room and go in to find it empty. Sometimes doors wouldn't open, as if they were locked or someone was pushing hard against them.
I often thought someone was in the upstairs bathroom (next to my eldest son's room) only to find that everyone was downstairs. Sometimes stiff doors would be yanked open, the handle turning violently as you put your hand to it as if someone inside was trying to come out at the same moment you were trying to go in. There was never anyone in the room. Things would go missing and turn up in odd places. Occasionally, ornaments and crockery would fall and break for no apparent reason.
We'd hear scratching and knocking noises in the house but we talked ourselves out of any paranormal cause and always put it down to vermin. Sometimes there were bad smells in rooms but we blamed the livestock or decided local farmers must be fertilising their fields and the wind was carrying it in. Footsteps in empty rooms were more difficult to explain away.
I began to see orbs. They usually disappeared in a flash, but sometimes they would get much bigger and break into shimmering pin points of light that sometimes seemed to be trying to manifest into something before disappearing.
Our horses, which were fed and checked at the field gate, next to the garden, in summer, would come galloping up and neighing when they caught sight of us outside. It was only when they saw someone at the gate that they did that but they started to do it when no one was outside. It always seemed to happen at the same time of day, around four in the afternoon. We'd hear the rumpus and go outside to check on who was there but there was never anyone. The cats and dogs began to stare, bark and hiss at things we couldn't see, as well.
A friend brought tarot cards to the house one day and it seemed that after that it really started to escalate.
I started to see the black shadow of a person against the walls when there was no one there to make the shadow - sometimes it was wearing an elaborate hat. Then a head started to appear on the walls, like someone had pushed their head through to have a look in the room. It was male, had fleshy jowls, prominent lips and hooded eyes. Sometimes it was like a black and white photograph, other times it was normal colour. When it saw me notice, it would immediately shrink down and disappear in a flash. My husband saw floating orbs, heard and felt things, too. He was often touched or tugged by something he couldn't see. Something grabbed his shoulder when he was starting the car on one occasion.
Rooms began to get very cold even when the heating was full on (the last two years there, we couldn't keep our bedroom warm no matter what we tried.) I'd feel something touching me. Sometimes it felt as if something had sat down on me or was pushing against my legs. It would often feel and look as if something had sat down on the bed or sofa when I was lying/sitting on it. This happened to my husband, too.
Sometimes, I'd think it was my husband holding me but when I looked he was facing the other way and not touching me at all. Sometimes I was pinned me down on the bed and I'd feel a hand over my mouth and nose. This was when I was fully awake. It wasn't a sleep paralysis thing. I was terrified and if we could have moved house, we would have. As it was, all we could do was pretend everything was normal. It was about that time that the atmosphere in the house really began to change. It felt malevolent and made you feel full of dread and despair. It drained everyone's energy, we were never well (especially my eldest son) and our luck was terrible. Everything that could go wrong did.
I began to catch sight of a cloaked and hooded figure watching me. You couldn't make out any features, except for the eyes. They were horrible, blank, glowing. The figure didn't look or feel human. It looked as if it might have a snout. It really frightened me and feeling like she'd probably think I was crazy, I told a close friend. She knew that we weren't the sort of people to pretend about anything like that and was flabbergasted, but said she'd talk to a friend who knew about such things. He passed along a prayer/spell thing, and we were told to read it out loud. We were living such a nightmare that we did. It was something about restoring 'the light'.
That night my eldest son had such terrible nightmares he had to sleep on the sofa in our room. The next morning, one of the dogs was dead. She was only five, had never been ill and was fit as a fiddle the night before. The day after that our six month old terrier went out with us to bring in the horses and when we turned round she was gone. We never saw her again, and believe me, we searched and kept searching, advertised, contacted the dogs homes, put up flyers in the nearest villages, everything. Then one by one ALL of our mares had to be put down – all accidents when no one was with them.
I heard my eldest son (16 by this time) cry out downstairs. I ran downstairs and he told me that when he came out of the kitchen there was a man standing in the hallway at the bottom of the stairs. He said the man had looked real but was a bit hazy. He was wearing old fashioned clothes – breeches, boots, shirt, waistcoat and jacket. He had disappeared when my son screamed. The hallway was freezing.
That's when it all came out. He'd been seeing all these things, too – for years. He described the hooded figure and it was exactly as I'd seen it. He'd been too scared to talk about it and too scared to go to sleep. We realised that all the times we'd come down stairs in the morning to find him asleep on the couch, and all the times he'd looked shocking and been unable to go to school made sense. It was no wonder that the doctors couldn't find out what was wrong. He said he felt like it was trying to get inside his head. It had been pinning him down, too. We were devastated. We had been trying so hard to hide everything and give our children a happy life and my poor, poor son had been thinking he was going mad.
He wasn't. The child psychiatrist told us he was absolutely normal and blamed it on stress at missing so much school. My husband did mention ghosts but met with such derision that he left it alone.
The downstairs front room had always had a good atmosphere and we moved his bed down there and would sit up with him, watching over him while he slept. My husband had to go to work so it was me that did the night shift. It seemed to keep the hooded thing away from him but it was no way to live. He usually spent weekends with friends. Things continued to happen in the house but we had no choice but to dig in.
One after another, huge vet bills, our new car taking off down the drive and writing itself off against a succession of fence posts (the mechanic said the hand brake must have slipped), the roof of the stables being damaged beyond repair in a freak storm, the downstairs of the house flooding in another bad storm and wrecking all the carpets (the farmhouse was on high ground and nothing else flooded), the septic tank flooding the garden with raw sewage despite the fact the experts saying there was no reason for it, me having to stop working to stay up at night, call outs to electricians to check wiring because lights kept going on and off and would stop working all together (the wiring was fine and every light worked the day he came) meant that our money situation was terrible but we started saving up for a move and looking for a new house.
In the end, we didn't get out until after my eldest sat his final exams (which he passed with straight A's). The farmhouse and outbuildings were later flattened by the buyer and there are now about ten new houses on the site. My eldest son took a year out and went away to do some voluntary work before university. That year was a good one for him.
My husband and I were exhausted and depressed, but we thought we had left it all behind and it would pass. My youngest finished school and went to university. Then we got a call from one of my eldest son's flatmates to say that he was really ill. The hooded thing had found him again. Every time he was alone it was there. That was 20 months ago. Once again, all the doctors said that there was absolutely nothing wrong with him that would cause him to see something that wasn't there. He has a reactive depression but apart from my youngest son, we all do.
Apart from that white thing in the garden in January nothing big has happened here, but there are little things. My eldest feels ill all the time (he has been checked for everything they could think of and physically he appears to be fine, too, although he has just come out in shingles this morning). He practices relaxation techniques and follows all the advice on good sleeping but he still has nights when he sees the hooded figure. He won't talk about it anymore and we don't talk about it either. He's a man, now, and I know that admitting he's scared is hard, but I know when he comes through to get me at night, it has been there and he's frightened. We sit up and watch a movie or talk about a good future while my husband sleeps. At least I can do that for him.
Even to us, it sounds unbelievable and over the years, we have tried to talk ourselves into all sorts of scientific reasons why this might be happening to us. Some sort of Infra sound was our favourite, even though we couldn't work out where it might be coming from. Sleep paralysis, some sort of underground magnetism, poisoning from crop spraying, night terrors. The list goes on. During the brief good spell after we moved house, we might even have been able to persuade ourselves it was something like that. Now, I honestly don't know. We are just ordinary people who are trying really hard to live our lives a day at a time.
Story and photos are copyright 2008 True Ghost Tales and may not be republished without permission. The person who sent us this photo and the accompanying story requested that their identity be kept anonymous.
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