Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Ghosts of Chillingham Castle

By Jackie Reynolds

Chillingham Castle, Northumberland, UK is said to be
the most haunted castle in the UK and not surprisingly since the castle
houses dark dungeons and macabre torture chambers. This ancient
fortress dates back to 1246, when the Earl Grey lords built this
remarkable building and where the Earl Grey ancestors have resided for

The castle is presently the home of Sir Humphry
Wakefield Bt., his wife The Hon. Lady Wakefield and their family. The
family claim it is the most haunted castle because of the many ghosts
which frequently haunt their home.

The most notable ghostly
apparition is the 'blue boy' (or 'radiant boy') who is said to haunt
the castle's Pink Room. Many guests, whilst occupying the room, have
heard terrifying wailing sounds soon to be followed by a halo of blue
light appearing above their bed.

Although that particular
haunting ended when a gruesome discovery during renovation work
revealed the bones of a young boy and a man who had been bricked inside
a wall. It was intended that no one should ever hear their piteous
cries for help, as the wall was built 10 feet thick.

This was not
the end to the hauntings in Chillingham Castle. The owners have also
witnessed a much more sinister energy which wanders the halls...the
terryfying spectre of the once evil torturer - John Sage.


nightime falls around Chillingham Castle, one of the most feared sounds
to be heard on occasions is that of 'something' slowly dragging its
foot as it wanders the corridors. It is believed to be the spirit of
former Lieutenant, John Sage who earned the nickname 'dragfoot', when
in life, his leg was injured by a spear during his final battle in the
ongoing wars with his Scottish neighbours.

After his injury he
was desperate for a position of work and was proud to be given the
title of Chillingham Castle torturer by the castle owner Edward
Longshanks (1200 AD). Sage was a monster of a man and his gruesome work
would give him immense satisfaction for the next 3 years, where he
would go on to torture at least 50 of his Scottish enemies per week.

would revel as the Scots were captured and tossed into the castle's
dungeons. These poor souls would wish they had perished on the
battlefield, as Sage was renowned for carrying out the most hideous
tortures in history. One torture device came to be known as one of the
most feared...'the cage'. This apparatus would trap its victim and then
be placed over a blazing fire - roasting the captive for hours, whilst
Sage sat studying his enemy - writhing and screaming for their death.

insatiable thirst for torture would eventually lead to his downfall,
when one day his lover Elizabeth Charlton paid him a visit. During
their sexual liaison, Sage decided to place Elizabeth on one of his
other torture devices - 'the rack'. Sage then began strangling her
during the height of her sexual pleasure, but he went too far and
accidentally killed her.

Elizabeth's father (a Border Reiver,
clan leader and outlaw), upon hearing of his daughter's death, warned
the now almost penniless Longshanks, if he did not have Sage killed he
would join in an allied attack with the Scots against the Castle.

dwindling resources due to the war and the fact that the Border
Reiver's were a powerful force gave him little choice but to put Sage
to death. He was hanged on the grounds of the castle on 'Devil's Mile'
(aka, Devil's Walk) before a crowd of jeering onlookers.

Sage's body still twitched with life, the crowd set about him - slicing
pieces from his body, including his nose, toes, and testicles. A rather
'cutting' fate, some may say, for one who's greatest rapture was the
sight of an ungodly end.

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