When you create a new ghost tour, there’s a certain unknown element that adds mystery and spice to every outing – guest reports. We recognise the heady mix of vivid storytelling and atmospheric locations is designed to raise anticipation and encourage imaginative thoughts. Perhaps this makes our guests a little more susceptible? That said, we also recognise we are spending time at purportedly haunted locations sharing personal, and often tragic, stories of those who have lived and died in those places – this in itself could act as a trigger.
At the recent launch of Legends and Lore at Castle Loch, a number of guests spoke about seeing, hearing and sensing a variety of intriguing (and disturbing!) anomalous experiences. We’d like to share some of those with you and invite you to contact us with experiences relating to Lochmaben Castle and the nearby areas. Our research continues into the paranormal history of this ruined fortress as well as it’s beautiful woodlands said to conceal a hideous vampire-like creature, famously witnessed by ghost-hunter, researcher and writer, Tom Robertson – have a wee read and let us know what you think…
Tour guest, Nick Harkins, shares a remarkable experience from the launch night of our Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival Tour at Castle Loch:
The incident in the Stone Room was something I’m still struggling to process. I never saw anything, but I definitely felt it. I felt something on my left lower back and my left bicep. No icy fingers gripped me, but a force of some kind seemed to shock me, causing me to snap my head round to the right. It was cold and very quick and left a tingling feeling afterwards.
Of course, it was getting dark and chilly, there was a bit of a breeze. Maybe it was a gust of wind. Or maybe I just had a little shiver like we do when someone ‘walks over your grave’. But I don’t think so. I know both of those feelings well and that wasn’t it. It was something else, I’m sure.
I also felt sadness and loneliness there, possibly a sense of defeat, too. It really is an incredible place.”
Jane (name changed to protect anonymity) was full of enthusiasm during our final vigil and volunteered to ask one of the questions on our cards. This is what happened after Kathleen handed her the card regarding a hooded ‘vampire’ witnessed in Castle Loch woods:
Firstly I read the card at which time I was perfectly calm and happy to do so. As I finished reading a terrible feeling of dread came over me, making me tingle from my head down across my shoulders and down my spine. I had to get rid of the card. As I handed you the card tears started to flow from my eyes and I felt welded to the wall behind me. The feelings continued for some minutes following this and gradually faded away.”
Sarah Whitley, Nick’s partner, shared an interesting theory on the events of that night..
Something I noticed afterwards – is that everyone who had been affected, it looked as if there was some kind of pattern, which seemed to go round the circle starting with the original gentleman who felt something in the beginning, to the lady that was stood next to me then to Nick, then to the lady a couple on from Nick and then to the lady who was stood by the entrance wearing the hat. I don’t know if this is of any significance, but thought I would point it out.”
Our research into the castle is ongoing; we invite you to share Lochmaben ghost stories, possible vampire sightings or any other curious experiences. Equally, if you’d like to put forward a theory on our guest’s reports, please contact the team through our website or by phoning 07791 047835 or 07912 145865. You can also follow us on Twitter.