Haunted Britain: Craig Y Nos Castle, Wales
Each month, comedian Barry Dodds and his sidekick Rebecca Kirk spend a night in a different haunted location.
Kirk’s Paranormal Investigation Report:
9pm: We are warmly welcomed by Lynn on reception before being shown around by Chloe, who insists her brother, Jay, accompanies her on the tour.
‘I’m not going up into the children’s ward on my own!’ she tells us with a nervous laugh. Lynn nods knowingly.
10pm: Having explored the beautiful opera house, the theatre basement and the salt cellar, we switch on our head torches and make our way up to the derelict lower children’s ward, a spooky maze of original fittings, ornate plasterwork and silent, darkened rooms.
10.15pm: We move up to the top floor, the isolation section. In the largest ward, Dodds walks to the far corner and promptly asks, ‘Do you smell that? It’s soap, like my granny always used to use.’
We all move to join him and sure enough, can smell old-fashioned soap! There is a box of scented candles in near-by storage, but the scents don’t match up to what we are experiencing.
10.30am: Now we’ve found our bearings, we are left to explore the castle alone. After strategically positioning an old Bible in the opulent bridal bathroom, Dodds grabs his EMF and laser thermometer and we head back to the derelict upper floors.
10.35pm: As soon as we’ve climbed the old stairs into the lower ward, we hear a metallic squeak and a door slams somewhere down the pitch black hallway. Then, while frozen in shock, we hear something else.
‘Those are children’s voices,’ Dodds whispers,
before deciding, ‘There must be kids staying in the hotel tonight.’ 10:40pm: We return downstairs to enquire and are told there are no children on the premises tonight... not present-day children, anyway! 10.50pm: We tentatively make our way to the ward that was once Adelina’s room, and find that while the other rooms are a warm 180c, her room is a significantly cooler 130c. 11pm: From the playroom, we hear a muffled muffled bang from the top floor and steel ourselves to head up.
11.20pm: Having climbed the creaky wooden staircase, we are sitting in the gardener’s room when the EMF Meter begins to flash. We respectfully ask for communication but are met with empty silence.
12am: We chat with Donna, who has been involved with Craig Y Nos for many years.
‘I feel sadness for the children,’
she tells us. ‘But I also hear them laughing so there were happy times too. I sometimes feel a hand on my shoulder when I play Patti’s favourite composers.’
1am: With Adelina Patti in mind, Dodds and I now make our way to the opera house. ‘I feel totally at peace in here,’ Dodds says, ‘and it’s not just the gold and the lights and the opulence; this is a happy room.’ We talk to Adelina. It’s her space and her benevolent presence is strong. 2am: I decide to spend the rest of the investigation in the bridal bathroom with the Bible, while Dodds stakes out the adjoining room. 5am: The Bible has stayed still but Dodds confides in me that he accidentally nodded off at one point, only to be woken by a very realistic dream about a shadow in the corner of the room. He won’t be sleeping on the job again!
Once home to an opera singer, the castle is now a hotel
Sad sensation: Gardener’s room Suicide: Long ago Going up: Isolation ward Spooky: Dark hallway