Bampton's Ghosts and Ghouls...
A town with a history such as Bampton's would not be complete without its resident ghosts from the past...
The Quarryman's Rest Inn, when it was The Tiverton Hotel, had one in the bar, believed to be an old customer. It was seen by only one person (twice) as far as we know. Plenty of spirits of a different kind are of course available there!
In one house in Brook Street, a ghost walks across a room, up a (now non-existent) staircase, and out through a wall.
The White Horse is supposed to have a ghostly "boots", a 19th century dwarf named John Tarr. Born in Bampton, and served 15 years as ostler (not boots!) at the White Horse and 12 years as the Boots at the Three Tuns in Tiverton.
One old house in Castle Street is reputed to have a spirit monk who prowls about from time to time.
Workers at the factory in the industrial estate tell us that from time to time they hear the ghost train still running along the old railway embankment where the workshops are sited. The railway closed in 1963.
A well at the 15th century Holwell Farm just outside Bampton used to be haunted by a white lady: to remove the spectre the well was filled in and converted to a wishing well. However, the white lady reappeared to haunt another well in the farm precincts where she still reigns, the smell of pomander being in the air when she is present.
Bowdenhayes is reported to have a ghostly girl (said to have had a troubled upbringing) who is inclined to turn lights on and off!
It must have been over 40 years ago that a young girl saw a figure in old clothing on the Castle Mound. She had no memory of the style of clothing though. The castle was last lived in in 1536 so "old" would certainly cover it! The only death of a lord of the manor on site that we know of was Sir Thomas Cogan, who was reputedly poisoned in 1315.
An Oakford Ghost: From the new owner of the old Red Lion at Oakford - "The story from what I'm told is that the local priest long ago had an affair with a barmaid here at the Red Lion, and when he was caught, he was excommunicated from the church. With his life ruined, he decided to hang himself in the cellar of this hotel. He likes to play tricks on people apparently, and hide personal posessions. He sets off fire alarms and locks people out of their rooms, or in one occasion locked one guy in the cellar. He can be seen walking around, knocking things over in the bar and sometimes heard talking in latin. He dosn't mean anyone any harm, he just likes a good laugh and a joke from time to time. He dresses in typical priest black clothes with some sort of shawl over his shoulders. He was last seen causing problems when Andy and Shirley, the previous land-lords decided to renovate the hotel into a proper home. Since I've moved in however, things seem to have calmed down."
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