Introduction

Hi and welcome to my site.
Cheshire is full of weird and wonderful stories of the supernatural, local heores and the mysterious.
I will take you on a tour as I look deep into the Cheshire that lies underneath the wonderful countryside and find the secrets that still hide there.
What magic and long lost secrets will we find?
So, sit back and enjoy my journey. This is a land of Magic, Knights, Dragons, Wizards, Witches, Boggarts, Murder, Ghosts and Old Forgotten Knowledge.


I would love to hear your stories as well. So if you have anything you would like me to look into and find information out, please let me know.

Monday, 5 April 2010

TRADEDY AT OVER, WINSFORD

FIRE AT THE MILL

On Wednesday October 28th 1874, the skies above Over were ablaze as a fire broke out at a Cotton Mill. Flames leapt hundreds of feet into the evening sky.

The fire started about 5pm but by the time volunteer fireman arrived, this large mill (180 feet long, 90 feet wide and six storeys high) was almost destroyed.

Over Cotton Mill was a spinning and doubling mill, built five years earlier and was owned by Messrs Abraham Haigh and Sons. Head of the family firm was Mr James Haigh of Over Hall. More than 300 people worked at the mill, many having moved from Lancashire to work here.

The fire started in the spinning room on the fourth floor. A spark caused by friction from the machinery. There had not been any appliances to fight the fire in the mill, no prearranged fire drill or buckets of water kept by the machinery. These simple things like a bucket of water next to the spinners may have stopped the spread of the fire. No Health and Safety in then days.

Most people escaped with no injures but, as you can imagine, some people were burnt or suffered smoke injures. In total eight people did lose their lives.

Five workers had been found 12 hours after the fire started. The grim discovery of their charred remains were made by two Tarporley firemen. The other three victims died infront of the watching crowd.

Harriet Whitehurst and her three month old son had been trapped on the fourth floor with her daughter, Margaret, who was 13 years. They had first tried to escape down the staircase but had been overcome by the fumes. Knowing they were stuck, Mrs Whitehurst looked out of the fourth floor window and saw a large water tank below. She shouted to her daughter to jump and she landed safety in the water. Leaning out of the window with her baby in her hands, she let him go but before she could tell if her son had landed in the water, she too jumped. Sadley Harriet and her son, Thomas, crashed to the pavement in front of the stunned onlookers.

A few minutes later, the crowd watched as another woman burned to death, caught by her clothing on a rail 60 feet above them.

An Coroner's inquest was held at a local pub, The Wheatsheaf on Friday October 30th 1874. The verdict was accidental death on all the victims but the coroner, Mr Churton, said that it would had been wise for the mill owner, Mr James Haigh, to have kept a small portable engine on the premises.

The victims were buried in a common grave at St John's Church, Over. They were ....
HARRIET WHITEHURST .......... age 34 and her three month old son, THOMAS, of Factory st
MARTHA ANNE GOULDING .... age 15 of Factory st
MIRIAM WHITEHURST ............ age 23 of Factory st
CATHERINE MOUNTFIELD ..... age 17 of Over Lane Terrace
ELLEN FLETCHER ...................... age 18 of John st
ELIZA HINDLEY .......................... age 16
JOHN TIMPERLEY ...................... a married man of Factory st


Over the years, stories have grown regarding the site of the mill. Tales of screams heard and the smell of burning have been reported. Dark figures have also been reported. The figure of a woman has been seen, perhapes Harriet is looking for her son.

Sunday, 4 April 2010

SAUGHALL'S GIBBET MILL

This story happened in 1750 but according to Burdett's map of the country dated 1777, this mill was described as a New Mill, was this beacuse it had taken 27 years to build this mill, I dont think so, or had a new mill been built on the site of an earlier mill. Whatever the reason, Saughall Mill had been given the nickname "THE GIBBET MILL" from the tale I am about to tell you.

On August 29th 1750, four Irish harvesters were travelling back to Ireland through Parkgate, just three miles from Chester. The men got involved in a row and three of them attacked and murdered the foruth. They robbed him of his money and clothes and threw his body in a ditch.

We know they went drinking after this but this is where the tale changes.

One version claims hey were drinking in The Swinging Gate in Saughall and murdered a woman. Another version says they went drinking in The Old Greyhound in Shotwick.

Whichever version is correct, they were caught and during their trail, one man told on the other two and gave evidence against them. The trail ended on September 8th. Because one of the men gave evidence, the other two murderers were found guilty and hanged at Boughton on September 22nd.


Their bodies were brought back to Saughall and they were hung up in irons on a gibbet made from ash. This was postitioned at the junction of Parkgate road and a path which runs to the north of the present mill. Their bodies were exhibited as a warning.












The mill was grinding corn until 1926 and after fell into ruin. The mill was restored and is now a private house.

Over the years, rumours are told of shadowery figures are seen. Are these the lost souls who felt the cold irons as they hung from the gibbet or just people's imagination.

A VAMPIRE IN CHESHIRE


We all know the dark, gothic and sometimes romantic tales of Vampires. So many books and films. The most famous of course is Dracula by Bram Stoker, written in 1897. But vampires have been reported throughout the world, from the ancient Egyptians into present day.

There are two types of vampires, those that feed off blood and those who draws off the life energy of their victim, both leaving the victims physically ill and mentally exhausted. So a so called vampire attack does not have to have the tell tale small puncture marks on their victim's neck. The symptoms of an attack are identical to a condition called ME (MYALGIC ENCEPHALOMYELITIS). This can happen totally out of the blue and causes headaches, weakness, muscular pain, fatigue and sometimes fever and sickness.

In 1970, a 19year old girl from Winsford started suffering with these systoms. The doctor first diagonsed flu but the girl returned a week later. She was very pale and lethargic. She also had a number of purple marks on her neck and breasts. The doctor now thought the girl had glandular fever. The girl was not getting any better and her mum took her back to the doctors and told him that her daughter had started to have screaming fits and weird nightmares after midnight. The doctor referred her to a psychiatrist.

The girl told the psychiatrist about her nightmares --- after midnight, she would feel a cold sinister presence in her room. A young man, dressed in black would appear at the foot of her bed. The girl was asked to describe this man and she claimed it was a man called Lazzlo. He was living in her neighbourhood.

The man in question was Lazzlo Ordog. A 23year old Hungarian art student. He was over 6ft tall, olive skin, black slicked back hair and dark brown eyes.

A couple of months later, another girl was sent to the same psychiatrist. She had similar symptoms and the same story. She even described he same man.

The police couldn't do anything, so the psychiatrist deceided to go and see Lazzlo himself. Lazzlo was renting a room and was using it as a studio as well. There were water colours on easles, most unfinished. Two of these stood out to the psychiatrist as they looked like the two girls in his care. Lazzlo claimed all his paintings were from his imagination.

The psychiatrist told Lazzlo why he was there. Lazzlo started to act weird and asked the psychiatrist if he believed the girls. At this point, the psychiatrist felt uneasy and mumbled "I dont know". He left.

When he returned home, the psychiatrist found his cat dead on the doorstep. He called the vet and no cause of death could be found. The next night, while he watched tv, the mirror above the fireplace cracked in half. After he went to bed, he saw a man's silhouette standing at the top of his stairs. A short while later, his fiancee woke up choking. She said it felt like a pair of powerful cold hands were throttling her.

The psychiatrist thought about the vampire myths and even though he thought he might be going mad, he went into town and bought 2 bibles and 3 crucifixes. He gave a bible and crucifix to each girl and he wore the other cruifix. That night he heard a males voice whisper in his ear --- "I WILL BREAK YOUR NECK ONE DAY" But no one was there.

For a few eeks, they all wore their crucifix's and the girls kept their bibles in their bedrooms. All enjoyed restful sleep and the girls were soon feeling better. The psychiatrist decieded to pay another visit to Lazzlo but his landlord said he had moved out one night without leaving a forwarding address.

Had this been a vampire attack or was it more likly a case of hysteria, autosuggestion or coincidence.
Where did Lazzlo go?
Had he been an indocent victim caught up in the story because he looked different?

Just over twenty years later in October 1991, in the very house the first girl lived in, a haunting was reported.

A young woman claimed she saw a man dressed in black at 4am one morning. He was floating close to the ceiling above her bed with his arms stretched out. She hid under her bedclothes. She was terrified but found the courage to look. The figure had gone.

Had Lazzlo been back for one last time?