In the small village of Goosnargh, lies one of Britain's oldest and most haunted buildings, Chingle Hall. Ghosts and poltergeist activity have been reported for many centuries with visions of monks being the most commonly reported phenomena.
The house formerly known as Singleton hall was constructed in 1260 by the knight Adam de Singleton. The Hall remained in the de Singleton's family late into the 16th Century. In 1585 the Wall Family who were related to the Singletons, moved into the Hall.
John Wall was born in the Hall in 1620, he studied at Worcester University. In 1641 he became a priest, during the time of the Catholic Reformation it was illegal to practice mass in Britain, Chingle Hall was used as a place of worship by Catholics and had many priest holes and secret compartments were made for the people taking part the mass to hide if the Hall was raided by the kings soldiers. At this time Father John Wall was most active, conducting secret mass on a regular basis.
In 1678 he was apprehended at Rushock Court near Bromsgrove, as he was tendering the Oath of Supremacy. He was taken to Worcester jail, where he was offered his life if he would foresake his religion, but he declined. Brought back to Worcester, he was drawn and quartered at Redhill on the 22nd of August 1679. His quartered body was given to his friends, and was buried in St. Oswald's churchyard. Mr. Levison, however, secured the martyr's head, and it was treasured by the friars at Worcester until the dissolution of that house during the French Revolution. It is rumoured to be buried the Hall's grounds or hidden in the building itself. The Franciscan nuns at Taunton claim to possess a tooth and a bone of the martyr. He was Canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1970.
In 1764 the house was passed to the Farrington family during these times Chingle hall was a hub for zealous religious activity. Great effort was made to keep alive the Roman catholic traditions, cavities were built into walls and tunnels were dug to some of the surrounding buildings as a method of escape.
Once inside the Great Hall, you see the wooden beams going across the ceiling. Some of these beams have strange symbols on them. No one really knew what these symbols were, until some scientists took samples of the wood. They found that the wood was much older than Chingle Hall, and had a lot of salt in them. The wood had actually come from an old Viking longboat. During the 1950s one of the beams spontaneously caught fire, and, just as quickly as it had started, it inexplicably extinguished itself. The smell of wood burning lingers in many of the rooms.
There is supposedly a poltergeist in the kitchen, but it does little more than rearrange the pots and pans. The visions of monks are one of the most commonly reported phenomena. In the Priests' Room upstairs, a man with shoulder length hair has been seen to walk outside the window. That would not seem to be too unusual until you consider that the window is about twelve feet above the ground.
One of the rooms considered to be most haunted is Eleanor's room. This room belonged to Eleanor Singleton, who was reportedly kept captive there for over 12 years and died/or was murdered there at the age of 20. Visitors have claimed to be overcome by a deep feeling of sadness when in this room. Some also smell lavender and feel phantom tugs at their clothing and some have even fainted. Orbs have been seen by many visitors to the property, sometimes only visible to one or two members of the group.
On Christmas day 1980, Gerald Main and ghost hunter Terence Whitaker spent time at the Hall in a vigil and recorded rapping sounds emanating from one of the priest's hiding hole. At the time of the knocking noises they recorded a significant decrease in temperature and saw an 'indefinable shape' move across the floor.
In 1985, sounds of bricks being moved were recorded by a visitor in the Priest's Room, which seemed to originate in the Priest's hiding hole. He peered within and saw part of a human hand moving one of the bricks. As he watched, the hand stopped moving and disappeared. This witness later managed to capture the sounds of footsteps on tape and a shadowy form on film. Later bricks were found scattered on the floor of the Chapel on the ground floor.
During January of 1996, a team from the Northern Anomalies Research Organisation investigated Chingle Hall. During the visit one member of the group managed to capture two photographs of a blue/white light which appeared on and near the oak-beamed ceiling. What is notable is that the taking of the photographs and the light were witnessed by a several people in the house. When tape recorders were used in an investigation, sounds were heard and recorded within the Priest's Room but nothing was heard or recorded on the cassette in the passageway outside.