The Kidsgrove Boggart - English Folklore

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The Kidsgrove Boggart - English Folklore

Post  Smish on Thu Feb 09, 2012 6:07 pm

This is a story that is told around the area I live, the tunnel in question is actually a ten minute walk away from where I live.

Over 160 years ago, before England had railways, a woman was travelling from Liverpool to London to join her husband, her husband had gone ahead of her to ensure that he had a job and a place for them to live once she arrived. One of the main modes of transport were the many canals that run throughout the country, primarily at this point for transporting resources and produce.

The woman was travelling along the Trent and Mersey Canal, when she came to the basin of the Harecastle tunnel. There, waiting, were men who worked boats, lurking by the dark portals of the Harecatle tunnel. One man offered her a ride on the boat to go through one of the two tunnels there. She agreed, as this was the only way to get through the tunnel at the time as the tunnel in question did not have a towpath, meaning that people could not walk along it and horse could not pull the boats through it.

As two of the man helped her with her luggage and getting onto the barge, the other mate untied the horse and began to walk over the hill with it as it would not be able to travel through the tunnel.

Once the barge was quite far through into the tunnel, it is said that the two men murdered the woman for her wealth and luggage. However, the method they did it is not even humane. They hacked at her neck with a piece of slate until it came off and then threw her body into Gilbert's hole (a coal landing stage within the tunnel).

However the story doesn't end there, it is said to this day she searches the tunnel for her head. Sightings vary, some say they see a headless ghost, other see a white horse. She searches and when she does appear, it is said that somebody dies, is murdered or drowns. Sightings of her are considered a terrible omen.

I hope you find this tale interesting =) There are variants and questions as to the origins of the story, however locals of kidsgrove strongly believe that there is a ghost in harecastle tunnel and I must admit when I see it I go cold. It's debated as to which of the two tunnels it was she was killed in, but to me it only makes sence that it's the Brindley tunnel as the Telford tunnel has a towpath in where as Brindley doesn't. The Brindley tunnel is no longer used. Here are some images of the tunnels:


In this image, the larger tunnel on the left is the Telford tunnel and the smaller one on the right is the Brindley Tunnel.


This is the kidsgrove entrance to the Brindley tunnel, it is no longer in use and is cornered off.


This is the other end of the tunnel, 2 miles away, this is the end that is close to where I live. you'd really have to know where this is to find it as it is quite hidden.


Brindley tunnel in use, as you can see there is a slope were a man is walking a horse. To get through the tunnel the owner would lie on top and drag it through by pushing against the sides of the tunnel with there feet. This is called 'legging'


Two canoeists inside the tunnel in 1973


The tunnel drained of water.

Smish

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Re: The Kidsgrove Boggart - English Folklore

Post  Helena on Thu Feb 09, 2012 6:31 pm

OMG! It is really... scary! o.o If definitely happened, poor woman :/ and also poor her husband who waited for her. I Really liked your story, I hope you can post more. And honestly, I think that story is true, you even showed the pic of the man with the horse Shocked . And wow, why the heek the woman went with the man *facepalm*.

Helena
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Re: The Kidsgrove Boggart - English Folklore

Post  tentei on Fri Feb 10, 2012 2:57 pm

Yeah it's really scary, and of course poor the woman and her husband if it's true.

But I also think it makes ur place to a very special place so it's cool u have such a story about it =) even if it's not a happy story.

Thank you for posting it!

tentei

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