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Apr 5

A Ghost Story

Posted on Thursday, April 5, 2007 in Strange and Unusual

This isn’t a joke, there’s no scrolling down to any punch-lines for you, I’m afraid.  This is just something that happened to me that I can’t explain, and that weirded me out a little bit.

We lived in Wicklow Town for a few years, renting a house that had been owned by our landlord’s uncle.  Let’s call this uncle ‘Mr. Murphy’.  Our next door neighbours told us that Mr. Murphy was a religious man, who loved classical music, and cycling.  He would cycle about 75 miles a day, and for an octogenarian, that’s not to shabby by my standards.  He had set up a very elaborate sound system with large speakers set in to the living room wall which we could never get to work.  Apparently he would play his electric organ loudly for hours and hours every Sunday, thus pissing his neighbours off no end. 

There was a bit of a mystery as to how and where Mr. Murphy died.  As nobody would give me a straight answer, I presumed he’d died naturally in his home.

I remember walking in to the house for the first time when we were sussing it out with a view to renting it.  The house felt warm, homely, and had a familiar smell.  It was as though we were welcome there.  You could almost feel a kind sort of energy in it.


We had been living there for about a week, and were watching television in front of a coal fire, when the noises began.

BANG… BANG BANG BANG. BANG.  Not rhythmic, but sort of sporadic, and very very loud, trailing off to quiter taps at the end of each set.  Sort of like as though somebody was hanging pictures next door.  Next door was empty that night though.  This banging lasted for about 30 minutes, and then stopped.

The same thing happened the next night we lit a fire.  That got me thinking that the chimney must be heating and expanding, causing such loud cracking noises.  It happened again and again, on various nights, fire lit and unlit.  We got used to it.  It was creepy, but what can you do?

I discovered one night that the source of the noise seemed to be upstairs, as it was pretty deafening up there.  So, up I went to where the chimney breast continued into our bedroom.

BANG BANG BANG. BANG… As I opened the door, the noise stopped.  Iwas really starting to get irritated now, I mean- not only was this noise disturbing our peace, but you have no idea how un-nerving it got when I was alone in the house.

4:00am.  The last straw.


 I woke instantly with a shocked “WTF?!?!” and drew the duvet to my neck.  Cold sweat.  I listened to the ominous din for about 10 minutes before I was able to move.  It wasn’t the chimney breast at all.  It was coming from the old carved wooden wardrobe in the corner of the bedroom.


I went to the wardrobe door, sucked in a tight breath, opened it quickly and jumped back Kung Foo style.  There was nothing there, save the usual stuff you find in wardrobes.  (BANG BANG) I grabbed a chair, dragged it to the wardrobe (BANG BANG BANG BANG), and was about to stand on it, when the sound suddenly got louder… then stopped.  To say that I was bricking it would be putting it mildly.  Empowered by adrenaline, I stood on the chair, and reached up to the top of the wardrobe to feel around in the dust.  My hand rested on a spanner, the only thing to be found on the surface.  I took it down, and examined it closely.  Just an old, rusty double ended spanner.  I tapped it on the wood that decorated the top of the wardrobe door.  BANG BANG.  Fair enough.  Stepping off the chair, I put the spanner into a drawer, and went back to bed.  As I pulled the duvet around me, I spoke into the darkness.

“I don’t scare that easily.”

The atmosphere seemed to lighten instantly.  I went to sleep.  We never heard the noise again.

Bring on the comments

  1. Kate says:

    Once upon a time, I was extremely skeptical about ghosts… didn’t feel strongly that they DIDN’T exist, but didn’t feel real sure that they did, either.

    Then I spent my fifth anniversary at the Lizzie Borden B&B, and you’re darn right they exist.

    It’s pretty cool, once you’ve lived through it and are pretty sure you’ll still be sane afterward…

  2. Brianf says:

    My best friend in the whole world, a kid I grew up with, bought a house and from day one I did not feel comfortable in their new house. I refused to sleep there. Now Jim and Linda are renouned for their summer backyard grilling out and going fishing on the river kinda’ all weekend parties. I slept in my old VW camper (transporter) every time I stayed there. I told him his house was haunted, not in a bad way, not in a an Amityville, NY kinda’ way, just that it had someone there and I would not sleep inside. About a year after moving in my bud Jim couldn’t sleep one night and swore he heard someone working in the basement. He went downstairs and he swears he saw an old man working in his (Jims) machine shop. He claims the old man smiled and waved at him. Ever since then I have had no problem or any wierd feelings in Jims house and I have since then slept in the basement. No problem, no wierd feelings!
    I bought the house I live in last November and was a bit worried that I might expierence something like I did at Jims house. From the first time I walked in here it has felt like home….all comfy and homey-like. I have since found out that the original owners were really nice folks and he worked on old Triumph motorbikes and was a rifle shooter and hunter. Damn am I him reincarnated?

  3. Welcome to blog world. This type of story totally freaks me out. No sleep for me!

  4. K8 says:

    Thanks flirty!!
    Brian, maybe the house found YOU?
    Kate, have you ever heard of Derek Akorah? (sp?) People like him totally put me off haunted houses. I’d still like to stay overnight in one though. For the craic.

  5. What the hell?

    ‘…Kate … this is Derek Akorah channeling you through Dario Sanchez … I am a greasy Scouse and if you actually watch Most Haunted you will notice that nothing actually happens about 99.99% of the time … I’m sure that somebody is knocking over those lamps unseen by the cameras … SPIRITS!

    What a shyster.

  6. K8 says:

    I betcha he waxes his eyeballs to get them to glow like that for the night vision cameras. Plonker.

  7. Kate says:

    There were any number of spirit hunters – including the Vortex Guy – in the house our first night there, and nothing, nada. No scary stuff, no spooky stuff, just a nice old house.

    The second night, my husband and I were alone in the house with the owner – and that’s when we heard the footsteps down the back stairs.

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