Podcast: The Ghosts Of The Tower of London

This is the transcript and sources for the podcast that just dropped this morning on Paranormal Housewife Podcast. You can listen to it on any streaming service you listen to your podcasts on. Please subscribe to my show to be alerted to when new episodes drop. Please let me know in comments what you thought about today’s episode! 

Hello and welcome to the first episode of The Paranormal Housewife Podcast! I’m your host, Kelly. I know that some of y’all who are listening to this first episode, probably have no idea who I am. So please allow me a few moments to introduce myself and to explain who I am and why my life revolves so much around the paranormal. While I have lived most of my life aware of the paranormal world, mainly thanks to the way I was raised, it wasn’t until after high school that I started to make a point of learning more about it. Growing up, I was always told to acknowledge when I see or hear something that isn’t of the normal world because it was most likely family members or friends who passed on coming to check up on me and my family. I knew the things I experienced was not the norm amongst my peers and I wanted to learn how to share these experiences with others. I didn’t want other people to feel judge like some of my peers had made me feel while growing up. All this happened before there were shows like Ghost Hunters and Ghost Adventures was on television. It’s not like it’s my fault that spirits like to reach out when I’m around. And honestly, I don’t consider myself psychic or a sensitive. I just believe that spirits recognize my willingness to interact with them or they sense other spirits around me that I interact with often, and they see me as a safe person to interact with. I don’t feel like this is a special gift reserved for a select gift but something that all people can achieve if they are willing to open themselves up to it. 

Thankfully, shortly after high school I was able to learn how to scientifically ghost hunt thanks to a paranormal team that is associated with the Rhine Research Center in Durham, North Carolina. They helped me learn how to conduct investigations that reduce the amount of self contamination of evidence, set good bases for evidence gathered, and how to categorize the evidence collected. They also taught me same really cool techniques to use while conducting investigations to get responses without having to provoke spirits. I used the information and techniques they taught me combined with the ways my dad taught me how to communicate with spirits to develop my own method of investigating. I loved being able to help families learn how to live with spirits instead of living in fear. When shows like Ghost Hunters and Ghost Adventures did come out, I quickly realized the harm these shows were doing to the paranormal community. People went out to locations to mimic what they saw on television and in movies without realizing the harm they were doing. This lead me to begin training teams and individuals on how to ethically ghost hunt across North Carolina and parts of South Carolina. Ethically ghost hunting is doing an investigations in a way that doesn’t harm the location, the spirits, or the folks that may live or work there. If done correctly, we are able to have that location be usable for future investigations to further research into the paranormal and to create bonds of friendship between the living and the dead. I don’t believe in provoking spirits, going to locations without permission, or removing spirits just because they exist. I believe there is a way to live with most of the spirits out there. In all my years of dealing with the paranormal, I have never come across a truly evil entity. The spirits I have been introduced to as being demonic usually had a reason for why they were presenting in that manner. Once that reason was figured out, the people in that location were able to live easily with that spirit. I’m not saying that demons or demonic spirits don’t exist. I’m just saying that I haven’t encountered one. They aren’t as common as Hollywood would lead folks to believe. 

It was while I was training teams and individuals, I ended meeting my husband, Jeremy, who was having an issue with spirits in his house scaring off his roommates. You can read more about that and how one of ours spirits named Al helped us come together on my blog, Paranormal Housewife. The post is named Finding Love  With A Little Help From The Other Side. Yes, we have multiple ghosts that share our home with us and most of them have traveled around the world with us. Jeremy is a Marine and because of that, we move often. Our spirits that follow us around from North Carolina to Japan, Illinois and now Southern California. It was as we were leaving Japan and settling into Illinois that I began blogging about our experiences with the paranormal world and sharing the history behind haunted locations. On my blog, Paranormal Housewife dot com, you can read more in depth posts about the various spirits we share our home with. 

The spirit that has been around me the longest is Al. He is a bit if a joker but protective spirit that is attached to a ring my dad gave me a while back. Al protected him during the Vietnam war and while he was a police officer. Al was killed during World War II and my dad reminded him a lot of himself. Because of that, Al wanted to protect my dad. Our new neighbors and their kids have encountered him often since we’ve moved in. My dad, in fact, is another spirit that comes by fairly often. I have videos on my blog of times his spirit visited while were living in Japan and posts talking about his visits while living in Illinois. He hasn’t been by to visit our new home in San Diego yet but he will probably be stopping by soon, knowing him. Another spirit shares our home with us is a haunted lamp we bought at a Japanese thrift store who we have named Rampu (thank you iCarly for the name). We don’t know much about the spirit that is attached to the lamp. It is a lamp that turns on or off when touched except this lamp decides when it will turn itself on and off. It has been checked out by several electricians and they couldn’t find a reason to why he would turn himself on and off. We have had a paranormal team out and he put a small show on for them. We have tried talking to him in English, Japanese, Chinese, German, French, and Spanish and haven’t gotten any real response from him. He loves scare our pet sitters off and provide mood lighting when scary scenes in movies are going on. He loves when we watch The Greatest Showman. Again, I have videos of this on my blog.

I love blogging and the people I have met through it. I decided to get into podcasting at the request of some of my followers. I hope through both I can continue sharing our experiences with the paranormal world and spread awareness of ethical ghost hunting. If you enjoy this podcast, please go check out my blog, Paranormal Housewife dot com.

Now that you have an idea of who I am and whatnot, lets get on to today’s topic! For this first episode, I really wanted to pick a topic that is something else that I am truly passionate about which happens to be British royalty. If you know me in real life you know that I’m obsessed with anything dealing with the Tudors. Especially when it comes to Anne Boleyn. My love for Anne Boleyn comes from finding out we share a family lineage through the Butler side of our families. I have mentioned in my blog that one of the places on my paranormal bucket list is Hever Castle in Kent, England to explore and investigate her childhood home. I have faith that one day I will see it in person. Another place associated with her that I would love to visit is is the topic of today’s episode, the Tower of London!

Before we get into the paranormal side of the Tower of London, we should probably go over a just a little bit about the history so we have a better understanding of the spirits that roam there and why they are there. I do want to jump in real quick to apologize in advance if I butcher any pronunciations. I’m clearly not British and will probably make a few mistakes. If I do mess up, please forgive me? The Tower of London was built by William the Conqueror in 1070 as part of the Norman Conquest. It is located on the north banks of the River Thames in London, England. It took over 20 years for it to be built. Over the centuries, the towers within the Tower of London has been added on to and renovated. There are 21 towers located within the Tower of London. Throughout the history of the Tower of London, kings, queens, and prisoners were kept within its walls. The Wakefield Tower, the largest of the towers, was built in 1220 and is home to both the King’s apartments and the King’s Chapel. The Queen’s apartments are in the Lanthorn Tower. The Queen’s apartments are thought to have been built by Henry VIII for Anne Boleyn in the 1530s. Anne stayed there during the days leading up to her coronation and in the days leading up to her execution after being accused of adultery. The crown jewels use to be kept in the Martin Tower from 1669 to 1841. The crown jewels are now kept in the Waterloo Barracks from my understanding. Throughout the centuries, the Tower of London has seen much death. From executions of queens like Anne Boleyn, Lady Jane Grey, and Katherine Howard; to the murders of Henry VI and the princes, Edward V and Richard of Shrewsbury; add on the amount of people who were torture in the dungeons for centuries; and its hardly surprising the amount of spirits that are suppose to roam these grounds. 

The first ghost that is thought to have appeared in the Tower of London is the ghost of Thomas Becket. Thomas was murdered during a service in Canterbury Cathedral. A few years after his murder, King Henry III ordered a wall to be built within the Tower of London. The ghost of Thomas Becket is said to have appeared before the wall was finished being built and caused the wall to fall down before the workers’ eyes. The king ordered the wall to be built again. Again the workers claimed that Thomas Becket appeared and caused the wall to fall again. The king assumed that Thomas was upset still about his murder and ordered that a chapel be built on the site in Thomas’ honor. After that the wall was allowed to be built and Thomas’ spirit was seen again. 

The most commonly seen ghost is probably that of Anne Boleyn. She has been documented as being seen in several different locations. She has been seen in the Queen’s apartments, as well as on the lawn where she was beheaded. In the 1800s, a soldier reported that late one night he saw a light burning in the Chapel Royal of Saint Peter ad Vincula. Upon peering into the window of the chapel, the soldier said that he saw what looked like a procession of knights and ladies being lead through the chapel by a headless Anne Boleyn. As the procession reached the doorway, the lights dimmed and went out. This chapel is where Anne Boleyn was laid to rest.In 1864, a different soldier was at risk of being court martialed for sleeping on post. The soldier said that he wasn’t sleeping and that in fact he had fainted from fright. He claimed that he had seen the headless ghost of Anne Boleyn approaching him. In his frighten state, he attempted to stab her with his bayonet but it just glided through her. This caused him to faint. His superiors didn’t believe his story until other soldiers spoke up saying they have also encountered her spirit. 

The Tower Green is another location that is haunted by Anne Boleyn. She was executed here on May 19th, 1536 after only three years of marriage. People say that they have seen her reliving her execution. But her spirit isn’t the only one seen or heard on the Tower Green. Margaret Pole, who was also executed on the Tower Green has been seen and heard. When she was executed, Margaret refused to kneel for the executioner while saying in reference to kneeling “So Should traitors do, and I am none.” When the executioner raised his axe to begin the execution, Margaret became frighten and attempted to flee from him. The executioner followed after her, hacking away at her neck while she screamed in terror. Visitors and workers have talked about seeing her botched beheading being reenacted by her spirit and her horrifying screams that still echo through out the grounds. 

In the Queen’s Apartments, the spirit of Arbella Stuart, Queen Elizabeth I’s cousin, has been seen. It was here that she was imprisoned in her final days all because she chose to marry William Seymour. Arbella starved herself to death in protest of her not being able to live with her husband. Her spirit has been seen by many females visiting the apartments. She is said to appear all in white and smells strongly of old, cheap perfume. Some claim that the smell is so overpowering that it causes them to become sick. Some visitors say that while in the room, they will feel a tap on their shoulder and as they turn around to address who tapped them, they only see a glimpse of white fading away behind them. 

Over in the Wakefield Towers, the ghost of Henry VI has been experienced often around the anniversary of his murder. He was murdered in the King’s Chapel by Edward IV after the Lancastrians lost the Battle of Barnet. He was praying in chapel late at night when he was stabbed to death in 1471. Since then, he’s spirit is known to appear around midnight either in the King’s Chapel. He is said to appear sad and mournful as he paces around the room before fading from sight. Down in the tower dungeons, the screams of Guy Fawkes’s ghost can be heard reliving the intense torture he endured after being imprisoned for his part in the plot in to assassinate James I in 1605. 

Over in the Beauchamp Tower, the ghost of Lord Guildford Dudley has been heard crying. His wife, Lady Jane Grey, has been seen wandering the battlements of the tower. Usually she is spotted near the anniversary of her death, February 12, 1554. They were executed because they were appointed to become King and Queen after the death of King Edward VI (the son of Henry VIII) instead of Edward’s half sister, Mary. They ruled for only 9 days before Mary was named Queen instead. Another spirit seen wandering along the battlements and halls of the Beauchamp Tower (also known as the Bloody Tower) is that of Sir Walter Raleigh. He was imprisoned twice by both Queen Elizabeth I and James I. He spent over 13 years imprisoned in the Bloody Tower before being executed at the Palace of Westminster.He has been seen sitting in many of the chairs, sometimes wearing the chains he was forced to wear while imprisoned there. In the rooms he once lived in while imprisoned  in the tower, the doors have a tendency of opening by themselves. A wife of one of the guards living in the tower claimed that Sir Walter Raleigh’s spirit has walked into her bathroom while she was taking a bath and touched her. 

Two other spirits famous in the Bloody Tower are the spirits of the two missing princes, Edward V (12 years old) and Richard of Shrewsbury (9 years old), they were the sons of King Edward IV and Elizabeth of Woodville. They were being kept in the tower by their uncle, Richard Duke of Gloucester, after their father’s death. when they disappeared from the tower. No one knows when they disappeared nor do they know who did it. In 1674, during renovations to the tower, the bodies of two young boys were found in a wooden box under the stair leading to the chapel in the White Tower. Tests done on the bodies in 1933, proved the bodies found were about the correct age for the missing princes. Their spirits have been seen occasionally in the White Tower. They are seen clutching each other while dressed in long nightgowns. When visitors try to approach them to offer them comfort, they fade into the wall behind them. They have also been seen and heard playing on the battlements. Some visitors report hearing children giggling in the White Tower. 

Also in the White Tower, a guard said that while walking his patrol he stopped to rest by a window one night. While resting he took off one of his shoes to massage his foot. While doing so, he heard a voice whisper behind him “There’s only you and I here”. The guard simply replied “Just let me get this bloody shoe on and there’ll only be you!” Children say that they can see a lady waving at them from a window in the White Tower but when adults look at the window, the adults can’t see what the children are seeing. There is also the spirit of a nameless thing that is known to follow guards around as they do their patrols. Another guard said that in the 1980s that while he was walking his patrol, he saw what looked like two other guards but in older uniforms standing by a fireplace and smoking pipes. They looked to be having a conversation when he interrupted them. They turned to him and simply vanished from sight. In the dungeon of the Salt Tower, visitors claim to see a small, golden yellow ball of light that will grow until the entire room is full of bright yellow light. As the light grows, the visitors are able to hear what sounds like a voice whispering a prayer. They also claim to feel icy fingers touch the back of their neck while listening to the prayer. Many contribute this to Henry Walpole, a Jesuit Priest who was tortured in this dungeon in 1593 because he refused to give up the names of his Catholic contacts. 

While visiting the Martin Tower, take care when entering the room where Henry VIII’s armor is on display. Many folks consider the armor to be possessed. Both guards and visitors claim to feel a sense of dread when near the armor. Some claim to feel as though there is a crushing weight on them as if a demon was wrapping its arms around their chest and squeezing tight. Others have claimed to have been strangled by unseen hands while in the room but the feeling lifts as they exit the room. The only sign of their struggle is bright red marks around their throat that remain briefly after leaving the room. One guard said he experienced what felt like a cape being thrown over his head and having it twist around his neck until he couldn’t breathe. Once he was back in the hallway, he found he was able to breathe again. He also noticed a red mark circling his neck. 

It is not just the spirits of humans that are known to roam the grounds of the Tower of London. People have reported hearing and seeing monkeys, lions, horses and bears over the years. Henry III use to have a menagerie of animals that he received as gifts. There are two different bears ghosts reported to appear in the Tower of London. One has been seen appearing behind the door of the Jewel Room in the Martin Tower.  It is seen rushing through the room at a high rate of speed but disappears before actually running into anyone or the door. The other ghost of a bear likes to appear in the courtyard of the Tower of London. When this ghost startled a guard, the guard attempted to stab it. The guard was so frightened by the experience that he collapsed and died a few days later. The bears don’t mean to harm those they startle. Guards that have either encountered them or heard reports of it, say the bears just enjoy scaring guests that come across them. I don’t know if this bear is the same spirit seen in two different locations or if this is two different bear ghosts. Both soldiers and visitors have reported seeing ghosts of horses galloping around the courtyard with glowing red eyes. One animal still kept in the Tower of London are the ravens. Legend says that if all the ravens leave, the monarchy will fall. For that reason, seven ravens are kept at the tower. They are tended by the Ravenmaster. 

While I did mention quite a few spirits in this episode, I know that there are many more spirits that call the Tower of London home. I just wanted to touch on the ones that are more famous and more widely experienced. Have you been to the Tower of London? What was it like? Did you experience anything paranormal while you were there? Let me know by either sending me an email or commenting on the post about this episode on my blog. 

Websites used for this episode:

  • hrp.org.uk
  • en.wikipedia.org/wiki/tower-of-london
  • walks.com/blog/tower-of-london-ghosts
  • authenticvacations.com/13-ghosts-of-the-tower-of-london
  • exploring-castles.com/uk/england/tower_london_ghosts

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