The ghosts of Preston Manor

January 31, 2018

Photos by Adam Bronkhorst 

 

 

Who might I meet at Preston Manor? The White Lady, the unhappy spirit of an excommunicated nun, a ghostly child on a toy tractor? This house comes with a reputation. First built in the 17th century, the original manor house has been demolished, rebuilt, and undergone major renovations over the centuries. The last was in 1905 by Charles Stanley Peach, who had previously designed electrical sub stations.

 

“Somewhat utilitarian,” comments venue officer Paula Wrightson, about the exterior, as she greets me at the entrance. She’s taking me on a tour of the entirely more remarkable interior. We start in her splendid office, overlooking the park (originally the main guest bedroom, where Princess Beatrice, Queen Victoria’s youngest daughter, once slept; the Stanford family were highly regarded hosts).

 

Paula has worked for the Brighton Royal Pavilion and Museums for 27 years. Her association with Preston Manor began in 2006, when a decision was taken to run ghost tours. This followed interest raised by an episode of Living TV’s Most Haunted.

 

Photos by Adam Bronkhorst 

 

 

She’s currently writing a book on the history of the Manor’s ghost stories, and tells me she loves finding interesting stories about people who lived and worked here, as well as meeting their descendants. She is an excellent storyteller and tour guide, and Preston Manor certainly has atmosphere. The lighting is dim, there’s a slightly peculiar aroma, and odd noises. All explicable, no doubt... [read more]

 

 

House opens April. Open all year for group bookings. brightonmuseums.org.uk/prestonmanor. Ghost Hunt by Psychic Gold Events/Ghost Hunter Tours, Sat 17th Feb, 8pm, from £21

 

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