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My dads neighbor

1986 Views 13 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  TampaCountryBoy
An old castle dating back to 1157
The castle is not far from where my dad used to live, about 800yards or so,
Hylton Castle was originally an 11th century fortified manor house, founded by Henry Hilton. Between 1374 and 1420, Sir William Hilton founded the stone castle, when adding a four storey keep-gatehouse and a chapel. Adorning the façades of the keep, is a fine display of medieval heraldic shields, with the altered chapel of St Catherine, replacing earlier chapels, which date from 1157. In 18th century, Baron John Hylton and his son

A little of the castles history.
Like most ancient castles, gatehouses and manor houses, Hylton Castle has its own ghost, but the origin of this apparition known as the ‘Cauld Lad’ could be in doubt and of questionable authority.

There are at least three legends explaining the ghostly apparition.

One was that a young retainer was discovered by the young heiress’s father courting his daughter and was slain.

However, the local historians favour an occurrence that was said to have come about in the year 1609.

It would appear that the Lord of Hylton had given orders that his horse be prepared by a certain time in order that he could make an important journey. Angered by the delay he visited the stable and found the stable boy still asleep. The furious Lord drew his sword and decapitated Roger Skelton, the youth in question. To hide his crime he threw the corpse into a pond and put about a story to cover up what he had done.

When the remains were discovered he was tried and acquitted of murder. The Coroner’s report from the Chester Ward at Hylton on the 3rd July 1609 showed that witnesses supported Robert Hylton of Hylton, described as a Gentleman, when he swore that whilst using a scythe during mowing he accidentally struck Roger Skelton with the point of the scythe on his right thigh, causing a mortal wound one inch long and two inches broad from which the youth died within the hour. It is also on record that a free pardon was granted for this ‘manslaughter’ by Bishop William Jameson on the 6th September 1609

Thus the legend of the ’Cauld Lad’ began

The title ‘Cauld Lad’ has different connotations. The word cauld is believed by many to mean cold and is taken from the local dialect word which is pronounced cowed. This would relate to the belief that the appearance of the ghost was always preceded by a cold damp wind. It could also be the spelling of cowed which is also a dialect word, meaning a steer with its horns removed, but when referring to a human, means headless, which the Cauld Lad certainly was.

Somewhere along the way the ghost of Roger Skelton became entwined with the ‘Brownies’ who were invisible and good-natured spirits, usually found in country dwellings such as farmhouses and are said to have originated from Scottish legends. It is during the night that they make themselves known by completing tasks that would please the owners, especially in the kitchen, but do not like to be seen doing this. Should any attempt be made to reward them with money or clothes, especially green, it would result in them leaving and never returning.

The Cauld Lad possessed some of the characteristics of a brownie, but should the kitchen be left in good order with all pots and pans cleaned and put away, he would become annoyed at having no work to do and throw all the utensils around the kitchen.

The castle building was not the only place to be haunted by the mischevious ghost, for on occasions the Cauld Lad is known to have impersonated the boatman on the Hylton Ferry, where after accepting the fares he would leave his passengers stranded in the centre of the river

Eventually some of the servants decided they had had enough of his pranks and in order to get rid of him made a green cloak and hood. When they were finished they laid these by the fire in the great kitchen and on the stroke of midnight the ghost (or brownie) could be heard weeping as he wrapped the cloak around him and crying:-

“Here’s a cloak and here’s a hood
the Cauld Lad of Hylton will do no more good”.

Although the brownie part of the Cauld Lad never returned to rearrange the kitchen and play pranks, his ghost could be heard long after.

Even up to the start of the twentieth century it was said that people passing the castle would claim to hear the unearthly cries of the ghost known as the Cauld Lad

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Man thats just gotta be awe inspiring to wander through a "building" that has been standing for 4 centuries or more! To think of all that has happened in a place like that as you wander it's halls imagining all who have walked the same path as you. Astonishing!
Fish4FunInFl said:
Im glad places like that didnt get destroyed during WWII.
True! I agree
andy said:
Sorry a date check it dates back to 1157.

Imagine what went on in those dungeons?? I can see how that would be creepy.
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