This article was written
by Ian Addicoat, and is reproduced here with his kind permission.
Many people have asked us for a comment.
Therefore, I will attempt to set the record straight...
... there is no historical evidence to
support any of these claims.
... a lot of the stuff quoted on "Most
Haunted" was taken straight from the Pengersick Castle
section of a site listed under the heading "Myths and Legends".
Three possibly genuine occurrences:
There were three things on the programme which did appear genuine:
1. Orbs are very frequent here and could almost certainly not be faked.
2. Derek Acorah did pick up on a female presence who does things by the
mirror and chair. This is very accurate, but not well known and has only
been happening recently.
3. It is a very little known fact that footsteps have often been heard
in the area where they were picked up on film. I myself have often heard
these late at night. They certainly were too loud to be a cat!
On Tuesday the 27th of May 2003, the programme "Most Haunted", featuring
Pengersick Castle, was transmitted on Living TV.
The show was eagerly anticipated by many, especially the hundreds of
people who have attended a ghost night here...
After many e-mails sent to www.ghosthunting.org.uk, it would seem that the
overwhelming opinion of people who have been here, is one of
disappointment and sadness that Most Haunted failed to live up to its
expectations. The programme was full of inaccuracies and focused on what
are widely believed to be the myths and legends rather than the genuine
stuff that happens here. This was truly disappointing.
So many other television companies have done this before, yet with "Most
Haunted" we had higher hopes for a programme free of sensationalism and
In response to the show, it appears that many people, who are not familiar
with the castle, have been given a false impression. Many people have
asked us for a comment. Therefore, I will attempt to set the record
As someone who has spent an awful lot of time researching the paranormal
and cataloguing all of the supernatural experiences at Pengersick and who
has spent long periods of time alone here, I can categorically state that
I have never considered Pengersick to be evil or remotely sinister. I do
genuinely believe that it is the most supernaturally active place I have
ever been, however, it is a beautiful, unique and heart warming place. I
do not feel fear here and throughout the 50 ghost nights we have run,
nobody has ever encountered anything DARK, DEMONIC or EVIL, just some very
peculiar experiences. People are sometimes unnerved by the things that
occur, because they cannot explain them, but there is certainly nothing
Claims that it is evil and that nobody wants to spend any time here are
made to appear ridiculous in light of the hundreds of people who have
fallen in love with its unique charm and special sense of mystery.
Almost every television company that has visited has soon jumped on a
bandwagon and focused on stories of devil-worship, black magic and the
infamous demon dog. However, there is no historical evidence to support
any of these claims. John Milliton was a very respected member of the
community. As well as Lord of Pengersick, he was Sheriff Captain of the
Mount and considered to be a high standing dignitary. It seems unlikely
that someone holding such a high office could possibly have gotten away
with murder, black magic, and treachery on such a grand scale. He may
haunt Pengersick? But nothing links him evidentially to anything dark or
dastardly. Of the professionals who regularly visit Pengersick and are
held in high esteem, the story of the demon dog is laughed upon.
Many of these legends materialised in the 19th century in stories by the
author R. Hunt and many were almost certainly fabricated by smugglers to
keep people away from their activities in and around Pengersick Castle.
Many of the legends have been rehashed again and again in books, the media
and particularly television. Also a lot of the stuff quoted on "Most
Haunted" was taken straight from the website www.pengersickcastle.com,
from a place listed under the heading "Myths and Legends". The owners of
Pengersick Castle and myself have always tried to distance ourselves from
such sensationalised tales and will continue to do so.
There are some very convincing ghost stories related to Pengersick and it
is undoubtedly a very haunted place. Unfortunately, few of these appeared
on the programme "Most Haunted", despite them being given every possible
access to such information. They appeared to concentrate on the stories
that have no evidence to back them up. While I understand that television
companies need to make their programmes entertaining, I do not believe
that this should be at the expense of realism.
I would also like to make some specific points related to the programme
(Most Haunted) itself to clear up some of the major inaccuracies...
1. It was
claimed that 2 monks were murdered at Pengersick. The true story is that
Henry Pengersick attacked one monk. He was NOT killed. There are no
records of another monk being murdered at all. The monk that is
regularly seen here, is always viewed wearing a wide brimmed hat, not as
stated a hooded robe.
2. Pengersick is not considered to be evil by the overwhelming majority
of visitors but is usually referred to as charming, picturesque and
3. Henry Pengersick did not build Pengersick Castle. The modern day
tower was constructed in John Milliton's reign, in about 1500. Henry
lived in Pengersick Manor, sited in the grounds here.
4. A claim was made that the owners believe that the sailors from the
wreck St Anthony haunt Pengersick. The owners certainly do not... in
fact Guy Evans states that he had never even heard this ghost story,
before the programme. Also no sailors have ever, to my knowledge, been
SEEN at Pengersick, as claimed on "Most Haunted".
5. The Demon dog - the stories of a demon dog are often quoted. However,
I know of no serious minded person who has seen the glowing red eyes of
a demon. Personally, I think it is a bit of a shaggy dog story! As do
most professionals in the paranormal world.
There is probably a ghostly dog in the bedroom but this is just a former
pet. There have also never been any previous mentions of the demon being
a "harbinger of doom, warning of impending death".
6. A lady in white has never been seen walking through the walls in the
room indicated on the show (the Solar).
7. Yvette is seen walking in an area she claims to be unhallowed graves
(known as the plague graves). This is completely the wrong place, and
although this was pointed out to her and the crew, for reasons known
only to them they have decided to leave it as it is.
8. The dancing girl is not actually seen. When her presence has been
claimed it usually begins downstairs.
9. There has been no previous mention or record of a murder in the Solar
10. There are absolutely no documented records of devil worship or
witchcraft or related burials.
11. In reference to claims at the end of the programme... that John
Milliton's connections to alchemy and black magic are not a well-known
fact! These legends are extremely well known, however they are almost
certainly NOT fact.
12. The door slamming incident: when the trap hatch at the top of the
stairs is left open, the main door often slams shut. We cannot confirm
if this is what actually happened.
13. The bedroom at Pengersick is undoubtedly the most actively haunted
place at Pengersick and is well known for it. Therefore we cannot
understand why the most haunted crew did not spend time on a vigil here,
I hope this was not through fear! The Solar is relatively inactive. On
Saturday evenings we almost always get results in the bedroom. WHAT A
14. One of the tents was claimed to have been pitched on the unhallowed
plague graves. It was actually pitched in an area known as the wise
woman's hut, some distance away.
And many, many more…
Overall, I am
sure that "Most Haunted" has given Pengersick a great deal of publicity.
Unfortunately, some of this is not the sort the Castle seeks.
Therefore I feel something needs to appear to distance myself, and the
owners of the Castle, from certain claims.
"Most Haunted" were given every opportunity (before and after filming) to
consult the extensive information and evidence we have collated, related
to the paranormal. However, they failed to consult us on most of the
important matters. This was very unfortunate. The fact is we have
comprehensive information of the strange things that happen here and we
may never know if Derek came up with something which could be put up as
conclusive evidence, when related to our widespread knowledge of
Several times I attempted to contact Antix Productions (makers of "Most
Haunted") and got no joy, often being completely ignored.
What a shame!!!