North Wales has a fantastic amount of history, and as such, no shortage of castles. Tourists flock to the area from all around the world to actually be at the source of so many tales, legends and myths. From being entertained and entranced by factual accounts of the long-lost Warlord Princes of Wales to Arthurian legends and myths of Merlin – Llanrwst and the surrounding Snowdonia area has so much history, you’ll be hard-pressed to explore everything in just one holiday. As you visit Llanrwst, you’ll be aware of there being far more to the area than pretty scenery and lovely walks. The area is magical, and the hotels in Llanrwst stellar.
The region is home to the magnificent Gwydir Castle, a storied and very historical structure. It’s not uncommon for buildings of such age to be rumoured to have a few unhappy spirits lurking about, the Gwydir Castle in particular has earned a reputation that attracts the most seasoned of all enthusiasts of the paranormal. Even skeptics have been reported to have seen, heard, and even felt a range of paranormal activity here, which are always uncannily similar amongst a range of people visiting at varying times over the last 50 years.
The most significant report is that of a young lady who haunts the north wing – between the Hall of Meredith and the castle’s Great Antichamber. Reports of this lady date from the 19th Century, and it’s said that she is white (or grey) and seen in the main hallway – emitting a terrible smell of decomposition.
An account published in 1906 provides a terrible explanation for the presence of this lady. Sir John Wynn, baronet of the castle at the time, seduced a young maid in his youth. When their relationship proved for of an inconvenience for him than a distraction from the responsibilities of minor nobility, he is reported to have killed her, and had her body walled up in the castle. The smell of the body, it is said, lingered for months, and years – though whether this is a signifier of his own internal struggle with guilt is unknown.
This was treated as nothing but a ghost story until a recent hollowed-out space within the walls was found within the large chimney breast which backs onto the rooms where the lady has been seen. It is said that this is where the body was secreted, and it is within this area that the smell is always the strongest.
Interestingly, Sir John himself made a deathbed confession to the murder. It is said that the spirit of the old baronet remains trapped beneath the waterfall near Betws y Coed “forever to be purged, purified, and spat upon by the water for the evil deeds committed by him in his days of nature.”
Other ghost stories which revolve around Gwydir Castle are numerous and unbelievably interesting, but detailed accounts would provide exhaustive. Amongst them, Gwydir Castle is known for visitors hearing the sound of children crying and a ghost dog has frequently been seen. (and it’s bones even unearthed in 1995)
Llanrwst is a fantastic place with lovely scenery, stunning walks, and a rich and undeniably interesting culture as well as some top-quality places to stay. This Year of Adventure, why not add ghost hunting to your bucketlist?