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Blickling Hall

Sir Thomas Boleyn, the father of the second of Henry VIII's wives, has been seen here, where he lived. The legend is that on a certain night of the year, he can be seen in a coach drawn by four headless horses, his own head under his arm and flames belching from his mouth. If anyone pays attention to this sight, they will suffer some misfortune themselves. His appearance seems to be some form of penance for failing to save two of his children from the King's wrath. It is reputed that, "Each year his ghost has to attempt to cross 12 bridges before cockcrow. His frantic route takes him from Blickling to Aylsham, Burgh, Buxton, Coltishall, Meyton, Oxnead and Wroxham." Anne Boleyn is also said to be conveyed in a spectral carriage too, riding down the avenue to the hall, with her head in her lap; the horses and coachmen are also said to be deprived of their craniums too! The coach rises into the air when it reaches the hall; some versions say that it simply vanishes and Anne glides into the hall and walks through the corridors. This is said to be May 19th, the date of her execution. Her spectre has also been seen in the house and grounds, dressed in a long grey gown and white lace collar. However, the current hall is of the Jacobean era, and it is not recorded how the ghost copes with the change of layout and architecture. Another "Grey Lady" (or perhaps Anne?) haunts the Hall, having been seen in the library, dining room and on the stairs. In addition, the room where Sir Henry Hobart died is haunted. Hobart was involved in a duel after his rival, Oliver Le Neve was elected to Parliament, and was run through with a sword after which he was taken to the Hall. His groans are said to be heard on the anniversary of his death (August 21st) in the West Turret bedroom, doors stubbornly remain open, and a dog became so unnerved that it bared its teeth at the room, its hackles raised. According to the National Trust, "Other less dramatic ghostly residents of Blicking Hall include the spirit of Sir John Falstofe, the inspiration for Shakespeare’s Falstaff," however no further details are given.

Update 16/9/21: Samantha Burgess, the Assistant Business Services Co-ordinator for the Blickling Estate informs me, ""There have been no ghostly sightings reported to us in the last few years.

Link: Daily Mirror

Link: Eastern Daily Press

Link: The Express

Link: National Trust

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