Sports reporter Gavin Grosvenor at the scene of the ‘haunting’
HAUNTING tales have flooded in from around Powys following the publication of our Hallowe’en spooky special.
But it was one of the experiences of our own sports reporter Gavin Grosvenor that prompted one of the most detailed responses.
Many years ago in Tregynon, Gavin believed he had encountered the spirit of the Davies sisters at Gregynog.
He said: “One cold winter evening near the hall my friend and I felt the presence of one of the Davies sisters.
“We had stopped on a small bridge near the entrance to Gregynog Hall, known locally as Squew Bridge. It was a cold night but we decided to stop for a cigarette while hanging our legs over the side of the bridge.
“To this day I have no idea why I looked down into the river below but when I did I noticed the reflection of the moon on the water through an overhanging tree branch had created a very clear outline of a woman.
“I have been known to have vivid imagination so asked my friend whether he also saw the shape of a woman.
“He agreed it was definitely the shape of a woman in a long dress.
“Before he could finish his sentence there was an inexplicable strong wind which seemed to come from nowhere.
“Minutes before the evening had been calm and quiet but now we could hardly hear each other for the screeching cold wind which seemed localised to the bridge.”
Gavin and his friend quickly headed for home.
“With the wind screaming into our faces to the extent that tears were almost in our eyes we picked up the pace and just thought the person behind us was walking their dog and had been caught in the same bad weather.
“As we approached the hill I looked behind and noticed this person had no dog.
“No big deal I thought but I double taked and what I saw next will stay with me forever.
“Not only was this person not walking a dog but this person appeared to have no legs. There was also something eerily familiar about this person’s shape. It was the same shape we had both seen reflected in the water.”
They picked up pace, but the spectre just followed suit.
“The wind was still strong and by now the spectre was within touching distance. Before we reached light we looked behind again. There it was. A faceless shape of a woman wearing clothes from over 100 years ago.
“I don’t know why but we both agreed afterwards that we had seen the ghost of one of the Davies sisters and it had wanted us to stay away from her former mansion home.”
Gavin’s story prompted a former Gregynog employee to make contact with the County Times.
Archie Rodway worked there for five years, as the evening porter, then house supervisor – again during the evenings, often working till midnight.
“Sometimes I felt okay, but there were times when I felt the hairs going up on the back of my neck, a feeling almost as if I was being watched.
“There were lots of spooky tales about the place from the other members of staff that you might be interested in,” he said.
“It was always said that room eight was haunted, as this was the room that the remaining Davies sister lived in till her death in ’63.
“One night, I just couldn’t resist going to have a look, to see if I could feel anything. I had the master key, and I knew that the room was unoccupied that night, so in I went. Even in the dark, the room was peaceful and warm, nothing strange.
“For some reason I felt I should go into room seven next door. As soon as I walked in, it was obvious that this was a different matter completely. The room was freezing and felt quite depressing, I walked over to the radiator, and just as in room eight, it was on full, only this time it was having no affect on the temperature of the room.
“I checked for draughts at the window but there were none.
“The rooms were similar, and both faced the same direction – if anything room eight was larger and should have been cooler – I couldn’t really explain it, but then I noticed that there was an adjoining bathroom between the two rooms.
“One evening, as I came into work, I got talking to the chef, and she told me that ‘the spooks have been at it again’.
“I asked her what she meant, and she told me that when the cleaners went to do their morning clean up in the rooms, they found that one of the rooms had a lot of mattresses and bedding on the floor.
“It was common for some of the students to play up a bit, so after questioning some of the course that were in – a course of female journalists from one of the Welsh universities had signed in a couple of nights before – they said that one of the girls was lying in bed trying to get to sleep, and heard someone stand next to her bed, then bend down and whisper in her ear.
“The commotion and screaming woke up the rest of the women on the corridor, and after that the only way they could sleep was to all pile into the same room.
“Tom, the house manager, told me that he walked out of the outside office block, to go into the house proper, and had to walk past the windows of the old Edwardian laundry room (they were still used at times, but were obviously barred to guests.
“Tom said that at one of the windows stood a burly white haired woman, with her hair up in a bun and wearing some kind of an apron.
“She just stood and looked at Tom sternly, and as he was the overall boss at Gregynog, he marched round to the laundry room to see who the hell she was, and to get her out of there.
“Needless to say the room was totally deserted.”