Belgrave Hall is arguably Leicester's most famous haunted landmark. Since the last tenants vacated the premises in 1936, rumours of paranormal activity have been rife.
The Hall was thrust into the spotlight when security cameras recorded two misty images in December 1998. CCTV footage showed a six foot tall white figure hovering outside a rear window of the property for five seconds, before disappearing over a nearby wall.
Due to the dimensions of the figure, consequently named the 'White Lady', there has been speculation from ghost enthusiasts that the apparition is a woman in Victorian dress.
This figure is rumoured to be Charlotte Ellis, one of previous resident John Ellis' seven daughters. However, why Charlotte has been named as the ghost rather than any of her six sisters remains unknown.
Interest in the footage was so great that a team from the International Society for Paranormal Research (ISPR) was invited to investigate the incident.
CCTV spotted the figure in the gardens.
It reported the ghostly presence of previous residents of the building, including children and servants, as well as spirits from a time prior to Belgrave Hall's existence.
However, the ISPR investigators found the area of the garden where the images were recorded to be the least haunted area of the grounds, and dismissed the image as a leaf caught on the camera lens on a stormy night.
Helen Gladwell, a current member of the Belgrave Hall staff, says paranormal encounters occur on a weekly basis. She reports having had numerous encounters herself in her two years working at the Hall.
Ms Gladwell believes the mysterious activity could be attributed to the extraordinary amounts of quartz within the building, trapping paranormal energy, and allowing it to resurface as images of years gone by.
The most widely reported sighting is of a woman in a long Victorian-style dress on the lower ground staircase gazing through a window into the garden. As a result of her attire, this vision has consequently been named 'The Victorian Lady'.
Staff and guests have also reported inexplicable shadows and cooking odours floating throughout the building, while they also report hearing mysterious footsteps on the upper floors.
Although the initial frenzy occurred in 1998, visitors continue to report paranormal experiences. The Hall's popularity remains strong, with overnight vigils and ghost hunts frequently being held.All the content on this page was produced by Claire Davies, Bethan Lewis, Nick Allen Kevin Fowler and Philip Tweddle from the New Media Publishing PGDip course at De Montfort University in Leicester.
last updated: 15/07/07