Ghost of Anne Boleyn- The stories

Anne Boleyn- an immortal Queen

It is my opinion that hidden in the fabric of ancient walls and floors remains an imprint of its previous inhabitants and events that echoed in that space. The more emotionally charged the event, the clearer an imprint that resonates and a greater likelihood of the event being ‘played back’ for some among us to sense or see.

It is for this reason that I think the ghost of Anne Boleyn has been seen and sensed in several locations around the UK.  She had an enormous impact in life and instigated great change.  The palaces, homes, chapels and parks where she once walked and talked at times reveal their secrets to those sensitive enough to receive them. When standing in a space once shared by Anne Boleyn, it is only time that separates us.  This is a thought that fascinates me. If only we could peel back the layers of time we would be there- side by side with a great Queen- a great woman.

I think that at times buildings and spaces, for reasons not yet understood, reveal the imprint of an event recorded long ago. And those who hear the whispers and see the recording have essentially looked into the past.

I believe that Anne’s soul is at peace and not wandering the grounds where she once lived. But I do think that her life was emotionally charged, her convictions unwavering, her impact on England unsurpassed by any other of Henry’s wives and her death traumatic. For these reasons, her ‘ghost’ or, in my opinion, her imprint has been seen and heard. Anne Boleyn- an indelible Queen.

The Stories

Tower of London

Anne Boleyn’s ghost has been seen on numerous occasions at the Tower of London.  It is said her ghost haunts the place of her death, beheaded on Tower Green on the 19th May 1536.

Perhaps the most spectacular ghost story relating to Anne is that of a Captain of the guard who saw a light flickering in the locked Chapel Royal late one night. He tried to uncover the source of the light by climbing up a ladder and was met with an unbelievable scene unfolding inside. A procession of Knights and Ladies dressed in ancient costumes pacing the chapel. Their leader, an elegant female whose face he could not see but whose figure resembled that of Anne Boleyn’s in portraits he had seen. The procession later disappears.

Anne is also said to walk from the Queen’s House to the Chapel of Saint Peter ad Vincula, where she walks down the aisle to her grave under the altar.

In 1864, a soldier, on duty near the Lieutenant’s lodgings, made another sighting of Anne’s ghost. He claimed to have confronted and challenged a white figure and when his challenge met no response he plunged his bayonet into the figure.  To his complete shock, the weapon did not meet flesh instead went straight through the woman. According to the traditional story, an officer lodged in the Bloody Tower saw the whole event take place from his window.

Hever Castle

Anne’s ghost is said to appear each Christmas at Hever Castle, her childhood home. She is said to manifest beneath a great oak tree where Anne and Henry courted. Her ghost also walks across the bridge, which crosses over the River Eden on the castle grounds.

Windsor Castle

Windsor Castle is the largest and oldest occupied castle in the world.

Anne Boleyn has been seen standing at the window in the Dean’s Cloister at Windsor Castle.

Another Windsor ghost story claims that Anne Boleyn has been seen running down a corridor screaming (sometimes clutching her head).

Hampton Court

Anne’s ghost has been seen at Hampton Court wearing a blue or black dress. Some accounts claim she is headless during these manifestations.

Rochford Hall

Rochford Hall in Essex is a manor house said to be where King Henry VIII first cast his eyes on a young Anne Boleyn.  The Boleyns owned the home from 1515, a home claimed to be the setting of secret meetings between King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn.  There are even rumours of a secret tunnel system beneath the home that King Henry VIII used as his discreet escape route from the house.

According to a previous owner, there are stories of sightings of a headless lady and feelings of extreme cold in one of the rooms.  Is this the ghost of Anne Boleyn?

Blickling Hall

Perhaps the story that I find most difficult to believe, is that of Anne Boleyn’s headless spectre arriving at Blickling Hall in Norfolk, clutching her severed head, in a phantom carriage, drawn by a headless coachman and four headless horses.  On arrival the carriage and horses disappear leaving Anne to roam the corridors and grounds until sunrise. This manifestation is said to occur each year on the anniversary of her execution- May 19th.

Conclusion

I have not included these stories because I believe them all to be true instead because most have been circulating for a long time and tell us something about how Anne is perceived in popular culture. I leave it up to you to form your own opinion about their validity.

I personally think that such a dignified woman in life would not then in death roam the grounds of these ancient structures as a headless spectre. Also, as I mentioned in my introduction, I believe that Anne is at peace and that any sighting of her is of an imprint left in the environment long ago rather than of her restless ghost.

If you would like to share any other stories please contact us.

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Comments

  1. I have to admit that reading this sent a shiver down my spine. After going to the Tower of London I have my own Anne Boleyn story so I can believe that people may have seen her imprint – I know I have.

  2. I wonder if you have seen this footage. Security camera, and no forgery involved. It relates to a series of unexplainable sounds over a couple of nights, I think, experienced by the security staff at Hampton Court Palace. On one of the evenings, this was captured on CCTV.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YWuFtqZ1wNk

    • Yes, I remember watching the footage when it first happened. It really fascinates me! I think had it just been the footage on its own then perhaps it wouldn’t have been so interesting but the fact that the footage was captured after days of hearing unexplainable sounds and the door apparently opening of its own accord on several occasions is what makes this truly amazing!

  3. Becky Bunsic says:

    Sarah,
    Yes, please do share your story. It is one of my greatest wishes to visit the Tower and have an experience of my own so I would love to hear about yours.

    Becky Bunsic

  4. Natalie, why do you feel she is at peace ?
    Kate :)

    • Hmm, this is a tricky question Kate. I guess part of it is my intuition and part is that, although she was murdered in a very violent way, she was prepared for her death and even welcomed it. Naturally, she was frightened as any human would be but at the same time she was composed and so dignified. I just feel that the manner in which she approached her unjust death, with such calm and always radiating regality, tells me that she knew something better awaited her and found comfort in that.

      • Hi Natalie,

        I also think Anne is at peace. I certainly hope so, anyway. There is a man called Eddie Burk who is a sort of medium. He says that he sees “dead” people as clearly and solidly as when they were living. He isn’t particularly into or knowledgeable about history so isn’t familiar with people and their histories. He was called to Coutts Bank to assist with an apparition that had been frightening staff (unintentionally, I am sure!) This turned out to be Thomas Howard, 4th Duke of Norfolk, executed in 1572 for his part in the “Ridolfi Plot”. Eddie also “met” the spirit of Catherine Howard, and according to him she made a lot of excuses for her behaviour (i.e. her adultery) but he didn’t believe her account. He says he has communicated with the spirit of Anne Boleyn and stated that she seemed to have no resentment or anger over what happened to her. I found him quite convincing.

      • I believe if someone has suffered a violent trauma then they aren’t going to be at peace or rest !

  5. Thanks a lot Natalie.I hope she is too.

  6. I too think Anne is at peace with her lot. In a sad way her death released her from the stressful life she was living. The twists and turns of court policies, the unpredictable behaviour of Henry, and the pressure to give birth to a son. But I like to think she gets most of her peacefulness from the knowledge that her daughter Elizabeth became a greater monarch than Henry ever did or aspired to be. You could forgive Anne if she even felt a ‘little’ smug…. :)

    • Brilliant. I find it quite ironic that the family who always strived to be the best banished the daughter that was the ancestress of princess Diana.

  7. OKAY NOW ANNE BOLEYN I HAVE BEEN DOING SOME RESEARCH ON HER. I HAVE BEEN VERY INTERESTED ABOUT KING HENRY VIII. THIS HISTORY IS VERY GOOD TO ME. IT KEEPS ME UP ON MY TOES. ANNE MAYBE IS WALKING AROUND WHERE SHE LOVED AND LIVED AT. SHE’S AT PEACE I KNOW THAT MUCH. BUT SHE ALSO LOVED HER DAUGHTER AND HENRY VIII DESPITE EVERYTHING.

  8. Leonie Hitchenor says:

    I visited The Tower on 2 occasions, both in May over 20 years ago while I was living in London. On the first occasion we strolled in & I was suddenly overwhelmed by the energy of the spot I was in & almost passed out, luckily a friend was with me who could look after my little daughter while I sat & recovered. I had no idea what the unassuming little lawn next to me was, until my friend found the little plaque they had there back then; it was Tower Green. I wish I knew what date I was there. I could not bring myself to go into the Chapel, though I must say I regret that now. There were lots of places closed off to the public that felt very “interesting” I did wonder if they are closed off not because they are offices & residences, but because they are psychically “active”. We managed to have a chat to one of the guards on his own & he told us some interesting little ghost stories, sadly as it was so long ago I don’t remember any details :)

  9. I have been fascinated by all these stories; despite being slightly sceptical towards the idea of ghosts and the paranormal, I love ghost stories and thing that there are many incidents which we cannot fully explain yet, for whatever reason.

    I am beginning to wonder if I had my own Anne Boleyn ghost experience last night – I will send it to you and you can judge for yourselves!

  10. Has anybody ever been successful enough to capture a picture of any Anne Boleyn apparitions? and on her anniversary of her execution, does her chariot appear consistently?

  11. Many years ago, on a trip to London, I was at the Tower and, like you said, there was just a little plague marking the spot hat is, supposedly, the spot where Anne Boleyn was beheaded. For some odd reason, I felt the need to hover my foot over the plaque, more like the edge of it, to feel the actual spot, and when I did I felt a slight chill. I definitely felt an energy. It was like I was compelled to do it, but not in an evil.way. I think Anne is at peace. Perhaps, she is curious about today or wants to tell her story to those are interesed, perhaps, she has emotional ties to some events, but mostly I think she is at peace. I am mot a medium, though I have been asked by some if I am mentalist. I do hear and feel things so there is some possibility im a bit sensitive. That being said The Tower of London creeps me out. You can definitely feel energy there. So thick you can cut it with a knife. The French Quarter in New Orleans is like that. As far as active places being closed off, …maybe,.,one time we went to Hampton Court and they had this one wing ” closed for tepairs” but there was a chain blocking the entrance, There seemed to be stuff.piled in the hall near that entrance, and there was an overall creepy feel. When we left, my brother was reading a ghost book and they had a section saying some of Hampton Court was closed off because of violent activity like chairs being thrown around. As far as Anne, there are only a couple of photos, if that even, that are supposed to be of her ghost. Typically when a place is reportedly haunted their are many photos of that ghost. I find it odd that their are so few if she so actively haunts, not saying she doesnt, maybe pictures arent her style but….maybe sometimes she appears without her head to make a point…but I bet you could see her beautiful face someday.

  12. I loved reading this article and all your comments.I have dreams that tell me when someone will die,my mother and sister have warned me not to dream about them ever.I am not a medium,well,I do not think I am . I have been to the tower of London more than once but never felt any energies except for when we went through the chapel,I felt like I was being watched.My sister was lagging behind me and I had walked away from her.That’s it really.Oh and the queen’s bed chambers,that was uneasy .

  13. I visited Hampton Court last week. I was wearing a necklace that had a picture of Anne Boleyn. As soon as we pulled up to the stop on the train, I went to fix my necklace and it broke. It was a bit spooky.

  14. I visited the Tower of London last year, due to my fascination with all things related with the Tudors, and it’s so amazing. I went to the spot where Anne Boleyn was beheaded, on Tower Green, and it felt somehow terrifying to know that 579 years ago, a woman was actually killed here. It went a bit chilly as well, which was a bit odd because even though it was October in the perpetually cold England, it was actually quite warm. I also had a scary moment when I lost my friend in the White Tower, but I doubt that had anything to do with Anne Boleyn.

  15. donna green says:

    hi after all u read about queen ann Boleyn I doubt very much she cheated on henry I hope she can rest in peace x

    • She never did cheat on Henry. He just said those things because he had no real reason to divorce her so the easiest way was to say she committed adultery and if course that punishment was death. He wanted her out of the way because she could not produce any more children and he wanted another women that could produce children. I believe that she is there but I also believe that she is at peace because as she said before being executed that God can justify her actions. Henry paid a very expensive executioner to kill the queen that would only take one swing of a sword to kill her instead of using a axe that would take a few wackes to take her head off so she wouldn’t suffer.

  16. I visited Hampton Court Palace last month, and other than experiencing a LOT of cold spots and odd feelings (especially Wolsey’s closet – I had to get out of there), I didn’t have any “experiences” with sightings or the like. Until I came home and looked at my photos. There are numerous photos all over the Tudor section of the palace, where a green orb appears in the photo, giving off its own light. I would ordinarily think dust, but many of my photos were taken in shutter mode – four or five taken in rapid succession. This orb, originates, travels and disappears in the frame. This happened in various parts of the palace – the “haunted gallery”, the corridor leading to the chapel, the halls near the entrance, the base court and the wine cellar.

  17. Yes, would love to see pics!

  18. amm.. is it really true? i mean these stories about anne .. amm i stay in india, n have no knowledge about anne ,about her ghost bt i read above about her n its something very sad n attractive about the stories.. but she loved king henry then why did he killed her? dint he loved her? n y did anne accepted his this kind of unjustice? m very eager to know plz sumone do tell me

  19. Talar Asdourian says:

    That’s so cool! I LOVE Anne, and am working on a Tudor dress with and with a necklace like hers but with a T. I hope she’s at peace! She never deserved execution, and hopefully one day I can visit England and maybe see her ghost! Sadly, it’d be a long trip because I’m in the US.

  20. Yes i believe in the stories of Anne haunting the tower of london as i have been there and felt a wired feeling that someone was watching me and then i herd a scream so yes i believe the stories

  21. Ricardo Pereira Lago says:

    It’s curious how Anne story interest me… I am Brazilian and as far I know no English ancestor (what a pitty) You may not believe in me but this story is true… I read about Anne when I was 15 years old (I am 23 now) and I became a great admirer of Tudor times and since that I read a lot about… Since that time ever May 19, I dream with Anne execution…. the curious is that I am always her… always the same dream… lucid almost like a memory…. the dream never changes….. and when I wake up I feel terrible sad…. last two nights I dreamt with her…. In my dream I was at Saint Peter as vinculae and her spirit came to me… she simply said I’m not here…. next night I dreamed that I was searching for a coffin…. and she was again close behind me…. of course that this seems to be fantasious but I swear that isn’t…. I don’t know why but I feel a intense connection with England and specially Anne….. although I am Catholic I do believe in reincarnation…. if other lives exist I probably was a Tudor courtier….

  22. I’m working on a blog piece for my history degree and I’d really love to know if you have a source for the story from the capifain of the guard? Ideally a primary one if you can! Thank you!

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