Your Experiences

A reader recently wrote in to share with me a strange experience she had at Hampton Court in 1987. I find this a fascinating occurrence as I’ve never heard of an experience quite like it. Here is her story in her own words:

“I will share with you a true experience that happened to me at Hampton Court in 1987. I came upon a portrait of Anne Boleyn (but instead of the traditional pose), she had a big grin on her face – I thought it was a caricature of the famous portrait we all know. I went close up to it and could not repress grinning myself. Then I went back for a minute or two to find my friend who was lagging behind – I told her she had to see this portrait of Anne Boleyn because it was so different. When we returned, the portrait had no grin – it was the traditional portrait! I read in a book later that one thing Anne enjoyed doing was hiding in the hallways of Hampton Court and jumping out at her friends with a big grin. If you think about it, that is what she did to me.”

Is it possible that Anne Boleyn attempted to communicate with Lynda through her portrait? Although it’s difficult to answer this in any definite terms, I do strongly believe that ancient buildings like Hampton Court house the imprints of events that transpired long ago and record the feelings and emotions of the people that played out their lives within its walls. And once in a while, I think they reveal their past to those of us sensitive enough to ‘see’ it. In this case, for Lynda, it was through the transformation of a well-known portrait but these revelations come in many guises.

If you have a story you’d like to share, please contact us.

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  1. Hi um this is a true story that happened to me just a few days ago well I was with a tourguide and my family so as I was walking down the haunted galley I felt a really queasy tight feeling in my stomach as I walked down my tourguide told me this is where Katherine Howard tried to plead with the king but got caught and taken back to her apartments I told my tourguide how I felt and she asked me where did it start I went to the first door and she said that was the door Katherine was trying to get into

  2. Karen dunn says:

    Went to Hampton Court yesterday with my husband, had a wonderful day, but the weirdest thing happen to me.
    I’m not to sure the name of the stairs we come down or what part of the building . It was from Henry’s V111 floor, called the younger Henry. The stairs are white and made from stone.
    I heard a woman whispering in my left ear, she didn’t sound happy in fact she sounded angry !! And she said ” This is my place “.
    I looked at my Husband and said did you hear that, he didn’t hear anything. We went back to the stairs, he thought I might have over heard something from someone else’s audit players.
    Has anyone’s else experience this, or is there anything on a audit player that sounds familiar to this.

    • Jennifer says:

      My daughter and I were there today and heard whispering in that same stair well! We were all alone. No one was nearby. We both heard it and thought it was a recording of some sort but I never could find the source. Is there something playing that sounds like this in that area?

      • They play a recording on those stairs from a radio which is kept behind the door at the bottom. The recording is a ghostly whisper repeating the well known rhyme “Divorced beheaded died, divorced Beheaded survived.”

  3. Lillyanna says:

    Hmmm. relating to Natalie’s stay @ Hampton, if you look closely @ the orb, now it may b my imagination or some leaves, but i swear you can sort of see the outline/random filling in certain places, of a person wearing a french hood, or perhaps crown-like headdress. It says in history and is obvious by all her portraits that she likes to show off more of her dark hair by wearing french hoods so that is more likely, but then again she was happy to b Queen so maybe it was a crown, or perhaps you didn’t see Anne at all but Catherine Howard or Jane Seymour.

  4. Lisa Ryder says:

    Argh. OK, this happened way back in 87, on a school field trip with a teenage group from Canada. I was starting to get the worst cold of my life (thank you, Air Canada) and feeling a bit fuzzy around the edges, kinda going through the motions even though I really wanted to be there. Zoned out on the tour guide, standing at the chapel door. He was a droner. I was standing against the wall(ish) facing both the door to my left and the long gallery to my right/forward, and we had entered from directly right. So my view was the chapel door, some classmates milling around, and the long sunny gallery with large windows.
    Drone, drone, and then…it got darker. Not scary darker, just curtains darker. The people and sounds kinda shifted to the background and the best way to describe it is that a movie played on top of the reality. That clear. It was quick-witted a handsome but not that remarkable woman was running from the gallery area to the door. She threw her arms on it, and kinda slid down it. It was completely without sound. Behind her was a bearded man in leather armour coming after her- efficiently, but not running. He seemed distressed, worried, kinda like ‘oh shit, now my ass is in for it’ on his face. But not dramatic, not angry, just, well, real. It faded out as he reached the woman. End of story.
    I am the owner of a good imagination, and as an artist, use it often. So here’s the punchline- it ain’t THAT good. The woman had dark hair, pale complexion, and wore a dark rose dress made out of some woven material. Not queenly stuff, not stuff you see in the movies, real woven fabric from a loom. Beautifully sewn, cut, and fitted, but still not some fabric you buy at a sewing shop today. No frills, no beading or embroidery, just a well made dress, and an ivory shawl possibly, also not too remarkable. The man was sturdy, bearded, not overly tall and so human in his expressions I felt for him. And the leather armour- I didn’t know leather armour existed! His helmet also looked like old, well worn, burnished leather. The rest of his clothes completely boring. Boots, also looking like daily wear instead of the costumes you see in movies. Could have been anyone’s Uncle, in his mid 30’s about.
    Now here’s where I put my neck out, as I have no idea if this is true and can be checked. The gallery and hall had large heavy drapes. The window was visible but drapes on both sides. Also, drapes IN the hallway, pulled back for passage. Like hey were used for insulators between the ends of the hallway. The whole scene was darker, differently lit, and felt more real than anything I have ever seen portrayed on film, it kinda ruined period movies for me actually. So there it is. My glimsecinto the past. If it wasn’t for the weird details I would actually think I had made it up myself, but I didn’t. I wish I could talk to anyone else who may have seen this to compare notes, but something tells me I’m one of a very few. I can’t swear to it, but I do believe we traveled there April or early May.
    Thanks for letting me vent!

    • What an intriguing experience! Thank you so much for sharing. I’d like to reflect on this a little more, and on the details you provided. Fascinating!

  5. I realise that my experience is far from empirical evidence, however, back in 1988, my wife and I enjoyed a visit to Anne Boleyns home at Hever Castle. Although called a castle, it isn’t really, being more of a large country estate with a drawbridge, moat, and maze, together with a walled kitchen garden and many additional houses for staff. While I was admiring the suits of armour and marvelling that these were the actual pieces worn back in the day, I had some sort of supernatural or spiritual experience, and saw who I believe to be Anne Boleyn and her mother. What struck me about Anne was how tiny she was! Her mother wasn’t much taller, but Anne would not have been more than 4 foot 6 or 7 inches tall. Her mother would have been about three or four inches taller. What caught my attention first of all when I had my back turned was a conversation between two women striding out across the floor hurrying to meet their guest. I could clearly hear them kicking their skirts out in front of them. That is what made me turn and look. Anne was dressed in what I believe to be pale blue silk, and her mother in pale pink silk. It was kind of shiny in appearance. I only caught sight of them in a twinkling, but I was aware of their conversation for much longer and I am positive it was them. I then heard a large team of horses cross the drawbridge (Could it have been Henry?) and come to a very noisy halt down stairs almost below where we were standing, (by that time converted into the souvenir shop and the drawbridge only taking foot traffic). I thought for a moment it must have been some sort of re-enactment, but no, my wife didn’t hear or see anything that I did.
    Anne Boleyn is allegedly buried under the floor of the Chapel of St Peter ad Vincula in the grounds of the Tower of London along with Henry’s fifth wife Catherine Howard (also beheaded in the Tower on some trumped up charge along with many other innocent souls). While doing repairs to the floor of the chapel in the nineteenth century, workmen removed the bodies of everyone there and reinterred them later. They found a female measuring about 5 feet tall to 5 feet three inches who they thought to be Anne Boleyn, but nothing of Catherine Howard!, not even a skull.
    Local legend has it that Anne had pleaded to be buried at her beloved Hever, (she was the queen remember), and was carried away by her attendants after her beheading to be buried in consecrated ground at Salle church near Hever.
    My opinion is that the remains that were found in the cathedral were Catherine Howard’s, not Anne’s. Based on what I saw, there is no way Anne was as tall as 5 feet or 5 feet 3 inches.

  6. Jane Rockley says:

    I have visited Hampton Court twice in 15 years. My first visit in 2001, I remember pausing in an area where there were windows out to a courtyard. As I stood there looking out, I suddenly experienced this profound sadness. It just washed over me. And it wasn’t an earthly sadness. I’m not sure how I knew the difference, but I did. This was something very permanent and far reaching about it, like it would never end. I came back to my hotel that night and was reading the book I had purchased about Hampton Court. I did not know about the haunted gallery at that point. As I read about it, and the tale of Katherine Howard, I realize that is where I had been standing that afternoon when I felt the terrible sorrow, in the gallery.

    In July of 2016 I returned to London. One of the things I wanted to do was re-visit Hampton Court and see if I “picked up” anything again in the gallery. So there I was. Nothing, absolutely nothing. Later in my wandering I came upon a bedroom, and as I turned to walk out, it happened again; a flood of sorrow. So much so, I could have almost burst into tears. It had just moved. By the way, in another large room of the palace, it was an assembly room or something, I could “feel” a great crowd of people milling about. Almost as if the impatient courtiers were still there, waiting and vying for their Monarch’s attention. I would say Hampton Court is a very busy place for spirits.

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