Loftus Hall is said to be one of Ireland’s most haunted mansions. It is thought that the place is haunted by one of the daughters that had an encounter with the devil himself in disguise and never recovered from the shock after she found out the truth.
A magnificent and stately manor to look at is Loftus Hall, one of Ireland’s finer ones of the Hook peninsula of County Wexford. This area is a famous site in Irish history, known as the place “where Ireland was lost and won”. The coastline offers a beach a day for a fortnight and is one of the special attractions of this area. Pretty fishing villages and bird watching on the mudflats of Bannow Estuary.
Read More: Have a look at all of our ghost stories from Ireland.
A little aside from the shore, from the village and from people, a Hall stands. Weathered, sure, but still in all its glory a moldy, ancient place inhabits. It stands alone in the austere and rather bleak landscape. But a dark legends hangs over the old house, and it has done so, for quite some time. Rumors about the devil that roams the ground as well as the ghost of a woman haunting the place.
The Loftus Hall was built in the 1350’s, also known for being the time of the Black Death Plague, taking the lives of so many in Ireland. It was built by the Redmond family to replace their castle. Back then it was known as Redmond Hall.
The Loftus Hall has always attracted the eyes of the darker and more sinister stories, especially since the legends started to cross the sea that lies so dark and rough just ahead. It even featured as the plays were they shot the horror movie, The Lodgers.
Read the movie review:
The Lodgers from 2017 is an Irish Gothic horror film by David Turpin and Brian O’Malley. It stars Charlotte Vega, Bill Milner and Eugene Simon. If you like eerily dark and hauntingly beautiful movies like The Others or newer one like Crimson Peak, The Lodgers will be an obvious next escape to a haunted house…
The Legend Behind Loftus Hall
In the mid 1700s, Charles Tottenham became Lord of the manor by marrying Anne Loftus. They had six children, one of their daughters, was also called Anne and this is her story. About her and the devil himself that knocked on her door and entered her heart.
According to the legend, on a dark and stormy night, a mysterious stranger came to the house on horseback. He went straight to the hall, asking for shelter, claiming that his ship ran ashore in the rough sea. The Tottenham family, who lived there at the time, invited the strange in.
The young daughter, Lady Anne Tottenham met this stranger, and instantly took a liking to him. And he to her. And soon they became very close. In some accounts, they even became lovers.
Whatever they were he stayed for a while and no one really noticed anything strange about the stranger before one fateful evening.
On one particular evening, she played cards with the mysterious visitor in one of the rooms of Loftus Hall. In the game, each player received 3 cards apart from Anne who was only dealt 2 by the mystery man. A butler serving the Tottenham family at the table was just about to question the man when Anne bent down to pick another card from the floor which she must have been dropped.
She bent over to pick them up and that is when she saw it under the table. The man had no feet of that of a man. They were cloven hooves, like a beast and she understood he had to be Beelzebub, the devil himself.
Read more: Check out more ghost stories were the devil himself made an appearance like The Jersey Devil in the Pine Barrens New Jersey or Baron Falkenberg that were Cursed to Sail the Sea for 600 Years.
Anne screamed at the sight of the man she thought she knew. As soon as the man noticed Anne’s look on her face, he knew that he’s been found out and disappeared from the mansion in most extra way possible by shooting himself through the roof of the halls, in a ball of flames.
The Ghost Haunting Loftus Hall
Anne herself never recovered after this traumatic incident and went into some sort of shock people say that she never got out of.
Some say her family was so ashamed of her and her unladylike behaviour that they locked her away in her favorite room, called the tapestry room. She didn’t want anything to eat or drink after the shock, only staring out her window, across the sea to where Dunmore east is today.
What she was thinking about differs from who you ask. Some say that she was waiting for her mysterious stranger to return, even though she knew who he was. Others say she locked herself in the room, wanting to feel safe from the devil who had invaded her safe space, her home and her heart unknowingly.
Read More: Check out more mansions and castles believed to be haunted from all over the world.
No matter what the reason was and what happened that night at Loftus Hall we will probably never know for sure. What we do know is that Anne died in the very room in 1775. She died sitting and when she died, they could not straighten her body out, and she had to be buried in the same sitting position she died in.
After her death many talked about the place becoming haunted. Some claims she stills walks the corridors in her ghostly form, still in shock after her encounter with the devil, unable to move on, or perhaps even scared for where she would end up.
The Paranormal Reports
Now, that is one hell of a story. And a pretty crazy one at that. But the reports of strange encounters and supposed evidence of the paranormal still keeps coming, even after all this time.
Loftus Hall was after the devil incident the owners of the manor had an exorcism by Father Thomas Broaders whose powers is said to have worked and the evil that lingered went away. Father Broarders went on to become Parish Priest of the parishes of the Hook and Ramsgrange for almost 50 years.
Even the original building was almost leveled to the ground, and the manor we see today is the one they rebuilt in 1865 to 1875 were it went through extensive renovations.
But even though it is said that the exorcism worked, reports about strange paranormal activity has been reported a lot. And a lot more since it was opened to the public in 2012. And this is why some say that Loftus Hall is Ireland’s most haunted place in Ireland.
There are stuff though, that are without a question just very creepy. Like when during a renovation of the house years later in recent times, the skeleton of an infant was discovered in the walls. What the story behind this could be, only the dead knows.
One of the supposed evidence of paranormal happenings in the manor comes from a nice summer of 2014, when Thomas Beavis made a trip to the scenic place to do some sightseeing. When he looked through his pictures from his holiday after he came home he was shocked.
In the background there is a ghostly outline, most likely of a young girl or woman, looking out the windows of the hall. Could it just be a reflection of the tourist walking outside? Or could it be something more eerie. Could it be Anne who is said to haunt Loftus Hall?
Throughout the years, the hall has been a lot. A castle, a convent, a school and under attack from foreign invaders. Today it remains as a tourist attraction. A dark one at that, embracing its history and people travelling from all over the world to take part in paranormal investigations following Ghost Adventures with Zak Bagans, Aaron Goodwin and Nick Groff. But know, in the summer of 2020, the Hall will once again close its doors for visitors. And the answers we seek will maybe never be answered.
As of 2023, Loftus Hall is still closed down and not open to the public as it is renovated.
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