GHOSTLY TALES at CROOKSTON
by Adelaide Borthwick (continued)

After we had moved back to our house, tenants moved into the basement flat. They had children at the local village school. Georgina and Alexandra became friendly with them. We had a children's party in the garden. I talked with their Mother about the flat. She said that they did not use the bedroom next to the sitting room, as they felt it was haunted. This room is not directly under the drawing room where the footsteps were heard, but is beneath the anteroom, of which more later! When we moved to Crookston, we did away with the flats. The bedroom in the basement is now called the "haunted bedroom" and is used as a storeroom. It is very chilly and unfriendly.

One of Harry's tales was of a happening when he was a boy. When he was quite small, he was confined to bed with a fever. He was alone in his room on a day when a shoot was being held at Crookston. He could hear voices below, and was eager to get out of bed to see what was going on. As he was about to creep out of bed, the bedroom door opened and a very old gentleman with whiskers came and sat on his bed. He spoke to Harry, asking him how he was, and then said that he must never worry about things, as he would be his guardian angel, and look after him if he was ever in trouble. He then went away. When Harry was better, and allowed downstairs, he saw a painting of this old visitor, and told his Father that he had visited him on the day of the shoot, when he had been ill. "Don't be silly Boy, that old man has been dead for a long time." Long after this incident, when Harry was in Germany during the Second World War, serving as a gunner, he had an experience, which brought this earlier incident very much to mind. He and his fellow gunners were under fire, and casualties were heavy. Reinforcements were needed, and he commandeered a jeep to return to headquarters for help, as the lines of communication were down. On his way there, he met a column of troops coming towards him, and he had to get off the road. Several areas were taped off as being safe. He tried to reverse into one of these, and got so far, when the jeep stopped. No matter what he tried, it would not go into reverse. It was as if he kept hitting a brick wall. He had to pull off the road as well as he could, until the column had passed. Eventually he reached headquarters, reported the situation, and headed back. When he passed the taped area that he had stuck at, he saw a vehicle had been blown to smithereens, and the area was now a huge crater. He looked up and thanked his Guardian Angel. read more . . .