Ghosts who have haunted the fort

THE MUSKETEERSaid to have been the only soldier killed in the battle when the Dutch attacked the fort in 1667 during the last invasion of England by a foreign force.

THE MUSKETEER

Said to have been the only soldier killed in the battle when the Dutch attacked the fort in 1667 during the last invasion of England by a foreign force.

While a few Englishmen did die from their injuries in the days following the assault on July 2 by the 2,000 men led by Admiral de Ruyter, the musketeer was the only one to die in the fighting and is said to haunt the Holland Bastion.

Mr Bradshaw said: “He only seems to appear when the country is in danger - and appeared several times during the second world war, seen walking around during sea mist.

“One medium told us that he doesn't know he is dead and is still doing his guard duty.”

PORTUGUESE WOMAN

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The Portuguese woman was accused of stealing a very expensive handkerchief and the stress of the situation saw her husband, the paymaster sergeant, leave his post and the fort for several days.

When he returned he was charged with desertion and put before the firing squad.

Mr Bradshaw said: “His death drove his wife demented and she committed suicide, throwing herself off the ramparts - she is still seen sometimes, wandering around the fort, a forlorn figure still looking for the handkerchief, unable to rest until she has proved her innocence.”

The incident happened in 1757 when the notorious and eccentric Philip Thicknesse was fort governor.

PLAGUE VICTIM

One ghost which has haunted the fort since around 1770 recently had his story told by a medium who toured the monument.

She believed a man died in the Chapel Bastion, imprisoned because he brought back a plague of some kind from India.

“The medical officers didn't know what to do with him and there was no cure and everyone was so afraid the rest of the garrison would get the disease,” said Mr Bradshaw.

“So they locked him in the bastion and left him there to die slowly, a horrible miserable death on his own.”

DROWNED OR BURNED TO DEATH

What started off as skylarking turned sinister when six soldiers enjoyed a drunken night together in one of the fort's Edwardian bathhouses.

Five of the men tuned on the other - some people believe the man may have been a suspected thief or had sneaked to senior officers about soldiers' activities - and gave him a severe and bloody beating before dumping him unconscious in a bath of boiling water. He either died from burns or drowning.

“Three different mediums have told us this same story and all have said it took place between 1912 and 1918. However, we have not found any trace of it in military records and it could have been covered up or simply not recorded,” said Mr Bradshaw.

“At the moment work is being done to search the coroner's records to see what can be found.”

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