Published on Thursday 5 May 2005 13:06
THE DARK, claustrophobic streets running off the Royal Mile lead away from the light and downhill into the shadows. These half-forgotten reminders of Edinburgh’s insanitary past provide a perfect setting for a suitably spooky atmosphere. Largely built upon the ruins of centuries gone by, it is not just those of a sensitive nature who feel a certain frisson when they walk past.
Admitting to a spine-chilling creepiness is one thing, but deciding that you believe in ghosts is quite another.There are few places better situated to debating paranormal phenomena than Mary King’s Close, Edinburgh’s notoriously haunted spot below the City Chambers. The close was inhabited during the 16th and 17th centuries before the plague ravaged families living in the tightly packed tenement buildings. A century after the illness broke out, the city partly sealed the abandoned homes and alleyways, prompting chilling stories about paranormal sightings of previous inhabitants.