Muchalls Castle

Region : Aberdeenshire
Location : 5 miles north of Stonehaven, at muchall

Details :
Muchalls Castle was originally a 13th century stone tower house, founded by the Frasers. The small L-shaped castle was started in 1613 by Alexander Burnett of Leys who acquired the land at Muchalls from the Frasers and, in began building a castle and in 1627 his son, Sir Thomas Burnet finished the project. It has very fine plaster ceilings and a secret staircase. A chapel was included in the original design which served the Episcopalian communities of Muchalls and Skateraw. There is supposed to be a lost underground passage leading to the smugglers’ cove at Gin Shore.

Paranormal Phenomena : There is a ghostly link between the Gin Shore and Muchalls Castle, which lies about a mile inland. This 17th century castle, which is noted for its superb plaster ceilings, is said to be haunted by a Green Lady. It also has a secret staircase and a mysterious underground tunnel leading to a cave at the Gin Shore. According to one story the Green Lady is a girl who was drowned while on her way to meet her lover, a gin smuggler. Back in 1896, the Aberdeen Free Press came up with another story about the Muchalls cave. It said that long ago a piper had gone into it playing his bagpipes – and had never returned.

According to one report, the smugglers’ tunnel at Muchalls was sealed up by Lord Robertson, Lord Justice General of Scotland, who was tenant of Muchalls Castle at the end of the nineteenth century and took a jaundiced view of smuggling activities on his doorstep. Today, guidebooks usually describe the passage as ‘lost’. Like most local people, Davie Cameron is sceptical about the mysterious tunnel, but he says there is a cave – he has been inside it. That was back in the 1930s. There was no sign of any underground passage then, for the cave was completely blocked by huge boulders.

This may have been the ‘famous cave’ mentioned by the Aberdeen Free Press in May, 1896. Although it was commonly believed that the cave went underground to Muchalls Castle, the only information the newspaper could get about it from local people was ‘mostly vague theory’, and the same could be said to-day. The Free Press described how two men had set off to explore the cave -‘or, like the piper, return no more’. They found that it was 300 ft long, with the height from the entrance to the top of the rock close on 200 ft, while the width at the entrance was 41 ft. The first part of it was ‘a spacious vaulted chamber’ 130 ft long, 16 ft wide and from 40 ft to 50 ft high.

‘Above the entrance inside,’ said the report, ‘the roof is covered with three different species of beautiful ferns in full foliage. The next part of the cave for 100 ft is little more than 3 ft wide, in one or two places being only 16 in. The height…”

A tourist visiting the castle in the 1970`s was convinced that, when in an upstairs dining room she saw a girl facing a wall. ‘As if looking into a mirror and patting her hair into place. Her dress was terribly old-fashioned and was an unusual lime colour. ‘When the visitor entered the room the apparition vanished. Years earlier Mr. Maurice A. Simpson, the owner of the castle, told me that he has on one occasion experienced ` a frigid icy atmosphere, nothing to do with the heating system` when in the same room. The room has a history of being haunted by a young woman in a green dress. One of the first authentic reports was when a guest of Lord Robertson saw her.

2 thoughts on “Muchalls Castle”

  1. I used to work and live at Muchalls castle and there is definitely something in the drawing room. When I used to go up the spiral stair case, past the drawing room, the door used to swing closed. I also remember a female singing voice in the gardens during the summer months. I had many strange premonitions when I lived there, that came true while I was there. Although there where strange goings on, I never once felt threatened.

  2. Ellis Sutherland

    My name is Ellis Sutherland, I am 15 and I am from Newtonhill. Today (01/05/2020) I came across a website which led to me finding Muchalls Castle which I was unaware that was only a few miles out from my home in Newtonhill. I done some research into the castle and found out some basic history about the place and I wanted to see it for myself as it was within walking distance of my home. I headed out with my dog, later today at around 6pm to see the castle that had been a mystery to me for the 8 years I have been living in Newtonhill. Upon my arrival the place was an amazing sight, the building was in perfect condition. There was large flocks of crows and the plants around me were lush and green. It felt almost unreal, it was so calming to be there even though the place was that to be haunted, which it might be. I took a few photos from just outside the property and decided that I should head home. I walked home and arrived back at my house at around 8pm after a great walk to the castle, I didn’t learn much while I was there but I got to take some photos. I then decided to look over my photos and noticed something that looks like a woman looking at my from out the window at the house. My stomach dropped and I ran down to my parents too see what they thought, if they seen the woman too. At first they said they didn’t see anything but upon closer inspection they jumped with fear. I then decided to check with my best friend Meghan to see what she thought, she was shocked to see the figure in the window too. I don’t know what is it, but I read that Muchalls castle is among one of the most haunted castles in Scotland and this scared me so much. The figure looks to be a maid but I am not sure.

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