Oddly Watlington House wasn’t a location well known to me and was brought to my attention back in the day by one of my team as its located in her home town of Reading. Now don’t get me wrong this isn’t a piece about a dramatically active location with the usual evidence. In fact it’s a location that just left me feeling there was something there, something more to understand and that is why this is one of My Top Ten Most Haunted Locations in the UK list.
The Ghost Captain in the Window
Watlington House is the oldest secular building in Reading and the current building was built by Samuel Watlington, a successful Reading merchant in 1688, with the front being added in 1763. Samuel owned business premises in Broad Street and was very successful in his time.
The first resident for the building was Captain Edward Purvis in 1794. Purvis fought in the Peninsular War (at Corunna) with the 4th Regiment of Foot. He often used to sit in his window, pigtailed in his red military jacket, smoking a pipe.
Then in 1816 Mrs Stevens resided in the property and from then the Town Clerk used the House for their local office. In 1877 the building was adopted by Kendrick School.
1931 saw Watlington House acquired by the Trust to provide accommodation for social and educational organisations. With the money from the rents being used solely for the upkeep of the House.
With such great history its not uncommon for a location such as Watlington House to be home to paranormal activity. These range from knocks and bangs, strange feelings in the Garden Hall to the sighting of a full blown ghost. A ghost that’s said to be seen in the window wearing military uniform, perhaps it could be Captain Purvis returned home.
The Playful Boy Spririt
Once the team had all been briefed we started by setting up the CCTV system throughout the location to ensure that we covered our movement, but also with the hope of capturing something on video.
We then split into two teams and headed out on our first vigil of the night. One team headed out into the Garden Hall where there were reports of knocks, bangs and strange feelings. It wasn’t long before the more sensitive member of the team began to pick up on a small boy running around the room without a care in the world.
The second team headed up to the first floor in search of the uniformed ghost in the window. The team experienced a few spikes on the EMF Meter and heard a couple of strange noises, but nothing really conclusive.
Oddly for their second vigil the second team headed out to the Garden Hall to investigate and one of the teams camcorders battery completely drained. The camcorder was fully charged and there didn’t appear to be a logical reason why the battery may drain. Along with this the team also heard a few noises that they described to be like dripping water, but were unable to locate a source.
Apart from an interesting misunderstanding with some static the rest of our night was relatively quiet. However the place left me wondering a little. Wondering about what could drain a battery? Wondering about the small boy in the Garden Hall, who we thought may be called Jonathan? It also, left me wondering about Captain Purvis and whether or not he was watching us.
A Haunting Understanding
Some locations just leave you questioning things and with small irritation that makes you wish to return to understand more. Watlington House is a location I will have to return to one day for another more detailed and in-depth investigation I think. It’s for its strange activity in the Garden Hall and an investigators irriataion that makes Watlington House one of My Top Ten Most Haunted Locations in the UK.
Also, if you’ve ever visited or investigated Watlington House, then I would like to hear about it too? Have you ever experienced similar activity as I did with my team?
Have You Ever Been To One Of My Top Ten Most Haunted Locations In The UK? Would love to hear your comments below.
I will be posting the ghost stories, and how our investigations went in future articles on this site. So, make sure you follow me on Twitter, or like my Facebook Page to hear the latest. Better still, so you don’t miss out on any spooky haunting stories, you can sign up for me free newsletter here:
I’m always on the lookout for new locations, if you have one that you feel may make it on to next year’s list of my favourite most haunted locations in the UK, please let me know.
Also, if you run paranormal events I am interested in checking out the experience and event that you deliver to your customers. Invite me along and perhaps your event will make my top five paranormal events for 2016.