Samlesbury Hall, located in Preston, Lancashire, England, is a historic manor house with a rich history dating back to the 14th century. While Samlesbury Hall is known for its beautiful architecture and centuries-old charm, there are also claims of paranormal activity associated with the hall. Samlesbury Hall was originally built to replace an earlier building destroyed during a raid by the Scots, during The Great Raid of 1322. It was built in 1325 by Gilbert de Southworth (b. 1270), and was the primary home of the Southworth family until the early 17th century. The hall has been many things in its past including a public house and a girls’ boarding school, but since 1925, when it was saved from being demolished for its timber, it has been administered by a registered charitable trust, the Samlesbury Hall Trust.
The hall features a mix of architectural styles, showcasing its evolution over the centuries. The oldest part of the building dates back to the 14th century, with subsequent additions and alterations in later periods. The hall has distinctive black and white timber framing, which is characteristic of medieval Tudor architecture. The Great Hall is a prominent and well-preserved part of the structure. It has a large open space with a timbered roof, creating a sense of grandeur and historical ambiance. Surrounding the hall are picturesque grounds that add to its charm. These may include gardens, lawns, and possibly other features that enhance the overall appeal of the property.
Samlesbury Hall has a name for being one of the most haunted buildings in Britain because of its history of tragedy and ghostly activity
The medieval building has a name for being one of the most haunted buildings in Britain because of its history of tragedy and ghostly activity. One of the most frequently spotted ghosts roaming Samlesbury Hall is the White Lady who is often spotted inside the Hall as well as on fields nearby and even by bus stops. It is said that the White Lady is the ghost of Dorothy Southworth. Dorothy’s family were strict Catholics and, in the 17th Century, she fell in love with a boy from an Anglican aristocratic family. Dorothy’s father forbade them to get married so the young couple would meet in secret and decided to elope. Tragedy struck when the couple’s secret was discovered by Dorothy’s brothers. On the night of their elopement the brothers waited in ambush, killing the boy and two of his friends. Dorothy was sent away to a foreign convent where she died of a broken heart. Centuries later, three skeletons were discovered outside the moat. The popular opinion has connected the remains with Dorothy’s tragic tale.
Another tale includes the ghost of a Priest who was allegedly murdered by soldiers and decapitated. The Hall has several cleverly disguised hiding places. However, not even these hiding places can save a priest in the 1500s who soldiers followed in the hall. He was found, dragged and beheaded on the spot. According to legend, the priest’s blood stained the floor of the room where he was beheaded. No matter how hard the floor is scrubbed, nobody can wash it away. The room was bricked up for 200 years and was reopened in 1898. Servants refused to remain in the room until the floorboards were replaced. The bloodstain is said to occasionally reappear until this day.