1963


40
YEARS

WOBURN ABBEY

Woburn Abbey is a country house

in Bedfordshire.

It is also the principal residence

of the Duke of Bedford.

In 1963,

Underwood travels there

to meet the Duke in person.

“I had a long talk with His Grace the Duke of Bedford…”

“..his wife and her daughters...”

“In the private apartments of the Abbey…”

“...looking out over the rolling parkland…”

“...the Duke told me of

an annoyingly persistent manifestation…”

“...which caused them to move

the site of their television room.”

“The phenomenon,

which happened times without number,

was unexplained door-opening.”

“Time after time this door would open,

followed by another

at the opposite end of the room…”

“...just as though someone had walked through…”

“...and left the doors open...”

“New locks were fitted;

the doors were kept locked…”

“...but still they opened

by themselves…”

“Now there is an open passage

where the doors...

used to be…”

“…in the end the wing of the house

was reconstructed.”

“...‘But now the ghost has turned his attention...’

’...to other doors!’… 

“…and I heard how his son, his wife, the servants and various visitors...”

“…had all told him of their bedroom doors...”

“…opening mysteriously by themselves...”

“I was shown the beautifully-proportioned bedroom and the Duke and Duchess told me of curious incidents which they had experienced here…”

“There does seem to be an indefinable atmosphere in this portion of the house,

a kind of restlessness…”

“The same feeling is prevalent in the Wood Library Woburn and in the nearby office…”

“…the Duke told me that he finds it

difficult to concentrate in these rooms…

yet he continues to use them...”

“There is an isolated little summer house with an overgrown garden not far from the house

which the Duke feels is haunted by an unhappy ghost…”

“…perhaps [it is] his grandmother,

‘the flying Duchess’…”

“‘I feel her presence very strongly,

every time I come here’

the Duke told me.”

“She loved the isolation of this summer house,

especially towards the end

of her increasingly unhappy life…”

Mary Russell, ‘Flying’ Duchess of Bedford

“…[when] she took off

in her Gypsy aeroplane

from Woburn…”

*‘The flying Duchess' flew a DH.60G Moth.

“…on the flight

from which

she never returned...”

Gazetteer of British Ghosts
'Woburn Abbey, Woburn, Bedfordshire'

After leaving Woburn Abbey...

...she crashed into the North Sea...

Her body was never recovered...