Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Ghost-hunters rescued from haunted house

Two ghost-hunters had to be rescued after becoming trapped in a notorious haunted house in Derry, Northern Ireland. A number of ghostly tales have for many years been associated with Boom Hall which was built in 1779 on the banks of the River Foyle at Culmore. The historic building has been vacant for decades and has fallen into such a state of disrepair that the building and the area has been cordoned for a number of years because of fears that it could collapse. However, it has emerged that the fences around Boom Hall have not deterred would-be ghost-hunters from having a look around the building. Two men recently became trapped in the dilapidated building while on the lookout for ghosts in the dead of night.

A fire crew was called to the scene to help the two men to safety. The incident happened on Saturday, February 13, but details of the incident have only just emerged, The Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service confirmed that the rescue operation had taken place. A spokesperson said: “We received a call at 7:24pm to a report of an incident at premises at the Culmore Road area of the city on Saturday 13th February. One fire appliance from Northland Fire Station was deployed to the scene of two men requiring rescue assistance from a property in the area. Firefighters were able to rescue the two men using keys provided by the property’s keyholder. Both men were uninjured.” The NIFRS said the rescue operation lasted for around one hour.

It is understood the two men told their rescuers they were interested in ghosts and that’s why they were within the walls of Boom Hall. When built, the building was named after the boom which had been placed across the Foyle during the Siege of Derry in 1689. The boom was broken by ships which relieved those who had taken part in the siege within Derry’s Walls. Throughout its history, Boom Hall was home to some of the local area’s best known families. However, for many years, the building has been neglected although there are plans currently being discussed for its regeneration. In relation to the ghost stories associated with Boom Hall, a number of them were outlined in a booked by Madeline McCully called Haunted Derry which was published last year.

One story involved a girl who was a relative of the family who lived at Boom Hall at the time. She had been sent to Boom Hall to remove her from the attention of a young groomsman employed in her own home in England. However, the young man followed her and hid out in the stables where they had secret trysts. When they were discovered the girl was locked in an upstairs corner bedroom but the young man got away. The girl pined and a few weeks later the bedroom went up in flames. The family frantically tried to get into the room but to no avail. When eventually the flames were extinguished the ashes were searched for the body of the young girl but nothing was found. Legend has it that the ghost of the girl can be seen walking along the corridor at the top of the house.

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