Ghosts of the Past: Haunted house near Melbourne?

24th February 2024. Reading Time: 4 minutes General, Ghosts Of The Past. 1646 page views. 0 comments.

In this series, I take a look at some historical accounts of ghostly encounters published in newspapers. In this edition, a writer recounts a holiday spoiled by a noisy poltergeist and the ridicule received by sceptical friends when he told others of what they experienced.

In this series, I take a look at some historical accounts of ghostly encounters published in newspapers.  In this edition, a writer recounts a holiday spoiled by a noisy poltergeist and the ridicule received by sceptical friends when he told others of what they experienced.

The following article was published in the Warwick Daily News Saturday May 1952 on Page 3.

Haunted House Near Melbourne? (By John Turner)

Up to February this year I would have wholeheartedly agreed with anyone that there was no such thing as a haunted house in Victoria. After what happened to my family in February, however, I am not nearly so sure that he is right. In February my wife and I rented a house down at Queenscliff and took our two children down for a fortnight's holiday. It is an old house standing well back from a rough bush track in about three acres of land. It is hemmed in closely on all sides by tall trees and matted masses of shrubbery.

In the middle of our very first night in the house we were all suddenly awakened by four thunderous - knocks which reverberated through the darkened house, rattling the windows and shaking the floors. Every night for the rest of our fortnight's stay the series of knocks was repeated, sometimes three times during the night. On each occasion there were four knocks. On one evening I was seated in the vestibule in the centre of the house into which no fewer than 11 doors opened. I was reading volume four of Churchill's; account of World War II —no book could have been less spooky. Suddenly, for no apparent reason, my hair stood straight up on my head—quite literally I found as I fearfully jumped to my feet facing the mirrored sideboard. And as I stood, there staring at my ashen-faced reflection in the mirror the four thunderous bangs echoed through the house. Within minutes' I was combing the house and the gloomy depths of the garden armed with a powerful torch and a hammer. Apart from my wife and I and our terrified children no life stirred in the/house or among the great trees that leaned over it.

A day or two later a friend came down to spend the week-end with us. At breakfast after his first night there he said: "This certainly is a noisy house. What were you doing walking around for half the night." None of us had left our beds during the night. A day or two later I asked the woman who cleaned the house whether she knew anything, of its history.  She said she didn't, then added: "But I wouldn't spend a night in it for a thousand pounds'.

"The people. around here say it's haunted.".

That's all that, happened during our stay, in this weird house. But my wife, a level-headed woman, and I, who never believed in ghosts, are united in agreeing that we would never stay here again. I don't claim any storyteller's licence when I say that the whole house was pervaded with a peculiarly oppressive, brooding atmosphere. It may be worth, mentioning that there are two locked rooms in the house, leading into one another and with no opening to the grounds save one high barred window. -

Sceptical friends: we told about our experiences in the house laughed at us. They said the noises were made by possums or tramps. But if the possums caused the noises why did they always make four, no more no less; crashes? How could a possum make so much noise? Why should the bangs echo so long through the house? Tramps? Maybe. But why should they return night after night to the house Why when I searched the house and grounds immediately after the crashes should I see , nothing—nor even hear a rustling in the shrubbery or footsteps racing away down the road. If tramps made the noise why should I have had a premonition of the bangs before they came? Somebody suggested that the noises came from the hot water, service, but I thought of that myself and turned it off for one night. The four loud bangs came twice that night. I spent one whole afternoon Searching every, part of the house except the two locked rooms. I ransacked every room, I crawled into the space under the floors and I searched the space between the roof and the ceiling. And I found nothing.

Very likely there is some perfectly natural explanation for the noises that ruined our holidays. But I can't think of one


What I found really interesting about this article was that before the holiday, the husband and wife team did not believe in ghosts. Turner spoke about his sceptical friends laughing at them writing it off as possums, and I can't help but think prior to this incident, they likely would have reacted in the same way.  I guess it is one of those things that you don't tend to believe in something until it happens to you.  So perhaps this is a timely reminder to be kind to others when they think differently and don't be so quick judge as one day it could be you in their position!

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