Heritage and Culture

Folklore Friday - The Ghosts of Kellie Castle

By Sophie

This week we're looking at the Ghost of Kellie Castle in Fife. Dating from the 14th Century, the castle became property of the Oliphant family in 1360. There is an original tower, which we assume was standing before the time of the Oliphant's inheritance of the property, but either way throughout the following centuries, the castle was extended significantly and modified to a T-Shaped structure, which we can see today.

Sold to Sir Thomas Erskine in 1613, his descendants lived there until 1797. Passed to the ownership of distant relatives, none of them came to live there and in 1829 the contents of the castle were sold and the building was abandoned. John Erskine, the 9th Earl of Mar eventually claimed the castle, but it was still allowed to continue to deteriorate.

In 1878, James Lorimer, who was a Professor of Law at Edinburgh University, took occupation of the castle, which by then was technically a ruin. After agreeing to a lease with the Earl of Mar, joint restoration commenced to bring the castle back to it's former glory. It was leased it until 1957 by the Lorimer family, when it was purchased by the National Trust for Scotland and opened as a visitor centre.

On to the spooky stuff...

Kellie Castle is said to be haunted by two spirits. The first of which is James Lorimer. Haunting one of the castle corridors, his ghost has been spotted in a seated position.

Anne Erskine is claimed to haunt one of the spiral staircases. She was a resident at the castle and fell to her death down the staircase. He spirit is rarely spotted, but footsteps can be heard on the staircase quite regularly. Reports of a pair of red shoes seen running up the stairs have also been made.