Anne Boleyn's ghost has been seen on numerous occasions at the Tower of London. It is said her ghost haunts the place of her death, beheaded on Tower Green on the 19th May 1536.
Perhaps the most spectacular ghost story relating to Anne is that of a Captain of the guard who saw a light flickering in the locked Chapel Royal late one night. He tried to uncover the source of the light by climbing up a ladder and was met with an unbelievable scene unfolding inside. A procession of Knights and Ladies dressed in ancient costumes pacing the chapel. Their leader, an elegant female whose face he could not see but whose figure resembled that of Anne Boleyn's in portraits he had seen. The procession later disappears.
As a young girl, Anne Boleyn was sent to the French court and exposed to the influence of an immoral society. While her sister Mary was the mistress of Henry VIII, Anne thought she could do better and become the wife of the King of England. For six years she played the "hard-to-get" game she learned in Paris, and when Catherine of Aragon failed to produce a male heir, both Anne and Henry felt she could be the next Queen of England
The ghost of Queen Anne Boleyn is quite a unique phenomenon in the world of the paranormal. Unlike most ghost who haunt a certain locality, Queen Anne Boleyn's ghost is said to haunt a number of different locations through out the UK. Her spirit seems to have left a permanent imprint on the fabric of her surroundings, which is perhaps down to the impact she made in life and her traumatic death as to why her ghost still persists more than 500 years after her execution
Anne Boleyn was the second wife of King Henry VIII, with their marriage changing the course of English History. King Henry was already married to Catherine of Aragon and could not obtain a divorce from the Roman Catholic Church. In order to obtain his divorce he therefore created a reformed version of the Church, putting himself at the head - a direct challenge of authority to the Pope.
Having obtained his divorce and married Anne, the King's most important desire was for Anne to conceive a male heir. His previous queen had only given him a female heir, Princess Mary. On 7th September 1533 Anne Boleyn gave birth to a girl, Elizabeth (who was later to become Queen Elizabeth I). After her birth, the relationship between the King and Anne Boleyn deteriorated, and he began to court a new queen in Jane Seymour.
However, Anne became pregnant again, and there was a brief reconciliation, but the child was stillborn. Henry determined to get rid of Anne Boleyn and came up with a charge of treason, arresting and confining her to the Tower of London. Her execution had been scheduled for 18 May 1536 but actually took place the following day as there had been a delay while a skilled executioner was brought in from France.
THE TOWER OF LONDON
Some of the most famous sightings of Anne's ghost occurs in what is possibly the most haunted place in the world, the Tower of London. Anne stayed here twice, the first time was on the night before her coronation in the summer of 1533. She stayed again, in much sadder circumstances, when she was on trial for her life in May 1536, on most certainly trumped-up charges of incest, adultery and witchcraft. She was beheaded on Tower Green on the morning of 19 May, and was hastily buried (her mutilated corpse bundled unceremoniously into an old arrow-chest) beneath the altar in the chapel of St Peter Ad Vincula.
At the end of the 19th century an officer glimpsed a light coming from the chapel, even though it was meant to be locked up. He got a ladder and peered through the window. Inside he claimed he saw Anne (whom he recognised from portraits) approaching the altar accompanied by a posse of knights and ladies. They disappeared as they neared the altar.
In 1864 a guardsman, on sentry duty, saw a figure float out of a doorway towards him. He challenged it, with the traditional "halt! who goes there?" The figure took no notice, and continued towards him. He said that the woman was wearing a bonnet, but didn't appear to have any head inside it. He lunged at this terrifying apparition with his bayonet, which went right through it. The poor man fainted on the spot. He was later had up for a court-martial, but his colleagues backed up his story, claiming that they too had seen the floating, headless spectre.
At a meeting of the Ghost Club in 1899, Lady Biddulph reported seeing a woman with a carnation tucked behind her ear, looking out of the window of the Queen's House, and concluded that it was Anne. Also in the late 19th century, a yeoman warder swore under Oath, that he had seen a blueish form drifting towards the Queen's House, whilst another soldier saw a woman in white emerging from the house after midnight. As she approached Tower Green he was shocked to see she had no head.
HAMPTON COURT PALACE
This beautiful palace was built originally by Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, (who is also said to haunt it). When he fell out of favour with Henry VIII, for failing to secure the divorce that the King craved from his first wife, Queen Katherine of Aragon, Wolsey was pressured to hand the palace over to him. And thus it became another of Henry's many royal homes. Anne spent a lot of time here, and did most of her cat-and-mouse courtship with the King within its walls
Anne's ghost has been seen, dressed in blue, floating along the passageways. Staff at the palace who saw her at the end of the 19th century, reported that she looked sad. As Anne's life, for all its glamour and excitement, must have been a very traumatic and stressful one, this isn't surprising.
Anne isn't the most frequently sighted Tudor wife to be seen at the Palace though, that accolade goes to Henry's fifth wife, the pathetic little Catherine Howard. Catherine was Anne's cousin, and she too came to a tragic end on the scaffold. Her ghostly screams here are one of the most legendary hauntings in the whole of England. Catherine was very young, and frankly, not overly-blessed with brains. Like many young girls, she was obsessed with clothes and boys, but was most likely thrust into the role of Queen by her ruthlessly ambitious family, a role for which she was spectacularly unsuited.
When the King found out that his precious little girl, his "rose without a thorn", had been carrying on behind his back with a childhood sweetheart, he had her condemned to death. The terrified girl, on learning of her fate on 4 November 1541, ran screaming through the Long Gallery, desperate to reach Henry, so that she could beg him for mercy. The powers-that-be though suspected that the King might relent when he saw her, and forcibly kept her from reaching him. Catherine was beheaded on 13 February 1542, and her terrified screams have been heard in the palace ever since. One resident at the palace claimed to hear her on such a regular basis that she became a routine part of palace life! She is said to be most often heard during the autumn months.
BLICKLING HALL, NORFOLK
At midnight on the anniversary of her death, she is said to make a dramatic return, travelling up to the house in a carriage pulled by headless horses, dressed all in white, bathed in a red glow, and cradling her head in her lap! Anne's brother George is also said to return. He was executed a few days before Anne, on the charge of committing incest with his sister. He is said to return to the house being dragged by horses, whilst neatly cradling his head in his arms.
Blickling was rebuilt over a hundred years after Anne's death, but that doesn't stop her ghost being seen indoors as well. She was seen by a house steward in 1979, having apparently just been browsing through a book of portraits by Hans Holbein . In 1985 Steve Ingram, an administrator at the Hall, heard light footsteps approaching the bedroom in his flat late one night. He thought at first that it was his wife, until he realised she was lying asleep next to him. The next day his colleagues pointed out the date to him: 19 May.