Is England's most haunted house in Bedfordshire? 

An author and public speaker from Baldock believes so!

Damien O'Dell has has written 'Chicksands Priory - England's Most Haunted House?' after researching the history of the property, and experiencing paranormal activity during visits.


The author lived for many years in Baldock before moving to Royston.

His new book will feature historical accounts from the priory, along with information from investigations that Damien has carried out himself.

He told the Comet: "One of the most remarkable things (about the house) is that the witnesses are incredibly credible, if that's not a contradiction of terms.

Royston Crow: Damien O'Dell's book is available at independent book stores and on his website.Damien O'Dell's book is available at independent book stores and on his website. (Image: Damien O'Dell)

"They are military people. Many of the sightings have been by officers in the army and RAF, and these people aren't imaginative.

"But also, the hauntings go back over many years.

"I've captured as much data as I can, down to the kitchen staff, cleaners, visitors, and the military themselves - who have stayed there."

Damien went on to describe an experience that he had while investigating at the site: "We had about a dozen people. Of those, three people saw an apparition in separate locations, at completely different times.

Royston Crow: Damien's book tells the history of the house, and paranormal experiences that have taken place.Damien's book tells the history of the house, and paranormal experiences that have taken place. (Image: Damien O'Dell)

"When I interviewed them - and made sure that they didn't tell the others - their stories tallied 100 per cent.

"That convinced me that they'd seen something that was very real for them.

"What they saw, in effect, was a monk - in Gilbertine times, they called their monks there 'Canons'.

"It was clear to me that what they'd seen was a Canon.

"They all described a dark figure, with a cowl over its head so they couldn't see the facial features. 

"It didn't make any noise, it glided, but seemed to be solid because as it passed any kind of light source it blocked it out."

As Damien continued, he described his own experience at the house: "Mine was very very minor, but still of interest.

"I was mobile, I was checking on everybody else, making sure everyone was alright.

"I was in the downstairs area, just inside of the front door.

"I heard what sounded like a clear, distinctive, scraping noise - as though something had scraped along the floor.

"We'd placed a box of sand on the floor. On the box of sand, some pebbles had been placed - it's what investigators call a trigger object.

"It's designed to, if anything's there, interact with it.

"When I looked, the pebbles had definitely been shifted.

"There were drag-lines in the sand, and that's exactly what I'd heard."

Damien also described other experiences that he has had while investigating paranormal activity in Hertfordshire.

On one occasion, he described a woman's body being scratched despite having multiple layers of clothing on.

Damien also spoke of his experiences at Henrick's hairdressers in Royston - of how a woman's handbag had been taken from a chair downstairs and twisted around another on the second floor.

Damien's book is available at independent book stores - including David's Bookshop in Letchworth - and on Damien's website,