A Remote Haunted Bunkhouse

This is Frank Conway, an 85 year old mountaineer, now living in one of the most remote bays on the British mainland.

Frank is chatting to Liz. The three of us nattered and sipped tea for well over an hour, as Liz and I waited for the Knoydart ferry. We were in Tarbet, having just completed a super mountain bike ride.

With only one other house in the bay, it's a pretty out there location for an eighty-five year old. Apparently Frank, who has been one of the older 'characters' of Knoydart for years, also
featured in the Coast TV series, possibly this one.

But that's not why I'm writing about him. I'm writing, because Frank showed us a photo of a ghost.

Frank lives in a former church. Owned by theatre emprisario Sir Cameron Macintosh, it's now converted into a bunkhouse for which Frank charges just £2 a night.

You can't book a bed. "If people could book it, they'd think they owned the place", Frank told us.

He insists the bunkhouse he runs should be like the youth hostels of his youth, always willing to take a wet-and-weary mountaineer who staggers in late at night.

"If a group had booked the whole place, they might not let that person in. I'm not having that".

Lots of kayakers turn up too, using it as a base from which to venture deeper into Knoydart to bag munros.

And then there's the ghost.

From an envelope, which I suspect never leaves his side for long, Frank produced three photos. Not computer prints you understand. These were pre-photoshop, regular colour prints, just like the holiday snaps you used to get back from the printers. In fact, they were someone's holiday snaps. Taken inside the bunkhouse, they looked very much like the digital image I took.

Except they also captured the image of a ghost.

Two showed a faded grey shape, slightly indistinct, floating towards the back of the hall. But there was no mistaking the third.

A woman in a purple-ish, grey cape, drawn tight around her throat with collar turned up, was standing to the back of the old church.

Except she wasn't standing. She was floating. Her bottom half faded from view.

Perhaps I should have photographed the photograph. Then I thought - what better insentive for you to visit the place and see for yourself.

A great ride and a great kayak route - plus a ghost. The orginal Ghost Ride. What good value.

1 comment:

Jaz said...

Many hostels have long-term residents whom they employ as desk clerks or housekeeping staff in exchange for free accommodation.

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