One owner and his family fled the property soon after purchasing it, the unseen residents wanting them to leave.
The Disturbances Begin...
Rashid had purchased Clifton Hall for about 3.6 million pounds, and hoped for it to become his family home, as well as a stunning backdrop for people to hire for their weddings and other ceremonies and events.
Within eight months Rashid and his family had left the building, fearing for the safety (and sanity) of his family.
From their very first night in Clifton Hall the Rashid family had experienced strange events, the very first of which came in the form of a knocking on the wall. This was followed closely by a voice saying "Is anyone there?"
The knocking and the voice repeated itself, and when Anwar Rashid went to see who the late night caller was, he found no-one there. The house was tightly locked up and the windows were tightly shut to keep out the Nottinghamshire winter wind.
Although quite confusing, they thought nothing of the disturbance.
People had warned Rashid that the house was haunted, but he did not believe it. Stories of the ghosts of Clifton Hall go back at least as far as the 1970's, but if the hauntings are in fact true, then they no doubt go back further still.
A Haunted History
It has undergone extensive renovations numerous times, but at the time Rashid Anwar purchased it, the home had 17 bedrooms, ten reception rooms, several ballrooms/halls, a cinema and a gym. At one stage, the home held a dozen of so apartments, while at another stage the buildings were used as a grammar school for girls, a university and once more as a hall.
It was during the 1970's when Clifton Hall was used as Clifton Hall Girl's Grammar School that a majority of the experiences prior to the Rashid's experiences are told.
The most common of these stories concerned a bricked up doorway and a sealed off room. The cries of a baby could be heard coming from inside the bricked up room, and legend has it that a maid had grabbed the baby and jumped from the third floor window, killing herself and the baby. This was said to be revenge and a release, born from a relationship with the lord of the manor, as his jilted lover.
Other stories told of apparitions and 'doppelgangers', the entities within had taken up the likeness of students in order to travel the halls, which had, at times, seen students running into themselves in the halls.
The grounds and secret tunnels located about the manor and surrounding area were once used for black rituals. The stable had the claim for being one of the locations of these rituals, with a circle drawn in animal blood and broken mirrors placed throughout its space. The sharp, pinchy smell of burnt herbs hanging in the air.
The Family Flees
Dark shapes, the cry of a young child and more voices began to be heard over time.
Anwar Rashid began to believe the stories of the ghosts, as he was experiencing it first hand, and soon friends and family would not come to visit. With the stories circulating about the ghosts, and Rashid’s want to hire the manor out as a wedding venue (the local council soon denied permission to hold ceremonies there), he called in a team of paranormal investigators to get to the bottom of the haunting and hopefully move the spirits along.
Although the investigators had some experiences of their own, and felt the fear in the location, they were unable to move the hall’s unseen residents along.
The ghosts obviously wanted the Rashid family to leave and had the upper hand. What could Anwar and his family do if they could not directly confront their tormentors?
In August 2007, only eight months after moving in, the Rashid’s experienced what would be the final straw. Random stains and marks that looked like blood spatter began to appear around the house, and on the day the spatter appeared on the quilt of his 18 month old son, Anwar and his family had had enough.
They left that day and never returned. They defaulted on the loan, and the bank took back the property.
Anwar Rashid cites his experiences as being very similar to those seen in the movie 'The Others'. It was as if the ghosts were living alongside him, but just out of reach. However, the ghosts knew they were there and did not want the Rashid family to have their house.
In the end, the ghosts got what they wanted.