“The Screaming Lady of the Haunted Gallery”.


My Photograph – taken in the grounds of Hampton Court Palace in 2002

At Hampton Court Palace
One grey Autumn day,
Whilst strolling alone
I wandered astray,
Discovered this phantom,
Too shy to display.

Shroud for a lady,
Hide her away.
No one must see her
Lest somebody say,
She’s only a failure,
She’s long had her day.

But now she is hidden
And no one can see,
Then no one will question
Just who she might be.
They’ll just go on thinking
Perhaps she’s a he.

The fact she is ghostly,
Clothed in a Shroud,
Might give them a hint
That she’s not been allowed
To be seen out in public,
Detached from the crowd.

For in summer when tickets
Are hard to come by,
That’s when they’ll release her
Sustaining the lie.
Produce her in costume
When darkness is nigh.

Then this ‘Screaming Lady’,
As a spirit will glide,
In her Haunted Gallery,
Make-up applied.
Bemoaning, bewailing –
A Queen mortified.

So that’s it for the winter,
Don’t leave her on show.
Come wind and come tempest,
Come rain or come snow,
This tourist attraction’s
The best that I know.

That rival in Scotland,
The fishy old coward,
In a straight contest,
Its legacy soured,
It cannot compare
With our Catherine Howard.


The Grey Lady of Hampton Court

NOTES . . .


Henry VIII’s home at Hampton Court Palace is said to house several distinguished ghosts.


Lady Catherine Howard, Henry’s 5th wife, was accused of adultery and is said to have been dragged to her death, at the age of only 20, through the corridors of the Palace. Her ghost has become known as “The Screaming Lady of the Haunted Gallery”.


Anne Boleyn, Henry’s 2nd wife, who, accused of adultery and incest, was, like Catherine after her, beheaded.   At Hampton Court she is seen wearing a blue dress. She has been described as walking slowly, with a sad countenance.


Dame Sybil Penn, a servant to 4 monarchs, died at the Palace in the 1500s of smallpox, but ever since her tomb was disturbed in 1829, she is said to haunt the Palace as “The Lady in Grey”.


An article containing the above photograph, can be read by clicking on this link to:  Hampton Court’s Lady In Grey