The Ghosts of Malahide Castle
Written by Alan Healy on March 14, 2018
Malahide Castle is a beautiful castle with some interesting guests who like to appear from time to time.
Lord Galtrim, Sir Walter Hussey
First there is the spectre of young Lord Galtrim, Sir Walter Hussey, son of the Baron of Galtrim, who in the 15th Century was killed in battle on his wedding day. This Lord Galtrim wanders through the Castle at night pointing to the spear wound in his side and uttering dreadful groans. It is said he haunts the Castle to show his resentment towards his young bride, who married his rival immediately after he had given up his life in defence of her honour and happiness.
Lady Maud Plunkett
The second ghost is that of the Lady Maud Plunkett who does not appear as she did on the day of her marriage to Lord Galtrim, but as she looked when she married her third husband, a Lord Chief Justice. At this time she had become notorious as an un-equalled virago, and in her ghostly appearances chases her husband through the corridors of the Castle.
Miles Corbet’s Ghost
The third ghost is more interesting, historically speaking and is that of Miles Corbett, the Roundhead to whom Cromwell gave the Castle and property during his protectorate. At the Restoration Miles was deprived of his property and made to pay the penalty of the many crimes he had committed during his occupancy, and which included the desecration of the chapel of the old abbey near the Castle. He was hanged, drawn and quartered and when his ghost first appears it seems to be a perfectly whole soldier in armour, but then falls into four pieces before the eyes of anyone who has the unpleasant experience of meeting it.
During your day tour to Malahide Castle make sure you ask the guide to share the story of the forth ghost Puck. In the 16th Century, as befitted a family of importance, the Talbots always had a jester among their retinue of attendants. One of these jesters, “Puck” by name, fell in love with a kinswoman of Lady Elenora Fitzgerald, who was detained at the Castle by Henry VIII because of her rebel tendencies. On a snowy December night the jester was found close to the walls of the Castle stabbed through the heart, a tragic figure in his gay jester suit and cap and bells. Before he died he swore an oath that he would haunt the Castle until a master reigned who choose a bride from the people, but would harm no one if a male Talbot slept under the roof.
Poor little Puck and his last appearance were reported during the sale of the contents of the Castle in May 1976. His little dwarf figure makes its appearance in many photographs of the Castle and one outstanding photograph shows his old bewitching and wrinkled face peering out of the ivy on the wall. Still not sure if he has shown up yet, during the 10 Million Euro restoration work which has just been completed. If you have a couple of hours to spare, why not join a day tour from Dublin to visit Malahide castle on a fully guided tour. Your ticket also includes entrance into the famous walled gardens.
The White Lady
For many years, the painting of a very beautiful anonymous lady, in a flowing white dress, hung in the Great Hall of the Castle. Nobody appeared to know her identity or the identity of the artist who portrayed her. It had been recorded that from time to time she would leave her painting and wander through the Castle in the quiet of the night. Reputed to have been seen by a number of people, over a period of many years, she has become known as the White Lady.
In the Castle grounds is a field called Our Lady’s Acre, which is also reputed not to be immune to ghostly meanderings. On a few occasions two grey-haired, sad-faced ladies have been seen, wandering aimlessly. Nobody knows the reasons for their sojourn. Some sources suggest that they are ghosts of Danish women who never found rest when the Norman Talbot drove the Danes from Malahide.