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Kenwtell Hall (c) Martin Pettitt

THE OTHER SIDE: AMY

Of the many ghost stories originating in Suffolk, there are none as recent and thus as undocumented as the story of Amy. It’s a story that’s made all the more chilling by its newness, and by the first-hand accounts of people who are still here today.
The tale takes place at Kentwell Hall, a 500-year-old Tudor mansion in the countryside near Long Melford, Suffolk. Such is the rich history of Kentwell Hall that every summer its owner, Patrick Phillips, holds Tudor re-enactment weekends. These re-enactments are attended by participants of all ages, and it’s common for children play supervised by staff in the hall’s extensive gardens, and for their parents not see them until it’s time to go home.
 
On a hot summer’s day a few years ago, one such Tudor re-enactment was underway. The mother of a little girl called Amy became concerned; she had not seen her daughter all day. When Amy finally returned, she replied happily that she had been playing with her new friend behind the walled garden.
Tudor ladies in waiting at Kentwell Hall (c) IHTudor re-enactments take place at Kentwell Hall every summer
Photo (c) IH
The following day, as the Tudor re-enactment weekend was drawing to a close, Amy’s mother went to the walled garden to thank the people who had been looking after Amy, and to meet her daughter’s new friend. However, when she asked where Amy’s friend was, they said “What friend? No, no, you’re wrong – Amy comes in here and spends all day playing on her own.”
 
That evening, Amy’s mother spoke to her about what had happened at Kentwell Hall, but Amy was indignant: her new friend was not made-up. Amy and her mother never came back to Kentwell Hall, and the story may have ended there – but it doesn’t.
Kentwell Hall Suffolk aerial shot (c) John FieldingWho did Amy meet in the gardens of Kentwell Hall?
Photo (c) John Fielding
Since that hot summer’s day, there have been several occasions when visitors to Kentwell Hall have been standing in the walled garden by the moat, and heard a voice call out a name: “Amy.” People always check, and there is never anyone there.
 
Patrick Phillips has been trying to find an explanation for the sound since the reports started coming in. “I try to rationalise it,” he says. “But the people who hear it don’t know about Amy and her friend, so obviously something is making the noise. There may well have been an imaginary friend, but I can’t explain why so many other people have reported a young child calling the name Amy. It’s strange that people all interpret it in a consistent way.”

WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE?

Is this a story about an overactive imagination and some coincidental noises, or is there the spirit of a little girl roaming the grounds of Kentwell Hall, calling out for her new friend? Let us know what you think via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, using the hashtag #TheOtherSide.
 
If you’re feeling brave enough you could visit Kentwell Hall and search for Amy’s friend yourself, at their award-winning town of terrors, Scaresville!