The Haunting of Meggernie Castle
Meggernie Castle was built by a man called ‘Mad’ Colin Campbell, he was called this because it was thought that he suffered a blow to the head while he was married to his first wife sometime in the early 1580’s. We do know that in August of 1583 he made a complaint saying, “three score persons or thereby, by the break of day, masterfully reft, spulzied and took away furth of the lands of Glenlyon, four score head of ky, eleven horses and mares, together with the whole insight and plenishing of their (his tenants) houses and also struck dang the women of the said lands, and cutted the hair of their head……” but all the court did when they heard this was to make them ”denounced rebels” and it was hearing this that pushed Colin over the edge. The people in question carried on raiding his lands and in one raid two of his tenants were killed and so Colin and his son Duncan chose to organize a hunt for them and catch them on their next raid. With a strong force, they managed to catch Dougal of Muirdart and thirty-five of his followers. They were locked in the dungeons of Meggernie Castle until Colin knew for sure that they would be punished for what they did, but when Duncan came back from Edinburgh saying that they had been pardoned Colin really went ‘Mad’. He hung the men in the grounds of the castle from the trees and he shot Dougal of Muirdart. Colin and his son were outlawed for this and not long after his first wife died but it really didn’t take long for Colin to start searching for a new wife and he did this by kidnapping the Countess of Errol and took her to Meggernie Castle. After many letters of complaint from the Countess Colin’s son gave up his father for immunity of any crimes he had done with his father and Colin later died in 1597.
Meggernie Castle had for sure not seen its final days of murder on its grounds, because in the early 1700’s the castle was owned by James Menzies of Culdares and his wife. Menzies was a Jacobite during the risings of 1715 and was said to have sheltered Jacobite fugitives while entertaining the government troops during the 1745 rising. Menzies’s wife was supposedly the most beautiful woman you would ever meet and Menzies was known to be a very jealous man and in a sudden burst of anger lashed out at her and killed her. His excuse for his wife’s disappearance was that she had drowned during a holiday in Europe but really she was lying dead in a chest in his bedroom. He tried to dispose of the body by cutting it in half but he was only able to bury the lower half of her body just outside the graveyard before he was attacked and killed at the bottom of the stairs leaving the top half to be discovered later on by unsuspecting visitors.
To this day people have reported that they have been awoken by what felt like a kiss of a woman on their cheek and have seen the top half of the woman gliding away in the distance. She especially likes to mess around with the male guests who enter the castle. To this day she is still there gliding around and flirting with any male who enters the castle.