By Christine Lavelle
SCOTLAND has been named one of the spookiest countries in the world, with more than a third of Scots claiming to have seem a ghost.
A poll of 1,000 Scots has revealed that 38 per cent think ghosts exist, and just as many believe they have seen or felt a ghostly presence.
Yvette Fielding, a psychic investigator and presented of Most Haunted, said Scotland is a “hot bed of paranormal activity”.
She has dared people to come ghost hunting in some of the country’s eeriest spots during the run up to Halloween, when the veil between the living and dead is said to be at its thinnest.
She said: “If I lived in Scotland I would be a jabbering wreck, Scotland seems to be a hot bed of paranormal activity, I have witnessed some terrifying events in some of the most haunted locations in the world and Scotland is at the top of the list.
“The Edinburgh vaults will always remain a place that to this day still gives me nightmares, and any fainthearted person should stay away.”
The poll was conducted by Panelbase, on behalf of Edinburgh’s Art Roch hostel, which organises guided ghost tours around the capital’s underground streets.
Malcolm Scott, owner of the Art Roch hostel, said there has been a surge in interest in spook-spotting tourism in the city.
He said: “It gives a whole new meaning to Scotland the Brave.
“There’s no where better than Edinburgh to try a spot of ghost hunting.
“The ancient streets and buildings harbour hundreds of blood-curdling secrets and are becoming a magnet for brave souls who want to follow in the footsteps of the paranormal investigators.”
Mary King’s Close is considered one of the most haunted places in the world, and is said to be stalked by the ghosts of plague victims who died when it was bricked up in 1645 to contain the outbreak.
The city’s underground vaults are also believed to be haunted by the South Bridge poltergeist.
The Scottish government has produced a list of Scotland’s scariest places, including Culloden Moor where Bonnie Prince Charlie’s rebel army was crushed by government troops.
Acorah, a psychic ghost hunter, said Scotland is probably more heavily laden with spiritual presence than anywhere else in Britain.
He said: “It’s because you can go right back many centuries to people who died in atrocities when law and order was not much in place – some despicable things were going on in major cities like Edinburgh.
“And if people were hacked to death and taken out of their physical bodies very quickly and were not ready to leave their bodies they ended up stuck between two worlds.”
A Scottish Government spokesman said: “There are few countries in the world that are as spooky as Scotland.”
Scotland’s Spookiest Places
Culloden Moor, near Inverness
– Bonnie Prince Charlie’s rebel army was crushed by government troops in 1746
– Visions of the battle and apparitions at the memorial cairns are said to occur here
– The castle has a long and bloody history and is reputed to be haunted by many ghosts, including that of a headless drummer boy.
Mary King’s Close, Edinburgh
– Was bricked up during an outbreak of plague and only recently re-opened
– Said to be the most haunted place in Edinburgh, the spirit of a young girl has often been seen
Roslyn Chapel, south-east of Edinburgh
– Made famous by the novel and movie “The Da Vinci Code”
– An apparition of the apprentice who carved the famous Apprentice Pillar and murdered by his teacher can sometimes be seen or heard
Fyvie Castle, north of Aberdeen
– Haunted by the spectre of Lilias Drummond who died there in 1601
– Some believe she was starved to death by her husband, others that she died from a broken heart
Cruden Bay, on the Aberdeenshire coast
– The ruins of Slains Castle, which drape down from the headland inspired his vision of Count Dracula’s Castle
Dunstaffnage Castle, on the west coast of Scotland
– A lady dressed in green walks the ramparts when momentous events are about to unfold for the castle owners, Clan Campbell
Abbotsford House in the Scottish Borders
– Was the home of novelist Sir Walter Scott, and where he died after exhausting himself writing in an attempt to pay off huge debts