This section is dedicated to the more notable paranormal reports that have been told about Willow Court and Royal Derwent.
I have heard and received upward of at least 100 different stories and reports of the years and whilst some you must take with a grain of salt, some carry a great deal of weight given a number of factors including the credibility of the report and witnesses, repeated occurrences, captured evidence, and first and foremost evidence that has been debunked and left unexplained. Its these reports that call this section home.
If you have a story you think fits this bill please contact us.
WARD 5 Haunting
The Ward 5 ghost is the most, witnessed, infamous, and reported Paranormal Account in Willow Court and Royal Derwent Hospital records.
This Ghost has been witnessed by at least 20 people, some of which I know personally. These people have no reason to lie about the Ghost at least 18 years on and at the time were risking their job and credibility as Management at the hospital had given them a very stern warning not to speak about the Ghost.
The Ward 5 Ghost called Winston by staff members at Royal Derwent Hospital. The Ghost reportedly appeared in the early 1990’s but the source of the Haunting may have happened a lot earlier 1970’s.
Winston is known as the Male Hating Ghost and is reported to appear as a white tinge similar to a heat haze topped with a head. Staff have witnessed Winston physically attack male staff members on the Ward.
There were two theories as to where there is Paranormal Activity in Ward 5, one being that it once accommodated young alcoholics and drug addicts that were very much into the occult.
Another more well known theory is that several staff members on Ward 5 were conducting a séance one night shift when they were interrupted by a Night Supervisor coming on to the Ward which caught them by surprise and didn’t finish the séance appropriately opening a door to the other side. (see number 2 account for more info)
Ward 5 has been demolished, however many of the eye witnesses believe based on their experiences that the ghost would be still haunting the grounds.
Ward 5 Paranormal Accounts
(As requested some names have been changed to protect their privacy)
Several colleges of mine ex RDH staff stated that they very much believe there was a Ghost in Ward 5, and even mentioned that some of the patients believed they seen the ghost.
In August 2010 I was contacted by an ex-psych Mr M who informed me that he believed he was responsible for the Ward 5 Haunting. Mr M stated that he did his training up in Royal Derwent from the late 70’s – 80’s and it was during this period that they conducted the séance in the nurse’s office. Mr M stated that there was an Irish Nurse in Charge Mrs C.H, who was very much into séances at the time. Being the sceptic that Mr M was they thought it was a real joke so Mr M, Mrs C.H and another lady Mrs C.B set up a séance around midnight. During the Séance the Night Supervisor came on to the Ward and interrupted there séance without the closing it off properly. Mr M didn’t notice any haunting occurring shortly after the séance however noted that on various wards the hairs of the back you’re your neck would stand up. Mr M continued his involvement with séance and stated that he contacted various paranormal beings with surprisingly accurate results.
Trevor Crowther Nurse 1988 – 2000.
Trevor informed me that he mainly worked during the days and his Partner worked the night shifts. Trevor said that he lived within the RDH complex and would often walk up to Ward 5 at night to see how is partner was going or to give her some supper etc.
One day Trevor called into Ward 5 and was standing in the foyer section of the building along with 3 other people including a supervisor. They all stood and looked down the hallway on the West Wing, near the windows they noticed a white shimmer, or haze that had an upper torso/head and was following a staff member down the hallway.
Trevor stated that he decided to give it a go, so he also walked down the West Wing hallway although he could not see the ghost. The others that were standing up in the foyer once again saw the ghost appear like a haze and followed Trevor. Trevor said he didn’t see anything but he felt extremely cold and the hairs on the back of his neck stood up.
Trevor said that this type of activity happened a fair bit after his experience until one day when he had a frightening experience.
Trevor stated that in the early hours of the morning approx 2am he got a phone call from his partner named Staff member 1 (TAN) who was working on Ward 5. Staff member 1 stated that something was happening to a fellow staff member, Trevor heard a lot banging, crashing and screams over the phone so he stated that he would be on his way.
Trevor said when he arrived in Ward 5 he contacted the RDH Medical Services about the incident. Trevor stated he seen a Staff member (Staff member 2) on the ground in the Office shaking, white as a ghost and bashing his feet against the filing cabinet. Trevor said Staff member 2 was thrashing around and holding his throat. Trevor said Staff member 2 was yelling in a deep growly voice “Get it out of me Get it out of me” with a look of terror on his face the voice was not his voice but a voice which had a tone that I had never heard before. Trevor informed me that he recalled thinking to himself at the time whatever was doing this to Staff member 2 did not do it to him.
Trevor said the grabbed Staff member 2 by his shirt collar and took him outside in the fresh air to see if that would help, soon after this the RDH Medical Services showed up which included Dr, Ambulance. The Night Shift Supervisor never attended.
Trevor said he spoke with Dr Pascha about the incident afterwards, Dr Pascha stated that he has admitted a lot of patients and seen a lot of incidents, fits, tantrums etc over his years at RDH and firmly believed that the signs and symptoms Staff member 2 was displaying could not have been faked.
A few days after the incident Trevor said that he spoke with Staff member 2 and he thanked him for staying with him throughout the incident and said he was terrified.
Trevor stated that after the incident a medium came into Ward 5 and claimed that there were 2 ghosts inside Ward 5, one being the Angry Ghost that attacked Staff member 2 and another.
Trevor said that someone from St Matthews Church in New Norfolk came into Ward 5 and did a cleansing which seemed to work.
Staff 1 (Female, Trained Auxiliary Nurse (TAN) )- Ward 5
Staff member 1 informed me that lots of things happened inside Ward 5. Staff member 1 said it was widely accepted that there were ghosts inside Ward 5, but they just accepted the fact and moved on based on their assumption the ghosts were harmless.
Below is a list of some bizarre events that took place in Ward 5.
Staff member 1 said back in the old days there were slippers that had little bells on them and when people walked you could here the bells ringing. Staff member 1 said on the Ward at night you would hear someone scuffing there slippers, little bells ringing and a noise of something being dragged down the East Wing of Ward 5, when they checked they found no one.
Staff member 1 said that staff would fill up the urn at night, and by the next morning it was empty, with no signs or traces of where the water went.
Staff member 1 said several of her watches literally fell apart in Ward 5.
Once day in the Activity room Staff member 1 noticed an orb like substance however it was black and approximately the size of netball. The orb kinda of floated up high and was coming down from West wing. Staff member 1 said when she moved slowly the orbed also moved slowly. Staff member 1 stated when she moved quickly the orb like substance copied her again. Noticing that this was not normal staff person 1 ran and the orb came towards her very quickly and then all the sudden floated out the window.
Staff member 1 said that you would often smell toast being cooked late at night through the vents in the ceiling, but there was no one cooking at the time. Staff member 1 also said that they also heard music which sounded like church music or loud humming noises. Staff member 1 said she contacted Admin and they said it was just nearby houses with their music up loud. Staff member 1 said that this was not the case, but Admin would not listen.
Staff member 1 said there was a female patient on Ward 5 that had to have her bed perfect without wrinkles. Staff member 1 said if the bed had one wrinkle in it should would throw a tantrum and would not go back into her room or sleep until someone fixed it for her. Once night Staff member 1 stated that she heard this particular patient have a conversation to herself, Staff member 1 did really think much of it until next morning when she went to make the beds of the Ward and noticed that this patients bed was all mucked up with the mattress half on the floor. Staff member 1 new this was out of character for the patient and then remembered that she speaking to herself last night and wondered if she was interacting with the ghost?
Staff member 1 stated one day she was walking a blind patient back to her room when all of the sudden she couldn’t walk any further almost like she ran into an invisible brick wall. Staff member 1 said the blind patient continued walking and was not obstructed. Staff member 1 said out loud to let her past so she could support the blind patient and all of a sudden she could move again.
Staff member 1 said many more little incidents occurred on this ward and many of new staff were freaked out by it, but Staff member 1 stated that she used to calm the staff down and told them not to worry about it and to move on.
However one day her perception of the Ghost changed quite dramatically.
Staff member 1 said it was approximately 1am and herself and another staff member Staff member 2 were about to do the rounds. They walked down the West Wing and all of a sudden Staff member 2 pushed Staff member 1 against the wall. Staff member 1 just said “hey don’t do that”, and kept walking it happened again and again and Staff member 1 said to Staff member 2 “you are going to hurt me soon please stop”. Staff member 2 stated that something was making him push her.
Anyhow they finished the rounds and went back into the Nurses Office and again Staff member 2 pushed Staff member 1 against the filing cabinet. Staff member 2 said “it feels like something is inside me”.
Staff member 1 then noticed what she thinks was a white film behind Staff member 2 and all of a sudden Staff member 2 dropped to the floor and started thrashing around and holding his throat.
After the frightening incident many of the staff would not work on Ward 5.
Admin were informed of the incident and stated that if anyone spoke about the ghost and what happened they would be get the sack. Staff member 1 stated one day Admin contacted her and wanted to discuss the incident.
Several months later Staff member 1 met up with an old staff member who used to work on ward 5 when the paranormal activity was occurring. Staff member 1 asked the staff member what he saw and why he didn’t want to work back on Ward 5, the staff member was very reluctant to talk about it but said he saw a white figure.
Staff member 1 stated eventually Ward 5 closed not long after the incident and the patients were transferred. Staff member 1 said she really enjoyed working on 5 and one day walked over the exterior of ward 5 near the fruit tree when all of a sudden the window swung open. Staff member 1 said that was her last experience with the ward 5 ghost.
Staff member 1 said that she would like to go back to Ward 5 later this year or early next year.
JW staff member of Royal Derwent Hospital
JW stated that she also witnessed the Ward 5 Ghost but with a twist she saw 3 Ghosts. JW stated that she didn’t really believe all the tales she heard about the Ward 5 Ghost until one of the staff members invited her to come on Ward 5 one night.
JW stated that she was walking along the Left Wing towards the Laundry when it suddenly got really cold.
JW stated that she stood there and thought to herself “there’s nothing here” but as she turned around she seen 3 perfect apparitions standing behind her. JW said the apparitions were all different sizes and were in the shape of people. JW stated that she tried to come up with a logical explanation but couldn’t.
Helen Griffiths- Ex Resident
I lived on Ward 5, there was a ghost on Ward 5. I saw the ghost, he wore a black coat, white shirt and black trousers, he smoked a pipe. He was scary.
One ward in the main women’s build is known to nurses as the “ghost room.” It is in a central position surrounded by a group of wards which vary in size: Actually the room is little different from the others surrounding it, but because of its uncanny atmosphere, many nurses will not enter it unless it is essential for them to do so.
The Mercury 5/9/1944
A paranormal occurrence that took place in the nurses cottage early one morning, when people were living in there. Needless to say they didn’t hang around long.
I have also spoken with another former tenant of the nurses cottage that has claimed to see a little girl on numerous occasions.
Many people have described Ward C as the most haunted and evil place at Willow Court if not Australia.
APIU were granted permission to undertake an investigation inside Ward C and managed to capture several unexplained EVP’s.
Earlier instances claim occurrences of strange Red Hand marks on their clothes that won’t wash out. The hand marks were on parts of their bodies which were physically uncomfortable to accidentally do yourself. Some have also reported getting strange paper like cuts over their arms which appear the next day.
Many people have reported that Ward C emits a depressing and sad feeling and many people just want to huddle in a corner. People say that Ward C is a very tense and scary ward to be in.
Research and Investigate the Paranormal (RIP) investigators were lucky to an authorised investigation of Ward C which was reported in The Mercury.
One of the strange occurrence in which RIP experienced was being locked in one of the cells and not being able to get out. After phoning someone from the local council to let them out, one of the investigators jokingly said they are coming to give us the governor’s pardon. As soon as they said this the door mysteriously opened. The council have claimed that slamming doors and other stage occurrences were normal in Ward C. It wasn’t the only trick the sprits played that day. The Mercury photographer lost all of her photos from her memory card.
There are a few stories that have been told about Frescati over the years, none of these can be confirmed at this stage however it is a very well known story.
Apparently a man and a woman hung themselves inside the building. Another story is that there is a male hating ghost inside that throws men around. Apparently a cleaner once went into Frescati and he was found hours later with blood all over the walls stating that he was thrown around by something he couldn’t see.
Another Person believes they have seen the ghost looking back at them through a broken window. I have also heard reports that people can feel a pulse or vibe coming from the building when they touch it.
APIU were lucky enough to get inside this cottage a few times, and had a few experiences. Once a fellow investigator had mysterious scratches down his back, which were unexplainable.
APIU have been lucky enough to investigate Alonnah which has been closed off to the public since its closure. APIU captured a Class A EVP inside Alonnah which appears in their documentary along with some other instances. They note that its one of the most seemingly active buildings they have been inside.
Similar to Ward C many who enter Alonnah also feel sick, sad, anxious and or depressed.
There also has been several people witness what appears to be a white figure that hangs around the vicinty of Alonnah, Bronte and the old brick wall.
Quite a few people have reported either seeing, hearing or feeling something in especially Ward E or around the Oval Wards. It is without a doubt the most reported about Ward or area. There would be at least 20 odd different reports that I have heard in the past few years.
A person that used to live across the road from the oval precinct has claimed to see a girl about 9 or 10 with black hair in Ward E. He has stated that this girl like to play games and often hides behind the curtains at Ward E when spotted, he stated that he has seen this girl outside of Ward E around the Oval precinct. This same guy has also seen a man in a long gown hovering above the oval. This man was the same person to capture the hovering Orb on youtube.
A photo was sent to APIU in 2012 by a mother and daughter They were not ghost hunting just simply taking a look around. Lady claims that no one was in front of her and its not her daughter.
I have heard stories from a few ex-staff members that Ward E was believed to be haunted. I was informed that doors would open and close by themselves.
Ex-staff of Ward 2 have stated that Turning left at the end of (R) Wing of Ward 2, 2nd room on the right…. is one room many staff did not want to be in or near at night or early hours of the morning. Cold breezes passing through you, visuals of a ghostly female being, more scared than scary, and the taps on your shoulder or back with no one else there in that position to do it.
Another investigator has picked up on what appears to be some very good EVP’s