In this edition of Looking Back I’ll be checking out some historical spots in South Wales and the spooky tales that people tell about them.
The ‘Grey Lady’ of Taff’s Well
Taff’s Well or Ffynnon Taf is so called because the village is situated alongside the River Taff.
Taff’s Well’s thermal spring is the only one in Wales. In the 1760’s, German chemist D.W Linden visited the well and suggested that drinking several pints of its water, every day, would be a good cure for rheumatism. It is thought that this was the beginning of Taff’s Well becoming a destination for people seeking cure from various diseases.
Legend has it that a lady robed in grey frequently visited the well, with many people testifying to having seen her wandering along the banks of the river near the spring.
Rumour has it that, about seventy or eighty years ago, the woman in grey was sitting in the well and beckoned a man who was getting water.
He put his pitcher down and asked what he could do for her. She said: “Hold me tight by both hands until I ask you to release me.” The man did as he was asked but eventually, he felt a stabbing pain in his side and, with a sharp cry, he let go.
The lady in grey was angered and said: “Alas! I shall remain a ghost for another hundred years, and then I must get a woman with steady hands better than yours to hold me.”
She vanished and was never seen again… or has she?
An unforgettable journey across Mynydd Eglwysilan
Just to the East of Cilfynydd is Mynydd Eglwysilan, a 355-metre-high hill that can be driven across on the way to RCT from Caerphilly.
One night, around 11 years ago, Byron from Nelson was travelling across Mynydd Eglwysilan in his car to take his daughter Hannah to a party.
Byron said: “I’ve travelled that road countless times and this journey didn’t start off any differently.
“As we were going over Mynydd Eglwysilan I started to feel a little cold, I kept driving and didn’t think anything of it. However, at one point I started to panic; I felt freezing, my whole body was so cold I thought I was going to die.
“At that exact moment, Hannah turned to me with a shocked look on her face and said ‘Did you see that?!’. I pulled over and asked Hannah what she saw and what she told me I will never forget.
“She said she saw a little boy who looked like he was glowing with a bright light. He was dressed like a Victorian street urchin with a scruffed up shirt and flat cap and was running alongside the car.
“If you’d told me this story before that night I would have just brushed it off but after feeling what I felt that night, I am certain that there was something there.”
Byron dropped Hannah off at the party later that evening and drove back over the same road to see if he could see anything. He didn’t, but he will never forget how cold he felt at the exact moment his daughter saw the boy.
Do you have a spooky story about RCT that you’d like to share? Post them on social media using #ValleysMag or email email@example.com and we’ll share the best.