Yesterday number 5 was ticked off our list! Map roulette! Now normally, the idea would be to stick a pin in a map but as we don’t own a road map (I know, it’s shocking, these kids and their over reliance on technology..!) instead we uploaded a map showing an area of no more than an hour and a half a journey away (I know that doesn’t seem overly ambitious but time constraints told us that if we were going to make full use of a day trip, we didn’t want to be longer than three hours in the car. Next time we’ll go further afield and stay for a couple of days wherever we end up!) ANYWAY, with the map on the screen we then simply closed our eyes, pointed at random and fate decided…we were off to Wotton-Under-Edge!
We packed up the car, picked up our friend Nick & headed to the M5. On the way we did a quick google search where we found there was a church, a few pubs, but more excitingly; a place called The Ram Inn, a building that had been visited before by the Most Haunted team, right up our street! It took about an hour to drive to Wotton, and we soon located a car park. After a walk round we stopped at the Falcon Inn for a really lovely lunch of proper pub grub, also seeing a piano which the pub owners happily let us have a little play on. As we finished our lunch, we called the number we’d found for the Inn. Spookily, at first we just got through to white noise, but on the second try we got through to the owners daughter who said her Father was going shopping and we therefore might catch him if we were quick and wanted to look at the Inn.
Well, with one rather suspiciously poopy smelling baby, and one adventurer on crutches, we decided that chances are, as it was a walk down the hill, we’d probably miss him but we could still amble down and have a nosey of the outside. So taking our time, we paid the bill and made our way down. When we arrived at the Inn, we took some pictures of the outside, taking in the old and dilapidated building and creating our own spooky ambience by imagining what sort of ghosts might be haunting the area. We then were welcomed by the owner John (who as a side note is apparently known as Rambo!) who kindly let us in and offered to show us round – jackpot!
On entering, we realised very quickly that this wasn’t a pub or Inn open to the public, this was an incredibly old (1,000 years old according to the copy of the building deeds that John gave us) privately owned building that not only had a whole host of ghostly stories but even an open grave in one of the rooms underneath the cement floor! On going upstairs, John led us to the Bishops room, a room he refuses to go into himself; and one he rapped on the door three times with a cane whilst asking ‘may we please come in?’ As if that wasn’t enough to chill us to our very core (& wonder if I was an awful Mother for bringing my poor beautiful innocent baby daughter into this place!) the stab marks in the beds in the Bishops room made apparently by guests seeing bodies within the beds when staying there, was certainly enough that we didn’t spend more than 30 seconds in the room!
The Inn was built on an ancient burial ground and there are far too many stories of child sacrifice than is comfortable for a new Mum to hear! We took lots of photos and listened to all of Johns anecdotes before he apologised and said he really had to get to the shops! Unbeknownst to us all, we’d stayed till shops closing time! We left decidedly spooked, and headed back to the car. On the way home we mainly discussed whether we’d have the guts to try & stay the night in the Bishops room (decidedly no!).
And so ended our random day trip. We spent the evening with a takeaway curry and watching the episode of Most Haunted that featured The Ram Inn & other frightening YouTube clips. It had been a really fantastic day and had it not been for randomly selecting a location, we may never have stumbled upon such a scary gem of the Cotswolds. We were very lucky to be invited into Johns property after just showing up on a random Thursday lunchtime!
Map roulette is definitely something we’ll do again & next time we’ll expand it so we can go further afield. In fact the idea eventually, is to turn up at a railway station or airport and get the next train or plane and see where it takes us! A sense of adventure can take you anywhere and hopefully Scarlett will allow her imagination and inherited sense of adventure to experience as much as she possibly can.
Although, if she’s not a paranormal fan when she’s older, yesterday wouldn’t necessarily have been an ideal road trip, but in some ways that’s the beauty of map roulette. Sometimes you’ll find yourself in a town with the UK’s biggest metalworks, or the worlds most comprehensive collection of napkins, and other times…well other times you’ll find yourself stood next to a dug out grave inside a haunted building built on an ancient burial ground where children have been slain and witches spirits hang around…
…still, we didn’t like sleeping anyway!