Haunted: The Pré Hotel, St Albans, Hertsfordshire
Stewart | On 15, May 2017
The Haunted Pré Hotel
Redbourn Road, St Albans AL3 6JZ
If you travel out of the west of St Albans along the Redbourn Road you’ll pass the Garden House.
The Garden House was formerly known as the Pré Hotel.
Back in the late 19th century the Pré Hotel was a grand white Georgian House where the Toulmins lived.
On one summer’s night Constance Toulmin was ill in bed and their cat was disturbing her peace by making a lot of noise in the garden.
So her younger sixteen year old sister Isobel ventured out into the garden to chase away the cat.
Whilst out in the garden, Isobel notices a glowing figure behind a tall hedge…
She described the figure as being lovely, twice the height of a man, dressed in a white robe and bathed in a haze of golden light!
The glowing figure remained motionless for about three minutes until Isobel’s other sister entered the garden and it then vanished into thin air!
Isobel wrote to her brother in America about the beautiful apparition in the garden.
Her brother wrote back saying that he had also seen the figure with two other witnesses.
He nicknamed the apparition ‘The Saint’.
Some people believe the beautiful vision Isobel witnessed in the garden was the apparition of Saint Alban himself!
Now, the Pré Hotel had a reputation for being haunted by a shadowy figure of a child…
The hotel was used for wedding receptions.
And the ghostly child would often appear in the wedding photographs taken in the hotel’s gardens.
Especially those taken in the summer month of August!
So say the shadowy child is the ghost of young Isobel herself as she loved the house and its gardens so much.
It’s not only the grounds of the hotel which are said to be haunted…
Spooked hotel guests have reported hearing phantom footsteps walking down an empty corridor.
And members of staff have reported the sound of eerie tapping on the doors of bedrooms!
Paul Adams (2013) Haunted St Albans. The History Press