That old Bishop Lucy story.....

That old Bishop Lucy story.....

The Chapel Ghost

It was a dark and stormy night, really, and we were doing our prep or some such up in the Library. Looking outside from there the Chapel forecourt was pitch black and there were no lights on in the Chapel itself. But you could just see the silhouette of the chapel bell-tower against the swirling orange mist of the street lights beyond.

As we huddled over our books, at a time when there were not any chapel activities scheduled, suddenly the chapel bell started ringing. At first no one took any notice, but it kept going. The bell was near to the Library window so it was loud and impossible to ignore. Someone casually went over to the window to take a look, and there was a stifled gasp as the report came back, "There's no one there. The bell's ringing but the Chapel's all dark. It must be the ghost of Bishop Lucy!"

This remark referred to two aspects of the school's history and folk lore. Firstly, one of the figurative marble monuments located in the Chapel lobby was of Bishop Lucy, a former cleric of good repute whose piercing stoney stare led us to imagine that he really might have some other-worldly knowledge of what went on in the chapel pews when we were meant to be paying attention to the service. Secondly, his ghost was supposed to manifest itself on various but always unexpected occasions. So this announcement was greeted partly by the cynical disbelief of teenagers, but also by a migration to the windows overlooking the Chapel to see for ourselves. We stared, and we saw. "Whoa, it's true! No lights! That is very wierd! It really is the ghost of Bishop Lucy!"

The speculation and the noise level grew in the Library, and the bell kept tolling. And then quite suddenly it stopped.

In the Chapel yard down below there were lights, people, and voices - but no white spectres or bone-chilling howls. As the mounting tension in the library began to reduce, word reached us that it was nothing to be concerned about. Mr Lewis Jones a music teacher had gone into the Chapel to get something from the organ loft, and he had inadvertantly become locked inside the Chapel. Being unable to get the Chapel door open again, and not being able to attract anyone's attention by shouting, he had quite sensibly decided to draw attention to his plight by pulling on the bell rope. But the chapel was dark. Why were there no lights inside? Oh of course, because Mr Lewis Jones was blind.

Thanks to Mark N. Powell (SHB, 60-66)