Friday, March 2, 2018

The Monster Of Glamis (un PC version)

                                               It's a long, long road.....

                                                       to here!
                                        Surprised they let these reprobates in....

We had a rather fabulous time at Glamis last Saturday. You might  recognise/ know/ have got drunk with a few of the authors who were there. Val McDermid , Denise Mina, Chris Brookmyre, Douglas Skelton , Craig Robertson and loads more. Apart from the bitter, bitter cold, ( the guys in the book shop were dressed in thermals,  big hats  with hairy ears, and fur lined boots), the venue lent a spooky magnificence to the event. How many events have you been to  where the lunch is waitress served, with white folded linen napkins.
                                                    I am waiting for my interviewer....she has gone!!!

The book shop was located in THAT room, of all the 170 rooms- they had to pick that one.. the one where the devil is still sitting, with an ace up his sleeve.  The one with the door that is not a door and maybe, the extra window.
                                               Oh here she is! With a dagger.... in the sitting room..

Here’s a quote that I found online which sets the tone for what me, and all like minded individuals believe  is the real mystery of Glamis. The monster.
                                            And a big audience.....

“If you could even guess the nature of this castle’s secret, “you would get down on your knees and thank God it was not yours.” said Claude Bowes-Lyon, 13th Earl of Strathmore. And I don’t think he was meaning the recipe for the butternut squash lasagne.  
                                              I think I look quite regal. I could be on a stamp.

So to consider the unspoken horror of Glamis, we need to think about the mid 1850’s to about 1900.  It still resolves around a hidden room, an extra window, weird noises at night and ghostly figures drifting along the stone corridors of the castle. Probably looking for the toilets.
                                                     Not a thing was nicked.

Basically there are two sides to this mystery.  There are those family members who believe it to be so awful, they didn’t ever wish to know, while admitting that there WAS something going on that was so awful that they did not wish to know about it.   Other members of the family  insist that the secret is real, they  know all about it, but they cannot speak it. Which is not helpful.
                                                            truly wonderful venue. My pals were in the crypt.

 To put it in context, we are talking about a time where the devil playing cards, and the mad being possessed by the devil, can be parked firmly in history. We are talking not so long ago but still at a time when disability was considered weakness, or bad genes. It was something shameful. And any body connected with the Royal  family was not  allowed to be anything  less than perfect.  There is another rumour that the Queen Mother ( whose family own Glamis) had a  close relative who was considered ‘mad’ in  some way and securely locked away. ( I think that  is one of the present queen’s cousins on her mother’s side  who has been incarcerated and ignored by her family due to a mental incapacity).

So the story, well the rumours, go that the  real heir of the  Bowes Lyon fortune  had been born so deformed that he was an affront to society, and spent most of his time walled up in the  secret  room ( which may or may not be the secret room behind the wall where the hypothermic booksellers were.)  The boy was left in the  charge of the factor who let him out and about at night,  giving rise to much of the ghostly legend.
The child might have been the son of the 11th Earl. I think that is the Earl whose wife gave birth to   a son , a son who died on the same day. That is what the records say.
                                                        Is this the ghost?

But what if he didn’t, and the baby was born deformed . ‘Hideously twisted,’ by one account. Another calls the child ‘a human toad’.
                                                        Nope, just me looking for a phone signal.

I guess we will never know the truth.
                                                Ice station book shop.  That stag on the left must have been
                                             going at some speed eh?
The Crime At The Castle event is going to be on again next year. I think there might be some snooping to be done. Surely, a festival full of crime writers can crack this one.

Caro Ramsay  02 02 2018


  1. Oh, sure, Caro, just like most teases, it's all tease and no coming through with The Good Stuff. We wanted answers. We wanted gruesome photos. We wanted blood and guts.

    All we got were rumors, photos of a pretty lass, and a bunch of folks who looked like they were being slowly frozen.


    Could I get a refund?

    1. Get money out a Scottish person???? Really? And the story might not be over.... well it is but indeed---no pictures, no evidence because it's all been hushed up!!! so no sheesh but shush!!!

  2. Whatever they were serving that got you to thinking as you did...I want some!

    And, yes, you do deserve your own stamp...and shout.

  3. We were served something very lovely, and extremely small - we genuinely thought it was a starter! So we had to roast a few fans in the crypt. They weren't Caro Ramsay fans so I didn't care..