Shot of Spirits: Episode 4: Angaston Hotel
The Angaston Hotel, in the Barossa Valley, is allegedly haunted by spirits that display poltergeist type activity.
The Angaston Hotel, in the Barossa Valley, is allegedly haunted by spirits that display poltergeist type activity.
It has long been rumoured that blood runs down the walls, and seeps out the doors of the Seppelt Mausoleum on the anniversary of family deaths…
Do otherworldly demon dogs haunt an old mine near Moculta in the Barossa Valley?
My thanks go out to Daniel James Down from Gawler In Photographs for allowing me to use some of his photographs of the very bridge I talk about in this video!
In 2014, my paranormal investigation team ‘Eidolon Paranormal’ were invited to conduct a paranormal investigation at a remarkable location, The Barossa Junction Motel. The motel was somewhat of an icon on the road between Nuriootpa and Tanunda, with its train carriage hotel rooms, and train-themed restaurant. It also contained a large motor vehicle-related museum.
The hotel was the idea of John Gordon, who was also behind the Buffalo Family Restaurant in Glenelg. Gordon set up the location in conjunction with his good friend Bruce Hoffman, after their winery, Hoffman’s Wines were purchased by Peter Lehmann.
The site of the motel was originally the Barossa Drive-in Theatre. The screen from which was incorporated into one of the large halls inside the museum.
Gordon and Hoffman sold the location to Eric Parker in 2003, but due to ongoing overheads and lack of interest, the site was sold in 2014. Woolworths purchased the property to extend their Dorrien Estate Winery which sat alongside the property. This led to most of the contents, old trains, cars and other memorabilia being auctioned off and removed.
The Barossa Junction Hotel had long been rumoured to be haunted. Legend had it that in the train carriages the spirit of a girl had been seen. She was said to be a young teen who could be seen inside the carriages, or sometimes walking between them in the yard. No-one could identify whom she might be, but there was speculation she either died by falling off a carriage or drowning in the onsite swimming pool. Another train of thought (pun intended) was that she may have died on one of the train carriages before they were converted into hotel rooms at the Junction. Either way, there is no proof of her history or her ghostly presence.
We investigated the site the night before the auction. We were granted access to every location inside the property and made the most of it by investigating every train, room and vehicle we came across.
The swimming pool which was located inside a building was also rumoured to be haunted. We entered late in the night to find the pool virtually empty. The room looked as though it had not been used in some time as cracks were starting to appear with plants in them. Dust and cobwebs were everywhere, and with our night vision lights reflecting off the remaining water, it created a spooky and creepy effect. Even though we had heard this area might also be haunted, on this night, no one came forward.
We came up with absolutely nothing. Not a thing from a train carriage, the pool area, or the car museum! This isn’t entirely unusual in investigating the paranormal, but we were granted the privilege of investigating a truly iconic location in the Barossa Valley!
After the auction, Mr Parker moved what was left of the collection to his museum in Greenock, located in the old Perry’s Electrical site. It is not known if the alleged ghosts moved with him.
Allen Tiller ALIAtech, DipFamHist is Australia’s most recognised paranormal investigator,
eminent paranormal historian, and star of the international smash hit television show “Haunting: Australia”.
Allen is also the founder of Eidolon Paranormal, South Australian Paranormal and the author
of book and blog, “The Haunts of Adelaide: History, Mystery and the Paranormal”.
Allen was awarded the 2017 “Emerging South Australian Historian of The Year Award” as presented by The History Council of South Australia. Employed as “Historian in Residence”
in 2016/2017 with the Adelaide City Council Libraries and employed by the City of Port
Adelaide Enfield Council to write the popular, “Ghosts of the Port Self-Guided Walking Tour”
You can find Allen online at:
First published in MEGAScene Issue 18 2019
© Allen Tiller
The rear yard of the Angaston Hotel also contains walls that were once part of the Angaston townships original council pound for stray animals.
‘Advertising’, South Australian, (25 December 1846), p. 3.
‘ANGASTONS COMMUNITY HOTEL MOVE FAILS TO REACH FIGURE’, Leader, (4 October 1951) p. 1.
‘ANNUAL MEETING OF MAGISTRATES. Monday, March 13.’, South Australian, (14 March 1848), p. 2.
‘COUNTRY NEWS.’, The Express and Telegraph, (17 February 1871), p. 2.
‘COURT CASES.’, The Advertiser, (2 September 1914), p. 14.
‘MITCHELL’S ANGASTON HOTEL.’, Saturday Mail, (10 June 1916), p. 2
‘NEW GENERAL LICENSES.’, South Australian, (15 December 1846), p. 6.
‘QUARTERLY MEETING OF MAGISTRATES.’, South Australian, (14 September 1847), p. 3.
‘THE AMATEUR CONCERT.’, South Australian Register, (8 November 1843), p. 2.
‘Truro Farewell to Mr and Mrs F. Nicholls’, Leader, (9 October 1952), p. 1.
 ‘NEW GENERAL LICENSES.’, South Australian, (15 December 1846), p. 6.
 ‘Advertising’, South Australian, (25 December 1846), p. 3.
 ‘QUARTERLY MEETING OF MAGISTRATES.’, South Australian, (14 September 1847), p. 3.
 ‘ANNUAL MEETING OF MAGISTRATES. Monday, March 13.’, South Australian, (14 March 1848), p. 2.
 ‘ANGASTON.’, South Australian Register, (14 March 1856), p. 3.
 ‘COURT CASES.’, The Advertiser, (2 September 1914), p. 14.
 ‘PERSONAL’, Leader, (6 April 1950), p. 3.
 ‘ANGASTON COMMUNITY HOTEL MOVE FAILS TO REACH FIGURE’, Leader, (4 October 1951) p. 1.
 ‘Truro Farewell to Mr and Mrs F. Nicholls’, Leader, (9 October 1952), p. 1.
 ‘THE AMATEUR CONCERT.’, South Australian Register, (8 November 1843), p. 2.
 ‘COUNTRY NEWS.’, The Express and Telegraph, (17 February 1871), p. 2.
|James Crase: 1879 – Photo SLSA: B76601|
|Basement North Kapunda Hotel 2009:
Photo by WISPA Paranormal
The Hotel has seen numerous deaths in its 165 plus years of service, including scissor grinder Martin Jansen who choked to death in the ground floor Parlour.
Henry Binney Hawke, a very well respected man in Kapunda, who died in the billiard room of the hotel after suffering a heart attack.
Joseph Caddy, a local music teacher and a politician who died of natural causes in an upstairs bedroom.
In 1912 Mr Henry Fairclough, publican of the hotel for 14 years became very ill, and by November of that year had been confined to his bed as his condition worsened. On Monday 17 November 1912, Henry Fairclough lost his battle with illness and passed away in the upstairs bedroom he shared with his wife.
Dennis Horgan, was publican of the hotel from 1913 until 1919, then again in 1925. Horgan died from a heart attack in the hotel in December 1925 in an upstairs room he shared with his wife.
Other deaths reported include that of servants, at least two young prostitutes, a travelling salesman, and at least 3 young children.
|Ghostly fingers across a guests face in 2015
(date in photo is incorrect)
I had many ghostly experiences in the hotel after tours and on private investigations, but the most memorable for me happened one night after a tour. As the last guests were leaving. Karen and I were doing our “after-tour” walkthrough, to lock up the hotel and make sure no-one had been locked inside. As I went to close the tour room door, I turned and saw a young girl, I would estimate around 7 years old, standing in the hallway looking at me.
|An apparition of a boy in the basement. Some claim pariedolia,
but later photos show the boy in a different position.
little did he know, the spirits were about to do the same to him.
During the filming of Haunting: Australia, paranormal guru Gaurav Tiwari and I set up several ghost hunting devices given to us by Jason Dickson of Apparition Technologies. We placed REM Pods (a device that emits an electromagnetic field from an aerial, that if a spirit comes close to, will set off a warning alarm and coloured lights) as well as voice recorders, EM Pumps (a device that emits a very strong electromagnetic field thought to attract spirits) and Vibration Detectors in the downstairs hallway basement, a large side room that was once bedrooms, originally for the cooks, but eventually used by prostitutes.
In the next few minutes, things really picked up. Gaurav and I raced into the hallway to see all our REM Pods and Vibration meters lit to full, every light in the basement, including our torches and camera lights suddenly drained completely and we were left in total pitch black. At the same time, Mick got a call over his headset to get the hell upstairs as the producers thought Ray may have had a heart attack in the Hallway to Hell.
came from the air in the centre of the room and echoed throughout the room. I suggested later during our reveal filming at the Old Kapunda Courthouse, that the noise may not have been a gunshot at all but could have been the sound of what psychics and mediums call a “portal” snapping closed as the spirit returned to her own realm.
Chinner, B., & Berry, P., ‘Angaston sketchbook’, (Rigby Adelaide 1976).
Baragwanath, P., ‘Mechanics’ Institutes role in Australia’s history’, The Guardian: The Worker’s Weekly, Vol.1526, (9 November 2011), https://www.cpa.org.au/guardian/2011/1526/12-mechanics-institutes.html, accessed 18 April 2019.
1936, Angaston and Nuriootpa: centenary souvenir, 1936, The Leader, Angaston viewed 18 April 2019, http://nla.gov.au/nla.obj-21483483
|Oscar Benno Seppelt – 1860|
1925 ‘MRS. B. SEPPELT DEAD’, News (Adelaide, SA : 1923 – 1954), 6 April, p. 5. (HOME EDITION), viewed 29 Mar 2019, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article129716015
1931 ‘Death of Mr. Benno Seppelt’, Leader (Angaston, SA: 1918 – 1954), 14 May, p. 4. , viewed 29 Mar 2019, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article165687683
Angela Heuzenroeder, ‘B Seppelt & Sons’, SA History Hub, History Trust of South Australia, http://sahistoryhub.com.au/organisations/b-seppelt-sons, accessed 27 March 2019.
History, Seppelt (2019), https://www.seppelt.com.au/history, accessed 29 March 2019.
Got a ghost story from the Barossa Valley, or want more information about hauntings in the Barossa Region?
Historian, Genealogist and TV presenter from Haunting: Australia and paranormal investigator Allen Tiller will be hosting a “Ghosts of the Barossa” stall at this years Barossa History Fair.
Allen will also be available to record and preserve any local ghost stories that are brought to his attention on the day!
Allen has also agreed to present a talk on ghosts in and around the Barossa Valley! But seats will be very limited, so you’ll need to make a reservation.
|Historian, Allen Tiller from The Haunts of Adelaide
with Barossa History Fair organiser Chris Murphy in Nuriootpa,
who look forward to the free event in May.
photo: Michelle ORielly
This story first surfaced in Valerie Laughtons’True Barossa Ghost’s book, in which she stated that she changed the names of the people involved.
Davis, Richard & Davis, Richard Michael, (editor.) 2014, Great Australian ghost stories, ABC books, HarperCollins Publishers, Sydney, N.S.W
Laughton, Valerie Joy & Falkenberg, Darren, (photographer.) 1991, Valerie J. Laughton’s true Barossa ghosts (gathered together with good spirits), Laughton, Nurioopta, S. Aust