Tag Archives: haunted

Shot of Spirits: Episode 10: Holy Trinity Church, Adelaide, South Australia.

 Shot of Spirits: Episode 10: Holy Trinity Church, Adelaide, South Australia.

Holy Trinity Church on North Terrace, Adelaide was built in 1838.An unknown male parishioner is thought to haunt the church. It is believed he died during an Easter service very early in the Churches history. Every Easter service since, parishioners have heard a disembodied voice, louder than all the rest, shout “AMEN!” at every possible opportunity.The congregation often looks to the direction the booming voice has come from to find no one there at all. Many people thought it was a hoax perpetrated yearly by the same person, but that person could never be identified.

Find out more about this haunting in the book: The Haunts of Adelaide: Revised Edition

Shot of Spirits: Episode 9: Exeter Hotel Adelaide. S.A.

 Shot of Spirits: Episode 9: Exeter Hotel Adelaide. S.A.

“On 18 November 1970 the body of the hotel’s owner, Mrs Joy Josephs, was found in the kitchen and a 30-year-old man trialled and sentenced for her murder. Years later, screams, sighs and a female voice of no known source are often reported as coming from the kitchen by hotel staff. “The Exeter’s reported paranormal occurrences predate Mrs Josephs’ murder, but she’s thought to be behind almost all the spooky goings-on alleged in the hotel today. “Disembodied footsteps and voices are frequently heard throughout all levels of the hotel, while the most often reported phenomena happen near the upstairs hallway where her bedroom used to be situated. “Another common disturbance is the moving of objects – often staff will place an item on a kitchen bench, only to find it’s been moved moments later!”

Read more about this haunting in The Haunts of Adelaide: Revised Edition:

Shot of Spirits: Episode 8: Estcourt House, Grange S.A

 Shot of Spirits: Ep.8: Estcourt House, Grange S.A.

Estcourt House was built at Grange (now Tennyson) in 1883 by Frederick and Rosa Bucknall, the house getting its name from Fred’s middle name ‘Estcourt’. Frederick had married into money, Rosa’s was the widow of beer baron Henry Haussen. Within 3 years Fred and Rosa were facing bankruptcy and had to sell. The AMP bought the house in 1886. In 1892, the James Brown Memorial Trust bought the house and set itself up to help disabled people. In 1931, the home became a TB and polio treatment centre for children run by the Salvation Army. In 1978, the State Government bought the house making it part of the Strathmont Centre. It is now privately owned. Estcourt House has long been alleged to be haunted, but what old house isn\’t? Are there ghosts within its walls? watch to find out… Read more about this haunting in the Haunts of Adelaide: Revised Edition https://www.amazon.com.au/Haunts-Adelaide-History-Mystery-Paranormal/dp/B08JLQLLC5

Shot of Spirits: Episode 6: Brighton Beach and Dunluce Castle

 Shot of Spirits: Episode 6: Brighton Beach and Dunluce Castle

Does the ghost of shark attack victim Kitty Whyte haunt Brighton Beach, South Australia? Does Rev Macully haunted Dunluce Castle, Kitty\’s childhood home…watch to find out.

Read more about this haunting in the Haunts of Adelaide: Revised Edition


A Haunting at the Railway Hotel Peterborough


A Haunting at the Railway Hotel Peterborough

The Railway Hotel is located at 221 Main Street Peterborough, South Australia. It is the third hotel built in the town, opening on 24 December 1891.[1]The first publican was W. Britten.[2]


Railway Hotel 2017 – Source: Bahnfrend CC:

   Sister Beth Ashley was a much-respected nurse. She had worked at the Royal Adelaide Hospital and at St Margaret’s Rehabilitation Hospital at Semaphore. It was while at St. Margaret’s that Ashely met an orderly named William Hyson. Hyson had come to South Australia from Tamworth, New South Wales. Ashley and Hyson had started dating, but after a short while, Ashley called off their relationship.[3]

 Ashley had become a nursing sister at the Peterborough Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital in South Australia’s mid-north. On March 21, 1949, Ashely received a phone call from Hyson telling her he was coming to Peterborough to see her. Ashley became upset and told him not to come or she would tell the police he was harassing her.

 The following day, March 22, at about 11:25am, Violet Revell, a housemaid at the Railway Hotel, heard two gunshots about 30 seconds apart. Revell reported to her boss, publican Sydney Coombe at about 11:50pm that a woman in an upstairs room was calling out for help. Coombe investigated room 5, and called out to the woman to open the door. She said, “I can’t open the door. I am shot.’ Coombe asked if anyone was with her, to which the woman replied, “Bill.”
Coombe called out for Bill to open the door, which the woman replied, “He can’t”.
Coombe phoned the police.

Mounted Constable E.H. Thom was first on the scene. He opened the door expecting to see evidence of a struggle, but there was none. Sister Ashley, lying on the bed, opened her eyes, and said to Thom, “I was here only two or three minutes when Bill shot me!”.

 Dr A.M. Myers was called. He found Hyson and Ashley both alive and had them rushed to the hospital. Hyson had taken a .22 pistol and shot Ashley, then turned the gun on himself. Hyson died of the self-inflicted wound at 2:15pm that day.[4]
 Ashley was still conscious when the doctor found her. She had a small wound in front of her right ear. Dr Myers decided to operate when condition improved, however, her bleeding was not under control, and she died at 5:40pm.[5]

The coroner, Mr J.S. Bennett ruled at an inquest into the deaths, that it was a murder-suicide by shooting.


   It is alleged, ever since this terrible tragedy, that the Railway Hotel is haunted. Witness’ claim that sometimes a ghostly silhouette of a person is seen in the upper windows of the hotel. Some people claim that they can feel a person sitting on them. Oddly, this happens in room 3, not room 5 where nurse Ashley was shot.[6]

Another ghost reported haunting this hotel is a child who plays in the kitchen.

It is said of the ghost in room 3, that some truckies have rented the room, and have left to sleep in the truck rather than wake up to the ghostly figure sharing the bed with them!

Researched and written by Allen Tiller © 2020

[1] ‘About the Railway’, Railway Hotel Motel Peterborough, (2020), https://railwayhotelpeterborough.com.au/.

[2] Hoad, J. L., Hotels and publicans in South Australia 1836-1984, (Adelaide, 1984), p. 490.

[3] \’COUPLE DIE IN HOTEL\’, The West Australian, (23 March 1949), p. 6., http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article47652985.

[4] Nurse Died After Call For Aid, Brisbane Telegraph, (April 9, 1949), p. 8, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article216575186.

[5] \’Murder And Suicide Finding At Peterborough Inquest\’, Chronicle, (14 April 1949), p. 8. , http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article93334089.

[6] Marshall, Gordon de L & Shar, Richard, Ghosts and hauntings of South Australia, (Jannali, N.S.W., 2012), p. 251.

Photo: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Railway_Hotel,_Peterborough,_2017_(01).jpg

A Haunting at the Cornucopia Hotel – Wallaroo

A Haunting at the Cornucopia Hotel – Wallaroo


This month we are travelling to the Copper Coast to the historic mining seaside town of Wallaroo to visit one of my favourite haunts in the area – the Cornucopia Hotel, located at 40 Owen Terrace, right in the heart of the historic town.

The Copper Coast Hotel was built circa 1862 and first licensed to Mr R Hazelgrove.

 The hotel, boasting 52 rooms, was built in 1862 and was first licensed by Mr R Hazelgrove. It was the central meeting point in the town and had a purpose-built dance hall upstairs. It is the only hotel in Wallaroo to still retain its original opening name, having never been called anything other than “Cornucopia Hotel”.
 It was also home, in the early days, like many hotels in that era, as the staging point for coroner inquests into local deaths. Often this would see the body laid out, with Doctors, Judges and other local dignitaries sitting around deciding if there was more to a death then an accident or natural causes.

 I have investigated the hotel on a number of occasions, both privately and with the public, and have encountered some very strange phenome within its walls.
 The upstairs section of the hotel houses the guest’s suites and shared shower facilities. This seems to be the epicentre of the haunting, particularly in the one wing containing bedrooms 11 through to 13.
 On one occasion, about the middle of the day, I was standing in the junction of the hallways, which wind and turn through the upper levels. In one spot I could smell very distinctly the smell of the ocean and old tobacco, but take a step in any direction and the smell would be completely gone. Now, not being one to jump to the “ghost” conclusion in an instant, I put it down to being so close to the ocean, and the smell of tobacco being embedded in the walls and carpets, and didn’t think any more of it, until I went downstairs to the dining room and a psychic told me that right above us was a spirit of an old Swedish sailor who had died elsewhere, but returned here as he felt this was home – (this still did not convince me the place is haunted by a Swedish sailor!).

 On another occasion, my wife experienced very strange disembodied footsteps in the hallway whilst she was investigating in room 10, at the same time, I was sitting on the bed in room 11 and recorded an EVP that asked the question “Hello?” – this was only the beginning of weird occurrences in the upstairs area that evening,
 Whilst in another upstairs room we all experienced equipment responses to questions. One investigator also heard a disembodied voice within the room.
 During a public event in the Cornucopia Hotel, Rob from “Cityside Paranormal” had a poltergeist event occur. Rob and his partner was staying in room 11, he put his clothes and gear in the room, and during the tour part of the event, re-entered his room to find all his belongings were strewn about the place as if someone had been recklessly searching for some mysterious object!

 So who haunts the Cornucopia Hotel? It could be Archibald Samuels, a young man, aged 14, who lost his life in a water tank that is located directly underneath the current bear garden. Archibald had gone to draw water from the tank and somehow fell in, only to be found the following day when the hotel couldn’t find him to run an errand.

 Or, perhaps it might be Mr Crawford, who had a nasty gash upon his leg that went gangrene, he died in an upstairs bedroom.
 Many of the staff have told me stories of suicides that go unreported in the local media, one involved a young woman hanging herself from the balcony in full site of the town’s main street – it is said she may be the ghost often heard speaking in room 9, that also likes the roll bars of soap across the room.

Another mysterious paranormal event occurred in February 1894 when a fire broke out in the hotel stables (as reported in The Kadina and Wallaroo Times – 3 Feb 1894).  Albert Swanski, the horse keeper locked the stables at 11pm, and when he checked the horses at 7:30am, he found the stalls and horses very badly burnt, so badly, in fact, the vet put them down immediately (they are buried in the hotel grounds). All the leather bridles, reigns etc of the horses were perfect, uncharred, no fire or smoke damage. No one knew how the fire started, or how it got put out, all the locks were still intact, and no entry points could be seen – very strange indeed!


The Cornucopia Hotel Wallaroo remains a popular drinking spot within the town and depending on who you talk too, one of the most haunted pubs on the Copper Coast!

My thanks to Rick and Will Parson of Flinders Ranges Paranormal Research Group for assistance with research on this historic location.

The Cornucopia Hotel is now known as the Copper Coast Hotel.

Allen Tiller is the Australian star of the international hit television show “Haunting: Australia” and author of “The Haunts of Adelaide – History, Mystery and the Paranormal” as well as being a historian, lecturer, poet, musician, Tour Guide, blogger and podcaster. Allen is also a volunteer for many different associations and groups.

You can find Allen online at:




First published in MEGAscene issue 7 2016

© Allen Tiller