Brown Lady of Raynham Hall Mystery

The Brown Lady of Raynham Hall is a ghost that people say they see at Raynham Hall in Norfolk, England.

They think it is the spirit of Lady Dorothy Walpole, the sister of Robert Walpole, who was the first prime minister of Britain. Sightings of the Brown Lady have been reported since the early 1700s.

People have seen the Brown Lady since the early 1700s. Why is the ghost called the Brown Lady? They call her the Brown Lady because she wears a brown brocade dress. The Brown Lady of Raynham Hall is a very well-known ghost in England.

Brown Lady of Raynham Hall History

Every town has a different story, no matter what story category. From my perspective, every town, city, or place has a story to tell! Where is Raynham Hall?

In Norfolk, England, a manse called the “Raynham hall,” which is allegedly haunted by the ‘brown lady,’ claimed by some people that it is the spirit of Lady Dorothy Walpole, who became the mistress of Charles Townshend.

After she died, she continued to appear as a ghost in the manor and is called the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall. But who exactly was this Brown Lady of Raynham Hall? Let’s discover more.

Lady Dorothy was born in 1686. Robert Horace Walpole (father of Lady Dorothy) was a member of parliament, and her brother, Sir Robert Walpole, was the prime minister.

Lady Dorothy was raised in a decidedly wealthier and more accessible manner and is said to fall for Lord Charles Townshend.

But her father refused the marriage because he did not want to give too much freedom to his daughter.

Upon the rejection, Charles Townshend married Lady Elizabeth Pelham, but she died in 1711, making Townshend free to marry Lady Dorothy. Everything seemed like a wish coming true.

Brown lady of raynham hall
Brown lady of Raynham hall

Although Dorothy, while Townshend had been a married man, she allegedly had an affair with Lord Thomas Wharton, a dissipate, lazy, and irresponsible person who soon left the country because of his debts.

Things took a toll after Townshend’s wife, Dorothy, died, and Townshend tied the knot. After being happily married for 13 long years, Lord Townshend learned about his wife’s affair before their marriage which she never told him.

Upon discovering the betrayal, anger and madness crippled his mind, and he allegedly locked her in one of the rooms at Raynham Hall, forbidding her even to see her children.

Aliexpress WW

On March 29th, 1726, she passed away from smallpox, though rumors were she died violently. Legends also say that her funeral was fake and staged, and she’s still alive, locked in a concealed room somewhere in the hall.

There were numerous reports centuries after centuries that her apparition, dressed in a brown barcode, wandered the hall. Prince Regent himself saw her specter in 1815 while visiting Raynham Hall.

photo of Brown lady
Photo of Brown lady

This personage resembles a painting of Lady Dorothy hanging in one of the bedrooms.

Another incident took place in the year 1836 with novelist Friedrick Marryat. He believed the ghost sightings were nothing but some smugglers. So, he slept in a room where Lady Dorothy’s portrait was hanging, with a pistol under his pillow.

In 1936, the infamous hall became a feature of country life, and shortly after, all these haunted occurrences became a worldwide phenomenon.

One night while walking down the hall, he saw a woman approaching with a lantern. Assuming it was a woman who was walking upstairs to visit the nurseries.

He recognized the lady by her features and brown dress as she came down. She stopped at his bedroom door and grinned viciously and wickedly at him.

Marryat then took his pistol, aimed at her, and shot her, but the ghost disappeared. He later found his bullet lying in the opposite door.

Country Life is a British weekly magazine that published photographs taken by Provand and Indre Shira, who was his assistant in December 1936.

raynham hall staircase
Raynham hall staircase

The weekly magazine appointed Provand and his support Shira to shoot a couple of photographs for the magazine. While clicking the hall’s grand staircase, the brown lady appeared again.

As Shira recalled the incident, he was standing with the flashlight pistol behind the camera by Provand’s side, focusing on another exposure. When Shira looked up the stairs, he detected an unclear light coming down the stairs.

He pressed the flashlight pistol. After Provand developed the photo, he saw a ghostly image descending the stairs. This picture soon accumulated grave attention from the public and was soon featured in Life magazine.

The press coverage regarding this picture caught the attention of Mr. c.v.c Herbert, who was a psychical researcher and investigator. He interviewed Provand and Shira, asking about their experiences inside Raynham Hall.

He found out that Shira was, in fact, not a very skilled photographer. Rather, he was someone with a sound business mind and using a fake name, though it never revealed why he was living a pseudo-life.

raynham staircase
Raynham staircase

Provand told Herbert about his camera complications. He said the camera’s bellow was faulty, and he feared the lights might enter it.

While examining the duplicate picture of the ghostly image, Herbert found some oddity towards the frame’s border.

The angles indicated that the camera had shaken and accidentally took the staircase photo twice.

Although Provand did admit that he placed the camera on an unsteady marble table, he removed the lens cap hastily, which might be the reason for the exposure’s shakiness. 

According to Herbert’s report, it was all because of overexposure due to daylight.

Few other experts interviewed seemed content with the two photographer’s honesty. Notwithstanding Herbert’s doubtful reviews, the photograph still is universal.

What do you think? Is this brown lady of Raynham Hall a hoax? Though it’s pretty hard to fake an image like this, that too, in the 1900s.

It involved more than what we do nowadays with Photoshop. Skeptics might come up with new arguments shortly.

Raynham Hall Museum

Raynham Hall Museum is a historic house in Oyster Bay, New York, originally built in the 18th century. It was once the home of the Townsend family, who were important figures during the American Revolution.

Nowadays, the museum provides guided tours of the house and its gardens, along with educational programs and events. Visitors can discover the history of the Townsend family and learn about the house’s architecture and decorations.

The museum also features exhibits on the American Revolution and life in the colonial era.

How to reach Raynham Hall

It is situated in Norfolk, England. It is 60 km far from Norwich railway station. You can use public transport or cab services to reach the place.

Norwich Airport is less far from this hall than the Norwich railway station. Its distance from the airport is 46 km.

Brown Lady of Raynham Hall Ticket Price

For each person, the cost to enter Raynham Hall on Open Day is £30(including the guide fee). To enter Raynham Hall on Open Day, it is necessary to reserve your ticket ahead of time.

Dogs on leashes are welcome outdoors but not inside the house.

The guided tours usually take about 1½ hours and are led by Lord or Lady Townshend, depending on how many people are there.

5 famous Places near Raynham Hall

Raynham Hall, located in Norfolk, England, offers several nearby places to visit. Here are some suggestions:

  • Sandringham Estate
  • Holkham Hall
  • Castle Acre
  • Pensthorpe
  • Holkham National Nature Reserve

Sandringham Estate

Sandringham Estate is a famous royal retreat located in Norfolk, England. Sandringham Estate blends history and nature for a delightful experience. This special place has been the private home for many generations of the British royal family.

It is one of the places where Charles III, the current king, lives. His grandfather, George VI, and great-grandfather, George V, died there. The house is on a very big property covering 20,000 acres (8,100 hectares) in Norfolk.

It has a magnificent house, lovely gardens, an interesting museum, and a charming church.

When you visit Sandringham Estate, you can explore the luxurious rooms, walk through well-kept gardens, and learn about fascinating stories and objects that show how important this place is to the royal family.

Holkham Hall

Holkham Hall is a stunning country estate located on the north Norfolk coast of England. Large gardens and parkland surround this grand house.

It was constructed in the 18th century, following Neo-Palladian architecture. It was made specifically for the 1st Earl of Leicester by an architect named William Kent. Lord Burlington also helped William Kent during the construction.

Visitors can see beautiful rooms filled with old objects from the past. Outside, visitors can explore well-kept gardens with stunning countryside views.

Holkham Hall is a great place to learn about England’s history and experience what life was like for rich and important people.

Castle Acre

Castle Acre is a fascinating village located in Norfolk, England. It is famous for its well-preserved medieval castle and priory ruins.

The castle was built soon after the Normans took control of England by a man named William de Warenne. The castle was located where the River Nar and the Peddars Way met.

William built a castle with a high mound and a protective fence made of earth. Inside the mound, there was a big house where people could live.

The village also provides beautiful countryside paths, where visitors can enjoy rural England’s peaceful and calm atmosphere.

Castle Acre is a great place to learn about the area’s history and is perfect for people who love history or want a quiet and relaxing getaway.


Pensthorpe is a nature reserve and gardens in Norfolk, England. It has different habitats, like wetlands, woodlands, and meadows, attracting many birds and animals.

The park spans 700 acres (280 ha) and was established as a nature reserve by Bill Makins in the 1980s. People can explore pretty gardens, walk on nature trails, and find many different plants and animals.

Pensthorpe has fun things to do for families and people who like nature. You can watch birds, go for nice walks, and learn about taking care of nature. The ideal place to appreciate and conserve nature.

Holkham National Nature Reserve

Holkham National Nature Reserve is a pretty place in Norfolk, England. It covers a large area of 3,900 hectares (9,600 acres). It has different habitats like sand dunes, salt marshes, woodlands, and wetlands.

The reserve is taken care of by Natural England and the Holkham Estate. Many kinds of birds, animals, and special plants live there. People can enjoy walking in beautiful areas, seeing birds flying, and enjoying the coast’s pretty views.

Holkham National Nature Reserve is a peaceful place for people who like nature.

Brown lady of Raynham Hall Timings

Raynham is normally closed to the public, but the Lord and Lady Townshend open it for special events and guided tours. They’ve established a fund to support the collection and hold yearly music recitals in the Marble Hall.

It’s a unique opportunity to explore the stunning interior and learn its captivating history. If you want to know about the opening time and closing time of Raynham Hall, then visit their website.

5 Best Hotels To Book Near Raynham Hall

Raynham Hall Address

Raynham Hall has become famous because people say it is haunted, especially by a ghost called the Brown Lady. There is a very famous photo of the Brown Lady ghost going down the stairs, and people say it was taken at Raynham Hall.

The Hall is located at 1 Raynham Hall, East Raynham, Fakenham NR21 7EP, UK


Is Raynham Hall open to the public?

The tours usually take about 1.5 hours, and either Lord or Lady Townshend leads them, depending on the number of visitors. Children who are 11 years or above may get a special admission rate.

Raynham Hall Events

FOR Raynham Hall Events, CLICK HERE

Who lives at Raynham Hall?

Raynham Hall is a large house in lovely Norfolk. For nearly 400 years, the Townshend family has owned it. Lady Townshend, whose real name is Alison Combs, and her husband Charles, the 8th Marquess, look after Raynham. They have four kids.

Brown Lady of Raynham Hall book

To purchase “The Brown Lady: The Ghost of Raynham Hall,” book click here

Who is the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall?

It is said that Raynham Hall in Norfolk, England, is haunted by a ghost called the Brown Lady.

What is the origin of the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall?

Lady Dorothy Walpole, the sister of Britain’s first prime minister Robert Walpole, is believed to be the spirit of the ghost known as the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall.

When did the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall first appear?

According to legend, people have reported seeing the ghost for the first time in the early 1700s.

Are there any famous sightings of the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall?

Certainly! The Brown Lady has been spotted countless times. In 1936, Country Life photographers photographed her. This ghost photo is famous.

Is there any scientific explanation for the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall?

There is currently no scientific explanation for the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall, which means that the ghost is still a popular mystery and legend.

Nearby food places of Raynham Hall

These are some famous restaurants near this hall:
1. Subway
2. The Crown
3. Sculthorpe Mill
4. Russell’s Diner
5. Red Lion Lounge

What kind of activities can we do near raynham hall?

There are several activities you can enjoy near Jaipur Wax Museum. Here are a few suggestions:
1. Visit Sandringham Estate
2. Explore the Norfolk Coast
3. Discover Historic Towns and Villages
4. Visit Castle Acre Priory
5. Savor the Local Cuisine

Read Also

  1. I was heard this story before but with less details, so much details here, thanks for sharing with us

  2. Nice post 🙂

  3. I thought that it is horror place

  4. It always amazes me how in ancient times their lives were planed for them – who they would marry – yet they were so many scandalous stories like this on having affairs.. It just proves that unhappiness will haunt someone for ever.

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