Richard Gough, writing his History of Myddle in 1701–2, gives an account of an omen which had regularly foreboded death for members of whichever family owned the farm at Cayhowell; he had personally observed it on three occasions, and was well placed to do so, for his sister had married into the Bradocke family, the then owners. The omen was that a pair of pigeons would come to the farm and remain there for about a week or fortnight before the person’s death, but would leave immediately afterwards. Those that Gough saw were ‘pretty large pigeons’, whose markings he describes; he was sure it was the same pair each time. When the farm was later let out to a tenant, they came for this man’s death also. On the other hand, if someone at the farm was sick and the birds did not appear, this meant he or she would recover.
Haunted England : The Penguin Book of Ghosts – Written by Jennifer Westwood and Jacqueline Simpson –
Copyright © Jennifer Westwood and Jacqueline Simpson 2005, 2008