Owner is warning potential buyers of rocking horse’s apparent ‘paranormal’ past
A “haunted” rocking horse that is said to have moved itself from room to room over the years is going up for sale.
The great-granddaughter of a medium named Dick Godden, who is said to have used it to help summon spirits, is selling the early 20th century wooden toy.
The owner, “Kelly,” who did not want her full name used, said she cannot sell the rocking horse without warning potential buyers about its paranormal past, SWNS, the British news service, reported.
The gray dappled pony, she said, has been passed down through generations of her family — but her 10-year-old daughter isn’t eager to ride it or play with it.
The mother recalled her own great-grandmother telling stories to others of leaving the house with the rocking horse on the landing — yet returning to find it in a completely different room, though no one else was inside at the time.
Spiritualism ran in the family, said the woman — who also said her mother took her to her first séance “at just 15 years old.”
Now a holistic therapist in Ashford, Kent, in the U.K., the woman said she’s since renounced spiritualism and found Christianity.
It is her new faith, she said, that’s prompted her to remove the spooky pony from her home.
She said she often hears banging noises upstairs while she’s working.
She said that while the horse has not moved from her landing lately, she often hears banging noises upstairs while she’s working.
Her great-grandfather Godden apparently held séances at his home and believed a young girl named Angela was playing on the toy horse — after he reportedly “raised” the girl’s spirit and she admitted to rocking on it.
Recounting her supernatural upbringing, the woman said, “One day my great-grandma Irene came home to an empty house and the horse had been moved into the middle of the living room.”
She added, “She assumed one of my cousins had been playing on it, as they used to let themselves in to [take] a shower after being to the beach, as they often did, but no wet towels were hanging in the usual place.”
It turned out that the cousins hadn’t been near the house at the time, she said.
“One day my great-grandma Irene came home to an empty house and the horse had been moved into the middle of the living room.”
She also told SWNS, “I remember going from our home in Hampshire to visit my great-grandparents when I was about seven. It was a three-story house and the top bedrooms always felt quite eerie.”
She recalled “feeling uneasy going up and down the steep narrow staircase on my own to the top floor where the horse was kept,” she said.
She’d had the rocking horse ever since her own daughter was an infant, she said — but as her child grew, she was “never drawn to it or interested in playing on it.”
She said, “I’ve never seen the rocking horse move rooms.” It stays on the landing, she said, but “there would often be the sound of someone walking around upstairs.”
She noted, “On more than one occasion, I would hear a huge bang from one of the rooms upstairs. Thinking it was something falling off a window sill, I would rush up there and absolutely nothing would be out of place. It did make me wonder.”
The woman said she’s eager to flag the horse’s past to potential buyers.
She said, “I really feel that whoever bids on it should know, even though I realize that might put some people off.”
The woman’s great-grandfather Godden was reportedly a well-known paranormal investigator in Folkestone, SWNS said.
“The vendor’s [great] grandfather was a trance medium/ghost hunter in the 1940s, and the horse was used for séances.”
During the early 1970s he investigated a frequently sighted apparition at a local theater. A boy was believed to have been killed in the theater by an extractor fan that fell from the roof in 1945.
Godden’s Kent investigation features in “Phantom Ladies,” a published collection of supernatural stories across Great Britain written by Andrew Green, who pioneered the application of scientific methods to ghost hunting, SWNS noted.
The rocking horse that’s for sale is expected to fetch £200 to £300, or roughly $257 to $386 in U.S. dollars, at auction on July 30.
Along with the dimensions and cursory description, the lot summary from Canterbury Auction Galleries reads: “Note: The vendor’s [great] grandfather was a trance medium/ghost hunter in the 1940s, and the horse was used for séances.”
A spokesperson for the auctioneer’s house said, “The supernatural element of this item has not determined the estimates put on it.”
The item is listed along with many other lots on the auction house’s website.