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Opened in 1625 England’s oldest operating prison overtaking the closure of another in 2011 Shepton Mallet finally closed its doors in 2013 where in its end years it was a category C lifers prison housing 189 prisoners some of its former more notable inmates during its time include the Kray twins following their abdication from the British army.
Shepton Mallet most likely held executions long before records were kept, and we know that it was a place of execution between 1889 – 1926 but there are several documented civil executions on this site that drew crowds of hundreds. The impending execution would be posted on notices at the prison gate.
The crowds were not allowed to see the execution but would listen instead for the sound of the drop. The death of the condemned would then be signalled to the crowd by the raising of a black flag. Shepton had a Hanging Tower a large red brick room that from outside appeared benign with a simple window and guttering running down the side.
Inside the hanging was performed by a trapdoor lever and pulley system with a drop that was measured to ensure a broken neck and a quick death. Conditions at the prison were described as terrible in early years with one inspector describing it as a building full of disease and pestilence. He said prisoners would come in nourished and become within 11 weeks, frail sickly and ridden with pox. Dying slowly with corpses rotting on the floors in an unsanitary hell. The bodies of the executed are all buried within the prison grounds.
This dark and foreboding building is grade two listed and still holds the ghosts of it past within.
Shadows have been seen in the cells. Names have come through in the white noise box. The feeling of dread as you walk through the halls along with many other sightings. Are you brave enough?
When you arrive, you will be greeted by one of our team and you will be placed into a small group. Once introductions have been made and the team have run though the health and safety. You will explore different parts of the building throughout the evening with your team member. You will get the chance to conduct some amazing experiments such as Ouija Boards, Table Tipping, Glass Moving vigils and our up-to-date ghost hunting equipment. We will be using the most active areas of the venue throughout the night and you will be guided through this terrifying process by our friendly and capable team. Included near the end of your evening you will be able to go off and explore for an hour to yourself using what equipment you would like. Do you dare to explore the unknown?