Things that go bump in the night

By MELANIE PETRINEC

EVER seen or felt a strange presence at night in Central Queensland?

You wouldn't be the only resident to have experienced this. Ghosts, or spirits it seems, are regularly sighted in the Beef Capital and surrounding areas. Of course, Rockhampton's most famous ghost is the woman known to prowl the Criterion Hotel. She is said to be an unnamed chambermaid who committed suicide in the hotel's staff quarters after being jilted by her lover in the late 1800s.

Owner-manager Ryan Turnbull said the woman with the slender build and long hair had been quiet of late. "She's definitely not your librarian-turned-evil-ghost like in the movie Ghostbusters,'' Mr Turnbull said. The Headmistress' Ghost at the Rockhampton Girls Grammar School is another well documented story. The school's first headmistress, Helen E. Downs, is said to haunt the belltower. She was a no-nonsense woman who, above all, disliked "prettiness" in her pupils. According to legend, she comes down from the tower at 11pm on November 11 every year and makes her way through the girls' dormitories. Once there, she is said to find the girl with the longest blonde hair, produces a pair of scissors, and hacks off the victim's tresses.

In an eerie coincidence, not an hour after this story was filed, the Grammar School emailed The Morning Bulletin regarding the legend.

It was the first time the paper had been contacted regarding a ghost story.



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