Who she was, no one seems to know, but she is popularly believed to be the wife of one of the Derings, lords of the manor of Pluckley down the centuries. They were a rich and powerful family marrying with an eye to both financial and political advancement. Several wives were short lived, producing large families. Of course, not all children survived into adulthood. Many died at birth. It is rumoured that one such child was born to our lady. It died, or was stillborn, and buried hastily, in an unmarked grave. Now this gives rise to all sorts of conjecture! Why not in the family crypt? It is large enough to take the coffin of a small child. Indeed there are several there. So, who was this unfortunate infant? How was he/she conceived? Who, indeed was his mother? A Dering wife - or a Dering daughter? The Dering archives are well documented and it seems strange that as such there is no record. But popularly, her ghostly form wanders the churchyard at night, sobbing bitterly, and searching for the grave of her unacknowledged child. Why the Red Lady? Nobody seems to know. Could it be the colour of the gown she wears? The halo which surrounds her ghostly figure? Was it the colour of her hair? Perhaps if someone eventually does see her we will all know. Carlton-in-Lindrick | Dublin | Exeter | Godshill | Lincoinshire | Lincolnshire | Norton | Old Lady | Whiston | Whiston |
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