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County Cork Ghosts, Folklore and Paranormal Places

Children of Lir - two children being turned into swans.

The Swans

Location: Allihies - Children of Lir site
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Site still present
Further Comments: Eva, daughter of King Bov, turned her stepchildren into swans, believing them to detract her husband's attention from herself. She instantly regretted her action but was unable to undo the damage. Nine hundred years passed until Christianity reached the shores of Ireland. The power of Christ turned the children back into their former selves, but incredibly aged. They died soon after the transformation and were buried on this site.

Mind the Edge

Location: Allihies - Cliff near old copper mine, Beara Peninsula
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Mid-1850s-1930s?
Further Comments: After working late one moonless night, a local man returning from the copper mine took a shortcut across a hill. He became lost, and in his confusion fell over the edge of a cliff and died. For many years following the accident, travellers crossing the hill would pause to throw a stone over the edge of the cliff, fearing that failing to carry out the ritual would result in them experiencing the same fatal accident.


Location: Annagh - Bridge
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Laden with thread, this phantom was believed to be a tailor who had immorally acquired the thin yarn during his lifetime and was repenting his sins by carrying it upon his back (special thanks to the Churchtown Village Renewal Trust, from their 'The Annals of Churchtown').

Man in White

Location: Annagh - Channeleen
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A cyclist was chased by a strange white figure who refused to speak. The cyclist finally stopped pedalling and threw his lamp at the ghost, who immediately vanished. The Channeleen was also home to a phantom woman who wore black (special thanks to the Churchtown Village Renewal Trust, from their 'The Annals of Churchtown').

Woman in White

Location: Annagh - Unstated property
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1927
Further Comments: While camping close to this property, one traveller awoke to see a white female form standing at a gate. He woke one of his friends who also observed the ghostly figure. The following day the travellers moved on and never returned (special thanks to the Churchtown Village Renewal Trust, from their 'The Annals of Churchtown').

Leprechaun's Shoe

Location: Ardrah - Field in the area
Type: Fairy
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A small shoe said to belong to a leprechaun was found near the village by a cow herder. Unfortunately, the man forgot to take the shoe home, and when he went to retrieve it the following day, the shoe had gone.


Location: Ballincollig - Castle
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Pre-1930s
Further Comments: It was said that a dark room in the castle was home to a ghost named Brian, who would appear on horseback to anyone who ventured into the structure.

White Woman

Location: Ballincollig - Oriel Lodge
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Pre-1930s
Further Comments: A husband and wife encountered a white female phantom standing by the kitchen door, after which they had their bed covers pulled from them by an unseen hand on three consecutive nights.

Killer Woman

Location: Ballingeary - Road towards Droumanallig, 300 metres west of Ballingeary
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A female phantom began to kill those who failed to answer her riddle 'A candle and a candlestick there is, and you fit a couplet to that'. Local man Michael Creedon banished her after replying 'You ought to have got to heaven in time rather than being a ghost as you are'.

Rocking Virgin Mary

Location: Ballinspittle - Roadside grotto
Type: Other
Date / Time: 22 July 1985 onwards
Further Comments: Cathy O'Mahony and her mother observed the statue of the Virgin Mary rocking on its heels. The following night they returned with friends who observed the same event. Since this time, tens of thousands of people have visited the shrine in the hope of seeing something.


Location: Ballyandrew - Glen of Croke, which stretched from Saffron Hill to Pinegrove
Type: Shuck
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The phantom woman who once appeared here was said to be a Creagh girl who died shortly after her lover was killed by her father. The Moddra-na-Craeuv, also known as the dog of the Creaghs, also haunts the area.

Vanishing Island

Location: Ballycotton - Off coast
Type: Environmental Manifestation
Date / Time: 7 July 1878
Further Comments: Local fishermen awoke to see a strange new island out to sea, covered with trees and rocks. As dozens climbed into their boats and set off towards it, the island faded from view.

Great Fish

Location: Ballycotton - Somewhere between Ballycotton and Old Head of Kinsale
Type: Cryptozoology
Date / Time: Circa May 1906
Further Comments: A fishing vessel reported being attacked by a dark fish the size of a whale. The fish rammed the boat several times, only ceasing the assault when the captain ordered the engines to be killed; after half an hour, the fish disappeared.

John the Baptist

Location: Ballycotton - St. John's well
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Well still present
Further Comments: A rock near the well was said to be the head of John the Baptist, which slowly turned to stone and was weathered by the elements over time.


Location: Ballyedmond - Fort Field
Type: Fairy
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The fort in this field was home to four fairy bagpipers dressed in red.

White Woman

Location: Ballygarvan - Small bridge over a stream
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A small bridge over a stream near Ballygarvan was home to a white woman. After appearing to one man who fell critically ill the following day, a priest went to the site and banished her.


Location: Ballynoe - A Queen Anne mansion
Type: Other
Date / Time: December 2007
Further Comments: A skull discovered in this mansion was quickly linked to the 'ghostly' sounds occasionally heard in the area. Police said the skull was smooth, which indicated regular handling, and was likely to have belonged to a former doctor who lived in the building in the 1800s.


Location: Ballytrasna - Unnamed farm
Type: Other
Date / Time: August 1991
Further Comments: After having a vision of the Virgin Mary, a farmer converted part of his farm into a shrine which he named House of Mercy.

Former Students

Location: Ballyvourney - Ballyvourney De Salle College
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2000s
Further Comments: After numerous stakeouts, CPI (Cork Paranormal Investigators) are convinced that this disused college is home to several entities, including a priest, a young boy and four teachers. The sound of laughing children and the ringing of a bell are just a few of the incidents reported.


Location: Ballyvourney - St. Gobnait's Well (still present) and area surrounding
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Fifth century
Further Comments: Gobhnet (or Gobnait) was a nun who built an oratory on the site where she stumbled upon nine white deer. She kept bees that doubled as her protectors, chasing away thieves. The well on the site is still a site of pilgrimage, who tend to visit on 11 February.


Location: Ballyvourney - Unnamed Road
Type: ABC
Date / Time: 1981
Further Comments: A large cat seen as it stepped in front of a car was later identified as a lynx.

Thrown Stone

Location: Baltimore - Fastnet Rock
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Rock still present
Further Comments: Ireland's most southerly point, Fastnet Rock was thrown into position by a giant from Mount Gabriel (Schull).

Money Stone

Location: Bandon - Monerone area
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A rock in the centre of the road was known locally as the Money Stone and according to legend was used to mark the location of buried treasure. People had tried to dig up the hoard but were always scared off by a supernatural presence.

A ghostly woman riding a horse.

Woman on Horseback

Location: Bandon - Roads in the area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Nineteenth century
Further Comments: A phantom woman on a white horse once rode around this area. She is said to have given local man Owen Kelly a lift after he failed to recognise her as a spirit - after riding around in circles and crossing the river three times she vanished, leaving Owen by the fence of his farmland.


Location: Bantry - Bantry House
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2000s
Further Comments: A comforting presence is reported to felt in the nursery.

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