As legend has it, Loftus Hall hosted the devil himself and has been haunted since the 18th century.
Built in 1170, Loftus Hall is an architectural site to behold. The beautiful Georgian mansion in Fethard on Sea in Ireland’s County Wexford is now on sale for $2.87 million. Prospective buyers should take more than the 22 bedrooms into account, however — namely the local legend that it was once inhabited by the devil.
According to The Smithsonian, it’s said that an 18th century card game at the historic property culminated in one of the players revealing his cloven hooves to the owner’s daughter.
As the story goes, she was traumatized for the rest of her life — and her spirit has wandered the halls ever since.
Loftus Hall’s most recent owners have taken strongly to their property’s backstory, offering visitors haunted tours and overnight stays.
If you’ve got the coin, the mansion can be yours, for good. Beware, however, as ghostly silhouettes allegedly stand in the windows at night — and the legends may be true.
The Legend Of Loftus Hall
The wind was howling, as cold rain poured from the thundering skies. It was a dour Irish evening in the 18th century — one that came with a mysterious rapping at the door.
The Tottenham family of Loftus Hall didn’t find this unusual, however, as their private shoreline was often used by sailors in stormy weather. They offered the man at the door shelter for several days. He befriended his hosts and took a particular liking to one of their daughters, Anne.
Keen on a bit of socializing and fun, the group sat down to play a game of cards. It was then that Anne dropped her ring (or, by some accounts, a card), and saw something that altered the course of her life. Leaning down, she realized their guest didn’t have human legs — but cloven hooves, instead.
Anne screamed in terror, as the entity they had invited into their home escaped through the ceiling. A loud clap of thunder erupted right after, and a cloud of smoke appeared, leaving the family engulfed by the scent of sulfur. Anne never recovered from the incident.
She went into seclusion in a chamber and died young soon after. According to some, particularly visitors to the almost thousand-year-old mansion, her spirit still wanders the halls.
However, there’s much more to the mansion’s colorful history than this haunting.
The History Of Loftus Hall
Originally, a Norman knight named Raymond le Gros built a castle there in 1170. According to Atlas Obscura, he wanted to assimilate into Irish society, despite having tirelessly fought to conquer its people, and changed his name to Redmond.
When the Black Plague arrived in 1350, his descendants replaced the castle with a modern structure — a mansion that became known as Redmond Hall. After passing through the hands of numerous owners during Oliver Cromwell’s brutal conquest of the island, the Hall was purchased by an English family named Loftus.
Between 1865 and 1875, the building underwent extensive renovations. Adding to the eerie history of this place, an infant’s remains were found hidden in the walls of the tapestry room during the remodel.
That room was where Anne secluded herself after her supposed brush with the devil. Some have theorized that the legend was fabricated to hide a scandalous truth — namely that Anne was impregnated out of wedlock, potentially by the visitor, and subsequently let her baby die.
In the end, only questions regarding the Loftus Hall legend remain as time itself and the home’s new owners forge ahead.
Loftus Hall In Modern Day
Current owners Shane and Aidan Quigley purchased Loftus Hall for $800,000 in 2011. Though the mansion appears to have a rather solid foundation and good bones within its structure, the two resourceful homeowners decided to give it a proper renovation. The property’s ominous character, however, was actively retained.
The 22-bedroom mansion served as a convent and hotel during the 20th century but was in a rather derelict state by the time the Quigleys bought it. The most substantial renovation work consisted of restoring the Italian staircase, stain-glassed skylight, and adding a reception and café area.
With such an engrossing story on their hands, the Quigleys opted to use the ominous legend to their advantage. From offering haunted tours throughout the property to overnight programs allowing people to experience the creaking residence for themselves — they’ve put it to lucrative use.
Despite all this, the 27,124-square-foot property is in dire need of further renovation. Replacing the 97 windows will cost an estimated $400,000 — making Aiden Quigley’s preference to sell rather than further renovate fairly understandable. Nonetheless, he’s open to some ideas.
“I’m not just going to sell it to anyone,” he said. “I’ll be interviewing potential buyers. If a state body comes in, that’s an option. If an American owner wants to live here, I’d be keen to work with them to restore it.”
On the subject of the rumored haunting, Quigley said, “There is always a feeling that you are not alone in Loftus Hall.”
Next, read the true story of the Winchester Mystery House. Then, go inside the incredibly twisted murder hotel of H.H. Holmes.