During the 17th century a little girl aged about six years old lived at the Manor with her family along with several servants.
To own a pair of shoes at the time was evidence of the family’s wealth. But as sometimes happens with children, she mislaid one of her precious shoes and was scolded by her nurse and sent to bed.
However, the little girl was desperate to find the lost shoe and during the night she went in search of it, it may have been that she was sleepwalking. Sadly, the following morning her crumpled body was found at the foot of the stairs.
The Manor was purchased by Bernard Roberts in the 1940’s and alterations and repairs were begun soon after. One of the bedrooms was to be converted into a bathroom and while plumbing work was carried out, a tiny leather shoe was found under the floorboards.
The locals had heard the story of a ghost of a child wearing a long blue dress wandering the house at night and some even claimed to have seen her; eventually the full story was told to the Roberts family.
The ‘Little Blue Lady’ has not been seen since the recovery of the shoe. Perhaps that is because now she can rest in peace.
The above story is a classic case of an ‘illusory correspondence’ where a story has been created to explain and example of unknown phenomena. The shoe was never ‘lost’ – it had been intentionally concealed under the floorboards, probably by the parents or homewoners at the time.
Concealed shoes and other objects including protective graffiti, mummified cats, witch bottles and spiritual middens are now understood to be part of a continuum relating to ‘ritual house protection.’ Please refer to earlier posts on RPM & RP which address each of these subjects (and objects) individually.
The owner of the Manor, Mrs Clarke related the story and recorded by Charles Denham in 1973.
The information card and the small child’s shoe resides in the Sittingbourne Heritage Museum along with the contents of ‘The Sittingbourne Cache’ – a large collection of clothes and objects that had been deliberately concealed in the walls of the Plough Inn, Sittingbourne.
More about deliberately concealed shoes and clothes –