The Overtoun Bridge in Dumbarton

The Overtoun Bridge in Dumbarton

This article will be taking a look at the mystery of the Overtoun Bridge in Dumbarton, Scotland…also known as the Dog Suicide Bridge…


The Overtoun Bridge Dogs

Since the 1950’s, the bridge has witnessed at least fifty, unexplained, dog deaths, which has earned it the gruesome title of ‘Dog Suicide Bridge’.

For some reason, most of the dog breeds seem to have been long-nosed, like Labradors or Retrievers.

The canine suicides only seem to take place on clear days, and there’s not that many of them in this part of Scotland! Also, they only jump off one side of the bridge.

There is a legend linked to this strange place – apparently centuries ago, a local man threw his baby over the bridge because he thought it had been possessed by a demon.


The Suicide Dogs

Over the last decade, the amount of dogs that have perished from the bridge has risen dramatically…and nobody knows why?

The story continues to attract widespread media attention – are these dogs really committing suicide?

Many paranormal experts believe that nearby Overtoun House is the epicenter of these strange happenings. Many locals believe that the house supports a ‘thin place’ – a location that connects Heaven and Earth.

The Suicide Dogs

A Scottish psychic named Mary Armour has spent a lot of sessions on the bridge, trying her best to find out what’s behind the strange suicides. She believes that some animals are hypersensitive to the spirit world.

She has also walked across the bridge many times with her own dog. She describes the bridge’s feeling as pure calmness and serenity. Her dog has not attempted to jump off, although it has gravitated towards the right-hand side of the bridge on every occasion (the side the dogs jump off!).


Dr Rupert Sheldrake

Biologist, Dr Rupert Sheldrake, believes that dogs have abilities beyond current scientific understanding, and he has also offered a theory to Overtoun Bridge.

He suggests that maybe the dogs are responding to some sort of human depressive impulse at the bridge which then causes suicide.

Could the dark past of the area have left a ‘footprint’ on the bridge that only dogs can pick up on?


Mink 

Scottish Wildlife expert David Sexton has concluded that there are three main species active in the bridge area – mice, squirrel and mink.

Now, a recent study shows that a high percentage of dogs go for the smell of mink, probably because they are not native to Britain and they have a heavy smell.

It is thought that mink have only really started breeding in the UK since the 1950’s – around about the time when these strange suicides started.

Coincidence?

Are these dogs flinging themselves over the brick walls of the bridge in excitement at the smell of mink…or is something more sinister, and paranormal, at work here?

Please leave your thoughts and opinions on the subject in the comment section below.

Scottish Banshees: The Baobhan Sith Vampire

Scottish Banshees: The Baobhan Sith Vampire

In this article we will be taking a look at the legendary Baobhan Sith Vampire, pronounced ‘baa’van see’.

These mystical creatures took the form of stunning young ladies and are also known as the White Women of the Scottish Highlands.


The Scottish Banshees 

The Baobhan Sith are thought to be related to the fairy family in Scotland – but they are not the friendliest version of this cryptid!

Legend has it that normal fairies enjoy the sun’s rays, and are often seen playing about in the Highlands – the Sith were generally withdrawn from society, with no interest in power…they only wanted to feed.


Vampires

More traditional vampires are known for drawing blood from their victims with their teeth – this is not the case with the Baobhan Sith.

Instead, they use long claw-like fingernails to pierce the flesh and then use their blunted mouth to drink out the blood.

They were known to be settled around the forest and mountain areas of Scotland – their hunting ground!

They would be attracted to the kills that Scottish Highland huntsmen were leaving. They would then lure these hunters into the dark corners of the landscape with their beauty.

Vampires

They are described as having hooves instead of feet – but these grotesque features are always hidden below their beautiful white dresses.

They are able to transform into animal form, but not a bat, like traditional vampires. Instead they opt to morph into wolf form.

There are no male versions of the Baobhan Sith, only female. If they feed off a female human she will eventually turn into a Sith herself. 

Legend has it that the hunters only had two weapons which worked against the Scottish vampire – they were terrified of horses and they could be killed off with weapons made out of iron.


The Young Hunters

The most common tale involving the Baobhan Sith centers around a group of young hunters who holed up for the night in a forest lodge. 

They got the fire going and sat around drinking whiskey – there was only one thing missing…

They all agreed that a few females would be the icing on the cake.

Without warning – there was a knock on the door!

They opened the lodge door to find four beautiful women who claimed to have got lost in the night, and were looking for shelter.

The Young Hunters

The men welcomed the women into the lodge and offered them food and drink. Before long, they were all merrily dancing around the lodge (a little drunk!).

The women moved in for the kill, slitting the throats of three of the hunters – one managed to escape with his life. He ran outside and stood next to the tethered horses – the Sith would not go near them!

He stood there, in the middle of the horses, all night long. When morning broke, the Baobhan Sith wandered back into the forest. 

The hunter re-entered the lodge to find his mates completely drained of blood, lying on the floor, with translucent skin.


If you have any thoughts or opinions on the Baobhan Sith, please leave them in the comment section below. 

Spedlins Tower – James ‘Dunty’ Porteous

Spedlins Tower - James 'Dunty' Porteous

The fortress, Spedlins Tower, looms over the south bank of the River Annan in the county of Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland, UK. It was constructed in the Tudor era (around about 1605) and was home to the wealthy Jardine family.

Records show that the Jardines owned the majority of the land between Templand and Milhousebridge.

The Jardine family’s stay at Spedlins Tower was cut short due to an unwelcome guest terrorising their day to day life. They eventually had to move across the River Annan to get away from the ghost of a miller who was haunting them…


Who Was James Porteous?

James Porteous worked as the local miller in the nearby territory of Milhousebridge. His work route included delivering his produce to the Baronet, Sir Alexander Jardine, at Spedlins Tower.

Porteous was a larger than life character with a bit of an argumentative side to him – his quarrels with the locals eventually led to him picking up the nickname Dunty (apparently this is Old English for ‘argument’).

Dunty’s sharp side eventually led to him having a big falling out with Alexander Jardine, some say there was an accident in the mill that Sir Alexander owned…and Dunty was behind this accident.

The argument finally got the better of Sir Jardine’s patience and he ordered Porteous to be locked up in the dungeons of Spedlins Tower for a cooling off period.


Hunger

Not long after this argument, Jardine was called away to Edinburgh on some pressing business – he had forgotten he had locked the miller in his dungeon and he had also forgotten that he had the keys to his cell in his jacket pocket.

As the hours led to days, Dunty realized that Sir Jardine had forgotten about him and began to panic.

Sir Jardine

When Sir Jardine eventually arrived at his destination he was horrified to find the keys to the dungeon in his pocket. He hastily hired a courier to return to the Tower with the keys and release Dunty.

He was too late.

Dunty was found dead inside the dungeon cell with half his hand chewed off – apparently he was that desperate for food!


The Haunting

From that moment on, the Jardine family were tormented by the spirit of the dead miller.

All day long and all through the dark nights, the family could hear the ghost wailing out “Let me out – I’m deen’ o’ hunger!”

The tormented screams got so bad that Sir Alexander eventually called in a local chaplain to perform an exorcism. The Chaplin used a large black bible to banish the miller’s spirit to the dungeons – it was no longer allowed to haunt the tower’s living quarters.

The whole paranormal episode had been too much for the Jardine family – Soon after, they moved from Spedlins Tower to Jardin Hall across the river.

The large bible used by the Chaplin in the exorcism ended up being bricked up in a stone niche in the Tower’s staircase wall. This antique bible acted as a ward to the miller’s spirit, and kept it quiet in the dungeons.

A few years after the Jardine family had moved into their new home, across the river, the bible was sent to Edinburgh to be rebound. This resulted in the family now being haunted in their new home by the ghost of Dunty.

Sir Alexander sent for the holy book at once and as soon as it was placed back in it’s holding place in the tower, the spirit’s cries disappeared.

These days, the owners of Spedlins Tower still insist that the ghost of Dunty resides in their dungeon area. Apparently, if you put a stick into the dungeon window, it will come out chewed…

If you have any thoughts or opinions on the subject we have covered here today, please leave them in the comment section below.