A couple made an eerie discovery while renovating their 16th century farmhouse.
A mysterious bundle was found under the stairs of Kerrie Jackson and her husband Bleddyn, stuffed into a hole in the woodwork.
But when the couple managed to remove it, they were surprised by what they discovered.
Inside were several shoes, various animal skulls, rusty cannon barrels and a half-eaten hat – all items that were used in the late Middle Ages to ward off witches and demons.
Kerrie said Class II-listed Plas Uchaf in Denbigh, North Wales, has been in her husband’s family for generations.
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Talk to Wales Onlineshe said, “Bleddyn was working in the next room when he saw something through a hole in the wall.
“The staircase was built over a sealed medieval door that once connected different parts of the house, and the void below had been exposed by repairs to the old wooden frame.
“It was very scary to peer into the darkness and see all the objects in it. At first we could only see a pair of shoes through the rubble.
“As we kept pulling them out, more and more were found, until we finally lined up eight odd shoes – all for the left foot and from heavy work boots for men to toddler shoes – along with the remains of a horse’s skull – a wool hat and parts of a gun barrel .
“The shoes were in remarkably good condition – you could even see the imprint of their owners’ feet.”
Kerrie and Bleddyn researched the articles online and slowly pieced together the creepy reason they might have been put there.
“There’s an old superstition that says witches would enter houses between places like stairs, at dusk, or at midnight,” Kerrie says.
“People believed that by leaving out items such as shoes, witches, or demons, the wearer’s odor would be attracted, and once they stepped on the shoe or boot they could not return and were therefore trapped.
“Other theories suggest that they may be so distracted by the novelty of the find that they would leave the family alone.
“There are also many ideas about why someone would hide horse skulls in houses, and we wondered if there might be some connection to Mari Lwyd (the old Welsh New Years tradition of wearing a white sheet topped with a horse skull and from singing house to house or reciting poetry).
“We also found a smaller skull, but we are not sure which animal it belongs to.”
She added that all items have since been carefully reattached to protect the house for a few hundred years.
“We’re not worried about them being there, and we’re not scared of them at all,” said Kerrie.
“We come across quirky things pretty often in this old house that really connect us to the past. We believe it’s important to record what we find and then return it for future generations to discover.”
“Though we wonder what future residents of this place will think of the things we end up leaving behind.”
To see more of Kerrie and Bleddyn’s renovations, visit their Instagram page Here.