In 1770 land owned by Jane Priddy at Hardway, Gosport, was acquired by the Board of Ordnance to construct a new powder depot for the Royal Navy. Over the years that followed, Priddy’s Hard in Gosport became the Royal Navy’s principal armaments depot, supplying naval fleets from Trafalgar to the Falklands.
Priddy’s Hard was first used to store gunpowder for Nelson’s fleet in 1775 when the first gunpowder magazine – The Grand Magazine – was opened. Since then Priddy’s Hard has supplied the Navy with explosives through the Crimean War and into the twentieth century when the site became a huge bustling Armaments Depot employing over 4000 people during the Second World War. The depot closed in 1989.
Historical research has uncovered 12 deaths in the eighteenth and nineteenth century buildings of the former Armaments Depot at Priddy’s Hard. The untimely deaths have happened at Priddy’s Hard have been as a result of accidental explosions and in one case an “unnatural” gust of wind, rumoured to be the evil spirit of a convict labourer who died in the same spot.
Sightings of many of the past unfortunate souls have been rumoured by former workers of the Royal Navy Armaments Depot over the years including more recently security guards that have looked after the listed buildings.
Fright Nights are now offering YOU the chance to take part in an Explosion Museum Ghost Hunt at Priddy’s Hard one of England’s most haunted locations.
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