The Cardinals Error
A public house with spooky tales
The local story is, there was a young called Nellie a poor farm girl who lived here some centuries ago. She became pregnant by a local man who promises her marriage and his fortune, before jilting her. Nellie dressed herself in her wedding finest and then drowned herself in the pond that lay behind the pub. Over the years various people have seen a ghostly figure of this lady could this be Nellie?
The Cardinal’s Error pub was a farm called lodge oak and is situated very close to Somerhill house.
After hearing about the spookiness going on, at the Cardinals Error I wanted to try and find out more. After talking to some people I found out about the lady who saw the ghost back in the late 1950s and it was recoded in a book called Haunted Kent. I went with my dad and interviewed this lady and others, and this is their stories.
Val Lewis grew up with here Sister and parents Cynthia and George Lewis the owners of the Cardinals Error public house in lodge oak lane Tonbridge.
Val’s parents ran the pub from 1949 –1985 and as a young girl Val would play with her sister in the huge garden, she can remember a pond on land around the pub where they kept chickens and had fun playing in the fields and grounds of Somerhill house.
When Val was a little girl about 3 or 4 she would ask her mum “who was the lady who would appear and sit on the end of her bed for 2- 3 minutes then go out the window” other strange things that happened was one year the brewery had an extension built on the side of the property not long after this Val’s mother had some Toby jugs that she kept on a shelf, and often they would find them placed on the chair in the morning.
The ceilings were very low inside and you could put the palm of your hand on the ceiling and feel movement coming from upstairs even though no one was there. Val also said that she remembered in the cellar about some stairs that would lead to nowhere.
This is a picture of me and Val standing outside of the Cardinal’s Error and the bedroom in the corner used to be Val’s bedroom, where the ghost used to fly out of, and also in the cellar.
Inside The Cardinals Error
We went and saw the landlord during the day because it was too spooky at night and we asked if we could go in and have a look
around. We wanted to see if we could find the stairs that led to no where in the cellar. The landlord moved some chairs and opened a trap door which went right underneath the building.
The stairs that went down to the cellar were very narrow and they creaked, it was very cold and damp inside the cellar. We couldn’t find the stairs at first but then the landlord moved
some beer barrels out of the way so we could see the stairs. The stairs were very steep and after about four steps they went to no where.
The landlord Simon told us that he had a phone call about two weeks ago from a man whose house was built on the land where the pond was three houses up from the Cardinals Error, so we went and spoke to him and he told us about his strange going on’s.
Strange going ons a few doors down.
We met the owners of the house and they let us in there house and the man Clive told us about his strange going on’s. He bought five recycled glass vases and put them in the kitchen in one particular place. In the morning when they woke up the vase had shattered into pieces when there was no one there at all. When it shattered Clive thought ok it doesn’t matter. Then the second one shattered and Clive then thought that’s odd, then the third one shattered and a cup jumped off his dresser, he thought that is really weird. The fourth then shattered and he thought something strange is going on here, the fifth then shattered that’s when Clive looked up the history of his house and found the spooky tale of Nellie who drowned in his back garden where a pond used to be.
This is a picture of me in Clive’s back garden where the pond used be. It was filled in the 1970’s when the housing estate was built. The map is showing where in 1896 the Cardinal’s Error used to be a farm called Lodge Oak.
The Cardinal’s is in Lodge Oak Lane named after the house Lodge Oak.