I love tales of buried treasure.

I think they appeal to the love of mystery – and possibly also greed – in all of us.

One such concerns the village of Broomfield in Somerset (pictured above – see also Why Witches? Part Three), where an underground castle is said to contain riches, and the door to it can only be located by the light of the full moon.

All attempts to dig it up have been thwarted, however, by the spirits who guard it, scaring off treasure hunters with their ghostly cries.

A local doctor once apparently located the door, but when he tried to open it, its guardians nearly carried off his servant, and he had to place a copy of the Bible on the man’s head before pulling him to safety.

The door closed, and disappeared, thereafter moving its position so it could not be found again…


4 thoughts on “Broomfield

  1. oooo treasurrrrrre! Excellent, I hadn’t heard this one before. Curious isn’t it that often hidden magical treasure is said to lie near churches / wayside crosses – another example of the close intertwining between the ‘new’ Christian religion and the older beliefs I often think.

  2. Thanks Bia – yes, it’s interesting how the buried treasure in many of these stories becomes a metaphor, something more than just material items of gold and silver, but something almost unobtainable, intangible – like the past itself, I guess! 🙂

  3. Hi I lived in broomfield for many years and never did I hear this story . Where did this information come from and can u tell me more please many thanks

  4. Hi Bobby – I found this story in “The Folklore of Somerset” by Kingsley Palmer (B.T. Batsford Ltd, 1976). I got my copy at a second-hand bookshop, but it may still be in print. It’s in Chapter One, “Popular Beliefs”. Incidentally, there’s another strange story connected with Broomfield that I found in “The Lore of the Land” by Jennifer Westwood and Jacqueline Simpson (Penguin, 2005) – a fantastic book, and definitely still in print – which tells of a witch who “set the toads” on a poor carter when he forgot to bring her some coal back from Bridgwater: “And after that, if he had to take a load of dung… she’d come to the door of her cottage and cackle at him. And sure enough the pegs sprung and the dung putt tipped up. Then she’d cackle, ‘That’ll teach ‘ee to forget my coals. I’ll toad ‘ee!'”

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