The Ness Islands are situated on the River Ness, opposite the Bught Park, in the city of Inverness, Scotland. The first bridges to the islands were built in 1828, prior to their construction the only access to the islands was by boat. The original bridges were washed away in the flood of 1849 and were replaced in 1853-1854 by two suspension bridges.
The Islands are a natural beauty spot and a popular walk with tourists and locals alike, as the islands are home to a number of imported species of trees and home to wildlife such as bats and otters and occasionally deer.
The islands were however in use as a recreational area before the bridges were built. Carruthers (1843) describes a time, when the islands were accessible only by boat, a salmon dinner on a public gala day. He quotes "a gentleman of the town, Mr Angus B. Reach":
"On the grand occaisions of the judges' visits, and when the entertainments were on the most extensive scale, the 'Isle' was the scene of the revelry. With the embowering branches of the oak and the birch weaving a living canopy over them, and the pleasant sound of the running, stream in there ears, the 'lords' doffed their robes and cares of office together, and, attended by their busy entertainers, held sylvan court, like the banished monarch in the Forest of Ardennes ........ The only wonder is, how the river was crossed after the hogshead was empty."
In 2012 Highland Paranormal were approached by Highland Council to investigate the location ahead of their annual Halloween event at the location, below is our report:
No EMF readings detected on pre-investigation daylight visit.
Investigators should be aware of lighting in the area and possible underground cables.
Telephone mast located at Inverness Ice Rink checked for leakage, none detected.
Area to the west of the General's Well bridge has no lighting.
Investigators should beware of boggy areas in the centre of the Islands and also not venture beyond the paths on the water side.
No readings were recorded on the teams equipment in area to the east of the General's Well bridge or on the entire Island Bank Road side of the Islands.
Major movement was noted when dowsing rods were deployed in the open air theatre area, however as stated above no readings were detected on the equipment. At this time this is being treated as unexplained.
The area to the west of the General's Well bridge on the Bught Park side of the Islands did however produce some very interesting K2 readings, with readings fluctuating between 1.5 and 20+ mG. Although no intelligent responses were recorded to questions asked by the team, we had more success when we asked to be guided with the aid of the K2. This led to a bush in a clearing where a strange decaying smell was detected for a matter of 5 seconds and a bright flash of light was observed by two of the team. Warm spots were also recorded with a temperature difference of 5oC. It was also in this area that a strange mist was photographed, the team carried out several tests in an attempt to debunk the mist, but failed to do so.
On our return night time visit we again recorded K2 readings in the same area. One of our EMF meters suffered a complete battery drain and our trusty Kodak Z1275 camera appears to have been affected by some form of interference which appeared on some of the photographs. On our return to base the camera was tested and found to be in perfect working order again. The daytime visit again picked up activity in the same area however these were weaker signals than what had been picked up on the night investigations.
Our medium Mike attended these investigations and was drawn to the same areas that the K2 meter had recorded activity. He picked up on the residual energy of a woman called Ruth who appeared to be lying across the main path towards the river. In the clearing with the bush he picked up a much mores sinister spirit who he believed was in visitation and may have been causing some of the phenomena recorded. He also felt the presence of both a horse and a minister, the name Thomas was also picked up. When he led the team out of the area, he asked for the spirit to follow and one of the team members recorded that they had been touched.
For the most part the Ness Islands are devoid of any paranormal activity, however it is our opinion that the area to the west of the General's Well Bridge on the Bught Park side of the Island has a both residual and interactive hauntings taking place.
Our historians will continue to investigate the area and attempt to find evidence of the people named above.