St Woolos Cemetery - The Haunted Holy Ground

From the book "The Haunted Holy Ground" by Mike Buckingham and Richard Frame published in 1988.

About the Authors






The Captain’s Last Trip

By Mike Buckingham and Richard Frame
First published 1988

© Mike Buckingham and Richard Frame 2012

A Captain whose voyaging over the Seven Seas should have fitted him for a death more dignified than one at the bottom of a Newport dry dock is the subject of this short tale.

In the Queen’s Hotel, Newport, on the morning of Valentine’s Day, 1879 the coroner Mr Brewer held an inquest into the death of a Captain John Underhill of Bristol, whose ship had been berthed in the town’s Alexandra dock.

From the details which emerged it seems the captain left his ship to witness the turning on of the first electric lights to be seen in Newport’s docks.

While crossing over the dock gate Captain Underhill must have caught his boot, or so it was surmised.

From the top of the dock to its floor was twenty feet and it was into this dark chasm the unfortunate seadog fell.

In the fall his ribs were smashed and one eye was injured. Death followed after a couple of days. A simple stone marks the grave of one of many sailors who over the years have embarked on their last but greatest voyage after falling into the docks.