Wentworth Gaol is a haunting structure located on Beverley Street in Wentworth, NSW. Built between 1879-1881, this prison holds the distinction of being the oldest Australian designed Gaol. Both the Gaol and the town share their name with the influential figure, William Charles Wentworth. It’s architect, James Barnett had a visionary design with the Gaol standing as a testament to the past. Before its establishment, Mayor Lockyer used a dead gum tree with a bullock chain bolted around it to confine prisoners with heavy chains. This ominous Gaol was ultimately the answer to overcrowded lock-ups, it served as a place of punishment and despair for those unfortunate enough to find themselves behind its foreboding walls.
The men’s block, designed with utmost security in mind, features walls and ceilings constructed from unyielding concrete and cement, while iron bars adorn the windows, sealing off any hope of escape. The conditions within these cells were unforgiving, with stifling heat under the scorching Australian sun and bone-chilling cold during the long winter nights. With the emergence of newer prisons in the 1900s, the need for Wentworth Gaol diminished, ultimately leading to its closure in 1927. After serving as a Gaol, the gaoler’s cottage found a new lease on life, acting as extra classroom space for a school from 1935 to 1963. Join us as we delve further into the haunted history of Wentworth Gaol.
PARANORMAL PHENOMENA AT WENTWORTH GAOL
Inside the Gaol, you come face to face with the remnants of the harsh methods employed to control and subdue prisoners. Original stocks, a whipping stool, racks, and examples of shackles serve as chilling reminders of the torments endured. Visitors brave enough to step inside these haunted walls have encountered eerie phenomena, which include the whispers of disembodied voices that have been heard on multiple occasions.
Intriguingly, a photograph captured during a tour revealed a hair-raising sight: an unexplained white haze, that seems to form the apparition of two figures. There has also been a shadowy figure, taking the form of a person, sighted within the confines of a desolate cell. Observations such as these within the Gaol’s halls have left visitors intrigued and often questioning what other mysteries there are concealed within.
Visitors have also reported catching whiffs of enticing aromas hovering around the woman’s cells, these smells include biscuits, pastry, and ginger. As the darkness deepens, orbs have been sighted, moving through the air like fireflies, batteries on cameras have been known to mysteriously drain and interestingly a psychic medium once recounted a chilling encounter with a woman dressed in a “sack-like” dress with bare feet.
Among the ten cells, two stand out as “drunks” cells that were capable of holding up to 18 prisoners seeking sobriety. Strategically these cells were placed at the end of the cell block, this spared the guards from enduring the pungent smell of alcohol and raucous singing. Some say you can still hear and smell those who were once held within the “drunks” cells making their presence known.
VISITING WENTWORTH GAOL
As the chilling history and the paranormal intertwine within the haunted walls of Wentworth Gaol, one thing becomes undeniably clear: a visit to this eerie destination is not for the faint of heart. The stories of voices, apparitions, shadowy figures, scents, orbs, drained batteries, and ghostly encounters paint a haunting picture of a place steeped in supernatural energy. For those with a curiosity for the unknown and a willingness to embrace the unexplainable, a visit to Wentworth Gaol promises an unforgettable experience. But beware, as you step inside Wentworth Gaol make sure you are prepared to confront the spirits that dwell within for they are sure to greet you!
If you enjoyed reading about the paranormal phenomena experienced and reported at Wentworth Gaol then you may also be interested in reading about the ghost stories at the Old Adelaide Gaol located in South Australia.