1954 - 1957

31 - 34


Underwood is involved in the excavations that continue during the 1950s at the site where ‘the most haunted house in England’ once stood - Borley Rectory. 

Plan of Cellars of Borley Rectory

“Many persistent reports of a tunnel have cropped up over the years, suggesting that it led from a building which was presumed to have occupied the site of Borley Rectory to a nunnery…”

“In October 1954 Mr Philip Paul - a journalist turned psychic investigator - spent a week at Borley, looking for the tunnels. He wanted to find the rest of the ‘Nun’s’ skeleton…”

Underwood (centre back) at an excavation at Borley.

Partial skeletal remains were previously been found in the Borley cellars during Harry Price’s investigation in 1943. 

Excavators at Borley

“I have talked with nearly a hundred first-hand witnesses of apparently paranormal activity at Borley…”

“…and I still get reports of curious happenings in the church and churchyard just across the road from where the haunted rectory once stood...”

Borley Church

Underwood begins composing a history of the whole affair up to the present day. However an appraisal of Price’s investigations at Borley is published in the journal of the SPR in 1956.

Highly critical of Harry Price's work, the ‘Borley report’ delivers a critical blow to his reputation and legacy. The work Underwood has been preparing to publish (The Ghosts of Borley) is shelved.

Work nonetheless continues at the site.

The famous ‘floating brick’ photograph taken on 5th April 1944.

“On 12 September 1957 came the discovery of the long-lost and eagerly-sought tunnel running under the road between the vanished Rectory and Borley church…”

The tunnel on the Rectory side.

The reason for the existence of the tunnel is never firmly established.

The tunnel inside.


An exhibition by Hannah Taggart

Here Gallery, Bristol, 2007

Hannah Taggart; Widow of Borley

Hannah Taggart;  'House' (Detail of Living Room)

Hannah Taggart;  'House' (Detail of the Hallway)

Hannah Taggart;  Notebook cover replicating wallpaper from Borley Rectory

Hannah Taggart;  Plan of Borley Rectory and Grounds

Hannah Taggart; Notebook Page

Hannah Taggart; Notebook Page

Hannah Taggart;  Plan of Borley Rectory and Grounds