The day an earthquake hit Castle Drogo

This week a number of us have been involved in a workshop at Castle Drogo working out how we might create the visitor experience when the 5 year long building repair project begins next April. We need to stop the roof, walls and windows leaking – so we need to carry out an epic and massive project – lots of scaffolding and lots of builders – however we want to also keep the castle open to the public by offering a new and different visitor experience. What that might look like has been the theme of this week’s workshops.

Synchronicity is an odd and unexplainable thing but today such a ‘co-incidence’ happened.

One of the  members of the group James was creating a story based on the fact that Castle Drogo (built in the early part of the 20th century) had of course itself never seen battle – ironic in perhaps the bloodiest centuries of human existence. He contrasted that with the image of Drogo at war with Dartmoor – its weather, its quarries and the seismic fault line which runs through Sticklepath.

During all this war like talk a great rumble began – it seemed like the sound was coming from the floor above – everyone stopped talking and we looked at the ceiling as the noise started and continued for around 20 seconds – it was eery and unsettling but not frightening. Once it finished  several left to see what had happened – I speculated that there must a be some motorbikes outside on the drive.

Apparently visitors in the Castle had also heard the noise and had found it very unsettling too.

Mystery unsolved we pressed on with the workshop.

When I got home the mystery was solved – amazingly there had been an earthquake in Bovey Tracey (where my office is at Parke!) that afternoon – it measured 2.7 on the scale. That was what we had heard – only 10 minutes after we had been talking of the seismic fault lines in Sticklepath.

We need to be more careful what we talk about tomorrow and we need to be careful what we wish for!