IN NOVEMBER 1960, a little girl in Sauchie became the focus of a poltergeist.

Virginia Campbell was 11 years old. Her father James remained in Ireland, running the family farm, while Annie, her mother, worked in Dollar.

With the move from Donegal, Virginia found it difficult to adjust to begin with. She had been parted from her beloved pet dog Toby, and her best friend, although it did not take her long to make new ones.

The house which the family had moved to in Park Crescent belonged to Virginia's aunt and uncle, Thomas and Isabella Campbell, and Virginia shared the bedroom with her younger cousin Margaret.

All was well until on Tuesday, November 22, when both girls began hearing strange noises as they lay in bed.

They heard a sound like a ball bouncing off a wall, but they could not see anyone or explain it, so they went downstairs to tell the adults. The sound seemed to follow them down the stairs.

Reassured, they returned to their bed shortly afterwards, only to be frightened once more, this time by the sound of the headboard banging.

They moved to a different room, but it continued until Virginia fell asleep when it stopped.

Scratching noises could be frequently heard, not in one specific part of the house, but all over. Then things began to get really strange.

Items would go missing only to appear weeks later, a linen basket lid opened of its own accord, and ornaments moved without anyone being near them.

Furniture, too, began to move with no-one near. One instance of this happened the Wednesday following the bouncing ball incident.

Thomas and Isabella watched as their sideboard was moved several inches from its place by a wall. It then seemed to be pushed back by the unseen entity.

Soon word got around Sauchie of the haunted house. The family's nerves by this time were frayed as that same Wednesday night, the knocking go so loud in the house that neighbours heard it.

At their wits end, the Campbells enlisted the help of the local minister TW Lund. He visited the house but there was little he could do.

He looked around, inspecting the bedroom minutely and told the family that the knocks were coming from inside the headboard and from the wooden frame.

He is also said to have witnessed the linen box make its way across the floor of the bedroom only to move back to its original position.

By this stage, Margaret had fled, spooked by what she had seen.

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THINGS settled down, and the girls were told it was safe to go upstairs. When Margaret was told to get into the bed, however the violence erupted once more.

Further strange happenings occurred on Thursday, November 24, with a sewing machine turning itself on, and a vase and apple moving of their own accord.

What is odd about this case was that the poltergeist seemed to have attached itself to Virginia and where she went, it went.

One day at school she sat with her arms on her desk and Margaret Stewart, her teacher, happened to see her struggling with the lid. She asked what she was doing and told her to remove her hands.

Suddenly the lid flew open and it began flapping, hammering down three times. All her classmates began screaming at the sight, especially after one of the desks rose off the floor by three inches.

Another strange incident happened on Monday, November 28, when the pointer vibrated followed by Miss Stewart feeling the table vibrate. Virginia was close by, but not touching either of these items.

Virginia was hysterical – "all the time the phenomenon was appearing" – so Dr Nesbit of the Tillicoultry medical practice sedated her but even so, the poltergeist still appeared.

At one stage both he and the minister witnessed the rippling of Virginia's pillow and watched as it rotated on her bed. She was moved to a different house where Dr William Logan, Nesbit's colleague, visited her with his wife, who was also a doctor.

Here, they too witnessed knocking, and this led to Dr Logan and Dr Nesbit setting up a cine camera to capture the strange phenomena. Between 9pm and 10.30pm knocks were recorded, as was moving furniture.

On December 2, the story hit the press. The Alloa Journal reported that her aunt was once pushed off her bed when trying to comfort her and the sheets and blanket rose and fell of their own accord. Virginia was making moaning noises throughout as though in pain.

The Journal also interviewed James Henderson of the Spiritualist Church in Alloa who stated that he believed the girl had psychic abilities and he suggested that a "responsible medium" be taken to her to help her.

However, the night the cine camera was set up, Rev Lund and three other clergymen arrived and said prayers, hoping it would help.

By the following March, happier now and settled, the poltergeist left Virginia in peace.

Because so many responsible people witnessed the incidents, it makes it one of the most intriguing cases in Scotland.