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Buildwas Abbey

In the 12th century, Abbot Burnell was faced with difficulties when a cattle disease ran through the region. Crops also faltered and fields were abandoned altogether, but Burnell refused to treat these problems seriously and would not listen to any suggestion that afflicted land owners could have their rents reduced. One of the junior monks stabbed Burnell in a fit of anger. Soon afer, the Bishop of Coventry appointed a new Abbot who was more amenable to listening to the farmer's problems. Thomas Tong, Burnell's murderer, served his penance and returned to the Abbey, wanting to be readmitted as a monk. The spirit of Burnell appeared, unhappy that the farmer's rents were not being paid and that his murderer was back. On one occasion, his spectre was seen in the company of another monk. The sounds of chanting and praying has also been heard too.

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