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The photograph (bottom of this page) is from 1905, when Prime Minister Richard Seddon (bearded centre) visited the Cottage Hospital at Ōtaki.

Next to matron Edith Sealy by the door is the shadowy figure of an unidentified man.

Is this the ghost that is said to stalk the halls of the old Cottage Hospital, later the Ōtaki Maternity Home and now the base for the Ōtaki Women’s Health Centre? Inhabitants of the building have half-jokingly talked of unexplained noises and footsteps in the hallways, and seeing the photo they deduce that this is their ghost.

An exhibition of the Cottage Hospital is to open at the Ōtaki Museum in mid-December – see for details.

Is this the cottage hospital ghost?



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