The story surrounding William’s difficulty is intertwined with that of the monk Essric and has since developed into a mythical tale that still intrigues many; it ends with an execution but always begins with the Abbey, as it was at the time, materialising out of thin air and the present ruinous Mill transforming itself into a stone tower from where the execution took place.
Today’s apparition is often known as ‘ and it is believed to be that of Essric, the young bailiff monk who basely betrayed the Abbey in the hope of becoming its Abbot.
Now, if only Essric would help the general’s soldiers take over the Abbey he, the humble monk, would be elavated to Abbot of St Benedict’s Abbey – for LIFE – a gift that would be far beyond the menial’s wildest dreams!
The general added that the young brother had absolutely nothing to lose, for if the Abbey held out, despite impressive defensive walls and generous stocks of provisions, the army would attack in even greater force and inflict a terrible result on the religeous order.
There are also those mythical stories and legends relating to images and sometimes terrible things that had once been a part of this once sacred place and have since been periodically returned by what may well be magical means!
They include the recurring story of a monk from St Benets who, on quiet evenings, can still be seen rowing between the Abbey and Ranworth in a little boat, accompanied by a dog.