The 10 Best Haunted Locations in England
England is well known for being home to numerous haunted locations and dwellings. The ten places in this list are some of the most haunted places in England, with each place being the location of much unexplained paranormal phenomena.
Other the years I have been privileged to investigate some amazing haunted locations in England whilst working alongside the Scream Paranormal Team.
So begins my journey into what has been generally agreed to be the Top 10 most haunted locations in England….the questions is do you agree?
Borley Rectory, Essex (most haunted locations in England?)
Borley Rectory was first built back in 1863 on the site of an old monastery. The reports of strange occurrences date back to the mid to late 1800’s however, the first documented evidence of paranormal activity was in the early 1900’s.
The first reports that came to public attention were from 1928 when the then owner Guy Eric Smith and his wife contacted the Daily Mirror newspaper to report the strange goings on. The newspaper then took on the help of a paranormal investigator known as Harry Price. Mr Price stayed at the house to carry out extensive research for more than a year.
In 1939 the house was burnt to the ground, an oil lamp the cause. It was then left in ruins until 1944 when it was demolished.
For a house labeled as the most haunted house in England it’s little wonder there’s no shortage in ghostly experiences. One of the earliest sighting and perhaps most famous us that of a nun. Which may seem strange given that there used to be a monastery on the site, one would expect a monk rather than a nun.
According to local folklore, a nun from a nearby nunnery fell in love with a monk from the monastery, and the pair attempted to elope together. They were found and sentenced to death. The monk was reported to have been sent to the gallows in the monastery whilst the nun was sealed into the walls of the nunnery alive. This nun is believed to be the one that is seen on the grounds of Borley Rectory, looking for the monk in the hope of running away together once more.
The nun has been seen and heard several times throughout the years. She seemed to be most active during the time in which Rev. Harry Bull lived there.
The next most significant of reports comes from Eric Smith and his wife. They reported mysterious footsteps, doorbells ringing of their own accord, and poltergeist activity which occurred on numerous occasions. It was Eric Smith and his wife who reported their experiences to the Daily Mirror newspaper, who then arranged for the paranormal investigator Harry Price to stay and investigate.
Whilst staying there (for little over a year) Price witnessed the reported poltergeist phenomena first hand. He was said to have got in touch with the spirit of past tenant Rev. Harry Bull who died there years before. After numerous attempts at exorcising the property and continued media intrusions, in 1930 Mr and Mrs Smith left the house for good.
The next residents of the house were Rev. Foyster and his wife Marianne. They both were to continue to experience all the same phenomena that Price and the Smith’s had witnessed before them. However, the poltergeist activity seemed to become more aggressive with reports of smashed glasses, broken windows, and Marianne being thrown from her bed by an unseen force. The couple were to also experience otherworldly messages on the walls, which defied any logical reason like other reports.
After 5 years of what must have been very frightening indeed, the Foysters left the house leaving Price to move in and continue his study without interference. However during his stay he and his team of researchers were left relatively disappointed as they witnessed very little compared to what had been witnessed before. A full account of what Price experienced was published in the book ‘The Most Haunted House in England’.
Even after the house was burned to the ground reports continued to emerge. The most recent of reports occurred in the Parish Church.
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- Ancient Ram Inn, Gloucestershire
The Ancient Ram Inn has often been referred to as the most haunted house in Britain. The house itself is said to have been the location of many sinister happenings, The Ancient Ram Inn, in the village of Wotton-under-Edge, Gloucestershire, is believed to be riddled with up to 20 spectres who torment the paying punters of the 12th century home.
Built on an ancient pagan burial ground – and also believed to be the scene of child sacrifices and devil worship – the Cotswolds cottage is haunted by the likes of a murdered young girl called Rosie, a high priestess, and even a male sex demon, known as an incubus.
One ghost investigator who visited the house was spooked when a presence pushed up against his back – and felt the wooden beams of the medieval house vibrate and tremble when he grabbed onto them in fear.
A mysterious child’s scream was even captured on video – seconds after a man’s voice is heard to shout: ‘Get out!’
Ms Humphries, 51, said: ‘When I was a child, I was so scared of the house I used to sleep in a caravan outside.
‘It was normal for us to see people running out of the house, screaming in terror.
‘Once, I woke up and found a chest of drawers hovering over my bed – before it crashed down the staircase.
‘People have told us they’ve seen a high priestess sitting in one of the bedrooms, objects move and spin, and we used to hear the ghosts of murdered children screaming and crying in one of the bedrooms.
‘We put some children’s toys in the room for them to play with and they don’t cry as much any more.
‘The whole house is absolutely terrifying.’
Ms Humphries father, John, 85, was pulled from his bed by a spirit on the first night the family moved into the home – and after researching the history of the house, he was horrified to discover an ancient burial ground lay beneath. Many people who have visited the property have described it as the ‘scariest place’ they’ve ever been to.
- Pendle Hill, Lancashire
Pendle Hill is located in an area known as Pendleside. It’s famous for its links to George Fox, which led to the foundation of the Quaker movement. A Bronze Age burial site was also discovered at the foot of the hill and it was also home to the Pendle witches, prompting many people to visit the site in search of ghosts and spirits.
- Berry Pomeroy Castle, Devon
Berry Pomeroy castle is situated in an isolated part of Devon near to the small village of Berry Pomeroy. One of the ghosts is known as the White Lady and she haunts the dungeons, rising from St. Margaret’s Tower to the castle ramparts.
The castle was built during the early 12th century on land that was presented to Ralph de Pomeroy by the King of England, William the Conqueror, as a reward for his loyalty and support during the Norman invasion of England.
he castle was home to the Pomeroy family for nearly 500 years after the Norman conquest.The lands were forfeited in 1549 when Thomas Pomeroy took part in a religious rebellion. The castle passed to Sir Edward Seymour, who built a mansion within the walls of the Norman castle.
The castle was ravaged during the Civil War (Oliver Cromwell’s Roundheads Vs the Cavaliers who fought for Royalty) and was further damaged by fire in the early 18th century, after which no one has wanted to live their due to it’s dark history. It is now reported to be one of the most haunted buildings in the United Kingdom.
One of the ghosts is known as the White Lady. She haunts the dungeons, and rises from St. Margaret’s Tower to the castle ramparts. Those who report seeing this figure associate it with feelings of depression, fear and malevolence. She has been identified as the ghost of Lady Margaret Pomeroy who was imprisoned in the dungeons by her sister, Lady Eleanor.
Eleanor was insanely jealous of her younger and prettier sister, and is said to have incarcerated her because of a love rivalry, after Lord Pomeroy left to go on a crusade and left Eleanor in charge. Margaret was imprisoned in the castle dungeons for nearly two decades, before Eleanor allowed her a slow and painful death through starvation.
A blue light has been seen on a particular day every year in St Margaret’s Tower, usually during the evening. The blue light has been witnessed by many people in the past including Peter Underwood and his colleagues during an overnight investigation some years ago.
A second ghost is the Blue Lady, she has been reported there as far back as the 18th century. Dressed in a long blue cape and hood it has been claimed that she tries to lure men to their death by seeking help in unsafe areas of the castle.
Said to be the spirit of the daughter of an early Norman lord, who after an incestuous relationship with her father, she gave birth to a child. Shortly after it’s birth, her father strangled the baby in one of the upper rooms of the tower. In another version of the story it is said that she hated the child so much that she strangled it herself. It is said that because she smothered her child, her troubled spirit can find no rest, and she is often seen wringing her hands in anguish. At various times, the cries of the murdered infant can be heard throughout the castle.
Sir Walter Farquhar was a witness to the Blue Lady in the late 18th century. He was a prominent doctor of the time and was in the castle attending to the wife of a steward who had fallen ill. He saw “a stunning young woman, who was wringing her hands in obvious distress,” and he watched the figure move up a stairway and into a room upstairs.
- Woodchester Mansion, Gloucestershire
Woodchester Mansion is an unfinished Gothic revival mansion in Gloucestershire. Whilst it looks complete from the outside, inside, several rooms, lots of plaster and whole floors are missing. Over the years it has gained a reputation as a haunted location and several paranormal sightings have been reported, including that of a phantom horseman, the Tall Man of the Chapel and a ghost in the cellar. Some visitors to the mansion have been attacked by ghosts and others have collapsed, whilst women who have been to the bathroom have reported seeing a floating head. The ghost of a little girl and the ghost of an old woman have also been spotted at the site.
Some people have reported the strange smell of freshly extinguished candles there, although no candles had been burning prior to the appearance of the mysterious aroma.
Others have caught sight of a short man standing in one of the chapel doorways. He does nothing except gaze up at the ornate windows and he gives the impression that he is somewhat concerned about them.
It has been surmised that he may be the ghost of a stonemason and that his anxiety may be caused by the fact that water penetration during the years when the house was abandoned has caused a lot of damage to the chapel’s stonework.
He may also be behind the small stones that visitors have from time to time reported being flicked across the room when there is most certainly nobody visible in direction from which they came.
A phantom female voice has been heard singing an Irish lament in the kitchen, whilst in this same room there have been reports of a youngish man crouched in a corner who is apparently hiding from somebody.
He may have links to the revenant of a tall man who stands in the kitchen doorway and who appears to be searching for somebody as he leans towards the very area where the younger man has been sighted.
Perhaps these two ghosts are in some way related to the manor’s past and their appearances related to some long forgotten incident?
Indeed it would seem that only the fact that they choose to manifest at different times has kept the younger man from being found since, as many witnesses will attest, his hiding place is not that hidden.
A young girl has been seen skipping playfully up and down the house’s grand staircase, seemingly oblivious to the startled reaction she evokes from those who chance upon her.
On the first floor corridor the spectre of a young woman has been both seen and heard and she has been known on occasions to stand at one of the windows watching the comings and goings of visitors below.
The pet dog of the house’s caretaker seems to be more than aware of the ghostly presences that roam the building.
On one occasion the caretaker watched it sit on the sofa and wag its tale at someone who it could obviously see but who remained invisible to the caretaker.
Moments later the dog proceeded to lick thin air, and although no-one was visible, its tongue was definitely brazing against something!
- Village of Pluckley, Kent
Pluckley village has a reputation for being the most haunted village in Britain – and it was actually named just that by the Guinness Book of World Records in 1989. Between 12 and 16 ghosts have been reported in the village, including a screaming man, a highwayman who appears at Fright Corner, a schoolmaster found hanged by a group of children and an old woman who used to sit on a bridge smoking. Pluckley has been featured in numerous television programmes (including the darling buds of May) and is a favourite spot of ghost-hunters across the country.
- Athelhampton House, Dorset
Athelhampton House is located in Dorset and is thought to be one of the most haunted places in the county. A pair of duellists haunts the Great Chamber, where they once interrupted a female guest by fighting. Tapping sounds have been heard coming from the wine cellar, whilst the ghost of the Grey Lady has been seen around the house on numerous occasions. The padding sound of a phantom cat’s feet has also been heard on the bare floorboards around the house.
- Tower of London, London
The Tower of London has sometimes been described as the most haunted building in Britain and has been investigated by countless paranormal investigators and teams over the years. The Wakefield Tower is thought to be haunted by the ghost of Henry VI and on the anniversary of his death, his mournful figure is said to pace around Wakefield Tower until the clock strikes midnight.
The White Tower is thought to be haunted by the White Lady who has been seen waving at groups of schoolchildren. Her perfume is also thought to linger around the White Tower and the scent of it has made numerous guards physically ill.
- Salmesbury Hall, Lancashire
Salmesbury Hall is a black and white medieval house that dates back to the 14th century. It’s reported to be haunted by the ghost of Lady Dorothy Southworth, amongst others and has been investigated twice by Most Haunted, once in 2004 and once in 2009. It’s also appeared on an episode of Ghost Hunters International. A number of ghosts have also been caught on camera at the hall.
- Chillingham Castle, Northumberland
Chillingham Castle dates way back to the 12th century and has its fair share of ghostly tales and encounters.
Several ghosts are known to wander the castle’s timeworn interior. The most famous is that of the ‘Radiant Boy’, a childish wraith that is seen in the castle’s Pink Room, and whose heart rendering cries of either fear or pain echo through the corridors upon the stroke of midnight. In the past, cries always seemed to emanate from a spot near where a passage is cut though the 10-feet thick wall into the adjoining tower. As they faded away, a bright halo of light would appear, and the figure of a young boy, dressed in blue, would approach those sleeping in the room.
Later, the bones of a child, surrounded by decaying fragments of blue cloth, were found behind the wall. They were given a Christian burial, and thereafter the ‘Radiant Boy’ was seen no more – until, that is, Sir Humphrey began letting the room. Some guests complain of a blue flash that shoots out of the wall in the dead of night. Although they attribute it to an electrical fault, Sir Humphrey is quick to point out that there is no electrical wiring in that particular section of the wall.
Another unquiet soul to stalk the castle is the spirit of Lady Berkeley, wife of Lord Grey, whose husband ran off with her own sister, Lady Henrietta. Lady Berkeley was left abandoned at the castle, with only her baby daughter for company. The rustle of her dress is sometimes heard as her invisible revenant sweeps along the rambling corridors searching for her husband and leaving a cold chill, not to mention unsettled witnesses, in her ghostly wake.”
Have you experienced any paranormal experiences at the above locations? How about your own haunted house experience? Please comment below to let me know.