#1 The Mermaid Inn, Rye, East Sussex
Reputed to be one of the most haunted inns in England, the charming Mermaid Inn has a long and rich history with parts of the building dating back to 1156. It was once frequented by pirates and smugglers.
Guests have said they have seen people walk through walls, or been awoken by a man dressed in old-fashioned clothing sitting on their bed. It was reported that a medium actually saw figures dueling in the inn. Others have reported being woken at night by loud footsteps outside their room. When they went to investigate, no one was there. As soon as they got back in bed…the footsteps returned.
#2 The Devil’s Stone Inn, Shebbear, North Devon
A 400 year old former fishing pub, the Devil’s Stone Inn gets its name from the nearby “Devil’s Stone”, which, legend has it, fell out of the devil’s pocket when he fell from heaven. The Inn itself has had reports of much paranormal activity such as taps turning themself on and strange noises in the hallways at night. There is a tale of the Inn being haunted by a young girl, aged around 7 years, accompanied by a grey bearded man.
It is tradition that every year on the fifth of November, the stone is turned over by the church bell ringers to keep the Devil away from the village.
#3 Bucket of Blood, Phillack, Cornwall
Legend has it that the Bucket of Blood got its disturbing name many years ago when the landlord went to the on-site well to get a bucket of water but found there to be just blood. Further investigation found there was a badly mutilated body at the bottom of the well. Often visited by criminals and smugglers in the past, the pub now has reports of ghostly figures standing across the road and other strange phenomena.
Such an appealing name for a pub!
#4 The Royal Castle Hotel, Dartmouth, Devon
Built in 1639 on the Quayside beside the River Dart, the Royal Castle Hotel is reportedly haunted by a host of spirits. Guests have claimed seeing ghostly men fighting outside the entrance, and a spectral coach and horses are sometimes heard in the early autumn mornings coming to pick up Princess Mary, wife of William III, who haunts the hotel (some believe the coach’s appearance is the sign of an impending death).
#5 The George & Dragon Hotel, West Wycombe
A White Lady haunts this 18th century hotel. The story behind this pub’s haunting goes that the notorious “Hellfire Club” would meet in the pub before going on to do many a debauched deed. A servant girl named Susan, a young and somewhat naive barmaid, agreed to join them, only to turn up dead the next morning. Her ghost–known as “Sukie”– is said to walk the halls of the hotel, weeping. If followed she will disappear in to her old room.
Once the officers’ mess for the Duke of Wellington, this pub in Belgravia is reported to be haunted by a phantom Guards officer. Well known to the locals, the story behind the haunting tells the tale of a young officer who was caught cheating at cards, and his comrades punished him with a savage beating before he fell – or was pushed – down the stairs to his death. Although the year is not known, the month is thought to be in September, as this is when the pub seems to have an rash of supernatural activity. Ghostly shadows like wisps of smoke appear, and strange happenings occur at the Grenadier, all attributed to the phantom Guardsman.
#7 The Brushmakers Arms, Upham, Hampshire
This pub is said to be haunted by a man named Mr. Chicket, who was robbed and murdered many years ago while staying at the Inn. Many guests have since said they have seen a shadowy figure roaming the rooms, believed to be the murdered man looking for his money and possessions.
#8 The Angel Hotel, Lymington
Located in the center of picturesque Lymington, a popular sailing town on the south coast, the pub is reputed to be haunted by two ghosts.
One is the tall ghost of a seaman, dressed in a naval coat, and the other is thought to be that of a coachman, who is seen standing looking out of the kitchen window. The hotel was an old coaching Inn in the heart of the New Forest, and was used by the local shipbuilders for lodging.
#9 The Hyde Tavern, Winchester, Hampshire
Perhaps the oldest and smallest pub in the city of Winchester, The Hyde Tavern is said to be haunted by a specter that pulls the bedclothes off the visitors beds. The ghost is believed to be that of a woman who died in one of the rooms from cold and hunger centuries ago.
#10 The Ostrich Inn, Colnbrook, Buckinghamshire
The Ostrich Inn near Heathrow, dating from the 15th century has a grizzly history. As the tale is told, the Jarmans who were husband and wife landlords murdered over 60 of their wealthier guests by dropping them through a trapdoor in a bedroom, plunging them into a vat of boiling liquid and, ultimately, their deaths. There have recently been reports of strange occurences, possibly the ghosts of murdered guests trapped within the walls of the pub.
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