Drinkers' haunts for Halloween hellraising

 

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1. Ye Olde Man & Scythe, Bolton Manchester

This 750-year-old town centre pub is where James Stanley, seventh Earl of Derby, took his last meal before stepping outside to be beheaded. He must have enjoyed it (the meal that is) because he is believed to be haunting the place to this day.

 

2. Bucket of Blood, Phillack, Cornwall

Legend has it the pub's name came from a bucket of blood pulled from the pub's well, caused by a dead body below. More prosaically, it seems likely the water was actually tainted red by tin from the local mines.

 

3. The Ostrich, Colnbrook, Berkshire

Scores of murders were committed at this pub in the 17th century by the husband and wife landlords. They preyed on rich guests by tipping them from their beds into a vat of boiling liquid. We believe the customer service has since improved.

 

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4. Mermaid Inn, Rye, East Sussex

There's nearly a ghost for every room at the historic pub with numerous secret passageways. One regular is a woman in white or grey who sits in a chair by the fireplace. Another knocked dozens of bottles off a shelf, terrifying the poor manager so much that he quit the next day.

 

5. Llandoger Trow*, Bristol

A limping ghost by the name of Pierre haunts the attic of this pub, which is believed to have inspired The Admiral Benbow in Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island.

*Update, the Llandoger Trow sadly closed its doors earlier this year.

 

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6. Morpeth Arms, Millbank, London

Beneath the floor of this Thames-side pub is a corridor of cells that was used as a holding prison for the nearby Milbank Penitentiary. Ghosts can still be heard, presumably those of prisoners desperate for a pint.

 

7. The Black Horse, Pluckley, Kent

A cheeky phantom moves possessions and glasses around the pub, keeping them hidden for days on end. Sightings of a small child have been reported. It could just be a small child, of course.

 

8. The Burns Tavern,, Motherwell, North Lanarkshire

Paranormal investigators Spiritfinders Scotland report that a ghost called Anthony lives upstairs while another called Andrew lives downstairs. Wonderful that phantoms can cohabit so happily in this day and age.

 

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9 The Golden Fleece, York

There are so many ghostly guests here that a book has been written about them. The most famous is Canadian airman Geoff Monroe, who died after falling from a pub window. His uniformed figure has woken those staying in his former room with an icy touch.

 

 10. Jamaica Inn, Bolventor, Cornwall

The smuggler's paradise inspired Daphne Du Maurier to pen her first commercially successful novel. Regular ghost hunts take place at the pub, which is "genuinely haunted" according to The British Paranormal Association.

 

Happy Halloween everybody - sweet dreams...

 

 

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  • This list was first published in October 2015