As Halloween glares down upon us, you might be wondering how to mark this suspicious occasion. Fear not! There are a surprising number of B&Bs that cater to those guests who like their holidays full of history, unexplained noises and ghosts. It’s not surprising, then, that a terrifying 63% of Brits seek to stay somewhere haunted!
So if you’re looking for a haunted house to stay in for Halloween, or maybe just a booootique hotel, we have just the properties in mind for a spooky stay. Be warned though, these B&Bs aren’t for the faint-hearted…
Legend has it that Castle Levan is haunted by a ghost, known as the White Lady, who said to be previous owner, William Semple’s, third wife Mariota or Marion Montgomery. The story goes that she tortured and killed “tenants” of the castle. She was sentenced to death but her punishment was later commuted to imprisonment in the castle. When Lady Montgomery’s husband returned from military duty, he was supposedly so disgusted by her behaviour that he imprisoned her in the castle and she starved to death.
The Manor House Hotel is a listed building dating back to the 16th century. Brimming with history and character, this hotel was featured on the television programme Britain’s Most Haunted, and guests return again and again to room 7 – supposedly the most haunted room in the building. Visitors have reported a number of unexplained incidents, such as knocking noises coming from inside cupboards and ‘ghost orbs’ have been seen floating in mid-air…
At The Schooner Hotel, the descriptions of ghost sightings are very well documented. Paranormal investigators and enthusiasts make up a significant portion of the clientele, visiting to investigate the ghost sightings. You can find the record of latest paranormal phenomena experienced at the hotel on their social media. Speaking of nail-biting experiences, the approximate number of ghost sightings is over 3000! There are at least sixty different spirits who make an appearance to spook the guests of the Schooner Hotel, and you can even book a private ghost hunt with the hotel’s resident medium!
The 600-year-old Woolpack Inn is nestled at the bottom of the hill in the shadow of a Norman castle. With its vast oak beams and inglenook fireplaces, it offers a glimpse into the hospitality of yesteryear. There are records of the innkeepers dating back to 1488, a copy of which is displayed in the bar area. But more importantly, this historic inn is said to be haunted by The Grey Lady, a friendly spirit who wanders the older parts the main building, which is no surprise given the long history of the building.
Samlesbury Hall is renowned as one of the most haunted hotels in Britain. Resident spirits include the legendary White Lady, Dorothy Southworth, who died of a broken heart and has since been seen on many occasions within the Hall and grounds. One particular spot in the Great Hall is known to be the spot where strange things regularly happen, such as a slap to the back of the head, uncomfortable feelings by wedding guests and unexplained moving shadows.
Many TV programmes and magazines have attempted to record the ghostly activity at Samlesbury. Visitors have included UKTV’s Most Haunted team with Yvette Fielding and Derek Acorah, historian and ghost-hunter Richard Felix, Radio One DJ Edith Bowman and numerous international media teams.
Ye Olde Kings Head is a traditional inn that was built in 1622. The name refers to the time when King Charles stayed at the nearby Gamul House during the English Civil War. The Inn has been designated by English Heritage as a Grade II* listed building, and with its long and rich history come many tales of ghosts and spirits within the historical walls. Paranormal teams have carried out studies within the Inn for a number of years and they believe that there are up to thirteen spirits trapped within the walls…
Binniemyre was built in 1862 for The Morrisons – one of the many wealthy family mill owners in the area. They had a large family but their lives were tinged with sadness. History states that one daughter, Lucy, who was jilted before her forthcoming marriage, was so distraught she took her own life in the house’s private chapel room. Because suicide was considered a crime at the time, Lucy was not allowed to be buried in the town, but her name can be seen on the family gravestone in Eastlands Cemetery in Galashiels. Lucy’s ghost is still rumoured to visit Binniemyre. Both Carol (the owner), her mother-in-law and other guests have mentioned seeing a woman in a white dress walking around the house. One guest even mentioned that she sat next to him on the couch in his room!
Dobbins Inn is one of Ireland’s oldest pubs, and it’s family run, which is why it oozes character and offers guests a great old-timey atmosphere (featuring a real coal burning fire). The building is steeped in history and folklore dating back to the 13th Century, and Dobbins is said to be home to the ghost of Elizabeth Dobyn, who is now known as “Maud”. She wanders the hotel woefully in search of her fallen lover. The owners can tell you many a tale about her spooking guests in the hotel.
The Cridford Inn happens to be the oldest inn in Devon, and possibly even the oldest in England, as it dates back to 825AD! It had previously served as a nunnery and a farm, being originally inhabited by the early Britons, before the building was remodelled in 1081. In 1086 it was one of the nine small-holdings mentioned in the “Domesday Book” and by then belonged to the Abbey of Buckfast in the Manor of Trusham. It is also believed that the Cridford Inn is home to two ghosts, one is said to be a Nun from the very early history of the property and a second is a Cavalier from Trusham’s conflict with Ashton (a nearby village) during the Civil war of 1642-46.
The Shoe Inn has been a resting place for travelers for hundreds of years. The original thatched inn is believed to date from 1420 and was extended around 1640 to become a posting station for the mail coaches. A tollgate was constructed across the road and the landlord was responsible for collecting the King’s tolls on the border between Hampshire and Wiltshire. The last New Forest highwayman was caught drinking in the Shoe Inn one night, and was publicly hanged in the morning. It is said that his ghost remains in the old thatch building, but do not worry if you are staying with them, as that is the owners’ accommodation. However, the owners promise that there are plenty of spirits to be seen in the bar anyway!
The Watergate Inn is an old coaching inn and is allegedly haunted by the ghost called Green Jenny. The tale of Green Jenny is somewhat shrouded in mystery. What is known is that there was originally an extra level to the front of the building and this contained a narrow room with an earth floor and a barred gate. Features such as these were associated with rat baiting and cock fighting activities, and the room was very much not associated with women. In the early years of the 18th Century, an ostler was surprised to see a woman in an almost luminous green dress on the dark stairway to this exclusively male domain. He bid her good night, mistaking her for the Landlord’s wife. No response other than a casual wave further surprised him. On later reflection, the ostler maintained that she was the ghost of a recently deceased serving girl known as Jenny… with whom he alone, as an employee, had been familiar.
This delightful country inn was built in the 14th century and retains all the traditional features one would hope to find therein. The bar and restaurant with their low ceilings, oak beams and inglenook fireplaces are full of character, where guests can enjoy the company of the inn’s resident ghost. The Brocket Arms was originally the monastic quarters for the Norman church until the Reformation, and legend has it that a priest was tried and hanged in the building and that it has been haunted by the affable character ever since…
A listed coaching inn dating back to the 1600s, The Old Ram retains many ancient features, and it may come as no surprise that it is purported to have its own ghost. The presence of a female ghost called Rose has been felt by a number of people over the years, including by Karla, the inn’s longest-serving member of staff (34 years!). Rose is a spirit who is apparently happy in the company of ladies, but not so keen on gentlemen. Rumour suggests that she either had her heart broken and/or was ‘ravaged’ by a local landowner. There is also a part of the hotel that is always a shade cooler than anywhere else…
From all of us at eviivo, we witch you a very #HappyHalloween and hope that you #StaySpooked !