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The castle, now a romantic ruin, is reputed to be one of the most haunted in the British Isles. It has numerous legends associated with it, and although now only a shell of its former glory, it retains an air of its troubled history.
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The Black Downs have a long tradition as a haunt of the fairies, and stories tell of many sightings as recently as a few hundred years ago, when many country folk believed we shared this land with supernatural denizens. Read More »
On the 28th of April 1967 a flying saucer (UFO) was seen over the town by numerous witnesses. The object was first spotted by the coast guard (somebody used to observing) at Berry Head around midday.
The object hovered over the town at around 1600 feet for an hour. The UFO is said to have resembled a huge dome, eventually the UFO ascended rapidly and disappeared out of sight. Read More »
This large hillfort has a plethora of traditions attached to it, most notably that it is the site of the legendary Camelot, the stronghold of Arthur. There is a distinct possibility that the historical Arthur - probably a sixth century war leader - had his base here, as the Iron Age hillfort was reoccupied and refortified around this time. Read More »
Robert Charles Hope tells us in 'The Legendary Lore Of The Holy Wells Of England' (1893) that 'Cranmere Pool is believed to be a place of punishment for unhappy spirits, who are frequently to be heard wailing in the morasses which surround it'. Read More »
The mysterious footprints, which appeared overnight in heavy snowfall in Southern Devon in 1855, have never been adequately explained. According to contemporary reports, they stretched for over a hundred miles, and went through solid walls and haystacks, appearing on the other side as though there was no barrier. Read More »
The stone that lies in the village square to the East of the church is turned every year on November the 5th by local people. The stone is made from a type of quartz not found in the area, measures about six feet by four feet and weighs about a ton. Read More »
In his 'English Fairy and Other Folk Tales (1890), Edwin Sidney Hartland gives the following account of a ghost story and buried treasure in the Tavistock area. Read More »
There have been several ghostly sightings at Exeter Cathedral, a phantom nun was seen near the South wall of the nave, she disappeared through a wall.
The cloisters are also said to be frequented by phantom monks.
Once upon a time there was, in this celebrated town [Tavistock], a Dame Somebody, I do not know her name, and as she is a real character, I have no right to give her a fictitious one. All I with truth can say, is, that she was old, and nothing the worse for that; for age is, or ought to be, held in honor as the source of wisdom and experience. Read More »
Grimspound is a late Bronze Age settlement enclosed by a huge stone wall. The inhabitants were probably cattle farmers and the hut circles are the remains of their homes and pens for the cattle. It is not clear if the outer wall was for defence purposes or to keep the cattle enclosed. Read More »
There is a tradition dating back to the 17th century in Ottery St Mary, where tar soaked barrels lighted and carried through the Devonshire town. Only those who are born and lived within the town are eligible to carry one of the seventeen barrels which begin their journey from outside the local pubs. Read More »
The B3212 near Two Bridges has been the scene for one of the most frightening hauntings in Dartmoor, that of the phantom hairy hands, which try to push people of the road. Read More »
In his 'The Haunted Homes and Family Traditions of Great Britain' (1897), John Ingram gives the following account of the ghostly carpenters encountered by Mary Anne Hunn, probably around 1791. 'Amongst the innumerable multitude of buildings which have the reputation of being haunted, it will be noted that by far the larger number are haunted by strange noises and mysterious sounds only, Read More »
A Black Dog story is attached to a pool near Deancombe, and James Mackinley in his 'Folklore of Scottish Lochs and Springs' (1893) referred to the hound as its guardian, doomed to haunt there until the pool could be emptied by a nutshell with a hole in it. The following earlier and fuller account of the tale appeared in Notes and Queries, Number 61 (28 December 1850): Read More »
The pool is haunted by the spirit of a woman who wears a red head-dress. The pool was probably venerated in ancient times.
Fitzford House was the seat of the Fitz family from the 15th Century. It was demolished during the 1800’s, though the gatehouse, which is all that remains of the mansion was rebuilt in 1871. There is a story relating to Fitzford House involving a phantom carriage, a black dog and Lady Mary Howard (nee Fitz) Read More »
The village is said to be haunted by the spirit of the Vicar John Radford, who murdered his curate but was not punished for the crime. When he died his body was not buried in consecrated ground and his spirit is still said to wander around the village.
Off the A377.
Lew House (now a luxury Hotel) is said to be haunted by a white lady, a ghost of a widow of one of the Squires of Lewtrenchard.
On the old A30, between Okehampton and Launceston.
A winged dragon made its lair in an old tin mine here. The dragon’s hissing was said to be audible for miles around. It was finally slain in the mine but history does not record by whom. The story was recorded by the late 18th century writer Polwhele.
On 26 October 1967 at about 11.25 am, J.B.W. Brooks was walking his two dogs, an Alsatian and a Dalmatian, along the Moigne Down near Holworth during a force eight gale. He took shelter by lying down on his back in a hollow in the ground. Read More »
The Old Black Dog Inn has a curious story as to how it acquired its name. A local man who lived in a farm house that once formed part of a mansion destroyed in the civil war, found his house haunted by a black dog. The dog manifested by the hearth almost every night. Consider the article, The Lyme Regis Black Dog. Read More »
According to Raymond Lamont Brown in his 'Phantoms Legends, Customs and Superstitions Of The Sea' (1972), a ghostly 500 ton landing craft was seen off the Devonshire coast in October 1959. The phantom vessel was flying the World War II flag of the Free French and seemed to be in some distress. Read More »
Following a 1585 Act of Parliament, Plymouth Leat or Drake's Leat was built to divert water from the River Meavy on Dartmoor, seventeen and a half miles to Plymouth. The idea itself dates back to 1559 when Plymouth Corporation asked Mr Forsland of Bovey to make an initial survey for its construction, in order to create a new supply of fresh water. A more detailed survey was completed in 1576. Read More »
The following account of a strange experience by a young Joseph Wilkins in 1754 is taken from 'The Haunted Homes and Family Traditions of Great Britain' (1897) by John Ingram though the case has also been mentioned in several books including 'Phantasms of the Living' edited by Edmund Gurney, Frederic William Henry Myers and Frank Podmore. Read More »
Spinsters Rock is a burial cairn dating to the early Bronze Age. The structure was re-erected in the 1862 after collapsing earlier in the year.
According to folklore the rocks where erected by a group of three spinsters who where on a journey to deliver some wool. Obviously these three women where seen as giants having the strength to carry such a heavy burden. Read More »
Out of the dark, supernatural depths of Victorian England one name stands out. Jack.
Not Jack the Ripper, but a more supernatural fiend - Spring Heeled Jack! Read More »
According to 'The Legendary Lore Of The Holy Wells Of England' by Robert Charles Hope (1893). 'On the spot where St. Sidwella is reputed to have been martyred is the well dedicated in her honour; it is situated on the left-hand of the Exeter side of the tunnel leaving the city, at a place called Lion's Holt. Read More »
Stillborn babies and infants that had not been baptized could not always be buried on consecrated ground and a wealth of folklore developed around this delicate subject, some of it with a distinct North and South divide. Read More »
This particularly sinister folktale of the wild hunt is from Devon, and is based in the Dartmoor area, a place full of tales of the supernatural, especially the wild hunt.
One wild stormy night a farmer was returning home from Widecombe, somewhat worse the wear from the strong local beverages brewed on-site. Read More »