Durham - Paranormal Database Records

Man in Bowler Hat

Location: Rowlands Gill - Private residence, Sherburn Towers Estate
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1990s - 2012
Further Comments: Residents of this property are said to have observed a dark haired man wearing a bowler hat who stands at the bottom of the staircase. Sounds of banging have been heard and items move around.

Most Not Haunted?

Location: Ryhope - Cherry Knowle Hospital, Laurels Block
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2008
Further Comments: Ghost hunters were said to be putting their lives at risk by breaking into this former hospital, and local newspaper Sunderland Echo named it 'the most haunted hospital in the UK'. Unfortunately, there is a distinct lack of ghost stories relating to the structure, and one can not help but to think a modern myth is in the making.

Ada Harrison

Location: Ryton - Private building off Main Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: April 2011
Further Comments: Ada is said to have died of tuberculosis in 1907. Her ghost was reported to have been seen in a residence, sitting on a bench during a dinner party. She is also blamed for opening cupboard doors, turning on taps and moving objects around.

Anne Isabella Milbanke

Location: Seaham - Along the cliffs
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Weather dependent: Stormy nights
Further Comments: During stormy nights a grey lady is reputed to walk along the cliff tops, pausing close to Seaham Hall. She has been named as Byron's former wife.

Fox Hunt

Location: Seaham - Five Sisters (group of trees)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Weather dependent: Fog
Further Comments: A local legend says that the five trees are where an old witch coven would meet. One of the witches took the form of a fox and lead the local hunt over the edge of a cliff - the scene is repeated if the weather conditions are right.

Chained Figure

Location: Seaton Moor - Petermoor Hill
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Early Nineteenth century
Further Comments: The bottom of the hill was haunted by a semi transparent figure that would wave his chains at passers-by.

Pickled Parson

Location: Sedgefield - Old Rectory (building burnt down in 1791)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Pre 1791
Further Comments: A local legend says that this rectory was haunted by the ghost of a clergyman. The man had died a few days before the village tithes were due to be paid; his wife pickled his body and sat it at the dinner table, visible though the window, so she was able to collect and pocket the money due.


Location: Shotton Colliery - Private residence (new build)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2008 - 2009
Further Comments: A former occupier of this property moved out after his dog chased a shadow out of the living room and up the stairs. They also reported hearing horse's hooves and experiencing poltergeist-like behaviour.

Floating Face

Location: Spennymoor - Area of land next to old railway line (now Rosa Shafto nature reserve)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Circa 1982
Further Comments: A large, solid, white face was spotted floating alongside a silver birch tree by four children. The children fled home, with at least one of the witnesses having nightmares of the incident for years after the event.

Elizabeth Bessie Hewitson

Location: Spennymoor - Whitworth Hall County Park Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Dressed in black, Elizabeth is still said to walk around the building even though she died in the 1800s. Another ghost here, this time male, is reported to have died of a broken heart.

Bloody Horseman

Location: Staindrop - A688 between town and Raby Castle
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This phantom rider on a white horse has his face covered in blood. The entities are said to slowly descend into the ground.


Location: Stanley - South Causey Inn
Type: Other
Date / Time: 15 October 2009, around 23:45h
Further Comments: While in this pub with her friend, this witness heard a large group of people enter the building, she turned and saw the group were wearing bright clothing, and one woman in particular possessed a turquoise coloured outfit with lots of feathers. The witness turned to her friend briefly with the intent to point to the crowd, but when she turned back they had vanished.


Location: Stanley - Town Centre, close to the market
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1996
Further Comments: A witness here had a fleeting glimpse of a middle aged woman dressed in 1920s clothing. The figure disappeared 'in the blink of an eye'.


Location: Stockton on Tees - Stockton railway station
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Post 1937
Further Comments: This station is reputedly haunted by a girl who was killed on the site in 1937.

Ada Holmes

Location: Sunderland - Crowtree public house, Crowtree Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1960s onwards
Further Comments: A very popular landlady, Ada died in 1965, though her ghost wearing a colourful dress has been seen since.

General Beckwith

Location: Sunderland - Doxford House
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2013
Further Comments: The Ghost Hauntings Overnight Surveillance Team claimed to have encountered a couple of phantoms on this site - General Beckwith, a former owner, and a girl named Emily who died in a fire.

Mrs Johnstone

Location: Sunderland - Empire Theatre
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1970s
Further Comments: A violinist who died on the site, Johnstone has been seen by the manager, drifting along the dress circle before vanishing. There are also rumours that Sid James haunts the Empire, and that Barbara Windsor (and several others) now refuse to work there.

Cauld Lad

Location: Sunderland - Hylton (or Hilton) Castle
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1400s
Further Comments: This little brownie caused havoc in the kitchen after hours - the staff disposed of it by creating a distraction until the sun came up, the light of dawn dismissing the creature. Another story blames the kitchen disturbances on the ghost of a groom who was murdered by his master. More recently, one witness who lived nearby reported seeing the cauld lad in 1969, when he was a child.

George & Co

Location: Sunderland - North East Aircraft Museum
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Several entities are reputed to haunt this museum. The bottom half of a man has been seen walking around the hangers, wearing black trousers but no shoes. A phantom hound reputedly remains here, and poltergeist activity has also been reported - one witness watched an old fashioned gramophone, part of a static display, start to play unaided.

Pungent Cigars

Location: Sunderland - Royal Infirmary Hospital (Ward F62, no longer standing)
Type: Crisis Manifestation
Date / Time: 1980s
Further Comments: This was a palliative care ward. A doctor who worked there would smoke very pungent cigars. After he died the smell of cigars would fill the air a few minutes before a serious medical event occurred. So many staff experienced the smoke that it became unofficial procedure to check every patient and call in resuscitation staff if anyone detected the smell.

Strange Black Shape

Location: Sunderland - Stadium of Light training grounds
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: April 2005
Further Comments: Players from this soccer club stated that they were concerned that their chances for promotion in the football league were under threat by a ghost which haunted their grounds. One player stated that the phantom was an eighteenth century wreaker called 'Spottee'.

Andrew Mynarski

Location: Teeside - Teeside International Airport (was Middleton St George airfield ), hangers and nearby St George Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1950s onwards, Pilot seen in hotel 1982
Further Comments: Mynarski died after trying to save a trapped pilot in a Lancaster bomber as it dived towards earth, and was awarded the VC for his efforts. His restless spirit currently walks the area he was stationed during the war, and was seen outside the control room and hangers in the 1950s. Another version of the story names the phantom as a Canadian pilot named Mullen. In 1982 a pilot reported feeling a weight on his bed which vanished when he told it to go away, and although this could be sleep paralysis, the pilot researched further and found 20 more people who had experienced the same event.

Woman's Face in a Window

Location: Thornaby - Private house along Lockton Crescent
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Early 1990s
Further Comments: A wedding photograph taken in front of an empty house revealed the image of a middle aged woman staring out of the window from inside the building. The owners of the house did not recognise the strange figure, and have no explanation to who she is (or was).


Location: Thornley - Thornley Workingmen's Club
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: January 2011
Further Comments: A person working in the upper part of the building reported seeing a cloudy figure which emerged from a dressing room only to vanish near the witness. The witness was told by staff that the ghost was nicknamed 'Salty' and it likes to make its 'presence known'.

Black Shape

Location: Thornley - Unnamed council house
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1947 - 1963
Further Comments: A family living in this newly constructed house encountered a 'black shape' dozens of times over this period, often accompanied by a horrible presence. The family eventually informed the local vicar who prayed in the house - the haunting ceased.

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