Haunted Trees and other Myths & Legends of the Forest

 
 


Screams

Location: Pluckley (Kent) - Screaming Woods
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A local legend says that the screams which emerge from the woodland belong to those who became lost and died amongst the trees.


 
 


Monk

Location: Polstead (Suffolk) - Garden of Rectory, and across fields
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The spectre of a monk has been reported in the back garden of the Rectory here, sometimes walking across the fields and vanishing near Corder's House. Children living at the sight have often reported seeing other phantom children playing under the trees in the grounds of the rectory; adults have been unable to see anything.


 
 


Bleeding Elm

Location: Radstock (Somerset) - Round Hill Tump (aka Woodborough)
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Pre 1937
Further Comments: An elm (or possibly an oak) tree that grew upon the barrow was reported to bleed if cut.


 
 


Maud Toogood

Location: Ramsbury (Wiltshire) - Elm tree in village (now replaced with an oak)
Type: Curse
Date / Time: Oak still present
Further Comments: A hollow elm tree which was killed off by Dutch elm disease was replaced with an oak. One of the reasons for the replacement was that the shade of a local witch had taken up residence in the tree, and locals were worried that she may curse the area if the elm was fell.


 
 


Tree Spirit

Location: Ribchester (Lancashire) - Hothersall Hall
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A ghost that pestered this household was laid under a nearby tree - while the plant lives, the spirit can not escape.


 
 


Hooded Figure

Location: Salcey Forest (Northamptonshire) - General area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This figure, covered so no flesh is visible, is sometimes seen darting between the trees. It could be a lover of Nell Gwynn, who the king had murdered.


 
 


Nellie & Charlie

Location: Salcey Forest (Northamptonshire) - Salcey Lawn
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The figures of Nell Gwynn and King Charles II have been seen on the property, though never together.


 
 


Wild Man of the Woods

Location: Salisbury (Wiltshire) - Woodland near the town
Type: Cryptozoology
Date / Time: 1877
Further Comments: A wild man who lived in the woods was shot at when he attacked and tried to kidnap a local farmer's wife. The creature was never seen again.


 
 


Black Hounds

Location: Savernake Forest (Wiltshire) - General area
Type: Shuck
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The forest is reported to be home of several black dogs which bring ill fortune to any witnesses. There are also stories of a ghostly white deer which darts between the trees, a headless woman riding on horseback, and a coach and horses which leaves the forest and heads towards a nearby farm.


 
 


Dancer

Location: SE23 (Greater London) - One Tree Hill, Honor Oak Park, Dulwich
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: 1948
Further Comments: A female dancer was seen performing perfect complex ballet moves on the hill late at night, without making a sound on the debris ridden ground.


 
 


Sir Walter

Location: Sherborne (Dorset) - Castle
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 28 September, St Michael's Eve (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Sir Walter Raleigh is said to appear here once a year, near a tree that was named after him. Other ghosts claimed to haunt the castle include horses and a ghostly child. At one time, it was thought the castle was cursed, as ill fortune befell several of the owners.


 
 


Headless Sister

Location: Sherston (Wiltshire) - Pinkney Park
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The house connected to the park is home to a skull of a woman - it is believed to belong to the ghost of a young girl who carries her head under her arm, killed by her own sister. Another legend connected to the park is the 'Elm-Ash' tree, a single tree comprising of both types of wood given in its name - it was said to have grown from the grave of a male suicide into which two wooden stakes were thrust to ensure he did not return.


 
 


Upright Beast

Location: Sherwood Forest (Nottinghamshire) - Deep within the forest
Type: Cryptozoology
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: A local teenage myth says that the forest is home to a tall hairy man, whose eyes glow red in the dark. There is a chance that this is a modern version of the tree spirits that were once said to live here.


 
 


Faces in the Trees

Location: Sibton (Suffolk) - Village Green, Nearby trees
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The location where a fight between two gypsies resulted in both their deaths, the trees are said to have taken on a life of their own; faces will appear in their branches, and the leaves drip blood.


 
 


Peasant Girl

Location: Silverstone (Northamptonshire) - Whittlebury Forest
Type: Curse
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A knight took his own life after having his love rejected by a peasant girl. Lying in his own blood, the knight cursed her, and she died soon after. The peasant's ghost remains in the forest. Another entity reported to haunt the area is the wild hunt, complete with headless horseman.


 
 


Grey Lady

Location: Sissinghurst (Kent) - Approaching the village from Wilsley Pound
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2000s?
Further Comments: By a large tree near a white house on the approach to Sissinghurst from Wilsley Pound, a phantom grey lady occasionally stands.


 
 


Shaking Tree

Location: Stalybridge (Lancashire) - Unknown farm
Type: Other
Date / Time: Prior to a death in the family
Further Comments: The leaves in this tree would shake violently just prior to a family member dying, regardless of wind and weather conditions.


 
 


Sarah Harrington

Location: Staveley (Derbyshire) - The Hagge (former mansion, now a farm house)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Harrington was a former Maid of Honor to Queen Henrietta, and is thought to be the phantom woman in white who haunts this building. A mighty oak which stood in the garden was thought to scream and bled when cut; unfortunately the tree blew down during a gale in 1883.


 
 


Elderly Lady in Flowery Dress

Location: Stithians (Cornwall) - Kennall Vale woods
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: September 2004
Further Comments: Two people out for a walk in the woods watched an elderly lady bending down ahead of them, appearing to be picking something up from the ground. The witnesses looked away from the woman briefly, during which time she quickly vanished. The area is also said to be haunted by mill workers.


 
 


Army on Manoeuvres

Location: Stockton on the Forest (Yorkshire) - Skies above area
Type: Environmental Manifestation
Date / Time: 13 January 1792
Further Comments: Several people reported seeing a forest in the sky, with soldiers in black uniforms moving around in formation. More soldiers wore white clothing, but appeared to be allied to the other troops, rather than in conflict.


 
 


Hanged Soldiers

Location: Stogumber (Somerset) - Heddon oak tree
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The shades of many soldiers hanged on this tree by James II's men are still reported to float around the area. Sometimes the executions can be heard. Another story says that the ghosts are Monmouth's men.


 
 


Harriet

Location: Stogursey (Somerset) - The Witch Tree
Type: Shuck
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The shuck which appears here is believed to contain the spirit of Harriet, once a local witch who remains much feared.


 
 


Who put Bella in the Wych Elm?

Location: Stourbridge (West Midlands) - Hagley Wood
Type: Other
Date / Time: 1940s
Further Comments: A woman discovered inside the hollow trunk of a Wych Hazel was thought to have been murdered in an unknown ritual. Shortly after the crime, graffiti sprang up asking 'who put Bella in the Wych Elm?'. The crime remains unsolved to this day, and animals are reported to be weary of the area.


 
 


Small White Dog

Location: Stretton (Rutland) - Stocken Hall Farm (now part of an open prison?)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Early twentieth century
Further Comments: This pallid mutt was seen by many people on the site who would try to interact with it, only realising it was a ghost when it vanished before they could touch it. The building was also home to a woman in black who would be seen moving quickly down a corridor, and a ghostly hanging body that dangled from a tree on the grounds.


 
 


White Lady

Location: Tangham (Suffolk) - Forest
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: Late nineteenth or early twentieth century
Further Comments: A man driving a horse and cart through the woods was startled by the appearance of a white lady on the seat next to him - she vanished as he drove past the last tree of the forest. This story could be seen as an early version of the phantom hitchhiker tales.


Records 126 - 150, of 176

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