The Paranormal Database

Examining folkloric, paranormal & cryptozoological locations in the UK and beyond

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Berkshire Ghosts, Folklore and Forteana

Bullet Proof Witch

Location: Newbury - Cottington's Hill - general area
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A local story tells of a witch shot at by Cromwellian troops - she caught the bullets in her hands. The woman was defeated after a soldier managed to slice open her forehead with his sword, robbing her of her power, before shooting her in the back of the head.

A phantom white hound.


Location: Newbury - Donnington Castle
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This incorporeal trooper stands by the remaining gatehouse, quickly vanishing after being seen. A white dog haunts the hill on which the castle stands, often bounding towards the nearby woods where it disappears.

Chained Man

Location: Newbury - Enborne House
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1936
Further Comments: Florence Loury purchased the building and converted it into a guest house, but soon lost all her customers after word was spread that the place was haunted. During a court appearance over non-payment of rates, she described encountering the ghost - an old man with shackled arms and legs. Another witness she he had seen a slim figure wearing a skirt. The court displayed no sympathy and forced Florence to repay the rates.

Falling Pictures

Location: Newbury - Highclere Castle
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: 2012
Further Comments: Newspapers reported that Shirley MacLaine claimed to have had paranormal experiences while filming Downton Abbey at Highclere, although the experiences appear to be 'pictures falling from walls'.


Location: Newbury - Huntsgreen Farm
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Horace is said to be more playful than anything and will softly tug at sleeves or other pieces of loose clothing.

Hair Puller

Location: Newbury - Jack O'Newbury public house (was known as The Catherine Wheel)
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: Twenty-first century
Further Comments: The phantom at work in this pub is said to pull hair, unlock doors and move items around. CCTV footage from February 2011 shows two glasses falling from a shelf without human aid.


Location: Newbury - Roads around the White Swan Pub
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Circa 1955
Further Comments: A First World War airman was spotted by a driver and his passenger walking by the roadside one night. They stopped to offer the uniformed figure a ride, but he had disappeared. Both stopped at the nearby White Swan Pub and told their story, and received the distinct impression that locals knew of the airman but were unwilling to say anything more on the subject.

Miss Effie

Location: Reading - Elm Park football ground
Type: Other
Date / Time: 1996
Further Comments: The (former) owner of Miss Ellie, a dead hamster which was buried on the goal line of this football ground, claimed that the animal's spirit had prevented Reading FC being relegated.

Body in the Basement

Location: Reading - Private house along Baker Street
Type: SHC
Date / Time: 12 November 1978
Further Comments: A young daughter found her mother burnt to death in the basement - some witnesses described the body as charred, while the room itself was barely touched.


Location: Reading - Prospect Street, house not known
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Mid twentieth century
Further Comments: This ghost of a six year old girl was due to be exorcised, but the owners had a change of heart and called the event off.

Pacing Footsteps

Location: Reading - Roebuck Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: This ghost can also be heard knocking on doors, and opening locked windows, much to the annoyance of the owners.

Red Ball

Location: Reading - Skies above Basingstoke Road, Whitley
Type: UFO
Date / Time: 14 April 2006
Further Comments: Three teenagers spotted a strange red glowing orb flying overhead as they were out walking.

Death Gasp

Location: Reading - Unknown house
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1858
Further Comments: The occupants of this unnamed property were awoken by various sounds at night, including the gasp of a dying person, groaning, and a shill shriek. Floorboards were pulled up to find a trapped animal, but nothing could be discovered. Visitors to the site also heard the noises.

Grey Haired Woman

Location: Reading - Unknown house along Oxford Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Mid twentieth century
Further Comments: Returning to her former home shortly after death, this ghost of an old lady took to haunting the kitchen of a house along this road.

Captain Edward Purvis

Location: Reading - Watlington House
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Dressed in his red uniform, smoking a pipe, Captain Edward looks out of the window onto the outside world.

Mary Blandy

Location: Remenham - Little Angel public house
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Hanged for poisoning her father to prevent him from objecting to her marriage, Mary is sometimes seen around the pub where she fled.


Location: Slough - Ditton Park Manor House
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: While under control of the MoD, the site had a spooky reputation. During the 1970s, a gardener watched a phantom funeral cortege dressed in eighteenth century clothing pass through the grounds in an area later found to have been a chapel. Guards were said to have refused to patrol certain areas of the building and dogs refuse to enter areas. A Jacobean-era man was said to emerge from a painting, and the driveway was haunted by a horse-drawn carriage.

Raining Golf Balls

Location: Slough - Huntercombe Lane North
Type: Other
Date / Time: 2001-2004
Further Comments: Over the three year period hundreds of golf balls have fallen from the sky and landed in resident's gardens along this road, though no golf course is near.


Location: Slough - Meadfield Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: March 2016
Further Comments: Two people sitting in a car watched a 'shadow' pass by and disappeared up the road. One of the witnesses, who lived nearby, believed it related to a presence in their own home, which creates cold spots and generates the benign sensation of searching for something.

Woman Covered in Blood

Location: Slough - Upton Court
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Friday nights (reoccurring)
Further Comments: This girl, dressed in her nightdress, has been seen wandering the court covered in red stains, though it is unclear whether the blood is her own.

Lady Philomere

Location: Sonning - The Mill theatre
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Lady Philomere is said to have thrown herself into the nearby waters to end her life, and now haunts the theatre.

An old postcard showing Sonning-on-Thames.


Location: Sonning-on-Thames - Bridge
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A young child is said to haunt this bridge. The story hit the headlines in September 2013 after a letterbox appeared in the centre buttress of the bridge.

A phantom farmer.

William Field

Location: South Moreton - Unknown barn in the area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1804-1850
Further Comments: William was a farmer who hanged himself in this barn. His ghost quickly returned and haunted the neighbourhood until exorcised many years later by a team of eleven clergymen. The men finally drove the entity into a pond, using a stake to hold it there.

A golden calf.


Location: Thatcham - Grimsbury Castle (hillfort)
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: In the nearby woodland, a golden calf is reputedly buried.

A phantom child at Tidmarsh.

Drowned Lad

Location: Tidmarsh - Stream near Tidmarsh Rectory
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: June (reoccurring), clear nights of the full moon - last seen 1880s?
Further Comments: The stream that ran close to this property was said to be haunted by a young boy who once drowned in its waters.

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