The Paranormal Database

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

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December (and Winter) - Paranormal Database Records

Betsy Jane

Location: Solway Firth (Dumfries and Galloway) - Waters of the Solway
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 25 December - Betsy Jane appears, and the Rotterdam prior to a maritime disaster
Further Comments: Laden with a golden profit made from selling slaves, God extracted revenge on this morally questionable practice by sinking the ship and killing all the crew on Christmas Day, just prior to the vessel docking. The passenger ship Rotterdam, which sunk in the nineteenth century with the loss of all hands, is still seen, normally as a warning prior to a major disaster at sea. A hearty mix of other spectral vessels has also been reported.

Petrified Thief

Location: Llandyfrydog (Gwynedd) - Just outside the village - Carreg Lleidr (Robber's Stone)
Type: Legend
Date / Time: 25 December, midnight (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Legend has it that an oddly shaped stone here was a thief who stole a bible, and while carrying it over his shoulder, was turned to rock. Every Christmas the stone runs three times around the field in which it stands.

Game of Shinty

Location: Dalarossie, Inverness (Highland) - Land near the local church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 25 December, when it falls on a Sunday (reoccurring)
Further Comments: These people, during life, made the mistake of playing sports when Christmas day fell on a Sabbath. Now they all return from the grave for a quick game once a year.

Glowing Train with Red Lights

Location: Wormit (Fife) - Tay Bridge
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 28 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: The badly designed Tay Bridge collapsed in 1873, a passenger train crashing down with the faulty structure into the cold waters of the Firth of Tay below. The scene is re-enacted on the anniversary of the crash.

St Thomas of Canterbury

Location: Lapford (Devon) - Road through village
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 29 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: The ghost of Thomas Beckett appears on the anniversary of his death, passing through the village on horseback.


An old woodcut of a knight in armour riding a horse.

Knight in Shining Armour

Location: Kemsing (Kent) - Kemsing Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 29 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: This gallant looking figure rides up to the church, enters the building and briefly prays at the altar before vanishing again until another year goes by.


Molesworth Arms Hotel, Wadebridge.

Coach and Four

Location: Wadebridge (Cornwall) - Molesworth Arms Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Materialising in the courtyard, this phantom coach driven by a decapitated coachman leaves via the hallway. While some people are said to have seen the apparition, others can only hear it pass by.

Wine

Location: Kinsale (County Cork) - Two Found Out Well (no longer accessible)
Type: Legend
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: The water in a well close to Kinsale was said to turn into wine on New Year's Eve, but anyone who gazed into the water at this time would die. A couple went to see if the legend was true, and the following morning their bodies were found next to the well.

Drinking Cross

Location: Langton Herring (Dorset) - Ancient cross
Type: Legend
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: This stone hewn cross moves to the nearby Fleet lagoon to drink.

Jumper

Location: Hockley (Essex) - Railway Station
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: A former worker at the station is said to have witnessed a young girl in a skirt with a cardigan over her shoulders run to the top of the bridge crying. As he shouted out to her, she jumped off the bridge and vanished before she hit the ground. When the worker told his colleagues what had happened, they said the tragedy occurs every year - the girl committed suicide on a New Year's Eve in the 1960s after finding her boyfriend with another girl.

Coach and Horses

Location: Wickford (Essex) - Runwell Hall (no longer standing)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December (Reoccurring)
Further Comments: After a spectral horse and carriage stops at the top of the driveway, a woman climbs out and walks to the hall's door to be met by a long dead butler. A similar story says that Anne Boleyn travels in a coach along the roads surrounding the Hall around the same time of year.

Scarlet Rider

Location: Stockport (Greater Manchester) - Bramall (also known as Bramhall) Hall
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: This figure on horseback, dressed in an unmistakable red, appears once a year - in 1630 he is said to have taken the life of the owner of the hall.

Coach & Four

Location: East Wellow (Hampshire) - Area from Embley Park to St Margaret's Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Moving at breakneck speed, this phantom coach leaves the park just before midnight on the last day of the year.

John Bibby

Location: Bootle (Merseyside) - Peel Road / Bibby's Lane
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Seen once a year, Bibby rides his coach with his decapitated head in his lap.

Man on Black Horse

Location: Ranworth (Norfolk) - Neighbourhood of Ranworth Broad
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Locals tell of an unknown man on a black horse that is believed to haunt the area. The devil is seen riding across the broad every 31 December; under his arm is the soul of a Colonel who had dared hunt on the Sabbath.

Walking Stone

Location: Birsay (Orkney) - Standing Stone in the area
Type: Legend
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: At the stroke of midnight on Hogmanay, this stone would walk down to Birsay loch and would briefly dip its head into the water before moving back to its original location. Anyone foolish enough to try to observe the stone at this time would be found dead the following morning, laying by the base of the stone.

Horse & Dog

Location: Penselwood (Wiltshire) - Sloane Track - between Penselwood and Stourton
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: A man who wagered that he could cross the track in record time fell from his horse and snapped his neck. The man on horseback, now minus a head, with a hound in tow, tries again and again to make the journey once a year.

Green Hunter

Location: Fawsley (Northamptonshire) - Dower House
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: This woodland figure dressed in green, manifesting minutes before midnight, is thought to be an ill omen if observed.

House Party

Location: Downend (Isle of Wight) - Area near Knighton Gorges
Type: Environmental Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December knight seen (reoccurring), house reported in the twentieth century
Further Comments: A manor house has been seen in the area, a party in full flow visible through its windows. However, the house was demolished many years previous. Even when not seen, locals have reported hearing music coming from the site. A large black knight on horseback is still occasionally seen, once a year.


A photograph of a statue depicting the Devil.

Laird Beardie

Location: Moonzie, Fife (Fife) - Lordscairnie Castle
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December, Midnight (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Beardie played cards against the Devil and lost - the fateful game is now replayed once a year, though it is warned that anyone watching the game will also travel to hell with the Laird at the end of the match.


Westminster Bridge, London.

Leaping Shadow

Location: SW1 (Greater London) - Westminster Bridge (over)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 31 December, midnight (reoccurring) - 'Ripper' seen. Woman circa 1900s?
Further Comments: Just as a new year begins, a phantom man is said to throw himself off this bridge - many believe it to be the ghost of Jack the Ripper, taking his own life. Another story tells of a policeman who encountered a woman who pleaded with him to follow her. The policeman set off and was led to another woman in the act of throwing herself into the river. Having prevented her suicide, the policeman realised that the woman looked identical to the girl who had taken him to the spot, who had since vanished.

Relocation

Location: Rochford (Essex) - New houses along Rectory Road
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: Activity more intense during winter (Reoccurring)
Further Comments: A group of residential buildings erected on the site of a demolished mansion are reputed to be paranormally active, mainly by disruption by poltergeist, though manifestations occasionally happen.

Tech Support

Location: Chelmsford (Essex) - Civic Theatre
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: All year, but especially in December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: This building is haunted by the spirit of a technician killed on Duke Street. Visitors would sometimes ask about the helpful man who had guided them around, only to be told that it was the ghost. There are also reports of footsteps on stage and of an overwhelming uncomfortable feeling on the Balcony and the stairs to the Wardrobe/FOH Office. In December, the spirit takes the form of a white butterfly, seen (traditionally) on one show during Christmas week.

Pale Donkey

Location: Studland (Dorset) - Newton Heath
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Around Christmas (reoccurring)
Further Comments: A small white donkey haunts the area where its master was robbed and murdered while travelling across the heathland. While the owner's body was found, the donkey vanished without trace, now only appearing briefly before Christmas once a year.

Sobbing

Location: Wimborne (Dorset) - Griffin Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Around Christmas (reoccurring)
Further Comments: One room in the hotel is filled with sobbing around Christmas - some say the cries belong to a girl upset at her father's death. A grey haired woman in a brown skirt has also been reported in the hotel and was seen near Bedroom 4 during the 1940s.

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