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Devon Ghosts, Folklore and Forteana

Spooky Sound

Location: Bideford - Old Zoo House (no longer standing?)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2001
Further Comments: A group of teenagers visiting this rumoured haunted house felt a presence and heard a strange sound, although one witness acknowledged it may have been their minds playing tricks on them!

Figures

Location: Bideford - Private residence
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1998-2002
Further Comments: Over a five year period, the family living here experienced several strange occurrences, including seeing different figures (including recently deceased family members, as well as unknown people) and smelling the overpowering aroma of lavender.

Pact

Location: Bideford - Road behind the churchyard
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A witch once claimed (likely under duress) that she met the Devil in human form along this road, where she made a deal with him. As a side note, the Devil is thought to have tried to hamper the construction of the bridge here.

Mrs Bell

Location: Bideford - Unnamed Manor House in the area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth / early twenty-first century
Further Comments: The Edwardian Mrs Bell would be seen around the corridors of this property in the early hours of the morning, dressed in blue and sometimes to Chopin's tunes being played on the piano. The sightings ceased after a portrait of Bell was discovered and returned to the manor.

Battle of Bovey Heath

Location: Bovey Tracey - Bovey Heathfield Local Nature Reserve
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The site of an English Civil War battle on 9 January 1646, it is said the sights and sounds of fighting are occasionally reenacted.

Evil Awaits

Location: Bovey Tracey - St John's Church
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: It was said that the churchyard here was unused for a while due to the belief that the first body interred would belong to the Devil. The body of a servant under the employ of a visitor to the area was buried here, after which others believed the site was ready to be used for their loved ones.

Golden Frogs

Location: Bovey Tracey - St Mary's Well (aka Golden Well)
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Well still present
Further Comments: A poor farming couple provided food and shelter to a strange woman who sought refuge from a storm. The woman then cured the couple's sick child and created a well so they would never go thirsty again. The well became home to a colony of golden frogs.

Phantom Smoke

Location: Bovey Tracey - The Riverside Inn
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: Late 1990s
Further Comments: At least one guest has been awoken by the overwhelming smell of smoke, though on investigation no source has been found.

Black Worms

Location: Bramford Speke - General area
Type: Other
Date / Time: 1837?
Further Comments: During a snowstorm dozens of little black worms also fell from the sky.

Chatting Women

Location: Branscombe - Area near Hole Mill
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: 22 February 1959
Further Comments: A former archaeologist from Cambridge University watched his aging neighbour walk by accompanying another woman dressed in early twentieth century clothing. When he approached the old woman later in the day to enquire who her friend was, she replied that it was a ghost she was in contact with.

Bandaged Man

Location: Branscombe - Margells Cottage
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: A man wearing a bandage around his head was seen in the building on one occasion, though one is more likely to encounter the phantom plainchant of monks or rapping from deserted areas of the cottage.

Sow

Location: Braunton - Church and Chapel Hill
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The building of the church would be undone at night until the foundations were relaid where a sow with her young were found.

William de Tracy

Location: Braunton Burrows - Banks of river
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: De Tracy has been condemned to try to make ropes out of the sand - if he almost reaches his goal, a dog appears and burns the attempt. Another ghost, a phantom nicknamed 'Old White Hat', paces along the banks of the river, calling out for a ferryboat which never arrives.

White Lady

Location: Brendon - Staghunters Inn
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2015
Further Comments: Two witnesses watched a smoky white female form walk through a wall, cross a room, and vanish into the wall on the opposite side. The apparition was also said to have been spotted just outside the inn by a delivery person.

Moving Stones

Location: Brentor - Church
Type: Other
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The Devil came to the church's construction site night after night and moved the foundation stones to the top of the tor - the builders finally gave up moving them back so built the church there instead.

Lady Howard

Location: Bridestone - Royal Oak public house
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A coach carrying Lady Howard has been spotted just outside the public house, though it is more likely to just be heard by those nearby.

Mary

Location: Bridestowe - Bearslake Inn
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Late twentieth century
Further Comments: The ghost of little Mary can still be heard crying - it is believed she was the young daughter of a former owner, who fell down the stairs and died from her injuries.

Young Lady

Location: Bridestowe - Great Bidlake manor house
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Mid twentieth century
Further Comments: This female form has been observed only a handful of times over the years - more common are the sounds of disembodied footsteps.

Little Red Capped Man

Location: Brixham - Area around Lupton House
Type: Fairy
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The author Violet Tweedale reported seeing a twelve centimetre tall man dressed in green, sitting beneath a small plant. He vanished after a minute of her observing him.

Napoleonic Figure

Location: Brixham - Berry Head Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: August 2013
Further Comments: A wedding guest was said to have seen a figure in Napoleonic clothing during the night. Local legend says that the building is haunted by the ghost of a soldier.

Squire Hilliard

Location: Brixham - Black House
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Mid twentieth century
Further Comments: When empty, rooms in this house would be seen lit up at night, with the silhouette of Hilliard passing the windows, wearing old style clothing - he killed himself after falling in love with a peasant girl and his father refused to let him see her. Also used once by monks, their presence is still felt and heard, and even seen on a couple of occasions.

Monk

Location: Brixham - Churston Court Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: Reports exist of a monk seen within this building; as a witness enters, he leaves via another doorway. There are also reports of candles lighting themselves.

Rapper

Location: Brixham - Globe Inn
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: Late twentieth century
Further Comments: The rapping and tapping have reportedly kept previous landlords awake at night, and the poltergeist also enjoys hiding various belongings around the establishment.

Francois

Location: Brixham - Royal British Legion, Baker's Hill
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1980s
Further Comments: Thought to have been a French PoW from the Napoleonic wars, Francois has been seen sitting in the bar.

Domed Craft

Location: Brixham - Skies over town
Type: UFO
Date / Time: 28 April 1967
Further Comments: This craft hovered over the town for around an hour before disappearing.

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