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Bolton Ghosts, Folklore and Forteana

Hand on Bottom

Location: Bolton - Albion Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1978 / 79
Further Comments: The female owner at this hotel felt something grab her bottom as she climbed into the bath. The ghost is also said to play around with the beer pumps.

Men with Light Bulb Heads

Location: Bolton - Alleyway in town, exact location unknown
Type: UFO
Date / Time: November 1926
Further Comments: A local lad escaped one night from his house to play hide and seek with his friends. While searching for them, he observed three figures in grey rubber suits and fishbowl helmets in a back yard; they also possessed pallid faces shaped like upside-down pears, with slits for eyes and mouth. When they moved towards the boy, he ran home.

Smell of Smoke

Location: Bolton - Alma Inn
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1974-1975
Further Comments: A former landlord of the public house reported the smell of cigar smoke in the ladies' toilet, though there was never any evidence of smoke or ash.

Noosed Highwayman

Location: Bolton - Belmont Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This shade, mistakenly hanged for highway robbery, still has the hangman's noose tied around his neck when he appears. They also say his eyes look as if they're ready to pop out of his head. Another report says that the road is also haunted by a fatal car crash from the mid-twentieth century which killed a family - the screech of brakes followed by screams is heard but no accident can be seen.

Roman Soldiers

Location: Bolton - Boar's Head public house (no longer standing, replacement building is currently Hogarth's)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Pub demolished 1999
Further Comments: The Boar's Head was said to be haunted by Roman soldiers. They were only seen chest upwards and could be heard marching through the building. When the pub closed, archaeologists discovered medieval artefacts (including a cellar) before the site was concreted over.

Minnie Stott

Location: Bolton - Bradshawgate
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1987
Further Comments: A teenager who worked for a nearby garage watched a mist as it formed into a human-like shape at the top of a set of steps. The teenager was shocked when later shown a picture of Minnie Stott, a young woman murdered in the 1940s, as that was the figure she had seen manifest.


Location: Bolton - Churchgate Public House
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2010s
Further Comments: There is a story that the pub is haunted by a woman thrown out of the pub one winter's evening, after becoming pregnant with her employer's child. She died in the cold, and her child's cries can now be heard in the building. During the 1950s, bones were unearthed under the site and were thought to belong to a Cavalier who haunts the bar and cellar. Finally, a dog has been seen running upstairs but when chased nothing is found.

Smoking Man

Location: Bolton - Derby Arms, Derby Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Late twentieth century
Further Comments: This phantom complete with smoking pipe has been observed in the living room of the building.

Smartly Dressed Male

Location: Bolton - Eden Grove (former school, closed 2013)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The man who reputedly haunted this site had a whiff of tobacco and sweet flowers about him, with a smart wardrobe consisting of sports coat and flannel trousers.

Black Cat

Location: Bolton - Farnworth cemetery, Darcy Lever
Type: ABC
Date / Time: 11 October 2012, 14:30h
Further Comments: Alanah and Sherri-Lee Belk spotted a large black cat from around fifteen metres away in a field. The creature ran off in the opposite direction.

Ghost of a murderer walking through slums.

Murder Suicide

Location: Bolton - Former Tax Office and ABC Capitol Cinema, Churchgate
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1800s onwards
Further Comments: The Tax office and Cinema were built upon former slums Antelope Court. In one of the slums a murder suicide occurred in the 1800s. Ever since, workers of both building reported equipment activating by unseen hands, lights flickering on and off and the spectre of an old man, thought to be the murderer, and his wife, the victim, have been seen.

Phantom Runner

Location: Bolton - Hall i' th' Wood Manor House
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Runner between 25 December - 6 January (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Always heard but never seen, this spook frequents the old staircase, the footsteps always rushing. Other ghosts reported here include an old woman seen in the kitchen and two men, one dressed in black and the other green.

A phantom in a nightdress.

Husky Voice

Location: Bolton - Halliwell Lodge (public house, no longer operating)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This female ghost would materialise wearing only a nightdress in the early hours of the morning. It was also said her deep husky voice could be heard making suggestive remarks to any men still awake.


Location: Bolton - Moss Bank Cottage, Smithels
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: Early twentieth century
Further Comments: Even though she had never seen her grandmother, a young girl described the ghostly figure of an aging woman that stood over her bed to her aunt, who identified the figure as the girl's grandmother, dying many years earlier. The cottage was also said to be haunted by another old woman, this one sitting in the living room wearing a red shawl.

Vida Swift

Location: Bolton - Octagon Theatre
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Post-1968
Further Comments: Dying while carrying out the role of wardrobe mistress, Vida has been seen walking around the corridors and frequenting the stage control box.


Location: Bolton - Old Three Crowns public house, Deansgate
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: 2017 onwards
Further Comments: The sound of running footsteps and breathing have been heard in this pub. An engineer working in the cellar refused to return after he felt an icy hand pass over his shoulder and turn a nearby tap. The investigative team 'Haunted History of Bolton' recorded EVP, footsteps and poltergeist activity.

Workshop Worker

Location: Bolton - Outside the college and along Deane Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: This ghostly figure has been seen standing outside the college, wearing clothes that identify him as an old blue collar worker.


Location: Bolton - Private residence, Halliwell
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: On several consecutive nights, a couple were disturbed by the sounds of a crying infant coming from beyond their bedroom wall. After the woman placed her hand on the wall and comforted the infant, the sounds were never heard again.

Tucker In

Location: Bolton - Private residence, Hunger Hill area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: In a residence in this neighbourhood, an old woman has been seen and heard to say, 'I am here to tuck you in'. Disembodied footsteps, an old man, a strange atmosphere and a ghostly hand reaching around a child's bedroom door have also been experienced.

Bed Sharer

Location: Bolton - Private residence, Hunger Hill Estate
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: 1960s
Further Comments: Accompanying the usual bangs, crashes and raps, this polt could be felt as it climbed into the beds of the building's inhabitants. It would also pinch skin and pull hair. The intrusion ended when the family left the building after a particularly bad night, and never returned.

Man in Dark Clothing

Location: Bolton - Private residence, Somerset Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twenty-first century
Further Comments: A man dressed in dark clothing leaves the dining room and ascends the staircase. He has reportedly been seen by several guests in the property.

George Marsh

Location: Bolton - Smithills Hall (aka Smithells Hall)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 24 April (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Tried and executed for heresy, Marsh is remembered as his footprint (created when he stamped his foot) in the stone floor turns bloody each April 24. His shade is also reported to haunt the Green Room, where he was interrogated, though that is not date dependent. A priest is also reported to haunt the vicinity, as is a photogenic grey lady and a cat.


Location: Bolton - The Kings Head public house, Wigan Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: Doors would slam closed, and the landlord was once awoken by an oppressive atmosphere that flooded his bedroom. The pub is said to have been built on top of a graveyard, the haunting attributed by some to be carried out by phantom Cavaliers.


Location: Bolton - Unity Brook Inn
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: October 2008 onwards
Further Comments: This female ghost, dressed in black, appeared to the assistant manager on three occasions. She was described as slim, late twenties or early thirties, with dark hair and high cheek bones. The entity has been nicknamed Emily by staff.

Older Woman

Location: Bolton - Wilton Arms public house, Belmont Road
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: 1998
Further Comments: Sharing a drink with the landlord after locking up, a witness looked across to the fireplace and smiled at an older lady, between 60 and 70 years of age, who sat there. She smiled and nodded back. The witness continued drinking for a minute before realising that all the doors were locked. Turning back to talk to the woman, she had vanished - all doors remained locked and a search of the pub found no one.

Records 1 - 25 of 28

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