The Paranormal Database

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

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Bristol Ghosts, Folklore and Forteana

Bearded Man

Location: Bristol - Former Vicarage next to All Saint's Church, Corn Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1840s
Further Comments: This figure dressed in ancient clothing was seen stalking the building at night, scaring the occupants, to such an extend on jumped out of a window to avoid the ghost. It is unclear whether this is the same entity as the black monk that also haunts the area.

Fairground Organ

Location: Bristol - Gardiner Haskins store (former soap factory)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2018
Further Comments: A few spooky events were documented in the local press, including the music from a fairground organ, a disembodied male voice, and the fleeting sighting of a Victorian woman dressed in white. A poltergeist was blamed for moving pots of paint around the site.


Location: Bristol - Greyhound Hotel (no longer standing - replaced by the Galleries Shopping Centre)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The hotel which once stood here was said to be haunted by a ghost named Charlie. It is not known whether the spook now frequents the new building on site, the Galleries Shopping Centre.

PR Stunt

Location: Bristol - Harbour
Type: Other
Date / Time: December 2013
Further Comments: A luminescent 'creature', thought by some to be a squid or a deep sea animal, filmed in Bristol harbour was later revealed to be a manmade device to promote a television show.

Child's Footsteps

Location: Bristol - Hatchett Inn
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This inn, possibly the oldest in Bristol, is supposed to be haunted by fifteen ghosts, including a ghostly child who can be heard walking around. Local folklore says the front door of the inn has a layer of human skin beneath the paint.

Luftwaffe Officer

Location: Bristol - Hengrove Park
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: Left over from a Second World War aircraft crash, this airman still wanders around the park trying to figure out where he is.

Old Lady

Location: Bristol - Highworth Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Circa 1950s
Further Comments: The ghost of an elderly woman who frequented a house down this road was exorcised by a local priest.


Location: Bristol - House (no longer standing) which was constructed on the site of St Philip's churchyard
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This phantom was said to be a heavy footed man who would occasionally stomp around the site. Some of the building materials used on the house comprised of gravestones, and this was touted as a reason for the haunting.

Name Caller

Location: Bristol - King William III public house, King Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1998
Further Comments: Several staff have claimed to hear their names being called out, even though no one else is in the pub with them. Phantom footsteps have also been heard climbing up the rear staircase.

Kettle Boiler

Location: Bristol - Kings Chase Shopping Centre, Regent Street, Kingswood
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: 1976
Further Comments: Several shops in this centre were affected by a brief poltergeist outbreak. Events included small items moving by themselves, the sounds of footsteps and rustling, and a kettle turning itself on.


Location: Bristol - Kings Cinema (currently the base for the City Council's Housing Department)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: One of the rest rooms is said to be particularly cold - the area is haunted by the ghost of someone who took their life by leaping from the balcony.

Woman in Crinolines

Location: Bristol - La Taverna Dell' Artista restaurant
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: It is unclear whether it is a single woman or several which have been seen drifting around this arty restaurant.

Beaten Children

Location: Bristol - Lamb Inn, Lawford Street and West Street (no longer standing)
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: 5 November 1761 - November 1762
Further Comments: This polt remained on the site for a year. It became infamous for throwing glasses, disturbing the occupants through constant tapping and rapping, and beating the children.

Isambard Kingdom Brunel

Location: Bristol - Leigh Woods
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Brunel Unknown, teenager's experience in 2014
Further Comments: Brunel's shade has been reported near the site of the suspension bridge - he designed the structure but died before it became operational. In 2014 it was reported that two teenagers who spent the night in the woods had heard a child's voice and had photographed a ghostly figure (although the photographic image could have been pareidolia).


Location: Bristol - Library adjoining the cathedral
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 16:30h (reoccurring)
Further Comments: This phantom monk dressed in grey has always been seen around the same time.

Injured Sailor

Location: Bristol - Llandoger Trow public house (closed as of April 2019)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: This old inn is the home to a ghostly sailor with a severally injured leg. Another version of the story says that the ghostly presence was a young boy (also with a permanent injury). More recently, a visiting TV production team and their psychics claimed more than fourteen entities haunted the pub.

Victorian Figure

Location: Bristol - Market Bar, St Nicholas Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A Victorian woman has been reported in the area, along with an unknown man whose clothing dates from the twentieth century.

Young Girl on Horseback

Location: Bristol - Monument on a grassy hill next to the M32
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This female jockey broke her neck in a fall while attempting to ride down the hill - her shade, still on horseback, has been seen since her death.

Shadowy Figures

Location: Bristol - Odeon cinema, Broadmead
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Late twentieth century
Further Comments: Several members of staff have reported seeing people milling about the auditorium, disappearing if approached. A seat in the third row of screen three is said to be home to a shadowy apparition.


Location: Bristol - Old mansion, Hotwells (since demolished)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1831 - 1869
Further Comments: After moving into the house, the owner found it impossible to keep his servants - they left after claiming to have encountered a ghostly ape or, at other times, a large black hound. The owner himself heard loud bangs and crashes but was unable to find a source. The site would later be converted into three cottages, but the haunting continued in the area and the new buildings left to go to ruin. Reports of the ghostly dog would continue in fields in the area for many years.

Sarah Siddons

Location: Bristol - Old Vic theatre
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2010
Further Comments: Sarah's boyfriend hanged himself at this theatre, and her ghost is thought to continue to mourn the loss here. Architect Andrzej Blonski reported seeing Sarah's ghost, wearing a long, white crinoline dress, in 2010. Another member of staff reported hearing a female voice telling him to 'get out'. The other spook at home here is that of a scenic painter called Richard who died in an accident while working. Richard continues to move the props around.


Location: Bristol - Oldbury Court Stately Home, Whiteladies Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1970s, and circa 1990
Further Comments: This figure hid away from his enemies in a priest hole but became trapped and slowly starved to death. He was seen walking through a wall by a small group of teenagers in the 1970s and may have been spotted by several friends around 1990. Several female spooks are also said to frequent the house.


Location: Bristol - Oldbury House, St Michael's Hill
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1940-1941
Further Comments: A ghostly housekeeper was not the only phantom to haunt this former BBC building, which was used as a hostel for staff during the first part of the Second World War. A thin man who resembled a monk was spotted, as was a group of five girls. A child's sobs were reported, and frequent banging heard. The BBC eventually moved the residents out.

Suicidal Woman

Location: Bristol - Over Court (located near Cribbs Causeway)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1937
Further Comments: This area has the reputation for being haunted by the phantom of a woman who took her own life, though one variation of the story states that her husband shot her. Though injured, she ran away, only to stumble into a fishpond where she drowned. Her ghost was last seen by several carol singers.


Location: Bristol - Parry's Lane
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The lane takes its name from a well which once stood in the area, where a man Parry slit his own throat. His ghost remained in the area for many years after the death.

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