The Paranormal Database

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

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Lothian Ghosts, Folklore and Forteana

Pale Lady

Location: East Linton - Hailes Castle
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2000s?
Further Comments: Locals have reported strange banging sounds coming from the castle, as well as the occasional glimpse of a phantom woman in white.

Grey Lady

Location: East Saltoun - Saltoun Hall
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This shadowy female form reportedly haunts the rooms of this hall - some believe the entity to be a former owner who lost her pearls, and she now spends her time searching for the elusive jewellery.

Old Fireman

Location: Edinburgh - Lauriston Place (old fire station)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1980s
Further Comments: Normally appearing at night, staff have reported seeing a ghostly dark figure wearing old style fire uniform. Footsteps have been heard in various parts of the building when it is known there is no-one else on duty.


Location: Edinburgh - Learmouth Hotel
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: Door opening and closing are the trademarks of this spirit, though it is also known to whistle down the corridors.

Portrait Photograph

Location: Edinburgh - Liberton House
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A photograph taken in the building is reputed to show a huge phantom face, though it is said that you must use your imagination to see it properly!


Location: Edinburgh - Lochend Loch, Restalrig
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: Sixteenth century
Further Comments: As Bessie Dunlop tied her horse to the edge of the loch, she heard dozens of people on horseback dash past her into the water, although nothing could be seen.

Old Fashioned Figure

Location: Edinburgh - Lochinvar Camp (aka Wardie Playing Fields), Granton Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1950s-2009
Further Comments: The ghostly figure wearing old fashioned clothing was reported to have chased a teenager in the mid-twentieth century and was seen by other people during the 1970s through to the 1990s. Stargazers may have last seen the entity in 2009.

Lady in White

Location: Edinburgh - Lymphoy House, Currie
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This property was said to be haunted by a woman in white, a soldier's wife who died on the steps of his parents' house after they refused to let her in. A ghostly bagpiper is also said hang around the site, after entering a tunnel beneath the house and never returning.

Mary King's Close, Edinburgh

Plague Victims

Location: Edinburgh - Mary King's Close, currently buried under the City Chambers
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2010s
Further Comments: A whole host of spectres haunt this area; women, children, old men and even animals have been reported haunting the site over the past 350 years. More recently, there have been reports of a ghostly little girl and an 'impish' young boy. The last occupant of the close was forced to move out in 1898 to make way for the City Chambers extension, which now stands over the area.

Elizabeth Dundas

Location: Edinburgh - Melville Castle Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1990s
Further Comments: While the site was being renovated, one witness spotted this phantom walk through a wall.

Mercat Cross, Edinburgh

Death List

Location: Edinburgh - Mercat Cross, High Street
Type: Other
Date / Time: 08 September 1513
Further Comments: The voice of the Devil (or a demon named Plotcock, Platcock or Potcock) could be heard in the area of the cross calling out all the names of men who would die in the Battle of Flodden, which would occur the following day. Richard Lawson, upon hearing his own name, threw a coin against the cross, and appealed against the judgement in the name of God and Jesus - Lawson was the only named person to survive.


Location: Edinburgh - Mitre Public House, Royal Mile
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Archbishop Spottiswode is reported to haunt the building where he concealed his episcopal chair, even though the haunting takes the form of poltergeist activity.

Museum of Childhood, Edinburgh


Location: Edinburgh - Museum of Childhood, 42 High Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: Laughing, crying and whispering are all said to have been heard coming from empty rooms within the building, and phantom footsteps walk on the upper floors.

Chimney Sweep

Location: Edinburgh - Nicol Edwards public house, Niddry Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This young lad managed to trap himself behind the old chimney stacks in the area and suffocated. He has been reported by members of the public not aware of the story or history.


Location: Edinburgh - Old Fish Inn (no longer standing), Murrayfield
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1945-1957
Further Comments: This building was said to be the haunt of a gang of bandits, one figure was seen in the bar, while the sound of fighting could occasionally be heard in the evening.

The Edinburgh Playhouse


Location: Edinburgh - Playhouse, Greenside Place
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Dressed in a grey great coat when seen, Albert prefers to make his presence known by creating cold spots. He is thought to have been either a stagehand who died in an accident or a night watchman who killed himself.

St John's church, Edinburgh

Crying Girl

Location: Edinburgh - Princes Street and St John's church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1987?
Further Comments: The crying girl haunts both the church and Princes Street. The little girl sobs into her hands, slowly fading away until completely gone. The gardens of Princes Street were once the 'Nor Loch' - when drained hundreds of bodies were found when the water was drained.

Shadowy Figures

Location: Edinburgh - Private flat in Bruntsfield Place
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2004
Further Comments: Several entities reportedly haunt this building, including cats, a dog, and possibly several people who were mistaken as 'real' by one witness.


Location: Edinburgh - Private flat, Bruntsfield area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2003-2008
Further Comments: Disembodied footsteps were heard by members of the family at night and in the early hours of the morning.

Lurking Man

Location: Edinburgh - Private residence along Glenlee Avenue
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1970s
Further Comments: A member of the family living in this house reported, on more than one occasion, seeing a man lurking in the kitchen doorway. On the day the family moved out, they were told that a former owner hanged himself from a wooden beam the cellar, directly under the kitchen door.

Vanishing Children

Location: Edinburgh - Private residence, Comely Bank
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2017
Further Comments: A couple standing outside of their home had a conversation with a young boy and girl who vanished before their eyes.

Bearded Man

Location: Edinburgh - Private residence, Leith
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: 2007-2008
Further Comments: After one of the occupants spotted a large, bearded man in an overcoat standing by the kitchen door, the flat experienced a period of poltergeist disturbances that including running footsteps, bangs, rustling bags and finding family photographs placed face down in the kitchen. Guests to the property reported feeling as if they were being watched.

The Scotsman Hotel, Edinburgh


Location: Edinburgh - The Scotsman's News Building (currently the Scotsman Hotel), North Bridge
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: November 2004
Further Comments: A phantom man wearing an apron and carrying a tray of metal blocks was spotted in the basement by a member of staff. Another phantom, this time of a woman wearing black, was said to haunt the former reception area


Location: Edinburgh - Theatre Royal, Waterloo Place (no longer standing)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Nineteenth century
Further Comments: Various people heard talking and pacing in the theatre when it stood, even though it would be devoid of human life.

Tolbooth Tavern, Edinburgh

Glass Mover

Location: Edinburgh - Tolbooth Tavern, Canongate
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: 2007
Further Comments: The entity at work here is most likely to push around bottles and glasses, although the occasional shadowy figure has been spotted.

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