Haunted Churches and other Myths & Legends

 
Florence Wyndham

Location: Kentsford (Somerset) - St Decumen's Church, Snailholt Lane, and meadows
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: In 1559, Mrs Wyndham fell into a coma and was placed in her coffin in the family vault at St Decumen's. A local ruffian broke into the vault that very night and tried to steal her wedding ring by cutting off her finger; this shock brought Florence out of her coma, sending the would-be thief running. She was able to climb from her coffin and stagger home; the route her ghost has taken ever since.


 
Little Old Woman

Location: Kilchrist (County Clare) - Old church
Type: Crisis Manifestation
Date / Time: Circa 1776
Further Comments: This banshee was witnessed by a group of young people from the same family passing the church at night. They spotted an elderly woman with long white hair clapping her hands and wailing. The male members of the group approached the figure, but she vanished. A few days later they heard one of the older members of the family had died while in Dublin.


 
Lord Stourton

Location: Kilmington (Wiltshire) - Churchyard
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Lord Stourton and his gang of murderous friends still lurk in the churchyard - Stourton was executed for killing his father's servant. The inside of the church is haunted by the murdered man.


 
Dead of the Future

Location: Kilncote (Leicestershire) - Village Church
Type: Manifestation of the Living
Date / Time: St Mark's Eve, 23:00 - 01:00h
Further Comments: A particular ritual had to be carried out here. For three consecutive years, one could spend St Mark's Eve sitting in the church porch, from 11pm until 1am. At the end of the third year's period, the ghosts of all those who were doomed to die during the following year made themselves visible in the churchyard.


 
Magic Bell

Location: Kincraig (Highland) - Church of Insh
Type: Other
Date / Time: Still present?
Further Comments: This bell possesses healing properties, and would travel (flying self-propelled!) across the country when needed.


 
The Devil Helps Thrice

Location: King's Sutton (Oxfordshire) - Church
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Fourteenth century
Further Comments: This church is one of three in the area (Bloxham and Adderbury being the other two) that were paid for by three brothers. One of their workers who helped construct this tower never took any pay, never slept and never ate - he vanished as soon as the tower was built. The brothers were convinced that they were helped by Old Nick.


 
White Figure

Location: Kingston (Devon) - Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: December 1876
Further Comments: A choir was said to have fled the church after a white figure entered the building as they practiced. The figure moved up the aisle and mounted the pulpit, before leaving the same route it arrived.


 
Thomas Vaughan

Location: Kington (Hereford & Worcester) - Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1469
Further Comments: After being killed in the battle of Banbury, Vaughan's spirit was reluctant to depart this plane of existence and tried to hide in this local church. It was finally trapped in a snuff box by the local holy men and banished into nearby Hergest Pool. Some variations of the story have Vaughan escape the snuff box before being laid once again, this time under a large tree on the Hergest Estate.


 
Stone Thrower

Location: Kinsale (County Cork) - St. Multose Church
Type: Poltergeist
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: As a scout, Brian O'Neill of the Kinsale Ghost Tour was with a group of nine other lads in the churchyard when they were all simultaneously hit on the side of the head by ten little pebbles.


 
Cloaked Man

Location: Kintbury (Berkshire) - Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Wearing a dark cloak and wide brimmed hat, this figure will fade away to nothing if approached.


 
Fight

Location: Kirkby in Ashfield (Nottinghamshire) - Kirkby Castle (foundations remain west of church) and woodland
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: November 1989
Further Comments: Two people walking through this area heard the sound of a fight between a large group of men, though nothing could be seen.


 
Feast for a King

Location: Kirkby Malham (Yorkshire) - Churchyard
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Midnight once a year (reoccurring)
Further Comments: The meal is set out by the Devil to lure the living to him; the last person to sit down for the feast was the village parson, who escaped by making Old Nick and the food vanish when he asked for salt.


 
Protective Ditch

Location: Knowlton (Dorset) - Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The legends state that this building, constructed in the middle of a pagan temple, is haunted by dozens of spirits. The ditch which surrounds the building is not to keep intruders out, but to rather keep the ghosts in.


 
Bell Ringer

Location: Ladock (Cornwall) - St Ladoca's Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century (bell ringer), bird not unknown
Further Comments: This ghostly figure is often spotted out of the corner of one eye, before disappearing. A local legend says that a large, evil bird set up home in the bell tower, interrupting services with its noise - the creature was displaced after the vicar cast a spell with the help of the local community.


 
Young Woman & Man in Tweed

Location: Langenhoe (Essex) - Langenhoe Church (no longer standing - area is denoted by the overgrown graveyard)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1940s, 1950s
Further Comments: The woman was first seen in the 1940's, appearing quite normal before she disappeared into a corner of the church. A rector also felt the phantom's naked form push hard against him. She is believed to have been murdered by a former rector. A phantom man dressed in a tweed suit was seen once in 1950, walking along the nave.


 
Misty Woman

Location: Langley (Buckinghamshire) - Old almshouse near the church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Late 1940s
Further Comments: A woman and her three children living at this almshouse heard knocks and bangs at night, and also spotted a misty figure by a bookcase. The figure was also seen standing over one the children's beds. A medium managed to calm the spirit and it was never seen or heard again.


 
Reverend John Arundel-Radford

Location: Lapford (Devon) - St Thomas's Church and neighbourhood
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1867 onwards
Further Comments: This psychotic Reverend murdered his curate (but was later acquitted) and demanded that his own body be buried inside his church after his death. This was not to be, and as revenge the Reverend's ghost now stalks the area.


 
Footsteps

Location: Laughton (8 miles south of Scunthorpe) (Lincolnshire) - All Saint's Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1970s
Further Comments: Mysterious footsteps, belonging to a small group of ghostly people, have been heard coming down the staircase in the church tower. A builder repairing the tower refused to work alone after twice encountering the footfalls.


 
Kergrim

Location: Launceston (Cornwall) - St Mary Magdalene Churchyard
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This creature, similar to a ghoul, reportedly frequents this plot of land. Another local myth told of this graveyard is a morbid remedy for a stiff neck - during the last three days of May, the inflected person should visit the grave of the most recently deceased of the opposite sex to collect dew to be rubbed on the sore area.


 
Bride on Other's Photographs

Location: Lawford (Essex) - Church on the hill
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Mid twentieth century
Further Comments: Appearing on three wedding photographs (though none have been published to the author's knowledge), this ghostly bride is said to have died of a broken heart after discovering her husband to be had been killed on route to their wedding, after his horse had bolted. In addition, chanting has sometimes been heard coming from the church as it stands empty.


 
Glowing Gravestone

Location: Lawshall (Suffolk) - Churchyard
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: Late twentieth century
Further Comments: Two men reportedly saw a glowing gravestone whilst returning from the pub one evening, though when they returned the following day, they could find no trace of any gravestone that resembled the stone that they had seen.


 
Footsteps

Location: Laxton (Nottinghamshire) - Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Strange sounds were once heard coming from this church, including footsteps and loud bangs. A ghostly figure was observed by one parson.


 
Voice of Lord Marney

Location: Layer Marney (Essex) - Layer Marney Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: May (or Easter) (Reoccurring)
Further Comments: Legend says that the voice of Lord Marney can be heard echoing around the church.


 
Headless Chicken Runs Blindly

Location: Layer Marney (Essex) - Layer Marney Churchyard
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: Christmas (reoccurring)
Further Comments: With an unknown origin, a headless chicken appears and runs blindly around the gravestones.


 
Relocated Church

Location: Leake (Yorkshire) - Church
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Legend says that this church was supposed to be built on top of a local hill, but the Devil insisted on moving the building materials.


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