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Church Ghosts, Folklore and Forteana

Drop and Run

Location: Willoughton (Lincolnshire) - Church
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: An old folk tale states that by dropping a pin through the keyhole of the church and running around the building seven times, the Devil will be met.

Quarter Jack

Location: Wimborne (Dorset) - Church - West Tower
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Midnight
Further Comments: Quarter Jack sits within the West Tower and chimes the quarter hours. At midnight, he is said to climb down from the tower and wander the market town.

Hiding Highwayman

Location: Winchelsea (Sussex) - Winchelsea Church, monastery ruins
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Said to have been seen hiding in the trees around the ruins, the highwayman's target can occasionally be heard galloping up the nearby road. A black soldier in a red uniform has also been reported from the churchyard, and a phantom monk has been observed moving above the ground on nearby private land.

Glowing Headstone

Location: Wingate (Durham) - Holy Trinity Churchyard
Type: Other
Date / Time: 1997
Further Comments: The headstone marking the grave of Corporal Longstaff, killed in 1918, has been seen glowing at night.

Church at Winterborne Whitechurch


Location: Winterborne Whitechurch (aka Winterborne Whitchurch) (Dorset) - Church
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Church still present
Further Comments: Construction on the church at this village began in Round Meadow, but the stones were all moved to another field by an unseen hand. Villagers (wisely) decided to finish the building in the new locale.

Pig the Builder

Location: Winwick (Cheshire) - Church
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The foundations of the church were set in another location, but a squealing pig moved them all in one night to the spot where St Oswald had fallen. A carving of the pig exists in the church wall.


Location: Witchampton (Dorset) - Area around the church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Once the site of an abbey, this area is now haunted by a former monk who disappears into the entrance of a concealed tunnel.

Reverend Mr Marshall

Location: Woking (Surrey) - St Paul's Church
Type: Post-Mortem Manifestation
Date / Time: 1932
Further Comments: A friend of the recently deceased Reverend reported seeing his ghostly form standing close to the communion rail during a service.

Andrew Powlet

Location: Woodford (Northamptonshire) - St Mary's Church
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: 1862
Further Comments: Appearing only once, Andrew's ghost pointed to an area on a wall, which proved to be a secret compartment containing a human heart and a once stolen chalice. A photograph taken by a couple of teenagers in the 1960s showed a greenish transparent figure kneeling by the altar, while in the early 2000s a female witness reported seeing a white shape approach her from the same area in broad daylight.

Tom Chalkley

Location: Woodhorn (Northumberland) - St Mary the Virgin Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Since the First World War
Further Comments: George Charlton, the assistant sexton, spotted Tom passing through the churchyard. George later spoke to Tom's cousin, who informed him the Chalkley family have just received a telegram informing them Tom had been killed in action. Tom has reportedly been seen three times since his first appearance.

Meg Shelton

Location: Woodplumpton (Lancashire) - St Anne's Churchyard
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Still present
Further Comments: Meg was deemed a witch by the local populace, and after she died, a rather large rock was placed on her grave to prevent her digging her way out. Some say she is busy digging downwards and will soon emerge in Australia to seek revenge.

Lady's Well

Location: Woolpit (Suffolk) - Spring in meadow close to the church, currently a nature reserve
Type: Legend
Date / Time: Nineteenth century
Further Comments: A spring on this site was said to heal sore eyes.

Young Girl

Location: Worcester (Hereford & Worcester) - St Helen's church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A pale white girl, said to be young and tearful, is said to have been seen several times in this church. She would appear to be looking for something between the aisles before running off and disappearing.

Little Girl

Location: Worchester (Hereford & Worcester) - St Helen's Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A young girl searches the floor of the church, as if looking for a small item she has dropped. If spoken to, the child runs off and vanishes into the shadows.

Changed Site

Location: Worfield (Shropshire) - St Peter's Church
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: It was said that the Devil did not want this church to be built on a nearby hill, so spent every night undoing the construction work which had been performed the day before and moving the materials to the site the church now stands.

Blue Lady

Location: Worksop (Nottinghamshire) - Worksop Priory - church tower
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown (but reoccurring between 01:00h - 04:00h)
Further Comments: This entity is said to jump around on the roof of the building, before fading away. Some say that this figure is not a woman but a man. The blue woman has also been observed drifting around the grounds of the priory.

Coil Marks

Location: Wormhill (Derbyshire) - St Margaret's Church area
Type: Dragon
Date / Time: Still present
Further Comments: The marks on the hill near the church were said to be the location where a dragon once laid. The church is named after Margaret of Antioch, who was swallowed by a dragon but escaped when her crucifix caused irritation.

White lady

Location: Worstead (Norfolk) - Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 24 December (reoccurring), photographed 1975
Further Comments: Legend says this lady has scared to death at least one young bell ringer, although she is now said to have a healing effect. Poltergeist activity has also been reported, around the 1950's. A photograph taken in 1975 by Peter Berthelot appears to show a misty white lady sitting behind his wife on a pew.

Solitary Figure

Location: Wroughton (Wiltshire) - St John the Baptist and St Helen church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A shadowy figure has been seen standing by a yew tree in this churchyard. It is unclear whether the ghost is that of a man who hanged himself from the tree or a phantom woman. Either way, a local myth says the best way to encounter the phantom is to run around the tree thirteen times anti-clockwise.

Robed Figure

Location: Yatton (Somerset) - Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1952
Further Comments: Two witnesses reported, at separate times, seeing a female figure in a grey robe walking away from the altar. The ghost had her head bowed and hands clasped.


Location: York (Yorkshire) - Dance school attached to St Mary's Church, Bishop Hill Junior
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The sounds of coins being poured onto a table and into a metal box have been reported coming from this building.

Holy Trinity Church, York

Thomas Percy

Location: York (Yorkshire) - Holy Trinity Church, Goodramgate
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Thomas Percy, the Seventh Earl of Northumberland, has been seen decapitated in the churchyard, searching for his severed head. He lost it after upsetting Elizabeth I by attempting to raise an army fight her, and she vented her anger thus. A ghostly nun has also been reported on the site.

St Crux church, York


Location: York (Yorkshire) - St Crux church (the remains of which now form the chapel in the Shambles)
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Early twentieth century?
Further Comments: An on-duty policeman passing the church late at night heard funeral music playing within the building. As he approached to investigate, the doors of the building opened and the sound of people leaving could be heard, but nothing could be seen. The church was said to have a couple more frequent phantom visitors, one of whom was a tall man with a pale face who would stare out of the windows in the early hours of the morning. The other ghost took the form of a female figure in a shroud. The entity would follow people passing the church at night, either along Fossgate and vanish as when reaching Foss Bridge, or via St. Andrew Gate, fading away when nearing Spen Lane.


Location: York (Yorkshire) - St George's Roman Catholic Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Seen moving around the aisles of the church, the ghostly rabbit always vanishes before it is caught. Some believed it to be the ghost of Dick Turpin who is buried nearby.


Location: York (Yorkshire) - St Mary's Church
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Walter Calverley was briefly buried in this churchyard, after being executed for murder, before secretly being moved back to the village of Calverley by his friends. His ghost made several appearances around this time.

Records 726 - 750 of 750

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