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Highway Robbers - Ghosts and Paranormal Places

William Nevison

Location: Ardwick le Street (Yorkshire) - Hanging Wood
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The woods were a popular place for Nevison, a highwayman, to lurk before riding out to commit his crimes. After he was hanged in York, his shade returned to the scene of better times.

Lady in Brown

Location: Armathwaite (Cumbria) - Fox & Pheasant Inn
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Pre-2000s
Further Comments: A previous landlady and her friend observed a woman wearing old fashioned brown clothing walk through the front door while it was closed. The ghost is said to be a woman who lost both her children outside the inn in a coach accident. A highwayman is also reputed to haunt the building.

Headless Highwayman

Location: Atwick (Yorkshire) - Roads in the area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This decapitated spectral bandit remains lurking in the shadows of his old ambush area. One version of the story says he remains on his horse.

Shadowy Creature

Location: Bagley Wood (Berkshire) - General area
Type: Cryptozoology
Date / Time: May 2015
Further Comments: Walking through the woods after dusk, a couple found themselves chased by a large shadowy quadruped that stood just over a metre tall. One of the witnesses said it did not move like a deer or a dog. The woods is also reputedly home to a phantom highwayman.

Tom Faggus

Location: Barnstaple (Devon) - Ashleigh Road area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Circa 2005
Further Comments: Two people witnessed the ghost of a man riding a large horse in this area. The witnesses carried out some research and believe they had encountered the ghost of Tom Faggus, a Robin Hood-like figure who operated in the area.

A ghostly woman with a red veil.

Veiled Woman

Location: Batley (Yorkshire) - Howley Hall ruins, and surrounding golf course
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: A woman with a red veil has been reported here, sometimes accompanied by two male escorts. It has been speculated that one of these men could be a highwayman by the name of William Nevison. Civil war soldiers are also said to haunt the area.

Man in Tricorn

Location: Beckhampton (Wiltshire) - Road running through village
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Mid twentieth century
Further Comments: A phantom highwayman is reputed to haunt this road. There is also a story that a ghostly horse and coach have been heard along the Beckhampton Road.

Black Tom

Location: Bedford (Bedfordshire) - Junction of Tavistock Street, Union Street and Clapham Road
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Around Christmas, 1990s
Further Comments: A nineteenth century highwayman, Black Tom was executed and buried at this junction with a stake driven through his heart to prevent his return. The ritual failed, and both he and another unknown ghost were seen countless times for years following his death. A 1960s sighting of Tom took place in broad daylight, with witnesses stating they saw a gruesome figure with a broken neck staggering down the road, vanishing into thin air seconds later. The witness who spotted Tom during the 1990s thought he was just a drunk man in fancy dress, until he suddenly disappeared.

Turpin in Green Velvet

Location: Bickley (Kent) - The Chequers public house, Southborough Lane
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 2013
Further Comments: Local legend says Dick Turpin's ghost was seen in an upstairs room sitting at a desk, writing with a quill. Another story says a woman in eighteenth century garb also haunts the upper part of the building. The pub hit headlines in September 2013 after it was reported a phantom French Soldier called Barnard scared away two bar staff who were staying overnight.

George Lyon

Location: Billinge (Lancashire) - General area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1920s
Further Comments: Riding on his horse, this former highwayman passes through the village where he once hid out.


Location: Blackpool (Lancashire) - Eagle and Child public house
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A former highwayman, Murph can sometimes be heard mumbling and moaning at the bar late at night.

Woman in Black

Location: Blandford Forum (Dorset) - Crown Hotel
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Wearing a black crinoline dress, this ghostly woman has been observed on the first floor. One of the cleaning staff spotted a woman in black enter a room, but upon investigation, the room was devoid of life. The hotel is also home to a phantom highwayman who hangs about in the courtyard.

Female in Long Dress with Highwayman

Location: Blythburgh (Suffolk) - A12 from Ipswich, towards Kessingland, near Blythburgh common
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1700s onwards
Further Comments: Sometimes appearing with a horse, the unknown woman and highwayman have been reported a few times over the past two hundred years.

Noosed Highwayman

Location: Bolton (Greater Manchester) - 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.

Tom Hoggett

Location: Boroughbridge (Yorkshire) - Great North Road (A1), between town and Scotch Corner
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This former highwayman, wearing a coat so long it almost drags along the ground, is still thought to lay in wait for the unwary along this stretch of road.

A ghostly highway escapes across a field.


Location: Bramshot (Hampshire) - Roads in the village
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Roads running in and through the village are reportedly home to several phantom entities. A highwayman, a cavalier, a small group of Tudors have all been reported here.


Location: Bridgwater (Somerset) - A39 between Street and Bridgwater
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Late 1980s
Further Comments: Pocock, a highwayman, was badly injured in a fight. Pocock managed to escape and hide, only to die of his wounds in a cave which has never been discovered. His ghost has been seen on horseback, curiously galloping on the spot, and has been blamed for several accidents in the area.

Grizelda the Highway Woman

Location: Buckton (Northumberland) - Roads in the village
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: At the end of every month (reoccurring), last seen 1987
Further Comments: Dressed as a male highwayman, this girl has been seen still riding her midnight black horse. She reportedly held up a stagecoach carrying an execution order condemning a friend of hers, which bought him enough time to escape the noose.

Ye Olde Three Tuns pub, Bungay.

Rex Bacon and Friends

Location: Bungay (Suffolk) - Ye Olde Three Tuns public house
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1969
Further Comments: An investigation by a medium revealed this building was haunted by 24 ghosts (!), one of whom was Mr Rex Bacon, a highwayman from the eighteenth century whose base of operations was the inn.


Location: Calne (Wiltshire) - Area around Black Dog Hill
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Summer 2016, 0200h
Further Comments: A group of friends exploring this area heard a loud, tuneful whistling with no discernible source. One of the witnesses was later told the site was the haunt of a phantom highwayman who would whistle while he worked.

Naked Man

Location: Calne (Wiltshire) - Road in the area
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A naked man is said to haunt a road in this area. One story says that the figure was a highwayman who stripped and oiled himself up, to ensure that no one could grab him.

The ghostly highwayman of the A6.


Location: Carlisle (Cumbria) - A6, Barrock Hill near Carlisle
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: An infamous highwayman, Whitfield was finally caught and hanged for murder - but the rope was not tight enough and several days later a passing coachman heard Whitfield crying and moaning, dangling from the noose. To end the suffering, the coachman shot the hanging man; Whitfield's ghost can still be heard today crying for help.

Upper Bell Inn, Chatham.


Location: Chatham (Kent) - Upper Bell Inn (no longer standing)
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This public house was said to be haunted, possibly by the ghost of Dick Turpin, although there is a distinct lack of accounts of any sightings. A headstone which stood in the beer garden most likely added to its spooky atmosphere, as did its location, close to Blue Bell Hill and its infamous vanishing hitchhiker (but more on her another day). One paranormal group claimed to have photographed 'orbs' on this site.


Location: Chingford (Essex) - Area around Richmond Avenue and The Avenue in Highams Park
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: New Year's Eve, year unknown
Further Comments: A woman out walking in the area reported seeing a phantom highwayman who rode past her - the terrified witness ran back to her family.

An old postcard showing Clifton Down.

Jenkins Protheroe?

Location: Clifton (Somerset) - Clifton Down, Lady's Mile
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1977, around 23:00h
Further Comments: A driver and passenger witnessed a dark figure standing in the middle of the road with long arms stretched out in a 'stand and deliver' stance. Several days later the driver found out about the ghost of Jenkins (or Jenkin) Protheroe, a former highwayman hanged in the area.

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