Reports of Old Nick from the Paranormal Database

 
Moving Away

Location: Cottenham (Cambridgeshire) - Church
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Church still present
Further Comments: The church was due to be built in the middle of the village, but the Devil thought otherwise and moved the building materials to the outskirts.


 
The Devil's Shovel Full

Location: Coxbench (Derbyshire) - Circular earthworks
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Still present
Further Comments: This barrow was created by Old Nick after he lost his shoe and was forced to drop a shovel full of earth with which he intended to dam the Derwent in Derby.


 
Thrown Missile

Location: Crail (Fife) - Blue Stone (outside the parish church)
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Still present
Further Comments: The Devil, who may have been secretly involved in constructing the church, was angered by a local man. The Devil fled to the Isle of May and threw a stone at the church. The projectile fell short, and remains in place to this day.


 
Footballing Devil

Location: Crawshawbooth (Lancashire) - Village green
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Old Nick once popped up and started playing football on the Sabbath with a group of local lads - with his first kick of the ball it turned into a burning sphere, causing all the other players to flee!


 
Lost Souls

Location: Darlington (Durham) - Hell's Kettles, along the River Tees
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Kettles still present
Further Comments: Deep pools of water located along the river, the Hell's Kettles are said to contain the souls of sinners. Some report that these people (and animals in some cases) can be seen floating in the pools when they are clear.


 
The Devil does a Deal

Location: Dartmoor (Devon) - Tunhill Kistvaen
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: 21 October 1631
Further Comments: It was at this spot that Jan Reynolds was approached by a cloaked stranger who bought his soul from him for seven years of good luck. He agreed, and seven years later the Devil came and took his due, while Jan sat in Widecombe church.


 
Cloven Hoof Stranger

Location: Dartmoor (Devon) - Widecombe in the Moor
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: 1638
Further Comments: The Devil once appeared in the village, when a bolt of lightning came down from a stormy sky and started several fires. He had arrived to take the soul of Jan Reynolds, who had sold it to Old Nick several years previous. Jan and three others died in the church as it burnt.


 
Petrified Parson

Location: Dawlish (Devon) - Parson and Clerk Rock
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A Priest and his clerk found themselves lost in the area, and sought shelter in a old house where they found several men eating and drinking to excess. The two visitors joined in, only to soon realise that their host was Old Nick. They tried to escape, but failed. One legend says that they were found dead on the rock that now bears their names, while other stories say that the pair were turned into the stone.


 
Cheated Devil

Location: Devil's Bridge (Dyfed) - Lowest of the three bridges
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This bridge was built by Old Nick by the request of an old woman who needed to cross the water to reach her livestock. In return for his work, the Devil demanded the soul of the first living creature to walk over it. The old woman was not prepared to lose her own soul, and sent her dog over the bridge first; the Devil left angry and empty handed.


 
Devil's Print

Location: Devil's Dyke (Sussex) - Hillfort, and general location
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: An ancient hillfort, Devil's Dyke is also rumoured to be a popular place with those who practice the dark arts; it was here a large footprint was found in the mud, twice the size of a human's, with only four toes. Legend has it that the Devil tried to dig a large trench across the land to flood all the churches in the region. He was foiled by either St Dunstan or a local man who made all the cockerels in the area crow, fooling the Devil into thinking dawn was arriving.


 
Black Tom of Scothill

Location: Dewsbury (Yorkshire) - Dewsbury Parish Church
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: 24 December (reoccurring)
Further Comments: Black Tom is the name of the bell in the church, and is toiled the number of the year (ie, in 2007 it was tolled 2007 times) to ensure Old Nick doesn't visit the village during the following twelve months. The last peal has to occur on the stroke of midnight to ensure success.


 
Meeting Place

Location: Drymen (Stirling) - Finnich Glen, aka Devilís Pulpit
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This site was were the Devil would stand and preach to his followers below.


 
Relocation

Location: Duffield (Derbyshire) - St Alkmund's Church
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Church still standing
Further Comments: Wayne Anthony, in Haunted Derbyshire and the Peak District, writes that St Alkmund's was going to be constructed next to Duffield castle, but every night for a week the building materials were moved by the Devil to the current site where it was eventually erected.


 
Doom Park

Location: Earlsferry (Fife) - Unidentified park
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Early twentieth century?
Further Comments: A circular piece of ground, surrounded by a low wall, was said to have been left untouched by human hands as it belonged to the Devil. It was officially known as the Dome Park, but as it was believed that only evil people were buried there, it acquired the name Doom Park.


 
Missing Steeple

Location: East Bergholt (Suffolk) - Church
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Bell house still stands
Further Comments: Night after night, during the construction of the church, the Devil appeared and pulled down the steeple. The builders finally gave up building the tower, and the bells now stand in a little bell house.


 
Dropped

Location: East Knoyle (Wiltshire) - Large stone (exact location unknown)
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A large stone in the village was once believed unmovable, and was said to have been dropped by the Devil as he constructed Stonehenge.


 
Dropped in a Huff

Location: East Worlington (Devon) - Standing Stone (private land)
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Stone still present
Further Comments: Angered after hearing the bells of East Worlington church, the Devil dropped this stone - some say it can not be moved by man or beast. Four crosses decorate the stone.


 
Lady Elizabeth Hatton

Location: EC1N (Greater London) - Bleeding Heart Yard
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A bloody local legend says that Elizabeth was found here in 1626, her four limbs ripped from her body, but her heart still beating. She was last spotted dancing with a tall dark figure, said to be the devil.


 
Countless Stones

Location: Eccles (Kent) - Little (or Lower) Kit's Coty
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Still present
Further Comments: A baker attempted to count the stones here, to prove that it was possible to number the so-called 'countless stones'. The baker placed a loaf of bread on each rock, and when complete, counted each one he took back. The Devil had other plans, however, and consumed several loaves before the baker had finished.


 
Entrance to Hell

Location: Eldon (Derbyshire) - Pothole near the village
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Still present
Further Comments: This hole is said to be bottomless, and used by Old Nick to travel between this world and his own.


 
Built by the Devil

Location: Exmoor (Devon) - Tarr Bridge (also known as Tarr Steps)
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Still present
Further Comments: Dating back thousands of years, it is said that a local giant made a wager with Old Nick that he couldn't build the bridge overnight. Old Nick promptly proved him wrong. The Devil then took ownership of the bridge, refusing to let anyone cross safely until a priest drove him away.


 
Devil's Footprints

Location: Exmouth (Devon) - Backenhayes Farm
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: 8/9 February 1855 (footprints), ghost sighting unknown, ABC between 1982-1990
Further Comments: The Devil's Footprints ran for one hundred miles across Devon, appearing overnight after a light snowfall. One of the locations they were reported was on this farm, the tracks being recorded on the roof and second floor window. The house is also reputed to be haunted by a blue lady, while a fawn coloured large cat was seen several times over a eight year period.


 
Disguised Devil

Location: Fair Snape Fell (Lancashire) - Exact area unknown
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The Devil is said to haunt these rocks, disguising himself as a beautiful woman to lure young men to their deaths.


 
Fishy Devil

Location: Filey (Yorkshire) - Filey Brigg
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: While changing the landscape to make it more hazardous for sailors, the Devil dropped his hammer into the sea. Reaching in to retrieve the tool, the Devil pulled out a haddock, creating marks on the fish which can still be seen today.


 
White Oxen

Location: Fyfield (Wiltshire) - Devil's Den, Dolmen
Type: Legend - Old Nick
Date / Time: At midnight
Further Comments: On the stroke of midnight, the Devil appears and tries to pull this stone structure down using eight white oxen. A white hare or rabbit also joins them, offering advice. A second variation of the story says the Devil uses four oxen, and a black hound with glowing red eyes watches them. Another legend says that water poured into the cavities on the top stone will quickly vanish, drunk by an unknown horror.


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