The Paranormal Database

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

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Yorkshire Ghosts, Folklore and Forteana


Location: York - St. Saviours church
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: A ghost hunter once spent the night here, investigating reports of a phantom Viking who had been executed on the site. The following morning, the vicar arrived, only to find the man dead on a high beam - it is said he died of fright!

Victorian Man

Location: York - Tempest Anderson Hall, found in the Museum Gardens
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Mid 1969
Further Comments: A witness in the hall reported seeing a phantom man dressed in Victorian clothing reaching up to take a book from a shelf located near the stage. The ghostly form turned around and the witness saw that it had no facial features - needless to say, the viewer fled.

Drunken Airman

Location: York - The Golden Fleece public house, Pavement Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: Towards the end of the Second World War, a drunken Canadian pilot fell from an upstairs window in the building and broke his neck on the pavement below. Since then, this ghost has reportedly haunted the bedroom from which he fell.


Location: York - The Olde Starr Inn, Stonegate
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Another building which once housed injured Civil War troops, the basement is said to be the place where amputations occurred, which explains the sound of cries and screams. Two black cats are also reported to haunt the pub, and an old woman has been seen on the stairs.

Caped Figure

Location: York - The Other Tap & Spile public house, North Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: This shadow form has been seen in the building with a cloak or cape draped around its neck.


Location: York - Theatre Royal, St. Leonard's Place
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Music coming from the closed theatre was once heard late at night. A grey figure resembling a nun has also been spotted in the building; she is thought to be the ghost of a nun who was bricked up alive for seeing angels when a hospital existed on the site. It is said to be a good omen for any production currently showing if the grey nun appears. Finally, there are also reports of a wraithy actor who died in a duel nearby.

Roman Legion

Location: York - Treasurer's House, Minster Yard
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1953
Further Comments: Harry Martindale was working on a ladder in the cellar of the building when a group of Roman soldiers walked past him along the old Roman Road which ran through the basement. Harry was so shocked that he fell from his ladder, and despite his terror, noted that the figures disappeared into the floor at knee height and was also later able to describe the uniforms and equipment of the Romans. At the time Harry was told that his description of the soldiers was wrong, and the uniforms and equipment did not match that which was used by the invaders, although later local archaeological discoveries resulted in Harry's observations being proved correct. Harry died in 2015 and never changed his story, nor made any money from sharing it. The building also claims to be home to several other ghosts, including a dog, a black cat, George Aislaby (who was killed in a duel), and Frank Green, the man who converted the interior into what it is today. The Tapestry Room is reputed to have an oppressive atmosphere and is where the wife of a former owner murdered him after he conducted one extra-marital affair too many (so the story goes).

Disabled Teenager

Location: York - Tutor restaurant, Goodramgate
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: The upper part of this building is haunted by a seventeen year old disabled teenager who hanged himself many years ago. One witness reported seeing swinging light bulbs and feeling an invisible presence which tried to push them down the stairs.

Small Old Man

Location: York - Unnamed shop along Colliergate
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Twentieth century
Further Comments: The female owners of this shop reported being glared at by a strange old man who told them to get out - instead of doing so, one of the proprietors told him to go away, which he promptly did - the man vanished and was never seen again.

Scary Shadows

Location: York - Viking Hotel, North Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Late twentieth century
Further Comments: A darkened figure that would appear from nowhere was reported by several staff. One man is said to have resigned after the entity scared him too much.


Location: York - Windmill Hotel, Blossom Street
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: Footsteps walking across a wooden floor have been heard here, even though the floors were carpeted at the time. A mist has also mysteriously appeared and disappeared at odd times, while bottles have been known to spontaneously shatter.

Grey Lady

Location: York - York Arms public house, High Petergate
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: Unknown
Further Comments: The phantom nun which haunts this pub was bricked up behind a wall after giving birth. The building in which this occurred no longer stands, but the pub was built on the same spot... This may be the same ghost which haunts the Theatre Royal.

Metamorphic Paper

Location: York - York Castle
Type: Unknown Ghost Type
Date / Time: 1717 (paper), Mary unknown
Further Comments: Sir John Reresby reported watching a piece of paper blowing in the wind change into a monkey before transforming into a bear. A slightly more traditional ghost was said to be Mary Bateman, who would appear during the witching hour.

Dean Gale

Location: York - York Minster
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1702 onwards
Further Comments: This gentleman loved the Minster so much that in death he refused to leave and has been seen sitting while listening to sermons. A crisis apparition has also manifested here; the ghost of an officer appeared to his sister as she prayed in the church in the 1820s - at the exact moment he had died on far away shores. Also reputed to haunt the building is the sound of a dog barking.

Old Searcher

Location: York - Yorkshire Museum Library
Type: Haunting Manifestation
Date / Time: 1954
Further Comments: For several weeks one particular book in the library would be found on the floor on Sunday evening - the mystery was 'solved' when a caretaker reported seeing a ghostly old man looking through the shelves, as if trying to find reading material.

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