Photo: KnowInsiders
Check out the most haunted places in the Uk! Photo: KnowInsiders

The United Kingdom is a scary place. Terrifying, in fact, a country where nightmares sometimes become reality. Of course, it also happens to be one of the friendliest places in the world and an absolute dream on the tourism front, but don’t get too comfortable. British ghosts might be polite, but that doesn’t make them any less ghoulish.

From north to south and east to west, the UK is packed with rickety old mansions, abandoned castles, eerie cemeteries and post-industrial landscapes that might be more terrifying than anything the undead can throw at you. History is everywhere here, and not all of that history is happy gathering dust in the books. What was that noise? It was probably your imagination, but ‘probably’ isn’t the most certain of terms. These are the most haunted places in the UK and they aren’t for the faint of heart.

List of top 10 most haunted and ghost places in the UK

1. Pendle Hill, Lancashire

2. Tower of London

3. Ancient Ram Inn, Wotton-Under-Edge, Gloucestershire

4. Berry Pomeroy Castle, Devon

5. The Red Lion, Avebury, Wiltshire

6. Borley Rectory, Essex

7. Glamis Castle, Angus, Scotland

8. Culloden Moor, near Invernes

9. Springhill House, Northern Ireland

10. Felbrigg Hall, Norfolk

***

What are the most haunted and ghost places in the UK?

1. Pendle Hill, Lancashire

Photo: Pinterest
Photo: Pinterest

“Double, double toil and trouble; fire burn and cauldron bubble!” Since the notorious 1612 trails, the good people of East Lancashire have remained utterly cautious of the dreaded witches of Pendle Hill. Ten alleged witches were buried beneath the hill, having been hung at Lancaster Castle. The hill has since featured on multiple television shows, including a live broadcast from the “Most Haunted” crew.

The spirits of ten witches in total, all out for revenge, having been unjustly put to death by the terrified townsfolk of their time. Most famous among them is Alice Nutter, who was wealthier than her supernatural contemporaries and chilled everyone with her silence during the trial. She was found guilty of the charge of murdering Henry Mitton by witchcraft.

Pendle Hill looms large and portentous above the Lancashire countryside, creepy feelings aside, it’s a lovely place for a hike, and its summit boasts an astounding view.

2. Tower of London

Photo: Londonist
Photo: Londonist

We’ve all heard of the Tower of London. It’s most famous for harboring the Crown Jewels, and housing prisoners for their final days, before being trotted out to face public execution – so it’s little wonder why it’s thought to be haunted. Historical inmates include Thomas Cromwell, Sir Walter Raleigh, Guy Fawkes, The Cato Street Conspirators and the Kray Twins.

There are a number of spirits apparently wandering the halls of the Tower of London. But the most famous is that of Anne Boleyn – estranged wife to Henry VIII, who met her end on the block. She’s often seen walking around the various rooms after closing time, with her severed head tucked under her arm. Others have spotted her staring through the window of the room in which she was imprisoned.

The Tower of London is one of the English capital’s most hotly attended attractions. It’s well worth a visit for a chance at spotting Anne’s ghostly reflection in the world's biggest diamond.

3. Ancient Ram Inn, Wotton-Under-Edge, Gloucestershire

Photo: Haunted Happenings
Photo: Haunted Happenings

The Ancient Ram Inn, built way back in the 12th century, is one of the most famous haunted sites in the UK. It pretty much ticks all the boxes on the spooky checklist. Not only was it built on an ancient pagan burial ground, but it also boasts over 20 regular specters. It’s now the UK epicenter of the ghost hunting world, with supernaturalists descending on the ground year-in-year-out.

Amongst the many ghosts that patrol the rooms of The Ancient Ram Inn and its creepy basement is a lost little girl – allegedly killed by her mother – a rogue priestess – who can be heard wailing deep into the night – and, perhaps worst of all, a very randy male sex-spirit called an incubus, renowned for pushing unsuspecting guests onto the bed.

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4. Berry Pomeroy Castle, Devon

Photo: Wikipedia
Photo: Wikipedia

The Tudor-era castle of Berry Pomeroy (built all the way back in 1547), towers over the Devonshire countryside and is known to many as “the most haunted castle in the UK.” Seeing as there are over 1,500 castles across the country – each with its own resident specters – this place must be pretty haunted, right? Let’s just say, if you’re driving past on a moonlit night, and you see the figure of a lady in one of the windows, keep on driving…

There are two known ghostly tenants of Berry Pomeroy, ‘The Blue Lady’, and ‘The White Lady’, both with their own tragic stories. According to locals, the Blue Lady is said to have been the daughter of a Norman lord, who killed her child, having conceived it with her father. Apparently, the Blue Lady appears in the window of the highest tower, beckoning to passers-by, luring them inside. Anyone foolish enough to go to the Blue Lady is said to fall to their death. The White Lady, often confused with her blue counterpart, haunts the dungeons of the castle, after being imprisoned there via the spite of a jealous sister.

Berry Pomeroy Castle is now a grade II listed building, an English Heritage Site owned by the Duke of Somerset. It is possible to visit Berry Pomeroy Castle, and also to rent it out for weddings, gatherings and photoshoots.

5. The Red Lion, Avebury, Wiltshire

Photo: Fine Art America
Photo: Fine Art America

The British enjoy drinking in the afterlife as much as on earth if the number of supposedly haunted UK pubs is anything to go by. If any boozer was ever going to lay claim to spectral regulars it would be The Red Lion, situated within Avebury's mysterious stone circle, long associated with paganism, witchcraft and superstition.

Apparitions served at the Red Lion include a woman named Florrie who pays particular attention to bearded customers. Ghostly children have also been seen and visitors have often reported orbs of light, weird shadows and cold spots within the 400-year-old inn, which is never short of visitors looking to test their nerves with an overnight stay.

The Red Lion, Avebury, Marlborough, Wiltshire, SN8 1RF. Tel: 01672 539266. B&B costs £40 per person per night.

6. Borley Rectory, Essex

Top 10 Haunted Places in The UK
Photo: Pinterest

The 1944 demolition of this infamous haunted house hasn't diminished its status among supernatural enthusiasts. It's a legend based largely on the activities of Harry Price, a ghostbuster who became famous for a series of psychic investigations, including a not particularly scary-sounding tussle with a talking mongoose.

Price's thorough accounts of the Rectory's ghouls (most notably a murdered nun) brought the place national infamy until its virtual destruction by fire in 1939. No trace of the rectory remains although pilgrims still visit, to the irritation of some of Borley's long-suffering residents.

The village of Borley lies on the River Stour, two miles northwest of Sudbury in Suffolk and 24 miles northeast of Chelmsford in Essex.

7. Glamis Castle, Angus, Scotland

Photo: Britannica
Photo: Britannica

Nothing, it seems, guarantees centuries of angry haunting like a lifetime of secret incarceration. The imposing home of the current Earl and Countess of Strathmore is supposedly riddled with secret rooms. Residents include the so-called Monster of Glamis Castle (an unkind moniker for a deformed child held here in the 19th century), a tongueless woman running around the garden, and a wicked aristocrat who loudly bemoans a lost card game. There's also the mysterious Grey Lady. This isn't the late Queen Mother, born at Glamis in 1900, but rather Janet Douglas, executed on a trumped-up charge of witchcraft in 1537.

8. Culloden Moor, near Inverness

Photo: Countryfile
Photo: Countryfile

The last battle to take place in mainland Britain was fought on this barren moor in 1746 where the Jacobite rebellion was dealt a terminal blow and a grim era commenced of repression of Highland customs and traditions.

As befits such a bloody battle, where Jacobite prisoners and wounded were ruthlessly massacred on the orders of the notorious Duke of Cumberland, the dead do not rest easy and every year on April 16, the battle's anniversary, the landscape is said to echo again with anguished cries as phantom legions re-enact the slaughter.

Culloden village is three miles east of Inverness. The battlefield, where there is a National Trust for Scotland visitor center, is three miles south of the village.

9. Springhill House, Northern Ireland

Photo: National Trust
Photo: National Trust

Springhill House is a 17th century listed building in the townland of Ballindrum near Moneymore, Northern Island. Though it has remained the property of the National Trust since the 1950s, Springhill House has been in the possession of the Conyngham family for hundreds of years. The many heirs of the family and masters of the household have fought in a number of different wars before the house eventually began to decline during the early 20th century.

Olivia Lennox Conyngham was the bearer of a sad story. Her husband, George Lenox-Conyngham, killed himself and Olivia had to bring up the children all by herself, tormented by the fact that she could never save her beloved husband from his demons. As far as ghosts go, however, Olivia is fairly benign; she only appears by day and shows genuine concern for children, who she prefers to appear to.

Springhill is considered a vitally important bit of ulster history, having preserved the legacy of the Conyngham family’s 300-year residence. The estate is open to the public most days and boasts one of the largest surviving 18th-century wallpaper schemes in the United Kingdom.

10. Felbrigg Hall, Norfolk

Photo: Wikipedia
Photo: Wikipedia

The grand Felbrigg Hall Estate stands proudly within its vast grounds stretching 1,700 acres. However, amongst the hall’s idyllic surroundings there are stories of spirits haunting the area.

Felbrigg’s paranormal sightings are mainly focused on former resident William Windham III. William was well-known for his passion for books, and when a fire broke out in his friend’s library in 1809 William risked his life to rescue some of the precious volumes from going up in flames. Unfortunately, William was badly injured in a fall during the rescue and died from his injuries a few weeks later.

His ghost is said to regularly visit the grand gothic library at Felbrigg to read the books that he hadn’t been able to during his life. Staff working at Felbrigg have reportedly seen William sitting in at the table in the library with his favorite books in front of him or relaxing by reading in a chair.

You can now visit Felbrigg Hall and take in the elegant furnishings and opulent rooms of one of the most haunted places in Norfolk. Make a point to visit the shadowy Windham library and see where the ghost of William Windham III is said to inhabit.

With its long, bloodthirsty history and dreary dark weather, it's no wonder that the UK hosts an enormous number of spooky sites. Halloween is just around the corner, meaning you may well be looking for a scary experience to get you in the mood for the spooky season. That doesn't just mean binging the latest TV horror series. What if you want to hit the road and walk in the footsteps of the dead yourself?

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