If you’re into the paranormal, get maximum spooky satisfaction from your mini-break by booking into one of these ghost-filled venues. Just be aware that you may spend the night hiding under your duvet…
The Jamaica Inn, Launceston, Cornwall
The famous smuggler’s inn that inspired Daphne Du Maurier’s chilling novel of the same name, The Jamaica Inn opened in 1750 and was a regular stopping point for the smugglers that used the lonely Bodmin moors to hide their contraband goods. Now a hotel, it holds regular ghost hunts and guests often report spooky occurrences – blasts of cold air, voices in the bar when nobody’s around, lights, TVs and showers coming on in the middle of the night, and even ghostly hands grabbing them! Some guests who’ve booked into Room 4, in particular, have ended up spending the night in their car instead of this haunted hotel!
The Skirrid Mountain Inn, Monmouthshire, Wales
The oldest inn in Wales, built in the 12th Century, the Skirrid Mountain Inn has a horribly bloody past and a reputation for being one of the most darkly haunted places in the UK. ‘Hanging’ Judge Jeffries stayed here when he was sent to deal with the Welsh uprising against the English, known as the Monmouth Rebellion, in 1685. It’s said that 180 rebels were hanged in this very pub, and the beams on the ceiling bear scorch marks and scratches from their dying struggles. Needless to say, their unquiet souls have never left….
Lumley Castle, Chester-le-Street, Durham
Lumley Castle is haunted by a beautiful but tragic spectre called the Lily of Lumley. The first wife of the castle’s builder, Sir Ralph Lumley, in the 14th Century, her legend states that she was thrown down a well in the castle by two priests for renouncing Catholicism and stating she was going to leave Sir Ralph to become a nun. Her spirit is said to rise from the well – which can still be seen today – in order to haunt the castle. In 2005, several members of the Australian cricket team, who stayed at the castle during the Ashes, claimed to have seen the ghost!
Malmaison Oxford, Oxford
Now a glamorous Malmaison hotel, Oxford Castle dates back to Norman times and has had a turbulent history, being at various times a royal residence and a prison! Many people were put to death here, including the murderer Mary Blandy, executed at the castle in 1752. Her angry ghost has been spotted on the castle mound. A white mist has been seen rising up the stairs, only to disappear at the top, and unexplained rappings and bangings are often heard. Stay here if you dare…
Norwood Hall, Aberdeen, Scotland
This Georgian mansion is said to have three ghosts – this eternal threesome being previous owner James Ogston, his wife and mistress. Ogston rebuilt the house for his mistress, to keep her close to where he lived just over the river at Ardoe House, but his wife found out and demanded he leave her. He refused, but his wife’s vengeful ghost has not allowed the lovers to be alone together even in death! She is the most active of the spooks and has been spotted in the hall, kitchen and dining room.
Have you ever stayed in a haunted hotel?