Forget the image of No Mean City; Glasgow is also one of Scotland’s most haunted places, says MJ STEEL COLLINS
1. Provan Hall House, Auchinlea Park, Easterhouse
Unofficially the oldest house in Glasgow (it predates Provand’s Lordship by a couple of years), Provan Hall House is haunted by the spirit of Reston Mather, its last private owner.
The spirits of a mother and her two-year-old son also haunt the building, having been murdered by the mother’s husband, after he found his wife with a mysterious child upon his return after three years away in the army.
The Ghost Club have investigated Provan Hall approximately five times.
2. Scotia, Stockwell Street
Dating back to the 18th century, this has to be one of the most haunted pubs in Scotland, boasting a veritable cornucopia of spirits (yes, it still has the alcoholic kind).
The basement is said to be haunted by the ghost of a manager who hung himself there in the late 20th century.
Meanwhile, the spirit of a prostitute and that of the young son of a previous landlord walk the bar, where the phone has seemingly rung of its own accord…
3. University of Glasgow, Gilmorehill, West End
A ghostly Grey Lady roams around the Sir Gilbert Scott Building, favouring the Undercroft and Lion and Unicorn Staircase.
She has confused many a security guard, wondering why a student would be in that part of campus late at night and has been described in several forms, from an old lady, to a young woman dressed in mid-20th century clothing.
A strange figure of a man in a stovepipe hat has been seen in the Undercroft, while the lifts of the Boyd Orr building give regular rides to unseen passengers.
4. Pearce Institute, Govan Road, Govan
This community hub, which has served the people of Govan since 1906, is thought to be haunted by Lady Dinah Pearce, who bestowed it upon the community.
The disconnected pipe organ in MacLeod Hall saw a night janitor fleeing the building when it started playing, a figure has been seen flitting across the main entrance foyer, where the lights flicker and the taps in the café area switch themselves on and refuse to go off.
The apparition of what is thought to be Lady Pearce has also been seen watching from the balcony of the MacLeod Hall.
5. The Fairfield Heritage Centre, Govan Road, Govan
A new kid on the haunted block, this is a very active location where there is not a dull moment.
Figures have been seen flitting about the main staircase by the entrance.
And from personal experience alone, the present writer has smelled smoke in the corridor near the entrance, when there was nowhere for smoke to come from, felt the bustle of something unseen go by in the same corridor, and saw a white face and arm in the glass case of a model ship in the boardroom.
I also saw a white figure standing in the corner in one of the rooms of the converting drawing rooms upstairs and caught a photo of a creepy looking figure in a dark shadow in the room next door!
6. Theatre Royal, Hope Street
The Theatre Royal is said to be haunted by the ghost of Nora, a cleaner with acting aspirations, who committed suicide after being laughed out of an audition.
She is also accompanied by the ghost of a firefighter who died battling one of the theatre’s many fires.
Legendary ghost hunter Peter Underwood also experienced a poltergeist whilst waiting to be interviewed when the theatre was in use as studios by STV.
7. Glasgow Central, Gordon Street
The basement of the Central is said to be haunted by the spirit of a man who killed his wife in the basement, so the legend goes, but the Ghost Club couldn’t turn up any historical evidence to support the claims.
The spirits of the victims of a massive train crash in 1915 have also been detected. Their bodies were brought back to Central Station after the troop train crashed several miles down the line.
8. Tron Theatre, Trongate
A negative entity has been felt roaming the Tron Theatre. It was once the site of the Tron Church, which was burnt down by Glasgow’s own Hellfire Club in 1793.
The theatre boasts a skull keeping watch over things from a quiet crevice.
9. Dalmarnock Road Bridge
The ghost of a young man who committed suicide is said to haunt the bridge.
A businessman walking across the bridge came across the spirit in the 1970s, when he saw a young man in his thirties in relatively modern clothing apparently jump into the Clyde.
The businessman rushed to the side of the bridge in order to help, but there was no splash, nor any sign of the mysterious man.
10. Queens Park, Langside
The re-enactment of the Battle of Langside is supposed to be witnessed in the sky above the park on the anniversary of the battle, which took place on 13 May 1568.
The park sits on the ground where the battle took place. Ghostly soldiers with gory injuries have also been glimpsed walking around.
11. Glasgow Subway
A number of spirits once haunted, or indeed still haunt the six miles of tunnels that make up of the Glasgow Subway, affectionately known locally as The Clockwork Orange.
- A mysterious clatter was heard in the vicinity of the West St tunnels during construction.
- A strange humanoid with meat hanging from its jaws has been seen in the same area, whilst West St Station is said to be haunted by a Grey Lady.
- A hanged man has been seen mid air outside St George’s Cross Station, strange singing and arguing voices heard in Kelvinbridge Station.
- A happy lady togged out in 1930s finery has been seen on the platforms of Hillhead Station by workman after closing time.
12. Kelvingrove Art Gallery, Argyle Street
Strange voices have been heard about the museum.
There is also an urban legend that the architect committed suicide after the building was built the wrong way round (he didn’t and it wasn’t).
In the 1980s, a passerby experienced a time slip back several decades to witness horse drawn carriages just outside the gallery, before returning to the present time.
13. Scotland St School Museum, Scotland Street
This Rennie Mackintosh designed school served the local community into the 1970s before being turned into a museum of Scottish education.
But school isn’t out for some.
The spirit of a former headmaster has been encountered about the building, along with other former teachers, and the sound of children laughing has been heard echoing from otherwise empty parts of the building.
14. Kelvin Hall, Argyle Street
Now a hub of the National Library for Scotland, the wonderful Museum of Transport was once housed here.
One of the exhibits was a mock-up of a 1930s Glasgow Street, complete with a Subway Station, various shop fronts, old cars and cinema.
It was a great thing to behold if you were a wean on a day trip.
Perhaps not so wean friendly were the ghosts said to haunt it! Seats in the cinema would go down by themselves, voices heard and strange apparitions seen.
15. Govan Road, Govan
As well as being host to the aforementioned Pearce Institute and Fairfield Heritage Centre, many uncanny incidents have happened in Govan Road.
At New Year’s in 1966, a young boy out with his older brothers vanished, never to be seen again, supposedly taken by the fairies!
Strange apparitions have also been seen standing outside the Brechin Arms and by the Govan Old Parish Church.
One woman crossing the road by the old Bank of Scotland saw what she described as a man dressed in old style clothes, with the eyes of a dead person….
16. Blythswood Square/Sauchiehall Street
The trial of society girl Madeleine Smith for the murder of the lover Emile Pierre L’Angelier was the Glasgow scandal of the 1850s.
She was accused of poisoning him with arsenic after he threatened to reveal their affair when she was set to marry another man. L’Angelier was unsuitable, being only a lowly clerk.
Madeliene received that unique Scottish verdict of ‘Not Proven’ in relation to the charges, meaning there was no clear proof that she had committed the crime, but no clear proof that she hadn’t.
She emigrated to America in disgrace, dying in New York City in 1928.
The apparition of L’Angelier has been seen stoating about Sauchiehall Street, while the house that Madeleine and her family is said to be haunted.
17. Former Western Infirmary, West End
Now mostly demolished and being redeveloped as part of the University of Glasgow Campus, the Western Infirmary was said to have been haunted by the ghost of top surgeon Sir William McEwan, who died in 1924.
He refused to operate on a talented young artist suffering severe headaches.
The artist later died falling down four flights of stairs at the hospital while suffering one of his headaches, leaving Sir McEwan racked with guilt. In 1975, a nurse saw a silver haired old man in a dressing gown walking down the corridor.
Nothing unusual in that, except that a ward sister, who had also seen him, rushed up to the nurse in shock as it turned out the old man had been a previous patient who had died two years before!
18. Silverburn Shopping Centre, Barrhead Road, Pollock
The management of this shiny shopping mecca wound up calling in the ghost hunters after the apparition of a woman in black was glimpsed four times by customers and staff in 2016.
She was seen lurking around the toilets and outside a clothes shop by one shocked shopper.
19. Northbank Quadrant, Balornock
A poltergeist case of Enfield proportions erupted in 1974, involving two warring neighbours. At first, it was believed one family was playing a prank on the other, but this soon turned out not to be the case.
The main focus of the poltergeist appeared to be the young adolescent sons of the Grieve family.
They showed superhuman strength, throwing heavy furniture and grown men about.
Rooms were spectacularly wrecked and no reprieve could be got as the activity followed the family about, with activity erupting in relative’s houses, the boys’ school and the family car.
Things died down after the eldest son, unhappy in school, left and began an apprenticeship as an electrician.
The case was investigated by the Glasgow Ghostbuster, Prof. Archie E Roy.
20. The Arches, Argyle Street
This once infamous nightclub, and more recently, market, is the haunt of a young girl dressed in Victorian clothing.
She was seen in 2005 when the location was being used for a Laserquest event.
21. 23 Mansfield Street, Partick
In 1968, Lachlan and Mary O’Hanlon were at their wits end, and the butt of friends jokes after claiming their tenement flat was haunted by a poltergeist.
It all started with a light scratching, that Lachlan initially dismissed, but soon reached hair raising proportions, that drove the couple from their home.
Other phenomena included drops in temperatures, strange glowing apparitions and Lachlan being thrown from his seat.
The couple enlisted the help of now defunct Glasgow Evening Citizen, who sent a reporter in to hold a night investigation.
22. Grand Central Hotel, Gordon Street
This high profile hotel has seen many famous guests, including The Beatles.
It is also the scene of strange activity.
One guest reported hearing the doors knocking in the middle of the night.
A maid is supposed to have committed suicide by leaping from a hotel window about 100 years ago.
23. Panopticon, Argyle Street
This old music hall has been a number of things in its past. Now that past haunts it.
The smell of animals has been detected, thought to date back to the days when the Panopticon was a glorified zoo.
A ghostly soldier has been seen on the balcony and there is also a resident Lady In Black.
The whistling and laughter of children has also been heard.
Another claim to fame is that the Panopticon is where a young Stan Laurel made his professional debut.
24. Pearce Building, University of Glasgow, Gilmorehill
This old building, deserving an entry of its own, was once sited at the University’s original location in the Glasgow High Street.
A strange figure was seen lurking at a tower window by a security guard late at night.
One student was dared to spend the night in a reputedly haunted room. He had to be let out early.
25. Southern Necropolis, Gorbals
The Southern Necropolis is the location of the infamous 1954 vampire hunt carried out by the local children, which led to graphic, gory horror comics being outlawed by Parliament.
There is also a statue of the White Lady, which is supposed to turn its head, watching people and turning them to stone unless they say “White Lady, White Lady, White Lady.”
26. Kingsbridge Crescent, Kings Park
A family sold their flat in this street thanks to the haunting they experienced.
The daughter of the family saw a ghostly woman flitting through the house, while lights going on and off caused the family to finally sell up.
Eerily, when the flat was empty, neighbours below reported hearing noises.
In another strange incident in Kings Park, one man waiting for a bus saw a ghost train floating down the street, belching out flames, which then shot off to the sky.
27. The Gurning Man Of Crosshill
Between 1976 and 1979, 17 women reported what was described as a ‘demented spirit’, appearing as a solid mass in their homes in the Crosshill area.
The Gurning Man appeared to one woman in her bedroom.
She had been awoken by a strange grunting and saw the grinning apparition, which only vanished when she screamed and woke her husband.
The apparition also appeared to two passersby, who described it as having a twisted face.
No ghostly priests at this location, only a council housing estate. And a water tower with a White Witch.
And another flying train – both legends that scared the younger residents.
29. Former Police and Fire Station, Orkney Street, Govan
A ghostly firefighter has been seen here, whilst the cell block of the police station has an intensely eerie atmosphere.
30. Mosspark Poltergeist, Glasgow South
A house here was utilised by the local authorities as temporary accommodation for homeless families.
One family placed here had a highly colourful experience in the few weeks they lived there, claiming poltergeist activity and other haunting activity.
The council investigated, but nothing conclusive was found.