Ghost Pirate haunts Whitby’s Bagdale Hall Hotel


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Stay the night with the ghost of a pirate at Whitby’s Bagdale Hall Hotel, writes RICK HALE

Bagdale Hal Hotel
Browne Bushell – an executed pirate – haunts his former home of Bagdale Hall Hotel

Bagdale Hall Hotel

2 Bagdale, Whitby YO21 1QL

Located in the charming village of Whitby, North Yorkshire is Bagdale Hall Hotel.

A 16th century manor home that exudes atmosphere and is home to the ghost of a former owner.

A man who was charged and executed on charges of piracy. As well as other phenomenon not so easily explained.

History Of Bagdale Hall Hotel

This old Tudor house was built in 1516 and was originally designed to be three separate houses.

Bagdale is Tudor, while building number 4 is a Georgian house. And the third is a lodge built in 1770 and given the curious name of Lobster Hall.

The Hauntings Of Bagdale Hall Hotel

Throughout its years as a hotel, both guests and staff have reported hair raising encounters with a mixed bag of supernatural activity.

There is a wide variety of spirit activity, however most of the activity is attributed to one entity, pirate, Browne Bushell.

The Pirate’s Ghost

Browne Bushell, a former owner of Bagdale Hall, was a naval officer during the tense years of the English Civil War.

Initially, Bushell sided with the Roundheads in the conflict.

Captaine Browne Bushell is said to haunt his former home, now the Bagdale Hall Hotel in Whitby
Captaine Browne Bushell is said to haunt his former home, now the Bagdale Hall Hotel in Whitby

But in 1643, after a leading a small Parliamentary force to capture the Henrietta Marie in Portsmouth Harbor, Bushell switched sides and fought with the Royalists.

When the war was over, Bushell was arrested and brought up on charges of piracy and executed in 1651.

His ghost is said to still walk the halls of his beloved home, Bagdale Hall.

The apparition of the accused pirate, has been seen in various parts of the hotel.

However, Bushell has been mostly witnessed walking up and down on the staircases of the Hall.

A number of times only the sound of his heavy military boots have been heard.

Bushell, has also been known to awaken guests by appearing at their bedside.

When they attempt to inquire why he has disturbed them, he slowly fades away.

A pamphlet etching showing the execution of Bagdale Hall Hotel's Browne Bushell in 1651
A pamphlet etching showing the execution of Bagdale Hall Hotel’s Browne Bushell in 1651

The Other Ghosts Of Bagdale Hall

Although much of the activity in Bagdale Hall is compliments of Brown Bushell, guests have reported activity not associated with the pirate.

A peculiar, black amorphous mass has been seen gliding up and down the stairs and rarely interacts with people.

Lights in empty rooms are founding blazing even after being turned off.

Housekeepers have reported hearing the unmistakable sound of disembodied voices having conversations.

And lastly, the unnerving sound of an infant screaming in anguish has been heard in a room on the second floor.

Bagdale Hall Hotel is undeniably a hotbed of paranormal activity.

What Bagdale Hall Hotel Offers Guests

This hotel just seems to exude charm with en-suite rooms decorated with the original wood paneled walls, large fireplaces and traditional antique furniture.

The restaurant offers a high quality menu and an extensive list of international wines sure to compliment any meal.

If you’re planning a wedding, Bagdale Hall Hotel has the facilities to host your wedding party making it unforgettable.

Sightseeing Options in Whitby

Whitby, a quaint town in North Yorkshire has plenty of shops, pubs and restaurants to visit.

And there are several historic sites, including the church of St Mary’s and Whitby Abbey, to explore at your leisure.

If you, or anyone you know, has stayed at Bagdale Hall Hotel and had an experience, we invite you to tell about it in the comments.

Watch Bagdale Hall Hotel ghost video

Rick Hale, is a native of Chicago, Illinois and first became interested in the paranormal after having a positive interaction with an apparition at a young age. Rick is the author of The Geek's Guide To The Strange and Unusual: Poltergeists, Ghosts and Demons. Behold! Shocking True Tales of Terror...and Some Other Spooky Stuff. And Bullets, Booze and Babes: The Haunted History of Chicago and Illinois. Rick is the co-host of The Shadow Initiative Paranormal Talk. Rick was featured in the documentary Ghost Tapes 2. Rick is a featured writer for Spooky Isles and Rick has also been published by Haunted Times, Paranormal Underground, The Supernatural Magazine and Legends Magazine.


  1. hi we stayed there a few years ago we were supposed to stay else where but was double booked so we didnt know about ghostly sightings at bagdale hall i was drifting of to sleeping i heard a mans footsteps on the landing he entered our room he tried to get in to our bed he was pushing me i tried to scream but was frightened he was deep breathing in my neck it was a awful experience when i got home me and hubby was shocked when we googled bagdale hall it said there was ghost experiences

  2. I had an experience in Bagdale Old Hall as it was called at the time with my Dad & older brother, it would have been 1977, I was 3 & he was 4 or 5 we’re 17 months apart.
    Our dad knew the owner at the time, they were both sat chatting, so me & my brother went exploring around the house. Daylight shone through the window next to the stairwell as we were greeted with a floating blue & white glowing sphere, with a 2 – 3 inch blue halo & brighter in the centre, It came from the top landing & began to float down the stairs. I went towards it about 2 steps. It was about football or basketball size. It came most of the way down the top part of the 90 degree stairwell as I stood a few stairs down on the other section at the bottom watching it, then it stopped & went back up, I wanted to follow it, but my brother did’nt want to & I was’nt about to go by myself, even if I really did want to. The sphere went back up to the landing & floated off to the left & down the hall out of sight.


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