Tewkesbury in Gloucestershire has a legion of ghost stories to tell. MICHELE EVE, from Mystical Times Blog, shares some of her favourite haunted tales with us.
Tewkesbury is a medieval market town in Gloucestershire. The town is famous for the 1471 Battle of Tewkesbury, which was a decisive battle in the War of the Roses . The battle is reenacted every year with the Tewkesbury Medieval Festival.
It is also well known for its 900 year old abbey, buildings that are several hundreds of years old, along with its maze of historic alleyways, so it’s no surprise that Tewkesbury has its fair share of ghost tales.
The Royal Hop Pole, Tewkesbury
The Royal Hop Pole is now a chain-owned pub and restaurant, which is situated on Church Street. The building dates back to medieval times and was, at one time, two separate buildings; a private residence and a coaching inn.
On the first floor, staff have reported one area becoming extremely chilly and the staff are reluctant to go on that floor during the night.
Rumour has it that this chilling presence is that of the ghost of a chef that once worked there when it was a coaching inn. The chef was said to have stabbed to death one of the serving maids he was having an affair with as she was about to tell his wife about their affair. The chef was then said to have thrown himself into the River Avon, which is at the back of the building.
Around the 1950s, a member of staff went to fill the coal buckets in the yard when he looked up and saw a man staring at him. This silent man was wearing a cloak and riding boots, very much in style with the civil war. When the member of staff spoke to him, the figure disappeared right in front of him.
The most amazing ghostly experience in this building was when a night porter saw Roman soldiers marching in unison across the first floor landing but only saw them from the waist up.
Tolsey Lane, Tewkesbury
One of the oldest roads in Tewkesbury is Tolsey Lane, which has had some very strange experiences reported. Where the narrowest part Tolsey Lane meets the High Street, there is a building which once housed a branch of a well known UK retailer of newspapers. The manager of the store lived with his family above the store. They would regularly hear doors banging, footsteps and just very odd noises which couldn’t be easily explained.
The cellar of the building was the most troubling of all. The manager said he had seen something small and dark in there, which gave off a sense of evil The local paper boys would never enter the cellar alone when they had to pack their delivery bags up early in the morning. They would always wait until there were a group of them as they were too scared to enter the cellar on their own.
The building was later taken over by a ladies fashion shop. The staff who worked there experienced ghostly phenomena and ended up going to the local newspaper, who sent a reporter and photographer over to cover the story.
The ladies who worked there said that clothes were strewn across the store when nobody was there. They would hear doors being opened and slammed upstairs when there was noone up on that floor.
Two of the staff volunteered to take the reporter and photographer down to the cellar but they only took a couple of steps into the cellar when they felt they were unable to go any further.
The photographer took a photo of the staff members huddled at the bottom of the stairs and they told him that they had seen a creature and felt the presence of evil.
They described what they had seen as ‘a black furry animal, not a cat or a dog’ whilst pointing to a darkened alcove of the cellar.The photographer then pointed his camera in that direction of the cellar and tried to take a photo but his camera had jammed.
He turned around and took a photo of the stairs and the camera worked but when he tried again to take a photo in the cellar, it wouldn’t work. He tried several times but the camera would not work in the cellar.
When the reporter returned to her office, she typed up a report about the strange things happening in the building. She did this on her work computer then saved the file. This was along with her other reports she had written up that day.
The next day at work, the reporter went to edit her reports but the report about the building had just vanished. Strangely, all the other reports typed that day were still there.
Full Ghostly Funeral Procession
Still on Tolsey Lane, the strangest of ghost sightings has been reported. People have reported seeing a full ghostly funeral procession being held. The procession is led by undertakers and pallbearers, all wearing full black mourning garb; tall top hats with veils along with a coffin in a horse drawn hearse.
This sight has been reported by many, even police officers but it has only been witnessed in the dark of night.
MICHELE EVE is a blog writer of her own paranormal encounters and a collector of others spooky experiences. She has a deep interest of all things paranormal, especially in her adopted county of Gloucestershire. She also writes about folklore, strange deaths and burials, which can uncover some very strange backstories.You can find her at the Mystical Times Blog website www.mysticaltimesblog.com