Knutsford: 5 Haunted Places to Visit

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Knutsford in Cheshire has a long and ghostly history with plenty of haunted places to visit, says guest writer GEORGE WILLIAMS of Knutsford Ghost Walks

Knutsford

Haunted Places in Knutsford, Cheshire

Knutsford is a market town in Cheshire. The town was recorded in William The Conqueror’s Domesday Book of 1086 as Canutesford. King Edward I granted the town a Royal Charter in 1292.  

This gave William de Tabley, the Lord of Knutsford, the right to establish a weekly market, an annual fair and to lay out 38 burgage plots, each large enough for a house, a place of work and space for animals.

Naturally, with its narrow streets that still follow this old mediaeval layout, Knutsford has its fair share of ghosts.

The Courthouse Hotel

Built in 1820, and formerly the town’s Sessions House, the building is complete with a large Magistrates Room, C19 Grand Jury Room, a second smaller courtroom with underground holding cells and a prison to house 150 inmates.

The prison has long since disappeared and in 2015  the interior of the building was remodelled into what has become “The Courthouse Hotel” , now also host to strange paranormal activity. 

Both Guests and Housekeeping Staff have reported showers going off  numerous times, doors slamming on them almost everyday. Pictures have been taken in the past of orbs above their heads, as well as a very strange green mist. 

Future brides, staying overnight on their own in the top rooms, report a sense of feeling spooked and feeling uneasy about staying there on their wedding night.

The Royal George Hotel

Formerly “The George & Dragon”, a Georgian Coaching Inn, the hotel was renamed following the visit of Princess Victoria in 1832. The hotel’s Assembly Room was a popular venue in Georgian times, where the local gentry would congregate at weekend evenings to dance and play card games.

In 2001 witnesses contacted a Paranormal society to report ghostly sightings in the hotel. The Investigators examined the hotel for signs of glowing balls of light, an apparition of a Dick Turpin-like character and a grey lady in Room 201. 

The Dick Turpin-like character could be the most famous, or at least most notorious, Knutsford apparition – that of Edward “Highwayman” Higgins. He lived for some time in Heath House in what is now known as Gaskell Avenue.

The Ghostly Corner

Towards the end of Knutsford’s King Street, on the way to the Tatton Park entrance, is the left hand junction up to Minshull Street. Along this right angled section of the two streets lies a wine bar, charity shop, cafe, coaching inn and a former brewery’s tap house. 

All five venues have reported incidents of paranormal activity including hand dryers starting on their own , poltergeist activity and items rearranged overnight, unexplained footsteps and movement from upstairs areas and peculiar “strange things that go bump in the night” moments!

The Lord Eldon

The 300 year old Lord Eldon public house is reputed to be haunted by Annie Sarah Pollitt, Knutsford’s first May Queen and daughter of James Pollitt the landlord in the late 19th century.  She took over landlord-ship to run this pub after her husband Edwin died in 1896 and Annie was still there in 1901.

Witness reports tell of seeing an apparition that wears clothing dating from the 1800’s, flickering lights, moving objects and an unidentified cold breeze.  Staff have reported sightings of the white shade in the lower rooms (see photo below).

The Lord Eldon

There are many rumours that Annie haunts the Lord Eldon although there is no real explanation of why she would other than she had resided there whilst a child. 

The Blonde Lady of Sudlow Lane

On the outskirts of Knutsford there have been several sightings, at around midnight, of a blonde woman seen walking alone on the secluded lane leading to Plumley, sometimes standing on the bridge looking down at the motorway below. She appears to have had an accident, as she has blood on her face. As investigators get closer to the figure she mysteriously disappears.

GEORGE WILLIAMS is the founder of “Knutsford Ghost Walks”, and runs fortnightly afternoon/evening ghost walks around the town. You can book scheduled walks directly on EventBrite or arrange your own private walk with him for team building, birthdays etc. Contact him at [email protected] or phone 07713 456505. You can follow him on Instagram @knutsfordghostwalks and @knutsfordghosts

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