The Fleece Inn, Elland: Yorkshire’s Spookiest Pub?


CHRISTINE MILLER visits The Fleece Inn in Elland, West Yorkshire, the site of some particularly strange paranormal sightings…

The Fleece Inn in Elland, West Yorkshire
The Fleece Inn in Elland, West Yorkshire

The Fleece Inn, a Grade ll listed building in the Westgate area of Elland, West Yorkshire, dates back to the early 1600s. 

Unsurprisingly, it is said to be very, very haunted.  

So haunted in fact that the Most Haunted team spent the night here in 2017 – and it was an eventful night indeed. 

During the show, the landlady, a woman named Christine Watson, whilst being interviewed, was left significantly shaken when a wooden bar chair was violently hurled over the upstairs banister, landing mere metres away from her. 

But just who, or what, could this violent entity be? 

Could it be the spirit of a man who, during a violent argument with a “conman” in the 19th century, was left to bleed to death on the staircase? He and his victim are both thought to have stayed on at the pub after their earthly departure.

More Than A Few Spirits

But, with as many as 15 spirits said to call the 400-year-old Fleece Inn their home, it might be challenging to pinpoint who exactly is to blame for some of the more terrifying paranormal activity. 

The spirits aren’t just confined to the interior of the building; just outside the bizarre ghost of Old Leathery Coit – a headless man in a long, tattered leather coat  – rides in a passenger carriage that similarly headless horses pull. 

The phantom carriage, usually preluded by a rapid gust of wind, is said to drive at speed from Westgate to Old Earth before returning to the barn area outside the pub.

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Several mediums that have visited over the years claim they pick up on the menacing spirit of a grumpy man that walks around the building, said to be an old shepherd who is somewhat unpredictable and has even been blamed for once wrecking the pub’s storeroom. 

Furthermore, the presence of a young pregnant woman who was murdered by her lover sometime in the 17th century is also fond of staying put at The Fleece Inn in the afterlife.  

However, relatively modern-day spirits live on (so to speak) at the pub also. A young motorcyclist who tragically died outside the pub in the 1970s is said to linger on within the historic building walls. 

The Fleece Inn in days gone by
The Fleece Inn in Elland, West Yorkshire

Poltergeist Activity at The Fleece Inn

The amount of paranormal activity witnessed at The Fleece Inn is nothing short of intriguing. From phantom smells of pipe smoke, footsteps and voice, glasses smashing, scratching noises, to even furniture being moved, it all goes on at this very pub. 

Although this poltergeist-type activity isn’t the only way in which the spirits make themselves known…

Many a punter have reported being watched by unseen eyes, or even more creepily, the feeling of someone breathing on their necks.

Initially sceptical of the ghost stories coming out of The Fleece Inn, landlady Christine soon turned paranormal believer when she was awoken from her slumber to find a figure standing at the bottom of her bed in the early hours of the morning. 

Whilst trying to rouse her husband, the figure simply and inexplicably vanished. 

However, she became increasingly concerned when her young son grew upset that his toys were being moved. Christine then decided to place flour on the floor and secured the area to solve the mystery somewhat. 

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Disturbingly enough, when she investigated the following day, the flour had distinct track marks running through it. 

The family soon accepted the bizarre happenings and have not felt threatened by the spectres they share their home with since. 

With its unusual amount of ghostly activity, is it any wonder that scores of visitors make a beeline for this West Yorkshire gem? 

But are YOU brave enough to pop in for a pint, or perhaps spend the night at The Fleece Inn? Maybe you already have? Tell us all about it in the comments section below.

Discover The City of York’s most haunted pubs here.


  1. A friend of mine she was the landlady at the time in the early 2000 she said she called time every one left so she was just bottling up behind the bar she heard some noises she said she turned around and the bar was full of people ? So she just run up stairs frightened to death


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