Haunting of the Ye Olde Man and Scythe Pub, Bolton


The Ye Olde Man and Scythe in Bolton, one of England’s oldest public houses, , has 53 ghosts, says BECKY KEANE

Ye Olde Man and Scythe Pub, Bolton

With history dating back to the English Civil War, time seems to have stopped for this 16th Century Cider House in the heart of Bolton’s town centre.

In 1644, soldiers and civilians were mercilessly slaughtered in the vicinity, some of them seem to linger at Ye Olde Man and Scythe.

The 7th Earl of Derby, James Stanley, a beheaded Royalist spent the last few hours on a chair inside the pub, which still remains in the pub to this day.

Paranormal activity has also given the pub a chilling reputation, a phantom dog is also said to roam the building,staff and paranormal investigators have bravely venture into the 12th century vaulted cellar only to be pushed by unseen hands.

A spirit of a young girl known as Jenny often pinches people,  she has been known to move furniture and pull on ladies skirts.

At the turn of the 19th Century a woman drinking in the pub noticed her hands mysteriously dripping with blood,terrified, the woman left.

In 2014 , the pub manager came downstairs to find a pint glass smashed on the floor, thinking there had been a break-in, he checked the CCTV only to find a translucent flickering figure near the bar area.

The pub’s CCTV footage then made news all over the world.

Ghost sighting on camera at Ye Olde Man and Scythe, Bolton

What do you make of the Ye Olde Man and Scythe’s footage?

BECKY KEANE talks with the owner of Ye Olde Man and Scythe about the terrors the permeates the ancient Bolton pub…

In Bolton, the Man and Scythe is known for its spirits as well as its cider. And by spirits, we don’t mean the alcohol variety.

With a blood curdling and gruesome history, an earl beheaded and the brutal slaying of the town folk , there is no wonder that 53 ghosts haunt the 18th Century inn.

Surrounded by the modern times, shoppers and people enjoying a quiet pint, all to often walk where the bodies of murdered soldiers and civilians lay in pools of blood  in 1644.

The Man and Scythe

Always intrigued by this spooky building and reputation, I decided to ask Richard the Inn’s owner a few questions.

Richard has owned the Inn for three years and said that ghostly activity happens on an almost daily occurrence.

With the Bolton massacre in 1644, at the Man and Scythe’s door step and the beheading of an Earl who spent the last few hours of his life drinking there, no wonder an astonishing 53 ghosts are said to still linger.

Richard said no female staff will enter the cellar. Not because of negativity but because they are touched, by the spirit of a young boy.

In 2014, CCTV caught a ghostly image in the bar which was viewed all over the world. Smashed glass is regularly found on the floor, and a live-in manager reported he would wake up with wet feet in the night and thought the dog had licked him.

He would sit up to see the dog was fast asleep and hadn’t moved all night!

Objects will turn up in different places, too the surprise of everyone.

One of the scariest things to happen was a customer drinking in the pub who began to bleed from different points on the body but no visible injuries could be found.

Understandably terrified, the customer left.

Ghostly white orbs have been caught on photos and customers  tell the staff of any strange things they capture, including a picture taken in the beer garden.

A ghostly white image is seen from the window.

The landlord was away and his cover was downstairs in the bar… so who is it in the window?

Richard mentioned the staff are quite used to the activity now at the pub and some have names for their friendly visitors.

Join us for a pint of cider? Bring your camera…


  1. I know this to be a fake as I was once asked to quote a cost for getting the cctv running. It does not work and never has. The cameras do not connect to anything.


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