Skirrid Mountain Inn, Monmouthshire
Not just one of the United Kingdom’s haunted pubs, this 12th century public house in rural Wales is known as one of Britain’s most haunted buildings – full stop. When you consider its bloody history, you can easily see why. Used as a courtroom by a local judge in the 13th century, over 180 recorded criminals met their grisly end courtesy of the hangman’s noose in this pub’s staircase.
Other ghosts include Fanny Price, who died of consumption at the inn in 1835, and ghostly battalions of soldiers who followed general Owain Glyndŵr during the Welsh Revolt of 1400. Oh, and if that’s not mysterious enough? The nearby Skirrid Mountain is also the subject of a local legend, which says a lightning bolt split it in two during the crucifixion of Jesus.
The Mermaid Inn, Rye, East Sussex
This grade II listed building in the ancient town of Rye was founded in 1156 and is said to be haunted by ghostly duellists and 13th century smugglers. Criss crossed underground by a labyrinth of tunnels, the notorious Hawkhurst Gang used it as smuggling base.
Among the haunted rooms include room 16, supposedly the site of a grisly murder by one of the smuggling gang, and room 17 which is visited by a ghostly old woman who appears sitting in a rocking chair. Legend says she is the wife of the Hawkhurst gang’s founder, George Gray. The chair caused guests so many frights it has now been removed.
The Red Lion Inn, Avebury, Wiltshire
The Red Lion is not a unique name for a pub in England by any means. However, the Red Lion in Avebury certainly is – in that it is the only public house in the entire world that lies entirely within an ancient stone circle. These Neolithic monuments comprise the largest stone circle in the world and are a designated World Heritage site. Many superstitions, beliefs and paranormal phenomena are associated with stone circles.
But not only this, the pub is also supposedly haunted by the ghost of a murdered 17th century woman whose corpse was thrown down the pub’s well. In the modern day, it has been visited by TV programme Most Haunted and holds a four-star rating on Trip Advisor.
The Grenadier, London
This public house in London’s affluent Belgravia area, was built in 1720 as an officer’s mess for the 1st Regiment of the Foot Guards of the British Army. It is supposedly haunted by the ghost of a junior officer, who was caught cheating at cards and then was drunkenly beaten to death by his comrades.
The yellowed newspapers pinned to one wall tell all you need to know about the ghostly goings on since, summing up decades of haunting experiences. These include phantom cigarette burns, ghostly figures in photos and ashtrays being thrown across rooms. All this hasn’t stopped the Grenadier’s location and historical significance making it a popular haunt of the rich and famous. Past guests include Madonna, Prince William & King George IV.