If you’re looking for ghosts in Staffordshire, you will not be disappointed. There’s an incredibly high concentration of haunted locations in Staffordshire, from the well-known and very haunted Alton Towers to the lesser-known and equally haunted Gladstone Pottery Museum in Stoke.
Paranormal investigators travel across the country to experience what Staffordshire’s paranormal scene offers. But where are the best places to see ghosts?
Read on to see our list of the most haunted places in Staffordshire.
1. Gladstone Pottery Museum, Stoke on Trent
Gladstone Pottery Museum originally opened in 1787, and since then, it has been plagued by tales of death due to industrial hazards.
Some ghostly apparitions reported over the years include children in cloth caps playing ring-a-ing-a-roses in the courtyard, a bare-knuckle fighter near the kilns who shouts at anyone getting too close, and a lady in Victorian clothing who smells of Lavender.
2. Tamworth Castle, Tamworth
Over 900 years old and home to 11 families, countless lives have been lived and subsequent deaths here.
The most prominent ghosts that haunt Tamworth Castle are both a Lady in Black and the White Lady. Their apparitions have been seen throughout the castle.
The Lady in black is the ghost of a nun called Editha, who was awoken from her grave one night in 1139 by nuns at a local convent. Editha attacked Robert de Marmion and prophesied that he would die a gruesome untimely death unless he reinstated the nuns at their convent.
Her spirit struck Robert with the point of her crosier, and his terrified screams were heard around the castle. The pain subsided once he permitted the nuns to return to their convent. Editha still haunts the castle to this day.
Tutbury Castle has been around since about 1071, or possibly even earlier. It was built by the Normans and played a significant role in English history!
One of the things that the castle is most well known for – aside from the ghosts – is that it was where Mary Queen of Scots was held captive not once but on four separate occasions. It was also where the plot that led to her eventual death was conceived.
Several ghosts are said to haunt Tutbury Castle, making it one of the most haunted places in Staffordshire. As you might expect, Mary Queen of Scots is said to be among them. She must have hated Tutbury Castle since it served as her prison so often, but she appeared to a group of 40 men in 2004 standing atop the South Tower.
This was not the first time she had been seen in the castle. In the 1980s, a serving Marine reported seeing her walking across the grass.
She has been seen by archaeologists participating in a dig at the castle and by a senior member of the castle staff who has previously denied all paranormal activity! The credibility of the witnesses that have seen her gives weight to the claim that Mary Queen of Scots is indeed haunting Tutbury Castle.
The castle also plays host to various other ghosts, including a mysterious man in a full suit of armour, the White Lady in the North Tower, a little boy in a white shirt, and a little girl named Ellie, who is trying to pull rings from visitors’ fingers!
4. The Four Crosses, Cannock
The Four Crosses was built in 1636 using old shipping timbers almost 1000 years old! Over the years, several secret passages have been uncovered within the building, and it is believed that many more could not be found.
One of the most remarkable finds was an old Coachman’s uniform preserved perfectly behind a chimney for more than 150 years!
The history of The Four Crosses is peppered with intrigue, mystery and tragedy. The most recent death happened in the nineteen-eighties when a young boy ran into the road outside and was killed instantly when struck by a passing car.
There is also a story of a young baby who died after falling from a table in the 1800s and reports of several suicides in the building. Now you can see why The Four Crosses is an essential stop on any tour of haunted Staffordshire!
Reports of the paranormal come in regularly at The Four Crosses from staff and visitors alike! The most common occurrences include children crying, glasses smashing and phantom footsteps.
The ladies’ toilet is a focal point for paranormal activity, and the apparition of a young girl is often seen there. The reports of crying children and shadow figures are as common daily as they are by night.
One particular experience occurred when the manager opened up one morning in 2005. She found two flowers crossed on top of the toilet and assumed someone from the previous night had done it and went about her business as usual.
However, the next time she passed the toilets, a heavy candlestick from the fireplace had been moved and placed in front of the door! Since she was on her own at the time, she was understandably freaked out!
Other common reports of ghosts in The Four Crosses include an apparition of a Roundhead soldier in the men’s toilets, a ragged, unkempt teenage girl in the kitchen and a man in a long cloak in the car park on rainy nights!
When most people hear the name Alton Towers, they immediately think of the famous theme park, but most do not realise that it is named after the mansion that stands on the grounds to this day.
The site where the Alton Towers mansion stands has a history that can be traced back to 1000BC when there was an Iron Age fort on the site.
The site was handed to King Ceolred of Merica in 700AD, but he had gone insane within seven years, leading many to say that the land was cursed. This belief was strengthened in the 19th century with the legend of the old oak tree!
The Alton Towers mansion was transformed in the 1800s by Charles Talbot, 15th Earl of Shrewsbury.
In 1821 Charles was headed home to the mansion at night when his coach came upon an old beggar woman.
He refused her request for help, and she pointed to a nearby oak tree and told him that one of the Talbot family would die for every branch that fell. That same night, during a storm, one of the family members died due to a sudden illness.
The following morning he checked the tree and found a branch had broken off. He attempted to ward off the curse by chaining up the tree – the chains are still visible today!
In terms of ghosts, the most haunted area of Alton Towers is the appropriately named Hex ride! It is located in the old armoury of the mansion, and those queuing up have often reported seeing children dressed in Victorian clothing and have had stones and other objects thrown at them! In the main house, a large man has been spotted, and there have been phantom footsteps and a feeling of great anger in the area.
The most common sighting is of a woman in a long dress who strolls the mansion’s corridors accompanied by a strong smell of perfume! It has been suggested that should have been a governess at the mansion.
If you’re local, there’s a good chance you’ve heard some of the haunted history surrounding Cannock Chase, as the reports of strange happenings have been featured in the press many times.
The Lady of the Chase is a legend that stretches back decades, with people often seeing the tall thin apparition of a woman dressed in black. The black emptiness of her eyes accentuated her pale skin.
The Black Eyed Children are also another common ghost sighting at Cannock Chase, with a sighting as recent as October 2021. Could these children be the victims of the Staffordshire murderer, Raymond Leslie Morris? They seem to fit the age profile of 5-7, and Cannock Chase is where Raymond buried his victims’ young bodies.
The Cannock Chase beast is another legend that goes back a long time. This large black cat with red glowing eyes has been seen over 2000 times.
Bishton Hall in Wolesey Bridge, Stafford is a sprawling mansion with a rich history dating back to the Domesday Book of 1086.
This Grade II listed building, now owned by none other than Charles Hanson of ‘Bargain Hunt’ fame, is not for the faint of heart. The ghosts and spirits of those who have long since passed dwell within its walls.
The most well known spirit known to haunt Bishton Hall is that of Charlotte Sparrow, a spinster that inherited the home from her father, and lived there until her death at 90 years old.
Her ghostly apparition has been witnessed at the entrance to this foreboding location, though it isn’t clear if she’s pleased to see you or not.