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Berkshire is a county which has many Royal connections. It also has more than its fair share of ghost stories too – some of which relate to the royals themselves.
Let’s take a look at the 7 most haunted places in Berkshire:
7 - Windsor Castle
Windsor Castle is of course famous for being one of the official royal residences, but it is also known to be one of the most haunted place in Berkshire as well! The impressive property was built by William the Conqueror in 1066 and at the time it was a timber motte and bailey style structure. Over the years the castle has been renovated and expanded to become the building that we all know today.
Having stood for more than 1000 years, it really comes as no great surprise that Windsor Castle has its fair share of Berkshire ghosts in residence! There have been multiple deaths – of both royals and commoners – within the building and its grounds and many of them seem to have stuck around even long after their deaths. Perhaps the most prolific ghost associated with Windsor Castle would be Henry VIII. The Tudor King was notorious for dissolving monasteries and turning his back on Catholicism to establish the Church of England. Staff and visitors alike have described seeing the King in the cloisters or else wandering the corridors dragging his ulcerated leg behind him.
King Henry VIII is certainly not alone in haunting Windsor Castle. There have also been a few suggestions that perhaps Anne Boleyn also haunts the property. Anne was one of Henry VIII many wives and she was executed in 1536 for the crimes of witchcraft, treason and adultery. Her spirit has been reported in the cloisters where she sits at the window weeping. Anne Boleyn was not executed at the castle, but her body was buried in the chapel.
Other spirits that are said to haunt the castle include King George III, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth I as well as a number of unknown ghosts who were not royals! The most active spots in Windsor Castle are said to be the Deanery, the Prison Room, the Curfew Tower and of course, St. George’s Castle.
6 - Littlecote House STAY HERE
Littlecote House sits in 113 acres of beautiful grounds featuring stunning gardens, a heated pool and a fully equipped gym. It is certainly a luxurious setting for a weekend away in the Berkshire countryside. However, it is also the 3rd most haunted building in England and one of the most haunted spots in Berkshire!
The hotel can actually be traced back to the Tudor era and there was also a Roman settlement in the area in the past, so it is easy to see why there are so many spirits attached to the property. One of the most common ghost sightings is not actually human, but rather a large black dog that sits on the Jerusalem staircase. It is said to look very real, but when anyone attempts to pet it, their hand will just pass right through. There are also many ghost stories associated with 16th century midwife Mother Barnes relating to Littlecoat House. She has been seen as shadowy figure walking on the lawn and also sitting in the corner of one of the bedrooms, rocking an infant in her harms. That particular bedroom is the most active in the hotel in terms of paranormal activity.
Littlecote House – are you brave enough to stay overnight?
5 - Donnington Castle
Donnington Castle now stands in ruins, but it dates back to 1386 when it was built by Sir Richard Abberbury the Elder. It was more or less destroyed during the English Civil War. It is currently maintained by English Heritage and is a scheduled ancient monument. It is also one of the most haunted places in Berkshire.
Perhaps the most frequently spotted ghost is that of a guard who stands at the gatehouse. He looks so real that visitors are particularly startled when he vanishes into thin air right in front of their very eyes. Most people have taken him for a guide in period costume until he pulls his vanishing act! There have also been reports of the apparition of a white dog running from the castle towards the woods only to vanish before reaching the tree line! Visitors have also seen the ghosts of English Civil War soldiers and on at least one occasion a ghostly fire fight has been witnessed between royalist and parliamentarian spectres! One of the most chilling tales was reported by a young group of campers who saw a man dressed as a Royalist soldier assaulting a young woman. They of course, tried to intervene and ran over to pull him off of her shouting at him to leave her alone, only for both figures to vanish as they got close!
4 - Shaw House
Thomas Dolman built Shaw House in 581 when he was a member of a wealthy Berkshire family who had made their fortune in the cloth industry. The house is said to be very haunted and there have been reports of multiple different paranormal entities in the property. Some of the activity that has been documented there includes mysterious balls of strange light, shadow figures and even some disembodied screams that are heard throughout the building.
3 - Three Legged Cross
The 500 year old Three Legged Cross pub was once known as the New Inn until the middle of the 19th century and used to be a meeting place for the pony club. In the mid 1900s it was taken over by a former Yukoslav spy who restored it to a community pub. It has since been transformed into a bar and restaurant serving traditional English food.
The pub is also one of the most haunted places in Berkshire. It is said that a gypsy lady cursed the pub after being banned more than 100 years ago! Soon after, the landlord at the time fell ill unexpectedly and passed away. It is said that the gypsy’s spirit is still wandering around the outside of the Three Legged Cross cursing the landlord.
2 - Windsor Great Park
Durning the reign of King Richard II (1377 – 1399), a huntsman known simply as Herne was employed by the King and it is said to be his spirit who is haunting Windsor Great Park even today! The legend goes that the king and Herne were out hunting when they ended up getting cornered by a white hart. The animal was all set to charge the king, but Herne jumped in the way managing to save the King’s life. However, Herne was gravely injured in the incident and as he lay upon the ground bleeding out, a local wizard happened to discover him and used his magic to try and save Herne’s life. One of the so called treatments required Herne to tie the white hart’s antlers to his own head. However, the pay off was that Herne would live, but it would be without his skills as a huntsman! He became a close friend to the King having saved his life and this made the other huntsmen jealous, so they framed him for theft. This resulted in him being cast out by the Royals and ultimately he took his own life by hanging himself from an oak tree. The same oak tree still stands in Windsor Great Park and Herne’s ghost is often reported in the park as well.
1 - The George Hotel BOOK NOW
If you are in search of Berkshire ghosts then The George Hotel is great choice of accommodation. It dates back to the 12th century when it was originally a coaching inn and somewhere along the way a witch named Betty Price, who is said to still haunt the building today.
Local legend says that Betty Price used the coaching inn as a hiding place, but she ended up dying while hiding out in the cellar one day. However, it is said that before she passed away she placed a curse upon the parson of the hotel and every single person who had a hand in capturing her. Perhaps that is why she is still seen wandering the corridors in search of those captors so that she can exact her revenge!
Book your stay at The George Hotel today.
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