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40 Haunted Pubs of Hertfordshire

| On 17, Apr 2017

 

 

Table of Contents

The George Inn, Bishop’s Stortford

The oldest recorded pub in Bishop’s Stortford is the George Inn which is located on the corner of the High Street and North Street.

The historic inn has a Victorian façade but it actually dates back to the 1417.

In the 1600’s both Charles I and Charles II visited the hotel.

The George Inn is one of the town’s buildings which is said to be haunted by the Grey Lady.

Terrified members of staff have seen a white shape hovering in the hotel’s cellar…

But the cellar isn’t the most paranormally active area within the hotel, that’s left to Room 27!

It’s said that a woman was once stabbed to death by a burglar in that room.

Guest staying in the room had complained that they feel their being watched by something unknown.

And have also reported seeing the wardrobe’s doors open on their own accord and the bedroom’s lights turn on and off by themselves.

On one occasion a young couple witnessed a grey mist above the bed…

And one poor guest was scared witless when he saw a ghostly apparition of a lady in a grey dress next to the bed looking as though she was in a lot of pain!

Click Here to Stay the Night at the George Hotel

 

The Brocket Arms, Ayot St Lawrence

In the small Hertfordshire village of Ayot St Lawrence is a stunning 14th century pub called the Brocket Arms.

In its heyday it was a popular place for pilgrims on their way to St Albans Abbey to stay.

Keeping with a religious theme…

The pub is actually said to be haunted by a ghostly monk.

Terrified witnesses who have seen him describe him as being a small man and wearing a brown habit!

His ghostly apparition is often seen by frightened punters near the bar area of the pub…

Apparently, the monk committed suicide there by hanging himself!

Whether it’s the same monk or another one altogether…

Some visitors to the inn have also reported seeing the apparition of a monk who is on fire!

Click Here to Stay the Night at the Brocket Arms

 

The Silver Cup, Harpenden

On St Albans Road overlooking Harpenden Common you’ll find the 19th century Silver Cup pub.

Back in December 1985 the landlord of the Silver Cup got the shock of his life…

You see, he went into his bedroom and discovered an apparition of a lady dressed in grey with tied back hair just standing there.

The lady smiled at him and then disappeared through a door!

He believes that the grey lady probably has a connection with the Archer family who owned the pub for many generations.

Click Here to Stay the Night at the Silver Cup

 

The Olde King’s Arms, Hemel Hempstead

Further up the High Street you’ll find the 16th century Olde King’s Arms.

It’s said that the inn was once used as a meeting place for Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII when they were first courting.

Spooked members of staff have witnessed a ghostly apparition of a large man sitting on the bed in one of the pub’s bedrooms.

Apparently he resembling the King and is said to be laughing!

Click Here to Stay the Night at the Olde King’s Arms

 

Dog and Whistle, Hertford

You’ll find the trendy looking Dog and Whistle pub along Fore Street.

You may be surprised to discover that the pub is actually an old 17th century coaching inn which for much of its life was called the Ram Inn.

In 2011 the new management at the Ram reported some strange events taking place in the building…

Doors would mysteriously open and close on their own accord.

And witnesses reported seeing shadowy figures in the bar area of the building!

The Ram’s managers also found it hard to rent out Room 1 on the upper floor of the building due to the strange atmosphere in that room.

Click Here to Stay the Night at the Dog and Whistle

 

Feathers Inn, Wadesmill

The 17th century Feathers Inn located along Cambridge Road in Wadesmill near Ware is said to be haunted by a ghost dating back to when the Feathers was a coaching inn…

You see, a young girl was knocked down and killed by a stagecoach outside the inn and it’s now said that her ghostly apparition haunts the building!

Click Here to Stay the Night at the Feathers Inn

 

The Royal Oak Pub, Abbots Langley

In 2012, the Watford Observer reported that the radio presenter Darren Fernando had seen something eerie in the car park of the Royal Oak pub opposite his home in Kitters Green.

The Royal Oak is a former coaching inn which is said to be well over four hundred years old.

In the early hours of one Sunday morning he was awoken by the ghostly clip-clop sound of horses pulling a carriage.

Intrigued, he looked out of his window only to witnesses the apparition of a Victorian looking carriage being pulled by two ghostly grey horses heading towards the car park of the Royal Oak pub!

Footage taken at the time by the pub’s CCTV equipment is said to show a misty box like shape with an animal standing next to it in the pub’s car park.

What’s more…

It’s said that a former chef at the pub outright refused to work late at night as he’d had been scared witless in the past by a ghostly face appearing at pub’s window and hearing the phantom sound of someone crying!

 

The Cock Inn, Bishop’s Stortford

Situated on the Hockerill crossroads in Bishop’s Stortford you’ll find the 16th century Cock Inn.

In the 1980s, the landlady reported that the historic inn was haunted by two ghosts…

One was a man in clothing from the English Civil War era and the other was a serving wench!

The pub underwent some renovation work which seemed to upset the residential ghosts as all hell broke loose…

Sudden temperature drops, tables being moved on their own accord and lamps being mysteriously smashed were just some of the paranormal activity to take place in the pub during the building work.

The landlady reassured the spirits that the work would improve the building and she deck out the pub with beautiful flowers.

This tactic seemed to work as the paranormal activity suddenly stopped just as quickly as it had started!

 

The Star Inn, Bishop’s Stortford

The 17th century Star Inn along Bridge Street is said to be another of Bishop’s Stortford’s old buildings where the Grey Lady likes to make an appearance now and again…

Both members of staff and punters alike have reported seeing her ghostly apparition manifest itself in the historic pub.

In the 1990s the poor cleaner got the shock of her life one day when she was confronted by the Grey Lady.

She fled the inn never to return again!

 

The Black Lion, Bishop’s Stortford

The 17th century Black Lion pub in Bridge Street has a reputation for being haunted by many spirits including the Grey Lady.

Did you know that the building was once used to store coffins before burial?

A common apparition witnessed at the pub during the late 1960s and 1970s was that of a little Victoria girl…

She would often manifest in guests bedrooms!

A friend of the landlord got the shock of his life one night when he stayed over…

You see, he heard his bedroom door open and someone walk into his room and climb into bed with him.

When he turned over to see who it was he discovered that nobody there!

 

The Boars Head, Bishop’s Stortford

The ancient Boars Head pub which dates back to 1420 is located on Windhill in the town.

It’s said to be one of the pubs in which the Grey Lady stops before heading towards St Michael’s Church.

It’s also said to have a couple of residential ghosts too…

Witnesses have seen the ghostly apparition of an anxious looking woman sitting in the corner of the bar.

And a ghostly figure of a man has been witness in the pub’s cellar.

He’s actually believed to be a former employee!

Are these ghosts responsible for the paranormal activity seen by terrified witnesses in the bar one day?

Apparently, the credit card machine went haywire spewing out streams of paper then unexplained eerie knocks occurred on the front door followed by the optics above the bar shaking violently.

 

The Horse and Chains, Bushey

The listed 17th century Horse and Chains inn along Bushey’s High Street was said to have gone through a spate of hauntings in the early 1990s.

A terrified witness saw a beer glass fly off a shelf in the bar and smash on the pub’s till.

Apparently this eerie event was witnessed quite a few times!

Was the phantom glass smasher the ghost of a former landlord who was said to have haunted the building back in the 1970s?

I guess we’ll never know!

 

The Victoria Public House, Cheshunt

The one hundred and sixty five year old mock Tudor Victoria pub situated along Turners Hill was said to have been haunted by a ghost nicknamed Ron.

His ghostly footsteps have often been heard walking around the pub by spooked members of staff and punters alike.

The strange thing is… his ghostly apparition has never been seen!

 

The Cross Keys, Harpenden

You’ll find the 16th century Cross Keys pub along Harpenden’s High Street.

Historians believe there was actually a guest house on the site of the Cross Keys belonging to Westminster Abbey way back in the 13th century.

So you probably won’t be too surprised if I told you that the pub has a reputation for being haunted by monks!

In the 1960s a relief manager was looking after the running of the pub.

One night he went to bed as usual but was awoken by the sound of men talking in the bar downstairs.

Thinking that he had burglars he went down stairs to investigate…

Cautiously peering into the bar he got the shock of his life when he spotted three shaven headed men by one of the tables.

He described them as wearing dark robes and looking like medieval monks!

The monks turned and looked at him which was too much for the poor relief manager to handle as he fled back to his bedroom where he locked himself in for the rest of the night.

 

The Eight Bells Pub, Hatfield

On the corner of Park Street and Fore Street you’ll find the Grade II listed 17th century Eight Bells pub.

The pub is said to be the oldest one in Hatfield.

And of course it’s said to be haunted…

The landlord of the Eight Bells once awoke in the early hours of the morning to discover a ghostly woman’s face hovering above him!

The landlord has also witnessed an apparition of a hunched dark shadowy figure at the end of the upstairs corridor of the pub.

The apparition of a little girl has been witnessed standing by the fireplace in one of the pub’s bedrooms.

And, the eerie sound of a phantom young girl singing has also been heard!

Paranormal activity has been reported to take place downstairs in the pub.

Pint glasses have moved on their own accord in the bar area, the pub’s fuses have mysteriously blown on many occasions and the building’s alarm keeps on going off for no apparent reason.

 

The Rose and Crown, Hemel Hempstead

Along the Hemel Hempstead High Street you’ll find the Rose and Crown pub.

The pub is really old, it dates back to 1523 when it actually started life out as a butchers.

The owner at the time brewed mead for his workers which became very popular.

So much so, that he started to make more money from his brewing than he did from being a butcher which resulted in the birth of the oldest ale house in the High Street.

The Rose and Crown is said to be haunted by a couple of ghosts…

There’s the ghost of the Grey Lady who’s said to be responsible for the instances of the kitchen lights being turned on and off on their own accord.

And there’s also the ghost of a young handicapped girl who’s believed to have once lived at the pub.

Apparently she was locked in her room because of her disability.

During recent renovation work at the pub, a pair of old fashioned girl’s shoes was discovered.

The sole on one of the shoes was said to have been built up!

 

The White Hart, Hemel Hempstead

Opposite the Rose and Crown is another haunted pub called the White Hart.

The White Hart is also extremely old with parts of the building said to date back to 1530.

It’s the stairs of the pub where all the paranormal activity is said to happen…

Sensitive people get bad feelings when they approach the stairs.

Terrified witnesses have seen the ghostly face of a man manifest near the stairs.

They say he appears to be in terribly distress!

Local legend says that back in the days of the Press Gangs a young man was tricked into accepting the King’s shilling.

Depending on what version of the legend you hear…

The young man was either killed by the Press Gang whilst trying to escape.

And his ghost haunts the pub today.

Or, he killed the Press Gang’s recruiting sergeant and officers.

And their ghosts now haunt the pub!

 

White Hart, Hertford

The four hundred year old White Hart is situated in Salisbury Square in the heart of the town.

The pub’s cellar is said to be haunted by a ghost who likes to move the stock around the place!

 

Bar Amigo, Hitchin

Spooked witnesses in Bar Amigo in Market Place saw the ghostly apparitions of an old man and a little girl walk straight through the bar’s wall…

Apparently they had their arms linked together!

 

Coopers Arms, Hitchin

The regulars at the historic 19th century Coopers Arms in Tilehouse Street reported seeing the ghostly apparition of a monk manifest one day in the pub.

 

The George Inn, Hitchin

The George Inn situated along Bucklersbury dates back to 1676.

Phantom footsteps have been heard walking around the pub by spooked witnesses.

The pub’s cellar is said to have a very dark atmosphere too!

 

The Red Hart Inn, Hitchin

Further down Bucklersbury you’ll find the oldest pub in Hitchin, the Red Hart Inn.

The Red Hart Inn dates back to the 1500s…

It’s rumoured to stand on a spot where the last public hanging occur in the town.

In the 1960s, a trainee manager at the pub woke up suddenly in the night to discover the ghostly figure of an old man sitting in an armchair next to her bed looking at her!

As you can imagine, she was very shaken by the experience.

 

The Haunted Fox, Pirton

Along Pirton’s High Street you’ll find the Fox Inn.

The pub has a reputation for being very haunted…

In the late 1970s, the little son of the landlord witnessed an 18th century soldier manifest at the end of his bed.

The poor little boy was scared witless by the apparition!

Apparently, the soldier was dressed in a red coat with a mitre cap.

He was armed with a musket which was slung over his shoulder and held a pistol in his hand.

The funnily thing is…

In 2011, a medium who was working for a pilot TV programme called Britain’s Greatest Haunts picked up on another young soldier in the High Street who was killed at Ypres during First World War.

He told her that he visited all the houses along the High Street as he was looking for his mum!

She also picked up on the spirits of an 18th century mother with two sick children who died at the pub.

Eerie bangs and knocking noises have been heard in the pub by the punters.

And strange EVPs have also been recorded.

One poor barmaid reported being slapped in the face by something unseen.

The same barmaid also witnessed the ghostly figure of a woman by the pub’s door.

The doors in both the men’s and ladies toilets have been heard to slam shut on their own accord even when the restrooms were supposed to have been empty.

 

The North Star, Royston

The building that used to house the North Star pub in Old North Road has a ghostly tale to tell…

Back in 1992 a new landlord moved into the pub.

And straight away paranormal activity started to take place within the building.

Objects would disappear then appear in another part of the building at a later date, electrical equipment would switch itself on by its own accord, sudden temperature drops, bad odours and an eerie tapping noise were all experienced by the new landlord.

The cellar seemed to be the place where most of the paranormal activity took place.

Strangely, later landlords of the pub reported no paranormal activity happening within the building whatsoever.

 

The Ancient Briton, St Albans

On the corner of Harpenden Road and Beech Road in the north of the city you’ll find the Ancient Briton Harvester pub.

The Ancient Briton is said to be haunted by a spirit of a woman…

Terrified members of staff have witnesses a ghostly female figure in a misty form floating around the pub’s bar area.

One member of staff was scared witless one day when she heard an eerie gasping sound whilst she was down in the cellar alone.

She described it as sounding like someone was struggling to get breath!

 

The Boot Inn, St Albans

The 17th century Boot Inn is situated at the Clock Tower end of Market Place.

A bunch of dried flowers were discovered behind a wall when some building work was taking place at the pub.

It looked like the dried flowers had been place behind the wall deliberately many years ago for some strange reason.

Since the disturbance of the dried flowers the pub has been plagued with strange electrical problems…

The lights, juke box and fruit machines would all suddenly turn on and off by themselves!

Spooked members of staff and customers alike have reported seeing dark shadowy figures suddenly manifesting before them making an eerie moaning noise before disappearing back into thin air.

 

The Fleur de Lys, St Albans

A stone’s throw away from the Boot Inn situated in the French Row is a pub called the Snug.

The Snug is located in the building which was once the Fleur de Lys Inn.

The Fleur de Lys was an ancient inn which dated back centuries.

The building is said to be haunted…

Eerie phantom footsteps have been heard walking about the place.

And members of staff have heard the sound of rattling keys.

Employees often report that they feel their being watch by someone unseen.

Some of them have even reported seeing a ghostly face with spooky eyes staring at them from one of the pub’s mirrors!

 

The Goat Inn, St Albans

You’ll find the 15th century Goat Inn in Sopwell Lane.

It was originally built as a private hall house but was converted to an inn to service the stagecoaches from London.

In the 1920s it was used as a lodging house for road workers but now has reverted back to a public house.

The Goat Inn has a reputation for being haunted…

A door would open and close on its own accord and on a few occasions it actually locked itself!

The landlord reported that his room would have severe drops in temperature in the middle of the night.

And on one occasion he woke to find an ugly ghostly face at the bottom of his bed staring at him!

Objects would also be mysteriously moved around the building.

Witnesses have also reported hearing the sound of a phantom coach and horses in the middle of the night being driven through the pub’s present day archway.

Ghostly laughter and shouting has also been heard outside the pub.

It’s believed that this phenomenon is created by the spirits of young woman who once frequented the pub in the 16th century!

 

The Hare and Hounds, St Albans

The Hare and Hounds pub is situated in Sopwell Lane.

The ancient inn dates back to the 1600s when it was first called the Falcon.

It changed its name to the Hare and Hounds in 1774.

One summer’s morning in the late 1990s the barmaid at the pub went down to the cellar to get some cleaning equipment.

As she was half way down the stairs she felt the temperature drop suddenly.

And then a black shape rushed up the stairs at her and seemed to envelop her.

She described the shape as feeling like pure evil.

She then heard an eerie voice scream at her GET OUT!

Well, as you can imagine she didn’t stay too long after that.

She turned around and fled back to the bar.

The landlord later found out that the building next door was built on the site of the city’s old gallows.

And that the bodies of the hanged criminals were put into a trough which now forms part of the cellar at the Hare and Hounds.

 

The King William IV, St Albans

You’ll find the King William IV pub at the end of Sandridge Road in the northeast of the city.

Compared to other watering holes in St Albans the King William IV pub is a relative new comer as it only dates back to 1937.

That’s not to say it’s not haunted though…

In 1939, terrified members of staff witnessed a ghostly figure walk across the bar area.

They became ever more frightened when beer glasses would launch themselves across the room!

One summer’s morning in 1987 the pub’s head chef entered the cellar to get some stock cards.

She got the shock of her life when she saw a ghostly apparition of a very tall moustached man wearing an army uniform with green buttons.

She screamed out for the manager who came rushing to her aid.

The shocked manager also got a good look at the phantom soldier just before he disappeared into thin air right in front of them!

It was later discovered that just after the King William IV was built in the late 1930s the local Home Guard unit used it as a drill hall.

 

The Lower Red Lion, St Albans

The 17th century Lower Red Lion pub is situated in Fishpool Street.

The first floor bedroom above the archway has a reputation for being haunted…

Past residents of the pub have reported to have been woken in the early hours of the morning by their bed being shaken violently.

The ghostly apparition of a lady has also been seen standing at the bottom of the bed in that room!

The sad sound of a crying phantom child has been heard by witnesses in the pub.

It’s said that in the past a young girl died of pneumonia in the upstairs haunted room.

In the bar downstairs a spooked witness once saw a ghostly shadow move across the room.

 

The Six Bells, St Albans

Along St Michael’s Street there’s a 16th century pub called The Six Bells.

Before the enlargement of the pub’s kitchen in 1997 archaeological work uncovered the remains of a Roman bath house.

Unnerved members of staff at the Six Bells have reported to hear phantom footsteps following them around the pub.

A ghostly figure has also been seen in the kitchen…

Could this ghost be from the Roman baths?

 

The White Lion, St Albans

A stone’s throw from the Goat Inn in Sopwell Lane you’ll find another haunted pub called the White Lion.

The White Lion is a former 16th century coaching inn.

It’s said to be haunted by the spirit of a young girl whose apparition has been seen staring out of one of the pub’s windows.

Legend says that she’s waiting for her lover who never turns up because he was hung from the city’s gallows!

Once every month, members of staff at the White Lion swear blind that they witness a shadowy face on the outside of the small window in the bar.

One day, a pub regular got the shock of his life when he had his back against the window and he felt an icy cold hand on his shoulder…

Of course, there wasn’t anybody behind him!

This wasn’t the only ghostly hand to have been witnessed at the pub.

The White Lion’s barman also saw an apparition of a hand manifest on the cellar stair rail.

 

Ye Olde Fighting Cocks, St Albans

Ye Olde Fighting Cocks pub situated along Abbey Mill Lane in the city is said to be the oldest pub in England.

The pub’s cellar is built on the 8th century abbey gatehouse!

One morning in 2001 a terrified member of staff witnessed ghostly monks emerging from the ancient cellar.

What made the figures even more frightening was that they had no legs from the knees downwards.

The ghostly monks glided across the bar area and sat down at a fireside table before disappearing into thin air!

On one occasion the bar manager left some keys on the bar whilst he went into the cellar…

When he returned he found that the keys had been hung up on a key hook and were swinging violently.

Nobody else was in the bar with the manager at the time!

 

The Verulam Arms, St Albans

Along Lower Dagnall Street you’ll find the Verulam Arms pub.

The pub dates back to 1853 and some say it’s haunted…

Members of staff at the Verulam Arms have reported strange electrical faults taking place and objects mysteriously flying off the pub’s walls and shelves!

 

The Plume of Feathers, Tewin

You’ll find the Plume of Feathers pub in the Upper Green area of Tewin located just off Sevenacres.

The Grade II historic inn dates back to 1596 when it started life out as a hunting lodge for Elizabeth I.

The pub has a reputation for being very haunted…

If you ever have a meal in the Plume of Feathers choose to sit at Table 8.

You see, Table 8 and the area around it is said to be haunted by a ghostly old woman.

She’s described as having long grey hair and wears a transparent dress.

Spooked members of staff who’ve witnessed her say that she cackled at them!

Two ghostly old men have also been witnessed in the bar area of the pub…

One of the men sits down at the infamous Table 8.

Whilst the other one props himself up at the bar but actually faces in the direction of the former bar which was removed many years ago!

The ladies toilet is also thought to be haunted as there’s said to be a creepy feeling inside it.

The chef has reported paranormal activity taking place in the kitchen too.

The oven has switched itself on all by its self.

And food has been burnt when the gas hob has suddenly been turned fully up on its own accord.

The ghostly apparition of a little girl has been seen by terrified witnesses at the top of the cellar stairs.

In 1999, one poor female member of staff found herself locked in the cellar when she couldn’t open the usually free moving cellar doors.

She was trapped down in the cellar for a long time until suddenly the doors opened freely again.

In bygone years the cellar was actually used as servant quarters.

Back in the 17th century a woman’s body was discovered behind a bricked up fireplace.

The woman was believed to have been brutally murdered by her husband when he returned from sea to discover that she had been unfaithfully to him and
was carrying another man’s child!

The fireplace is no longer there but the area where the woman’s body was found is right where the infamous Table 8 stands.

 

The Old Bull’s Head Inn, Ware

Along Baldock Street you’ll find one of the town’s oldest buildings, an old coaching inn called the Old Bull’s Head.

The five hundred year old inn has a reputation for being haunted…

It’s said to be haunted by the ghost of a tax collector who came knocking one day and ended up being murdered at the property.

The spirit of a little girl is also said to haunt the pub.

And spooked members of staff have reported hearing the eerie sound of a phantom music box playing somewhere in the property!

Another paranormal phenomenon reported by members of staff is seeing the flickering light of a candle out of the corner of their eyes.

But when they turned round there’s nothing there.

Now, there’s an unconfirmed rumour about the tree in the Old Bull’s Head car park.

Some people say that it was once Ware’s hanging tree!

 

Attimore Hall, Welwyn Garden City

You’ll find the Attimore Hall pub just off the Ridgeway in the town.

Attimore Hall was originally a listed 17th century farm house but was converted into a pub in the late 1980s.

The pub’s women’s toilets are said to be haunted…

A ghostly apparition of a lady in a big flowery dress has been seen by spooked members of staff coming out of the toilets and disappearing into thin air!

But she not the only ghost said to haunt the pub.

The apparition of a young boy with dark hair has been seen peering through the pub’s windows and peeking around corners.

Many believe that the ghost of the small boy is the spirit of an eight year old lad who died in the farm house back in 1957.

 

The Doctor’s Tonic, Welwyn Garden City

In Church Road there’s another pub which has a ghostly tale to tell…

It was once known as the Cottage but today it’s called the Doctor’s Tonic.

In 1995, a former member of staff was leaving the pub one night when he suddenly felt a sharp jab in his ribs.

He spun around expecting to see one of his work mates messing with him.

But there was nobody there, he was totally alone!

 

The Chequers Inn, Woolmer Green

Just south of Knebworth in Woolmer Green you’ll find the Chequers Inn.

In the 17th century a brilliant fiddler called Blind George used to play at the inn.

Near to the inn was a tunnel which led to Anstey Castle.

The locals called the tunnel… the Devil’s Hole!

Many of the pub’s punters never went anywhere near the Devil’s Hole as they believed that if you went inside it you wouldn’t come out alive.

Well, Blind George had different ideas about the tunnel.

And to prove the locals wrong he said that he would venture into it and then return to buy them all a drink.

It’s said that George entered the tunnel with his dog whilst playing his fiddle.

Suddenly there was a scream followed by George’s poor dog running out of the tunnel’s entrance with most of its fur burnt from its body!

Blind George was never seen alive again but some people have reported to hear his ghostly fiddling in the area of the old tunnel.

The Chequers Inn is said to be haunted by the ghost of a middle-aged man that some believe is Blind George.

 
Bibliography
Damien O’Dell (2009) Paranormal Hertfordshire. Amberley
Ruth Stratton (2012) Haunted Hertford. The History Press
Paul Adams (2013) Haunted St Albans. The History Press