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28 Haunted Pubs in Bedfordshire (Updated 2017)

| On 09, Mar 2017

Table of Contents

 

The Knife and Cleaver, Houghton Conquest

In the village of Houghton Conquest along the Grove and opposite the church you’ll find the 17th century Knife and Cleaver pub.

Now the Knife and Cleaver has a reputation for being haunted by both a male and female ghost.

The most infamous paranormal story to come out of the pub was when a young barman got the shock of his life when he witnessed the pages of the booking dairy turn over on their own accord.

And then to cap things off… he saw a ghostly hand appear over his shoulder!

It’s said that the most paranormally active rooms of the Knife and Cleaver are the attic, the kitchen and the bar.

Terrified witnesses have even reported seeing ghostly shadowy figures behind and around the bar area.

Click Here to Stay the Night at the Knife and Cleaver

 

The Queen’s Head, Ampthill

You’ll find the Queen’s Head pub along Woburn Street in the centre of the town.

The 18th century pub has a reputation for being haunted…

Ghostly shadows have been seen in the Lounge Bar of the pub.

And on one occasion a barmaid had her legs slapped by something unseen whilst working behind the bar!

Both the upstairs and downstairs corridors are said to have a presence…

Suddenly temperature drops, high and variable EMF readings and phantom footsteps have all been reported to take place along the corridors.

Some people believe it’s the spirit of a former landlord who creates the paranormal activity!

The landlord’s son took a snap using his smart phone of the corner of bar area where his pet dog tends to like to stare and bark at…

He was surprised to discover that he’d captured an image of a 17th century gentleman!

Although the pub’s kitchen has seen some poltergeist activity the landlord feels that the ghosts at the Queen’s Head are mainly friendly.

 

The White Hart Hotel, Ampthill

Another of Ampthill’s pubs which is said to be haunted is the White Hart Hotel…

The White Hart is situated along Dunstable Street.

The Grade II listed building is a former coaching inn which dates back to the 18th century.

Like many old coaching inns the hotel has a reputation for being haunted!

Room 13 in the hotel is said to have a presence…

A regular guest of the White Hart had two spooky encounters whilst in the building.

One time he tried to close Room 13’s door but it flung back open hitting him in the head in the process.

Apparently, the female ghost who’s said to reside in the room doesn’t like the door to be closed!

The other ghostly encounter he’d witnessed happen in the hotel’s bar…

Together with other shocked witnesses he saw a ghostly apparition of a man wearing a cape and top hat walk into the bar area and then disappear into thin air!

He described him as looking like a coachman from the olden days.

Pint glasses have also been reported to move around the bar area in the middle of the night on their own accord.

 

The King’s Arms, Bedford

If you head along St Mary’s Street in Bedford you’ll come across the King’s Arms public house.

The pub has a couple of local legends associated with it…

It’s said that the King’s Arms is built on the site of a morgue.

And that the coffin-shape trapdoor above the bar was once used to lower bodies down from the room above which was used as a mortuary!

Another legend associated with the bar is that a dual was once fought on the stairs which resulted in the death of one of the dualists.

The King’s Arms has a reputation for being haunted by at least two ghosts…

Back in 1994 an employee of the brewery was scared witless when he saw a ghostly apparition of an old man in the cellar.

Apparently the ghostly old man was wearing a short-sleeved white shirt!

The ghost has been blamed for throwing buckets around the cellar and stripping down the beer taps after they’ve been cleaned and left to dry.

Spooked members of staff have often reported the feeling of somebody behind them when they’ve been working in the cellar.

The upper floor of the pub is said to be haunted by the spirit of a young man…

He’s been heard walking around upstairs making the floorboards creak and setting the pub’s dog off barking!

On one occasion some old fashioned handmade nails were thrown at the one of the pub’s customers in the bar.

Recently, a woman and her children were staying at the King’s Arms overnight.

When they woke up in the morning, the woman found a ring left beside her bed and two smaller rings left beside her children’s beds… one each!

Where these rings left as gifts for the woman and her children by one of the pubs ghosts?

 

Chameleon (The Bullnose Bat), Bedford

Along St Paul’s Square in Bedford you’ll find a bar called Chameleon.

In its past Chameleon was a pub called the Bullnose Bat.

When Bullnose Bat was being transformed into a new bar called The Square the poor builders got the shock of their lives when they uncovered the remains of thirty bodies!

After this, members of staff of The Square saw bottles fly across the bar on their own accord on many an occasion.

One residential barman reported seeing the ghostly apparition of a cat in his bedroom.

And customers would often comment on the cold spot near to the exit door of the pub!

 

The Golden Pheasant, Biggleswade

The Golden Pheasant is a pub which you’ll find located along the High Street in the town.

In 2003 the landlord reported that the pub was haunted by a couple of ghosts…

Phantom footsteps were heard walking around the upstairs of the building even though nobody was up there.

One of the pub’s ghosts was said to have been caught on film, the locals nicknamed him… Maurice!

Witnesses have also reported to have heard a woman singing in the bar area of the pub even though the room was empty at the time.

 

The Falcon Inn, Bletsoe

The Grade II listed Falcon Inn is a former 17th century coaching inn which like many other old coaching inns up and down the country has a few ghostly tales to tell…

In 1995 the new manager of the Falcon Inn heard heavy phantom footsteps pacing up and down the upstairs corridor.

He also saw a pair of bookshelves float across a room!

Another witness saw a pair of phantom feet standing behind his bedroom door even though nobody was standing there when he checked behind it.

On a couple of occasions he also heard a phantom baby crying out in pain in the back bedroom.

This disturbing event was also heard by the pub’s Head Chef.

The Dessert Chef occupied the front bedroom and would often leave her room untidy with her clothes left all over the floor.

When she returned to her bedroom she would often find that it had been tidy up even though she had locked her bedroom door so that nobody else could enter it!

Her clothes would be placed neatly on her bed.

And her shoes would be paired up and placed next to the bed on the floor.

Objects would often disappear then reappear elsewhere in the pub.

The manager would also hear ghostly voices whispering amongst themselves suggesting that the building had more than one ghost.

And on many occasion his girlfriend had bottles, glasses and books thrown at her by something unseen!

In fact, glasses and bottles falling off shelves were a regular occurrence at the pub.

The barmaids have also reported having objects thrown at them and having their name called when they were alone in the bar.

Many people don’t like going into the bottle store which was once the old stables as they feel that someone is watching them whilst they’re in there!

Local legend says that an ostler who worked at the inn in the late 1700s tragically died after he fell from the hayloft.

His ghostly apparition has been seen in the kitchen as well as the grounds of the inn!

 

The Five Bells Pub, Cople

Just opposite All Saints Church in the middle of the village is the 17th century Five Bells pub.

The pub was named after the five bells within the nearby All Saints Church.

Many terrified witnesses have reported seeing a ghostly apparition of an old fashioned sailor sitting on a pew in the corner of the pub near the fireplace.

Apparently he sits smoking a clay pipe and wears a hooped shirt and puttees.

He’s described as being old and has his hair tied back in a ponytail!

 

The Old Sugar Loaf, Dunstable

The Grade II listed Old Sugar Loaf situated along High Street North is said to have a residential ghost.

In 2009 terrified witnesses saw a ghostly apparition of a man in the bar area.

It’s believed that the ghost is the spirit of a man who tragically committed suicide by hanging himself from a rafter in one of the rooms in the upstairs part of the pub.

Nobody knows why he committed suicide!

 

The Victoria, Dunstable

The Victoria pub in West Street dates back to 1848.

The pub is said to be haunted by the ghost of a Victorian stable boy with an injured hand.

It’s said that he trapped his hand in a stable door and he now haunts the area at the back of the pub where the stable block stands.

 

The White Swan, Dunstable

The White Swan pub along High Street South dates back to 1719.

On many occasions the members of staff at the pub have witnessed a ghostly figure walking across the empty bar on the security live screen camera.

The strange thing is…

Although the figure is clearly seen, it’s never recorded on tape!

 

The White Horse, Dunstable

Along High Street North there was a pub called the White Horse.

The building was once an old coaching inn in 1800s called the Anchor.

One day, one of the pub’s regulars felt someone tap him on the shoulder when he was having a drink in the bar.

He turned around but nobody was there.

He believed that the spirit that touched him on the shoulder followed him home.

He says that it was the ghost of a young dray girl who wore a black dress, white apron and a peaked cap!

 

The Swan, Flitwick

You’ll find the Swan pub at the station end of Dunstable Road in the town.

The pub is said to be haunted by a ghost who tends to hide things…

New members of staff are particularly targeted much to their annoyance.

It seems like the ghost at the Swan pub is somewhat of a practical joker!

 

The Oakley Arms, Harrold

The Oakley Arms is a 16th century coaching inn situated in the middle of the village along the High Street.

The pub is said to be haunted by a former landlord called Dan Orpin.

He was the landlord at the pub during the 1930’s and 1940s.

Local punters have witnessed his ghostly apparition either walking through the pub or sitting down enjoying a cigarette and a pint of beer.

Sometimes his phantom footsteps are even heard walking around the first floor of the pub!

 

The Packhorse Inn, Kensworth

At the turning for Kensworth on the A5 you’ll find the Grade II listed Packhorse Inn.

The 18th century pub is said to be situated on the ancient route of Watling Street.

Some also say that the Packhorse stands on the site of an old Roman tavern.

The pub is said to be haunted by people who tragically died in road traffic accidents along the A5…

There’s a ghost of a woman who’s said to have had a car crash near to the pub and two men who died in a minibus accident.

In the 1950s a cricket team were driving along the A5 in a minibus when it suddenly had a head-on crash with an oncoming car whilst it was overtaking another vehicle.

Two men died in that accident.

Since that tragic day a taxi driver and many other witnesses have seen the ghostly apparition a very tall man dressed in cricket whites standing outside the pub!

 

The Bedford Arms, Leighton Buzzard

At the beginning of Old Road by the mini roundabout you’ll find the Bedford Arms pub.

The 19th century pub was formerly known as the Corbet Arms.

It’s said to be one of the oldest pubs in the town dating back to the 1860s.

Room 3 of the Bedford Arms is said to be haunted by a ghostly woman who likes to lean over people whilst they’re sleeping.

The woman is described as having brown hair worn in a bun and wearing a long grey dress with a brown pinafore.

She tends to visit the sleeping occupants of the room in the early hours of the morning between 2 and 3am!

 

The Buckingham Arms, Leighton Buzzard

If you head up Old Road you’ll come across another of Leighton Buzzard’s haunted pubs called the Buckingham Arms.

The pub dates back to the 1830s when it started life out as the Railway Tavern until it changed its name to the Buckingham Arms in 1848.

The ghost that haunts the pub can be heard opening the front gate in the early hours of the morning, then walking up the path and the banging loudly on the front door.

For a short time all hell breaks loose in the building, heavy footsteps are heard going up and down the stairs, doors are slammed shut and the sound of barrels being moved about are heard coming from the cellar.

With all this noise in the pub you would think that doors would be left opened and barrels would be strewn across the cellar’s floor.

But this is not the case, after the commotion is over there’s no evidence of anything ever being touched!

 

The Horseshoes, Luton

There’s a pub along Park Street called the Horseshoes…

In 1876 the original Four Horseshoes pub was burnt to the ground.

Tragically the body of the owner William Clifford was found by the back door with a cash box containing the night’s takings in his hands.

The spooked present day members of staff at the Horseshoes have reported hearing somebody unknown counting money whilst they’ve been down in the cellar.

They also report sudden temperature drops within the cellar when they hear this mysterious event occurring.

Some people believe the paranormal activity is down to the ghost of William who’s come back from the dead to get his money!

 

The Cork and Bull, Luton

There’s a pub on the corner of Cumberland Street in Luton which was once called the Cork and Bull.

The pub had a reputation of being haunted by the ghost of a White Lady.

She was blamed for objects being mysteriously moved about the pub.

As well as throwing bar stools across the room and shaking tables!

Her ghost was said to be so life like that on the odd occasion customers had spoken to her and she responded by touching them.

It’s not only the pub which she’s said to haunt.

She’s also been seen in different locations along Cumberland Street itself.

The White Lady is believed to be the spirit of a former resident of the pub called Anne.

It’s said that she was murdered at the pub and now her spirit can’t leave the location!

 

The Hare and Hounds, Old Warden

Along Bedford Road in the village you’ll find the Hare and Hounds pub.

The pub is said to be haunted by a ghostly woman…

During a stormy night in 2000 a Spanish barman was scared witless after seeing the apparition of a woman in an upstairs room.

He was totally alone in the pub at the time!

In 2002 a barmaid caught a glimpse of a ghostly woman standing by the bar before she disappeared into thin air.

It’s said that the room at one end of the pub called the Chapel is the most active place for paranormal activity within the building.

 

The Fox and Hounds, Riseley

You’ll find the 16th century Fox and Hounds historic farmhouse pub along the High Street.

The pub is said to be haunted by the ghost of a nurse who was ran over by a coach as she crossed the High Street nearby.

Her body was taken to the Fox and Hounds after the accident and it seems that her spirit has stayed at the pub ever since!

Phantom footsteps, ghostly coughs and the lights turning themselves on and off by their own accord have all be blamed on her ghost.

 

The George, Silsoe

You’ll find the 19th century George Inn situated along Silsoe’s High Street.

It’s said to be haunted by Lady Elizabeth Grey.

Local legend states that Lady Elizabeth Grey tragically died in a coaching accident near to the George when her coach crashed into a nearby lake and she drowned.

It’s said that she fell in love with a coachman at the inn and they used the George as a hide out.

They were fleeing her disapproving father when the fatal accident happened.

In 1959 the landlady of the George was so fed up with all the paranormal activity happening at the inn that she called in an exorcist.

Apparently the exorcism had no effect whatsoever…

The haunting continue soon afterwards with the doors at the property opening and slamming shut on their own accord in the early hours of the morning!

In 1960, a workman at the George saw a ghostly figure of a young woman dressed in grey and wearing an impressive hat walk pass him.

Was this phantom female the ghost of Lady Elizabeth Grey?

On another occasion a very solid looking apparition of a man was seen by a terrified witness who reported that the man just disappeared into thin air!

Other witnesses have also reported hearing phantom footsteps walking around the premises.

 

The Bell Inn, Studham

If you head along the Dunstable Road in Studham you’ll come across the Grade II listed Bell Inn.

Over the years, the landlords of the five hundred year old pub have reported some eerie events taking place within it…

In 1965 when some renovation work was taking place at the pub the then landlord reported that the yellow dusters and hand brushes would mysteriously go missing.

In 1976 a new landlord and his wife were sitting in the kitchen one day when they suddenly saw the heavy top bolt on the kitchen door slid back as though someone invisible was going to open the door.

One day when the landlord and his wife were in the bar they heard phantom footsteps walking around on the first floor.

This freaked them out because they knew nobody was upstairs at the time.

Another day one of their regulars got spooked when he was certain that somebody tapped him on the shoulder.

The thing is there was nobody around him at the time!

One night, some of the pub’s regulars were leaving the pub and had looked back at the building from the car park across the road to see a figure looking out of one of the windows.

Thinking it was the landlord they waved goodnight to him but the figure didn’t respond…

Next time they visited the pub they mentioned that they waved to the landlord but he didn’t wave back at them.

The landlord was a bit mystified as to who the figure was as he was clearing up the lounge bar with his wife at the time!

 

The Bedford Arms, Toddington

Along the Toddington’s High Street you’ll find the Grade II listed Bedford Arms.

At the time of this post the pub is sadly closed and I don’t know what future lies for this great building.

Local legend says that the pub is haunted by a nautical ghost!

The pubs regulars have reported being tapped on the shoulder by something unseen, hearing eerie phantom footsteps walking around the building and have witnesses the ghostly apparition of a man standing by the fire.

One of the ghosts at the pub is said to be the spirit of a sea captain who returned to his home to discover that his family had been murdered!

Overcome with grief he hung himself from a rafter in the building.

A priest did perform an exorcism in the pub but it didn’t seem to work as the ghostly sea captain is still seen in one of the bedrooms and the bar area of the pub.

Terrified witnesses who’ve seen ‘The Captain’ describe him as being a large man with a beard dressed in a seafaring uniform!

The apparition of the man who’s seen standing by the fire isn’t believed to be ‘The Captain’ but a Royalist cavalier from the English Civil War.

He’s described as being a small middle-aged man whose leaning on a cane and is dressed in a red tunic and wearing a plumed hat.

 

The Sow and Pigs, Toddington

The Sow and Pigs situated along Church Square opposite the Church of St George is another of the village’s haunted pubs which has now sadly been closed.

The 17th century pub is an old coaching which is said to be haunted by the ghost of a coachman who died after being run over by a coach in the stable yard.

Terrified witnesses describe him as wearing a large cloak.

Apparently he liked to scare the living daylights out of the pub customers by manifesting next to them in the gents toilets!

 

The Bell Inn, Toddington

If you head along Toddington’s Church Square towards the green you’ll come to the Bell Inn.

The Grade II listed Bell dates back to the 17th century.

It has a reputation for being haunted by a former landlord’s daughter who died in the pub after a fit.

The kitchen is said to be the most haunted room in the pub…

Pots and pans have mysteriously been flung across the room by something unseen.

Doors and windows have been slammed shut on their own accord and pictures have suddenly fallen of walls in other rooms of the pub!

In 1995 one landlord left never to return because he was constantly being woken in the middle of the night by an unseen presence.

The following landlord actually saw the ghostly apparition of a girl at the pub!

 

The Royal Oak, Woburn

If you head along George Street you’ll come across the thatched Royal Oak pub.

The Grade II listed Royal Oak dates back to 1730.

Although no ghost has ever been witnessed at the pub it has got a reputation for being haunted…

Doors slam shut on their own accord, flowers are taken out of their vases and the taps to the beer pumps are mysteriously turned off in the middle of the night by someone unknown.

Some people have even felt a presence on the cellar stairs!

 

The Chequers Inn, Wootton

If you head along Hall End Road in Wootton you’ll come across the historic Chequers Inn.

The Chequers Inn is an old coaching inn which dates back to the 17th century.

And like many old coaching inns up and down the country it has a reputation for being haunted…

Many of the pub’s members of staff have noticed a customer out of the corner of their eye standing by the bar.

When they go to serve the figure they always discover that he’s disappeared into thin air!

Terrified witnesses have also seen a ghostly man wandering around the building.

Sometimes he’s been seen to manifest from the area of a former doorway which no longer exists in the back bar.

They describe him as looking like a coachman or a groom from a bygone era.

He’s been blamed for throwing beer glasses at the pub’s frightened members of staff!

 
Bibliography
William H King (2012) Haunted Bedford. The History Press
Damien O’Dell (2013) Paranormal Bedfordshire. Amberley
Paul Adams (2012) Haunted Luton & Dunstable. The History Press