10 Most Haunted Pubs In The South West Of England

September 07, 2022 1:00 AM ‐ ParanormalGhostsTop Haunted Locations Lists

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The South West of England is known for is folklore, myths and mystery, much of it revolves around the region's many historic pubs and old coaching inns. So it's no surprise that such a high percentage of these meeting and drinking places are said to be haunted.

This list of the 10 most haunted of these inns in the South West includes the very famous Jamaica Inn, and the two historic pubs in Bristol that locals argue over which is the oldest, the Llandoger Trow and the Hatchet Inn.

10. The Hatchet Inn, Bristol


The Hatchet Inn on Frogmore Street dates back to 1606 making it the oldest operating pub in the Bristol. Locals believe the watering hole is haunted, perhaps the main reason for this claim is the fact that the inn's door is made from human skin. The skin of an executed criminal is said to be stretched over the door and hidden under coats of paint. It's also said that pirates, including the infamous Blackbeard, drank there.

9. The Bowl Inn, Almondsbury

The Bowl Inn, Almondsbury


Situated on the outskirts of Bristol in the village of Almondsbury, this historic pub pre-dates some of oldest pubs in the city itself and out-spooks them too. The pub is known locally for its haunted location, something we can attest to as regulars to this particular pub, which is pretty close to Higgypop HQ.

The pub is said to be haunted by the spirit of a six-year-old French girl name Elizabeth Maronne and her five-year-old brother, John. It's claimed that they were murdered by their father in the building in the 16th century. Their lingering spirits have been blamed for poltergeist activity and the eerie disembodied voice of a young girl singing nursery rhymes.

8. Dolphin Tavern, Penzance


The Dolphin Inn on the harbour at Penzance is a historic English pub reportedly haunted by three ghosts. The spirits who are said to roam here include an old sea captain named George, who is spotted wearing a tricornered hat, lace ruffles and a striking jacket. As well as rare reports of sightings, he is often reportedly heard walking around the upstairs rooms and corridors in the dead of night.

There's also the ghost of a women seen wearing Victorian style clothing, who has been spotted on several occasions in the main bar where she seems to materialised from a wall before gliding across the room. The guest bedrooms are said to be haunted by a young, fair-haired man, who is often spotted standing by or sitting on the bottom of the beds in the rooms.

7. The Three Pilchards, Polperro


The Three Pilchards is the oldest pub in the costal village Polperro, it takes its name from the village's tradition of fishing. The paranormal activity at this pub include sightings of the ghost of a woman, who's seen milking a cow in the backyard. Some drinkers have reported the mysterious smell of violets wafting through the pub despite no flowers being present. The pub is also said to be haunted by a family who lived there in the 19th century, plus the ghost of an elderly woman upstairs.

6. The Jolly Sailor, Looe

The Jolly Sailor, Looe


The haunted reputation of the Jolly Sailor is well documented and the activity is so normal to some regulars that they don't bat an eyelid when something strange happens. The activity at the Jolly includes items being thrown, disembodied voices, flickering lights, taps turning themselves on, objects and furniture moving around of their own accord, staff and drinkers feeling as if they've been touched by unseen hands, and even the bar's doors being violently flung open just after closing time.

Guests staying upstairs in the B&B rooms have reported seeing figures, and one guest reported feeling someone get into bed behind her. Another said their phone was pushed off the desk while they were sat watching television. Even the landlady has awoken in the night to find standing over her bed an old woman who proceed to vanish.

There's also been reports of sightings of a blonde curly haired child in the kitchen, and the ladies toilets are said to be haunted by a male spirit who according to the staff is said to be a bit of a ladies' man. He's made his presence known to a few of the locals who will now refuse to use the toilet alone.

Probably the most famous supernatural story to be linked to the Jolly Sailor is that of the spirit of a girl from the village who committed suicide after being jilted by the love of her life. Since her death she has been seen in the form of a phantom white hare rushing down to the Jolly in order to warn the drinkers whenever misfortune is headed for the town.

5. The Old Church House Inn, Newton Abbot

The Old Church House Inn, Newton Abbot


Lying five miles south of Newton Abbot is the 13th century Old Church House, a building that is believed to have once played host to Henry VIII. The inn was built by the same men that went on to build the parish church across the road, hence the name, and the two are linked underground via a secret tunnel.

There have been strange occurrences all over the building including faces appear in wood panelling taken from a Spanish Armada ship, candles relight themselves, and cold spots have been felt. A dark monk-like figure has been seen in the main bar and in the lounge, where a dark figure has been seen descending a set of stairs which were taken out years ago.

Poltergeist activity is prevalent in all rooms, and unexplained noises are her heard throughout the building, including in the guest bedrooms. Apparently many guests have left so frightened that they will not return. Bar staff have been chased and the owner has even been forced to hunt down a suspected burglar from his home, only to find that they disappeared into thin air.

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4. The Red Lion Inn, Avebury


The 17th century coaching inn stands alongside the ancient stone circle in Avebury and is home to a spirit named Florrie. She's said to be a former landlady who was murdered and pushed down the village well during the civil war.

There's also the tale of the violent murder of a local man in the cellar. So, it's no surprise the pub has its fair share of ghost stories.

3. The Llandoger Trow, Bristol

Llandoger Trow


The Llandoger Trow is without a doubt the most haunted location in Bristol, boasting 15 ghosts, most famously the ghost of a young boy. The historic pub is located on King Street near the old city centre docks and was named by a sailor who owned the pub. Llandoger is a village in Wales which built a type of flat bottom boat known as a trow.

The pub was legendary in its heyday and is the place where Daniel Defoe was inspired to write Robinson Crusoe and the pub which Robert Louis Stevenson based the the inn on in Treasure Island.

Many staff and guests to the pub have reported seeing the ghost of a young boy, even more have heard his footsteps. Some say he was murdered in the inn and has been heard wandering around the building ever since. They hear his footsteps going along the landing and up and down an all staircase in the heart of the old building. The boy was said to be disabled which made the sound of his feet clomping on the wooden floor boards even more apparent.

On certain occasions the little boy has been seen coming down the staircase carrying a white enamel pale in his hands.

2. The Jamaica Inn, Bolventor

The Jamaica Inn, Cornwall


Built in 1750, the Jamaica Inn is historic, atmospheric, welcoming and supposedly very haunted. The traditional coaching inn is setback from the busy A30 in Bolventor, overlooking Brown Willy, the highest point on Bodmin Moor.

Due to its history of hosting smugglers the pub has been the subject of books, television shows and an Alfred Hitchcock movie.

The paranormal activity at the inn includes the disembodied sound of footsteps throughout the building, unexplained tapping, the sound of children playing and babies crying, and most famously the sound of horses and carts moving in the courtyard.

Room 5, which is said to be one of the most haunted rooms is said to be haunted by the ghost of a mother and child. The young girl is often referred to as Hannah. The ghost of a murdered man has been seen in the main bar and sat on a wall outside the inn.

Guests and staff have reported seeing dark shadowy figures moving through corridors, the restaurant and the kitchen and many visitors have reported being touched by unseen hands while sleeping or having their hair pulled.

1. The Ancient Ram Inn, Wotton under Edge

The Ancient Ram Inn, Gloucestershire


The Ancient Ram Inn is a Grade II-listed building in Wotton-under-Edge. The pub has been investigated by many paranormal researchers, including the television shows 'Ghost Adventures' and 'Most Haunted'. The building is no longer open as a pub but welcomes thousands of ghost hunters to paranormal events each year.

Some of the most commonly reported activity includes highly localised cold spots, temperature drops, and unexplained icy blasts of air. There's also activity in the form of light anomalies seen with the naked eye and caught on camera. Doors are said to slam on their own, footsteps are frequently heard, furniture is heard sliding around, and mysterious knocking is witnessed.
This is an ever changing, dynamically updated page. Haunted locations may move up or down the list as new locations are added to our database and scores are reviewed to reflect new activity.

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