With the third national coronavirus lockdown due to end, on April 12 the government will relax the 'stay local' message, which means that for the first time in months we can get out and visit some of our favourite creepy and fascinating haunted locations.
Like a lot of people, you might be hoping to make up for lost time and visit as many famous paranormal
hotspots as you can this summer, so to help you out we've put together a list of five spooky places that are famous for their ghost stories in the North East of England.
Where possible with tried to pick open air locations and tourist attractions that will be allowed to open under the relaxed guidelines.
The medieval castle in the village of Chillingham, was the seat of the Grey and Bennet families from the 15th century until the 1980s when it became the home of Sir Humphry Wakefield Bt. Sir Humphry has spent the last few decades restoring the Grade I listed castle, it is now a tourist attraction offering self-catering apartments.
The castle's haunted reputation is well known and it has played host to the 'Most Haunted' team as well as other paranormal television shows. The most prevalent at the castle include the ghost of a Spanish witch who is said to have put a curse on the castle which is said to bring bad luck on anyone who steals from the castle.
There's also the ghost of Lady Mary Berkeley, she was a former resident of the castle whose husband had an affair with her sister, she died of heartbreak in the Grey Apartment. There's now a painting of her in the room which guests have claimed to see her come out of, other visitors to the castle say they have heard her grey dress rustling in the dead of night.
You might also want to look out for the ghost of a little girl who has been caught on camera in the castle's great hall. And the ghost of John Sage, a soldier who served under King Edward, but after taking a spear to his leg in battle with the Scots, was forced to retreat from the frontline and took up the role of the castle's torture in its fully equipped dungeon.
The castle's most famous ghost is the Blue Boy, it's said that guests see blue flashes of light above their beds or coming from within the castles walls. It turns out that these flashes are the ghost of a boy who was bricked up alive inside one of the walls.
During renovations at the castle the skeleton of a boy with blue clothes was found inside a three meter thick wall, the bones on his fingers were worn away from his attempts at scratching at the wall in a desperate bid for freedom.
The North East Aircraft Museum, part of the Land, Sea and Air Museums based within RAF Usworth, is one of the country's premier collection of aviation history. As well as housing aircraft from the First and Second World War, it's also said to be home to a fleet of ghosts.
Many of the hangars that house the exhibits are said to be haunted with the spirits of the airfield's past, while some are said to be attached to the aircraft that are displayed in them. As well poltergeist activity and an old gramophone that places music of its own accord, other paranormal reports include sightings of the bottom half of a man's body. These ghostly legs are said to belong to the spirit of a pilot of lost his life in a crash.
There's also said to be an angry phantom that hangs around the museum in order to guard his helicopter and the ghost of a Czech collaborator named Gustav Pultiz, who was sent to wartime Britain by the Nazis to steal a plane.
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The 75 feet high lighthouse, which was the first electric lights house in the world, is said to have a resident ghost, and staff have heard, seen and felt strange things. Many of them believe the ghost to be the spirit of a former lighthouse keeper.
The lighthouse was constructed by Robert Allison to protect ships from rock and cliffs off the mainland and it was near here that the famous Grace Darling rescued the survivors of the Forfarshire in 1838. Her niece Isabella Darling lived in the lighthouse from 1881.
Staff have witnessed items going missing, seen shadowy figures out of the corner of their eye, heard unexplained sounds and even seen the figure of man who appeared to be wearing an old lighthouse keeper's uniform.
The grounds of the Grade I listed parish church on Newgate Street is said to be haunted by the ghost of a young woman, the daughter of a wealthy local landowner. It's claimed that a young curate had fallen in love with her and saw her walking through the churchyard, but when he approached her, she vanished. The next day the curate found out that she had died the previous night. Her ghostly apparition is still said to roam the land.
The castle keep is the oldest part of the castle from which the city gets its name. It dates back to the 12th century and was once part of a larger medieval fortification. It is the oldest building in Newcastle, one of the best surviving examples of a Norman Keep and also the most haunted location in the city by far.
The keep's most famous ghost is known as the "Poppy Girl". She's said to have been a flower girl who was imprisoned in the castle and eventually died in incarceration. Her ghost has been sighted around the building and coincides with the smell of fresh flowers.
The Black Gate was added to the castle by Henry III between 1247 and 1250, serving as an additional barbican in front of the earlier north gate of the castle, this part of the castle is also said to be haunted. Its two most famous ghosts are that of a woman seen standing on a balcony watching visitors pass by below, and an apparition seen holding a baby.
Other paranormal activity in the old castle buildings includes the sounds of ghostly chanting coming from The Queen's Chamber in the keep, where a female apparition has been seen, and unexplained screams from the gallery, as well as disembodied voices and footsteps. Visitors to the castle have reported seeing black mists, feeling like they've been pushed or touched by unseen hands and even reported being scratched. Unexplained cold spots have been recorded around the building and dark shapes, light anomalies and strange mists have been captured in photos taken in the keep.
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