Visit Chef & Brewer's 'most haunted' this half term

10.09.2016

Our Most Haunted Pubs

So you may have heard that we have pubs in beautiful rural locations across the country, and you may have heard that some of our premises were built centuries ago…but what you may not know is that some Chef & Brewers have very colourful histories too! As the half term approaches, why not get into the spirit of All Hallows’ Eve and explore some of our most haunted pubs?

- Haunted Pub 1 -
The Boot & Slipper

Situated in Amersham on a hill just outside the town centre, the Boot & Slipper is believed to be one of the most haunted buildings in the area. Originally built in the 15th century, the pub used to be the site of an old cobbler’s shop until 1848, when it was opened as a pub by the Weller family.

People say that there is a haunting manifestation lurking in the premises. Both sour team and guests have reported sightings of ghostly goings-on; a figure brushing past them whilst muttering to itself, objects falling or even curtains and doors moving when there is no wind.

The Boot & Slipper

- Haunted Pub 2 -
Ye Olde Dog & Partridge

Dating back to the 15th century, Ye Olde Dog & Partridge has strong links to Tutbury Castle. It is rumoured that there are secret passages connecting the cellars of our pub with Tutbury Castle (the remains of which are on the site of an original Norman settlement that was destroyed in 1174). In 1270, the castle underwent a massive renovation which would one day become a one-time prison to Mary Queen of Scots, where bitterly cold winds would blow through the tower where she was incarcerated.

Regular ghost tours take place at Tutbury Castle, and the location was also featured on the popular ‘Most Haunted’ show. Many try to witness the ghostly soldier and white lady who are said to walk across the tower windows. Our team have also reported a mysterious presence in the cellar, and abnormal noises!

Ye Olde Dog & Partridge

- Haunted Pub 3 -
The White Horse

village of Shere, near the beautiful North Downs. Over the years, as Shere began to prosper due to the growing wool trade, a fireplace and new wing was added to the site. By the 18th century, as traditional ales were replaced by hopped beer, the farmhouse was transformed into an alehouse with its own brewery.

It has been said that during renovations to the building, the remains of a young Victorian girl were found in the chimney. Thought to be Emma Vincent, a maid who once worked in The White Horse, her spirit is said to haunt the pub. During another renovation, a hidden cellar containing casks of brandy, some dating back to 1712, were also found. This confirmed that The White Horse was once part of smuggling activity, which was rife in the area during that time.

The White Horse has also been featured in several films, such as The Holiday, Four Weddings and a Funeral and Bridget Jones – so come and take a look for yourself, and don’t forget to visit the ‘Silent Pool’. Legend has it that King John abducted a woodcutter’s daughter and forced her into the deep waters, where she drowned. People say that her ghost can still be seen in the area at midnight...

The White Horse

- Haunted Pub 4 -
The Peacock

Dating back to 1828, The Peacock was originally a coaching inn. Situated on Icknield Street, which itself was built in 49AD, the street is said to be the oldest roman road into London.

This stretch of road is steeped in history going back 2000 years, when the Roman army were pushing north during their conquest of Britain. There have reportedly been sightings of soldiers marching up and down the historic road, and, more recently, the silhouette of a figure has also been seen crossing the road near our very own pub; some say this is the ghost of PC Davies who was murdered whilst on duty in the early hours of 28th February 1885.

Team players and guests claim to have felt a creepy presence in the cellar, and to have heard the cries of a little girl in the women’s toilet. Believe it or not, this was actually not the first reported paranormal activity to occur in the women’s toilets! A rocking chair once situated in this room appeared to rock gently by itself. Fortunately, the pub has since undergone refurbishments, and the rocking chair has been removed.

The Peacock

- Haunted Pub 5 -
The Hutt

Built in 1400 as part of the spectacular Newstead Estate on the site of the Royal Hutt, one of seven to be built to house the men patrolling Sherwood Forest to protect the King’s deer – King John himself is said to have stayed here.

The Hutt is located opposite the stunning 12th century Grade II listed building, Newstead Abbey, which itself has an interesting history – Lord Byron himself once lived here. However, visitors may want to keep their eyes peeled for its longest standing resident! During the 17th century, a tunnel once connected The Hutt to Newstead Abbey, and a monk who used to travel along the tunnel is thought to haunt the basement after being chained to a wall and left to perish.

The Hutt

- Haunted Pub 6 -
The George Inn

The George Inn is one of the oldest pubs in the country, and has played host to frequenters such as Samuel Pepys and the Duke of Monmouth, who stayed in the pub during the Monmouth rebellion in the 17th century when 12 men were hanged at the nearby crossroads by the infamous Judge Jeffreys.

The George Inn is said to be haunted by the ghost of Viscount John Baptiste Du Barre, a foreign noble, who died in the last legal duel fought in Britain. Following a quarrel over the sharing of £600 that he and his friend had won from a game of cards, a challenge was thrown down and he and his opponent met on Claverton Down at dawn on 18th November 1778. The Viscount was mortally wounded and his body was transported back to The George Inn. Today, a mysterious apparition is often spotted standing by the bar, but many say he appears happy and poses no threat to the living.

During a paranormal investigation, a blonde-haired boy dressed in blue was sighted, and they also heard a woman sighing throughout the night. Over the years, there have been a variety of ghostly happenings at the pub, including items which have mysteriously moved about in the bar area, and guests being woken in the night by extreme cold.

The George Inn

- Haunted Pub 7 -
Ye Olde Swan

Dating back to Tudor times, this pub has a colourful past! Situated in an area of many ancient settlements, the remains of medieval villages can still be seen today. It is thought that many of these villages were wiped out by the great plague.

Over its long history there have been many reports of paranormal activity; bread and jugs flying off shelves, cloaked figures disappearing through walls and chairs unstacking themselves. One former landlord claimed that whilst the pub was closed one night, he heard raucous laughter and singing from a party going on downstairs. When he went to check what the commotion was, the noise simply faded away.

But this is not all that shrouds the tavern in mystery, a local highwayman, Dick Turpin, is said to have frequently stayed here to escape his life of crime. Legend has it that one night the authorities were pursuing Turpin, but he took refuge at the inn. Later he made his escape with a cunning plan, he re-shod his horse’s shoes so they pointed backwards and tied his horse to a stone outside the inn for a quick escape; his pursuers followed the cleverly laid trail. Rumour has it that Dick Turpin still appears in the moonlight outside the inn riding his black horse. But a word of warning, do not move the stone Turpin used for his escape as it is believed that a curse will befall anyone who moves it.

Ye Olde Swan