The UK has a history of hauntings and Bedford is no exception, with its own past of spooky goings-on.
With Halloween just around the corner, it seemed an apposite time to present some of the scariest urban myths, true horror stories and creepiest unexplained events in Bedford's history. Will this be the scariest thing you have ever read IN YOUR LIFE? Go through our gallery and decide for yourself.
In 1972two nurses watched an attractive girl in a long dress and coat glide into a toilet of Bedford Hospital. Their 1970s response was to follow her into the toilet (it was a different time), only to find the room empty. The same entity may have been observed 28 years later when three members of staff reported seeing a lady in a long dress walk through the wall of a store room.
Samuel Whitbread - there have been many of them, but in this instance we meanthe one who was headteacher ofBedford School at the turn of the 20th century. He is said to wander the corridors of the higher floors of the main buildingat night, often askingpeople who enter the building at night for directions out. Mr Whitbreadcommissioned the main building, so if they do hold a seance someone may ask if he wants to be exhumed and then re-buried with the architect's plans.
Several figures are purported to haunt theCecil Higgins Art Gallery. Which one should we pick out? The most snappily dressed of course, which clearly means the man wearing a bowler hat and 1930s clothing. That's bad news for 'Man wearing a dark suit', and 'Stable boy who walks around the library'. I don't make the rules, I just enforce them.
What could be more scary than a hooded figure, cold spots,and strange sounds aroundScreen 4 and the toilet area of Bedford Cineworld? Maybe strange noises and wet patches around the toilet, I guess? Anyway, some people think that the mysterious figure might be linked to the fact that the cinema stands on the site of Newnham priory.
The Black Tom area of Bedford is named after, um, Black Tom, a notorious highwayman. He was executed and buried with a stake driven through his heart in the 19th century, which apparently Nigel Farage wants brought back after Brexit. That's right, this story just got POLITICAL.Anyway, sightings of his ghost continued up to the 1990s, when the witness initally thought he wasa drunk man in fancy dress.
Most ghosts aren't renowned for being helpful. So hooray for the soldier's apparition at The Park pub, who apparentlydied when this building was used as a hospital during theSecond World War. He is said to occasionally appear to staff, and has been known to open doors.
Clophill has long been associated with satanic rituals and murders, meaning it was no surprise that two ghost-hunters told the Times & Citizen about their terrifying experience around theruins of St Mary The Virgin Church in 2016. They saw a mysterious figure, but when they chased after it they lost it. The hunters offered two explanations - a ghostly apparition, or "someone having a laugh".
Whilst we're just outside of Bedford, let's not forget Flitwick Manor, where an old woman is said to haunt the former stately home. This has been linked to the tragic death of a youing child, and the family blaming an elderly housekeeper who they thought was responsible - all in all a very sad tale. That's right, I'm not going to end by ridiculing reports of the paranormal. Although I clearly did on all the other ones.