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Is Derby Really The Most Haunted City In England? Pt.3

Posted by Atticus on Thursday, September 3, 2009 Under: UK

St Werburgh's Church is always worth a visit, even if it is just for the food!

In 1989–1990 the lease on the main building was sold and the building converted into a shopping mall called the Cloisters. This enterprise failed due to high rent and council tax. The building has stood empty and subjected to vandalism for a number of years but has now opened as a Chinese Restaurant called Wok Mania.
The building is now owned by Derek Latham, a local architect with an excellent record of restoring old buildings, in particular Churches. His office is based at the fully refurbished St. Michael's Church on Queen Street. The conversion of St. Werburgh's has been very sympathetic to the building's historical importance as a Church building.

Nearby St Werburgh's Churchyard, there stands Seymour's Wine Bar and Restaurant, which is known to have the ghostly figure of an old woman haunting the premises. Dressed in gray, the woman tends to wander about the upper regions of the building. In this article, you will encounter more information regarding Seymour's, as well as a site called Noah's Ark.

Seymour's Wine Bar

A handful of stories have emerged regarding the ghost, including that the scent of lavender hits the air when the ghost is planning an appearance. The odor is so strong, that one witness claimed that it stung the insides of their nostrils.

Many strange happenings that take place about the wine bar have been attributed to the ghost. For instance, cutlery has a habit of winding up in different places, and is moved around in a different order. Some items have a knack of disappearing altogether and reemerge weeks later. Upon entering the 'Bake House,' people have reported an eerie feeling as if they are being watched. Some staff members claim to have been touched by hands they cannot see. At any rate, the employees do not fear the ghosts they believe reside on the property.

There is a belief that the graveyard located adjacent to the church may contribute to some of the spirits that find their way to the bar and restaurants. Many locals believe that it is haunted by an assortment of spirits.

The Noah's Ark

The River Derwent was used for many different things during the 17th century, but for Noah Bullock, it served as his place of business and residence. Along with his wife, four sons, and five daughters, he built and lived in an ark and moored it on the Derwent, close to Morledge. Inside of his floating home however, he was in the business of coining of counterfeit money.

During the 1600's, creating counterfeit money was a capital offence at this time and when Bullock was found out for his crimes, he was ordered to appear in front of the Recorder of Derby, Sir Simon Degge – a man that Noah actually knew quite well. He was allowed to promise to end his forging activities, and as a result, broke up the ark and let it sink in the River Derwent. All of this helped him to escape the noose of the hangman.

If you visit Morledge, you may happen upon a public house that bears the name of Noah's Ark. However, today, his presence is still felt. He is known to haunt the pub. Located near the site where Bullock built, moored, and later sank his ark – it is believed a handful of river ghosts have chosen to haunt the site. Unexplainable lights are also commonplace in the region. A medium was brought to the site to investigate the ghosts and they claimed that the ghosts were "lost souls of the dead seeking a pathway to the next life."

Derby Cathedral

No listing on Derby would be complete without a mention of the Derby Cathedral.

During the late 19th and early 20th century, the population of England increased in such a way that new religious institutions were created. A trend emerged where regular churches were being transformed into cathedrals. Time and money grew short as the years lingered. People started to see less and less of the grand cathedrals that were commonplace during Norman times. This article focuses on the All Saints' Church in Derby, which later became Derby Cathedral in 1927.

The All Saint's Church was thought founded by King Edmund in 943 AD, but the original church underwent many different changes over the centuries. By the time the 18th century rolled around, one of the only features that set the church apart from other buildings was the tower. Standing 212 feet tall, it was known as the second highest parish church tower in England. This feature has a history that is traced back to the times of Henry VIII.

In 1723, the church was considered unsafe. At the time, no one wanted to claim responsibility for the church and it seemed as if the need for repairs would go unnoticed until a churchman named Revd Dr Michael Hutchinson put in an order for the entire structure to be demolished with the exception of the tower. The local people were not pleased with this decision. However, plans for the rebuilding of the church were already in the works. The new design was the work of James Gibbs, who had become quite famous for his many churches, which included St Mary-le-Strand and St Martin-in-the Fields, in London.

Designs for the new church were given the seal of approval and work on rebuilding the structure started with one of the most striking churches of today – the Derby Cathedral. Some of the features that have caught the eyes of onlookers include the memorial carvings, and attractive wrought iron screens.

You're probably wondering what is so scary about a church that was given new life, but the premises have been reported to serve many wandering ghosts that have chosen to haunt the vicinity of the cathedral. One such ghost is that of Charles Edward Stuart, who was spotted by a woman who once lived in a building (now a shop) that was situated across the road. She reported to have seen a man dressed in Jacobite clothing who would stroll into the Cathedral.

Another ghostly tale associated with the cathedral was that of Bonnie Prince Charlie, who is believed to haunt the premises – appearing to be recounting his footsteps. A ghostly figure has also been seen wandering about the Silk Mill public house. Other restless soul connected to the church is a 'white lady' that has been sighted walking down the steps located at the back of the church. A young woman that appears to be crying along with a small boy is also some of the ghostly residents of the Cathedral.

The George (D.Lafferty & Son)
Recently renamed D Lafferty & Son, the George Inn in Derby, England has a reputation for being haunted by a handful of ghosts. In this article, you will learn a bit about the property, as well as a mystery that is connected to the inn.

In Derby, the George Inn earned a name for itself for being one of the most recognizable of coaching inns in the city. Constructed around 1693, the inn not only served as a coaching house, but also provided a location for gentlemen to stay if they did not own a townhouse in Derby. During this time, a trend was growing in the separation of inns and taverns.

The George Inn was an upscale site where gentlemen had a place to gather. This was the sort of place that you would bump into people like the Duke of Devonshire, who stayed at the inn on more than one occasion. The Inn also served as his headquarters when a Jacobite uprising took place in 1745.

When it comes to the ghost stories and mysteries surrounding the Inn, one of the first tales to come to mind is that of the 'George Skull.' Workers, who were digging a 4-foot pit underneath the floor of the cellar, discovered the human skull of a female that looked to have suffered damage to the cranium. Beside the skull, animal skulls and bones were also found, alongside old shoes and pieces of leather. The work on the cellar ceased and the skull was transported to Nottingham for forensic testing. When the tests came back, it confirmed that the skull was quite old.

No other human remains were located other than the skull. Theories regarding the female skull were that she was killed and then thrown into a pit dated back to the early days. The reasoning behind the animal bones was that creatures that were killed on the premises and used for food for travelers were often thrown into a pit. Others believe that the woman was simply murdered as a way to hide her murder.

Others believe that she was not murdered and the human skull is a complete mystery. While they cannot explain where it came from, they theorize that the workmen found a former workplace of a blacksmith or leather worker, which explains why pieces of leather and old shoes were found. As for the animal remains, their bones would have been discarded after their skins were stripped to make leather.

During the days of the 1600's, it was customary for human skulls to be buried beneath the foundations of new buildings. A spade could have caused the damage to the skull, as it was placed underground. A pair of shoes and a dead cat was also used to ward off evil spirits and witches in regards to laying down a new building.

The Inn has been the site of many different odd happenings. Stainless steel buckets have moved on their own across a room. Beer barrels rolled unexplainably across the cellar floor with force. Odd groans have also been heard on the premises.

In : UK 

Tags: derby  noahs ark  seymours  england  most haunted  ghosts the george  cathedral   
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