Newbury is our next stop, though in olden days the Market
Place wasn't so pleasant for criminals. It was the site of the
old pillory where criminals would be forced to stand and be pelted
with vegetables as well as abuse.
you can hear moaning then look towards the Market Place,
look closely, and you will see Thomas Barrie walking in agony
- with no ears.
1538 Barrie, was up there for allegedly spreading seditious
rumours about King Henry VIII. The poor chap even had his ears
nailed to the pillory and then chopped clean off - ouch! He died
of fright and ever since his ghost has been seen wandering about
the spot ever since, moaning in agony.
we'll stroll on to Pelican Lane where there once was a
theatre, built in 1802. Here a dark crime passionelle took place
when one of the actors fell in love with his leading lady. Yes
gather round now, I know it's cold, well let me continue, story
has it that when she spurned his advances in favour of another,
he stabbed her to death in a fit of jealous rage after the curtain
fell on their last performance.
Ever since candles were blown out and mysteriously relighted,
and when electricity was installed, bulbs would blow and then
work again. Chillingly one couple witnessed a blood stain appear
in the room where the actress had been killed, yet in the morning
it was gone. The building has since been demolished so no more
ghostly hauntings here.
should you ever stay in a certain room here at Searle's Farm,
which, as you may know, is an ancient Tudor building marooned
in the middle of the gravel pits in northern Burghfield,
you may encounter a strange dream.
we? No we're not going to sleep we're just going to sit - don't
nod off now! - now, it is in this room that a servant girl, deeply
upset at discovering she was pregnant, committed suicide. And
those who do not know the story have the same strange dream when
sleeping here, I shall tell you now.
young girl appears, in a flowing white dress at the window, staring
out over the surrounding countryside. The room is in darkness,
but she is illuminated in a soft white light! Not a nightmare
by any counts.
enter Purley Hall here, the home of quite a few ghosts
methinks. Let's go to the bottom of the stairs, and yes, right
on cue, here comes the Viceroy of India, Warren Hastings, who
had rented this building in the 18th century while preparing his
defence against alleged corruption charges - he was later acquitted.
He appears to be in a bit of a rush, putting on his gauntlet gloves.
here's something creepy, this baby crying noise in the
bedroom above the dining room. Sends shivers done my spine, yes
madam I know it's unnerving. In the 18th century, the house was
owned by the Hawes family. The young daughter of the house allegedly
got 'up the duff' as it were by a philandering colonel. She had
given birth to the child in that room but she stuffed it in a
cupboard, where it inevitably died.
is turning out to be a pub crawl isn't it - ah well, nowt wrong
with that. Here we come to the The King's Head in Thatcham.
Come now with me to the first floor and meet old Miss Fremont,
a former landlady here during the golden age of coaching in the
has a great way of entering the rooms as you will soon see….ah!
There she is, all clad in grey, she walks in her silk dress looking
very busy, straight through the walls - don't you wish you could
quick stop at the River Pang in Tidmarsh now, just by the
rectory there, there above the misty waters rises the spirit of
a little boy - his face dissolved and clothes ripped and shredded-
the poor little lad drowned here and occasionally rises here from
on an area of a map or place name to be transported to Berkshire's
ghost world - not for the faint-hearted.