Sitting in the countryside, on the edge of the Cotswolds in Gloucestershire is the pretty little village of Prestbury. With its beautiful houses and picturesque scenery, it looks like any other idyllic Cotswold village – but beneath the charming façade this village is a little different. Legend has it, that this is the most haunted village in England. It is not really surprising, given the age of the village that it has some resident spirits. It is mentioned in the Doomesday Book in 1081 so it has been around a long time! Prestbury became very popular with wealthy visitors to Cheltenham in 18th – 19th century – they visited the Grotto Tea Gardens, an upmarket outdoor tea room with a summerhouse, and came to take in the views from Cleeve Hill. Prestbury is a particularly pretty village, with its chocolate box cottages, with honey coloured walls it is easy to see why it attracts so many visitors. If you aren’t lucky enough to live in one of these pretty cottages, http://reliable-remodeler.com/ has great ideas for home improvements and making the most of the home!
The Burgage is Prestburys oldest street, and also where the most hauntings are reported. There are many sightings of a charging horseman on a white horse riding down the Burgage. While on his way to fight in the war of the roses it is said that he was killed by an arrow. A skeleton was found in the area in the 20th century, with an arrowhead in it. Many people believe that this is the skeleton of the horseman. He isn’t the only horseman to ride down the Burgage – another unfortunate ghoul who rides along the haunted street is a headless horseman who was knocked from his horse during the Civil War – on his way from the nearby Sudeley Castle to Gloucester. He was beheaded by the Roundheads of Prestbury.
Further along the road, is Sundial Cottage – there are many reports of sightings of the spirit of a young girl here who plays the spinet. A family took refuge in the cottage during the second world war and saw the girl many times, and heard her music in the house.
Prestburys most famous ghostly resident is the Black Abbot. There have been numerous sightings of the Abbot in the churchyard of Saint Mary’s Church. The Abbot also used to be seen in the church itself, until it was exorcised. He always walks the same route – appearing in the churchyard and walking through it before disappearing into a wall! The picture below was taken of the spook in 1990 and is still one of the most famous ghost photographs ever taken.
Of course, a visit to the village will not guarantee that you see anything paranormal, but if you have an interest in the paranormal, or even want to spend time in quaint English village with a few resident ghosts, Prestbury is well worth a visit.