The Most Haunted Houses In London

London is one of the most famous cities in the world, and swimming in history and different historical sites. It’s no wonder then that London has a lot of properties that claim to be haunted and have stories to back them up. Compare My Move has put a report together on the 5 most haunted properties in London. From friendly ghosts who just like a pint, to unexplainable entities that are known to scare people to death, all of these properties have the grounds to call themselves the most haunted in London.

50 Berkeley Square

50 Berekely Square is a townhouse in the Mayfair district of London, built in 1740 and home to the former Prime Minister, George Canning, the house is known as the most haunted in London, and the house has supposedly taken over 4 lives in the course of the 19th century. The house has had many reports of supernatural goings on, but the most famous and most accounted paranormal activity was in the form of “The Nameless Horror of Berkeley Square”.

The house already had a reputation for the paranormal before the first sighting of the Nameless Horror. In 1840, a student known as Robert Warboys was drinking in a nearby tavern, and after hearing stories about 50 Berkeley Square, wanted to spend the night. The landlord of the property reluctantly agreed for him to sleep in the upstairs room, however, there were two rules, Robert must be armed at all times, and if he saw anything strange he must pull the cord next to the bed and alert the landlord.

An hour passed before the landlord heard frantic ringing, followed by a single gunshot. The landlord got to the room and found Warboys sitting in the corner, incomprehensible, with an empty pistol. There was nothing else in the room. In his state, Warboys could not explain what had happened and quickly ran out into the London streets.

30 years later, former MP Lord George Lyttleton had an obsession with the paranormal and decided that he was going to spend a night in 50 Berkeley Square and explain what was going on. It wasn’t long into the night when Lyttleton was awoken by a strange noise coming from a dark corner of the room. He reached for a hunting rifle he had brought and the sound stopped, a disgusting brown mass of tentacles jumped out of the darkness toward Lyttleton, causing him to shoot his rifle. After reloading, the creature was gone. However, a sludgy residue remained.

6 years later, 50 Berkeley Square had a new owner, and the owner employed a local girl as a maid for the house. It was agreed that her husband-to-be could live with, a naval captain by the name of Kentfield. As the maid was getting the upstairs bedroom ready for her and Kentfield, the house was filled with screaming. The owner found the maid on the floor, shrieking and pointing at the corner of the room. She was repeating “Don't let it touch me” and was committed to a hospital that day.

Kentfield stayed the same night in the upstairs bedroom, through the night a shout and a single gunshot were heard. The owners awoke to find Kenfield’s body in the centre of the room, having apparently committed suicide, it was later found out that the maid passed away the same night.

However, it was Christmas Eve in 1887 in which the most shocking tale of Berkeley Square was lived. Two sailors, Robert Martin and Edward Blunden were docked, and in the city for the holidays - struggling to find a place to stay, the sailors opted to sleep in the abandoned 50 Berkeley Square, and due to the damage on the lower levels, they decided to spend the night upstairs.

Blunden awoke in the middle of the night and saw a shapeless form making its way over to the still-sleeping Martin, leaving a trail of sludge on the floor behind it. Blunden grabbed a nearby poker and woke Martin up, while trying to attack the creature, it jumped at Blunden and wrapped itself around his face and neck. Martin reports seeing tentacles wrapped tightly around Blunden before he ran out of the house and found a nearby policeman. When they returned to the house, Blunden had fallen out of the upstairs window and was skewered, dead, on the fence spikes below.

Langham Hotel

The Langham Hotel is a beautiful building situated right outside the BBC studios in Marylebone, London. It was built between 1863 and 1865 and at the time was the largest and most modern hotel in the city, hosting the first hydraulic lifts in England. As well as its historical achievements, the Langham Hotel is known as one of the most haunted hotels in the world, and has a plethora of ghosts that roam the halls and taunt the guests.

The most popular room for ghosts in the Langham Hotel is room 333 which has had 3 different ghosts haunt 3 different guests. One apparition that frequents room 333 is one of a German Price who died jumping from the fourth-floor window of the hotel, he is one of the most active ghosts in the hotel and has a preference for the room. BBC announcer Ray Moore is one of the many people who have reported seeing the apparition and describes him as wearing a military jacket.

Another BBC announcer had a particularly frightening run-in with a ghost in room 333. James Gordon was staying in the room in 1973, where he awoke to a fluorescent sphere in his room, that turned into the figure of a silver-haired gentleman. This man was reportedly a guest who had taken his own life in the hotel after killing his new wife on their honeymoon. Politely, Gordon asked the figure's identity, the figure started floating toward him with his arms out and a blank stare. Gordon ran out of the room and came back with a member of staff, to their surprise, they came back to see the ghost standing over the bed in which Gordon was sleeping.

A third paranormal incident that happened in room 333 was more physical, in which one guest was sleeping, and was awoken by a figure tipping them out of bed. After the guest realised what had happened, they ran out of the hotel and onto the London streets in the morning hours.

Unlike some haunted properties, the ghost stories of the Langham Hotel don’t only come from the past, one of the most current hauntings happened in 2014 and was reported by England cricket legend Stuart Broad. Broad awoke in his hotel room as it was unexplainably hot, and as he awoke he heard the taps in the bathroom come on. Broad went to investigate, he turned on the bathroom light and as he did so, the taps stopped. He turned the lights back off, and sure enough the taps would come on again. After trying this a few more times, and seeing the same results, he requested that he and his partner be moved to a different room.

The Ten Bells Pub

The Ten Bells Pub is famous in London for its connection to Jack the Ripper, as it is reported that at least two of the victims of Jack the Ripper frequented this pub before they met their untimely deaths. The pub, which opened in 1752, has been reported to be haunted by 3 different ghosts, all of which have history linked to them and have made their presence known in different ways.

The first ghost, and one that has been seen by many staff at the pub over the years, is one of a Victorian-era man. Since the 1990s, the upper floor of the pub has been reserved as a living quarter for staff, and there have been multiple reports of the Victorian-era man climbing into bed with the staff while they are sleeping. When the staff open their eyes, they see the man lying next to them, he grins his blackened teeth and disappears.

Other reports of the man have seen him sitting on the bar leering at guests, mostly women. In 2000 a new landlord took over the pub and cleared out the cellar. In the cellar, there was a box of items that belonged to a man named George Roberts. In the box was a cutting of a newspaper that he had been murdered in a cinema in Swansea in the early 1900s. Research later found that George Roberts used to be the landlord for the Ten Bells and the Victorian-era man is believed to be the ghost of Roberts.

Another apparition that would make itself known to staff and guests is the disembodied cries of a baby who is in distress. The cries can be heard throughout the establishment and one physic refused to enter the top room of the pub, as she could feel something awful had happened there involving the death of a baby in the 19th century. Years later, a leading Jack the Ripper researcher was given permission to look around the pub, and even given access to the roof. While exploring, she found a sack in between the roof and the water tank, inside the sack were mouldy, victorian-era baby clothes, that were slashed with a knife. This sack was found directly above the top room of the pub, the same room that the psychic refused to enter.

The third, and most famous ghost of the Ten Bells Pub is the ghost of the second Jack the Ripper Victim, Annie Chapman. Annie Chapman was known to have liked a drink and by the time of her murder in 1888, had fallen on hard times and was living alone in London, Chapman was murdered near the Ten Bells, and it is reported that she had her last drink in the pub. Her ghost has been seen sitting at the bar and has been attributed to belongings of guests going missing, glasses being smashed, and in some cases, staff being pushed down the stairs.

Hampton Court Palace

Hampton Court Palace, near Richmond Upon Thames in Greater London, has massive historical significance in the English monarchy. The construction of the palace was begun by Cardinal Wolsey in the early 16th century and was soon acquired by King Henry VIII, by the 1530’s he had made it his own, a lavish complex fitted with many amenities and one in which he would bring all of his wives to. Due to its status in history, the palace is home to some very famous apparitions, including 2 of Henry VIII’s wives, and possibly the King himself.

The first wife of Henry VIII to haunt Hampton Court is his third wife, Jane Seymor, who died after complications post-birth of Henry’s son, Prince Edward. She is described as a white wraith in a permanent state of sorrow and has been seen on many occasions carrying a lighted taper candle. She is often seen on the large Silverstick Stairs, which once led to the room in which she gave birth to Edward in 1537 and the room in which she died soon after.

Another late wife of Henry VII’s is reported to roam the castle and one that is reported to be a lot more frightening than Jane Seymor is the ghost of Henry’s young, fifth wife, Catherine Howard who was beheaded at the Tower of London aged just 19 in 1542 after the King found out about her adultery with two other men. As she was arrested at Hampton Court, the teenage queen broke free of her guards and ran to Henry begging for mercy, never to find him. The hallway in which she ran down is now known as the haunted gallery, and Catherine Howard’s screaming ghost has been seen running down the gallery, shrieking and banging on the door at the end of the hallway, causing many guests to faint.

As well as his wives, the ghost of Henry VIII is also reported to roam the palace, and his ghost also appeared on CCTV footage in 2003, in what is one of the clearest apparitions caught on camera. The figure that appeared in Tudor's clothing was large and pushed open the courtyard doors with power. The day before this CCTV footage, guards documented seeing the doors swing open in the exact same way on their own, and with no explanation behind it. The day after this occurrence, the doors would fly open in the same way, but much like the first day, there was no cause for it. Aside from the security tape, a visitor also reported a large figure near the same doors.

The Viaduct Tavern

The Viaduct Tavern is a former gin palace with a dark history and is well-known for its many hauntings. Built between 1872 and 1875, and named after the Holburn Viaduct that was erected a few years beforehand, the tavern was situated between two properties of historical significance. Across the road from the tavern was Newgate Prison, demolished in 1777, and from the tavern, you can see the fountain in which many public hangings took place. Next door to the tavern was the Gilster Compter, which was a debtor's prison that operated from 1791 to 1853, the cells of which are still located and standing in the tavern’s cellar.

The most famous ghost of the Viaduct Tavern is a mischievous yet friendly ghost that the customers and staff have named “Fred”. Fred is known to finish patrons' drinks when they aren’t looking, turn on the hand dryers in the bathroom, and tap people on the shoulder. There have been multiple reports of Fred in the tavern, but the staff assure customers that he is a friendly yet mischievous, entity.

Other encounters with poltergeists haven't been as friendly, one night in 1982, after closing, the daughter of a landlord was sitting in the upstairs room reading a newspaper, when she heard loud, crashing footsteps coming up the stairs. As the footsteps reached the top of the stairs, the door to the room flew open, and her newspaper was ripped out of her hand. The door then closed by its own accord and footsteps were heard descending the staircase. After this occurrence, the daughter checked the tavern, and the tavern was empty.

Another occurrence happened in 1999 when two tradesmen were working on the property, one felt a tap on his shoulder, turned around thinking it was his colleague and saw his colleague on the other side of the room. After this, both tradesmen saw a heavy roll of carpet rise into the air, and thud back to the ground. The landlord would later blame this occurrence on Fred.

The most chilling encounter would come in the cellar, where the Compter cells are located. The landlord was working down there and was in one of the cells when the door slammed shut, the lights went out, and he heard a voice whisper “There’s just two of us down here now.” The landlord tried to open the door but it was too heavy to open, thankfully for him, his wife heard his cries for help and came down to the cellar - she was able to open the door from the outside with ease.

Many believe that the Viaduct Tavern is haunted by the ghosts of those who met their end hanging across the street, and even the friendly Fred could have been an executed criminal.

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