Stanley History Online
We all love a good ghost story, more so when we can relate it to a local place or person. This page looks at ghost stories that have been told over the years in Stanley and surrounding area, if you have any stories of your own that we could us on this page please add them to the box at the bottom of this page.
The Ghost of Edna Terrace
About 9 years ago we moved in to the house on Long Causeway that is situated in a row of houses known as Edna Terrace. On this one particular day, my mum and dad were decorating the dining room, with me being young at the time I was sent to my bedroom so I didn’t get in the way. Whilst in my bedroom I was visited by an elderly lady who sat beside me on the bed and began talking to me, as I was very young at the time I can only briefly remember her, she appeared to be very old with a distinct croaky voice. The woman remained a mystery as nobody came into the house that day. A little while ago I began to research the house and found that the row was named after a lady called Edna who ran a butchers business, I was also told that they would hang pigs on hooks in the alley way that runs through the houses. Further research found that Edna lived in our house. Was it Edna who visited me all those years ago? Other people who live in the row have claimed to hear faint, unexplainable voices, on closer investigation each time, there was nobody there……
Ghost in Stanley Marsh
During a jogging session at Stanley Marsh, I was running around the corner towards the golf course gate when I saw, as clear as day a man in grey step out from behind a tree and then vanish before my eyes. My mother and I both witnessed this apparition and to this day cannot explain it. We both get mighty spooked around that side of the Marsh now!
Ghost of Hatfeild
By Tracy Rawling
I and my sister used to live on Bevin Crescent in Outwood from 1985 when I was 2 years old for 10 years. In the summer holidays when boredom set in we used to venture into the rhubarb fields when we came across this old burnt down pub, I can not remember the year but looking at you pictures it must have been very late 1980's to early 90's because we were not allowed there as we were very young maybe about 8 to 10yr old.
Some other kids were there too and we were exploring the building, I was scared as the boys were telling stories that it was haunted; we knew it was wrong to be there but I was so inquisitive. Everyone ventured up the burnt out stairs and we went to a part of the building that had no roof and the room we stood in had a big hole in the floor which looked down onto a pile of bricks and rubble. As we all stood round looking down. SOMETHING took a massive run and jump at my back and I was forcefully pushed off the ledge straight onto the rubble. I remember NO-ONE stood behind me and I managed to grab the ledge but lost my grip and landed with my back to the pile of bricks. I could hardly breathe; everyone screamed I thought I was dying.
I remember been so scared been on the ground floor on my own while everyone ran down the stairs to me. I was really struggling to get my breath and an older boy picked me up and took me outside and laid me on the grass. I was carried home but could not tell my mum as we would be in trouble so I just said nothing and I couldn’t walk properly for weeks without searing pain in the chest. Turns out it broke my rib and the rib had healed bent and out of place and I get re-occurring problems with trapped nerves to this day.
I have never returned there but seeing your photos really scared me and brought back vivid memories of that almighty push from behind that was intentional from what I KNOW was a ghost. When I read the Annabel story I cant help but imagine that it was in fact a girl that pushed me, its like saw it through her eyes looking into my back and literally 'laying' into me. I learnt my lesson not to trespass.
Folly Hall Farm
The woman in grey
Folly Hall Farm stood on Leeds Road where the Co Op building now stands. Stories have circulated for many years of a ghostly figure known as the woman in grey, which is said to have haunted the building during the mid 1950s. Walter and Ellen Beaumont, who lived in the farmhouse at the time lived with the apparitions inside and outside the house for years, and even applied for permission from the Bishop of Wakefield for an exorcism. In an unusual move, permission was granted and the exorcism took place, but the apparition continued to appear as much as seven times a week, eventually driving Mrs Beaumont to a nervous breakdown and forcing the family to move out.
Unexplainable events at Lake Lock Yard
In the late 1970s and early 1980s Lake Lock Yard was semi derelict, the buildings themselves are over 200 years old and were at one time thriving workshops on the River side. Kids would play in the derelict buildings and they became a popular hang out. One particular group of lads were camping out and decided to go down to the yard about 1am, they were aware that people claimed to have seen ghosts and heard loud unexplainable noises in the houses but thought it a good idea to see if there were any “ghosts” for themselves. A couple of them went up onto the first floor in one of the houses, the others stayed downstairs. They all hear a loud crashing sound on the first floor, the lads upstairs said they saw something fly across the room, exited and scared they made a quick exit. Upon returning with their candles shortly after they found nothing out of the ordinary.
The Grove Park
By Alicia Simpson
A story told by my mum and auntie who were cleaners at the pub before it was converted in to flats. One particular day they were cleaning as normal when they heard someone come into the pub, thinking it was the Manager they both decided to hide from him for a joke. After being hidden for 15 minutes there appeared to be nobody in the pub, puzzled by this they checked everywhere in the building to find the place was empty. No explanation was found for the noises. Similar events also were reported by work men when the pub was converted to flats.
Unusual goings on in the Church Yard
By Alicia Simpson
In 2007 me and a friend were walking back home from the Youth, taking a short cut through the churchyard when we noticed a man to our left with what appeared to be a dog, within a glance he had disappeared. Strange we thought, but carried on a little worried. Within a few seconds he had re appeared, only much closer than before, so we ran back to the Road. I do not believe in ghosts but I cannot explain the strange set of circumstances. How did he get so close to use without us noticing? Was it a ghost? Or were we just paranoid?
Was it the beer
When Hatfeild Hall was open as a pub, three friends were sat in the entrance hall near the grand staircase with their pints having a good laugh and a joke. The three lads; Kev, Lindon and John all noticed the front door open, then close, then the lobby door just behind the front door open, then close. It was like somebody had just entered the hall but there was nobody there. Was it the beer……?
The toilet spook
Kathleen Parkin was a cleaner at Hatfeild Hall when it was the offices of the Asylum board in the 1970’s, she had heard of spooky goings on in the hall but had never seen anything unusual. On one of her shifts she was paying a visit to the ladies, when she got to the toilet door she saw it close, thinking somebody had just gone in she waited outside. Time passed and nobody came out, at this point she REALLY needed to go so knocked on the door asking if the person in there was going to be long. No answer. Thinking something was the matter she opened the door to find there was no one in there.
Gone with the wind
Another story from the time when Hatfeild was offices for the Asylum board, one of the staff was working late at his desk with his back to the window which was closed. All of a sudden all his paperwork flew off the desk like it had been caught in a gust of wind. On closer examination he found all the windows were shut in the building.
Mr Holland and his Labrador
Mr Holland worked as a security guard at Hatfeild in the 1970s, he had a Labrador which would do the rounds of the hall with him each night, however the dog would never go up to the first floor of the building via the second staircase with him. It would go up the main staircase but never the back staircase. It is often said dogs can sense a ghostly presence better than people.
Hatfeild Hall Summer House
Before the outbuildings were demolished at Hatfeild they made a great place for all the local kids to hang out. One Outwood lad, Keith Tyres was going up the stairs in the summer house with his mates when a file that was laid on the floor lifted up and flew past him. Nobody else was on the first floor in the building, leaving the incident unexplainable.
The ghost of 226 Canal Lane
By Ella Midgley
When I was living in the old Gledhill's butchers at 226 Canal Lane (before it moved to Lake Lock Road , according to his grand daughter, who I grew up with.) One night when I was 10 years old I woke up to see a tall woman, with dark hair and a white dress, standing next to my bed. At first I thought it was my Mum, who was pregnant at the time and had a long white maternity nightie, but as my eyes adjusted to the light I realised it wasn't her and pulled the covers over my head in fright. This might have been my imagination, and to be honest I put the strange memory out of my head when I got older, but a couple of years ago I was chatting to my Dad about the renovation work he did on the house when my parents bought it back in 1983. He doesn't believe in ghosts, but while we were talking he mentioned a strange dream he had in the little bedroom that overlooks the road, in which he woke up in the middle of the night and saw a tall woman in a white dress standing next to the chimney breast, looking down at him. The dream felt so vivid that he remembers turning away and pulling the covers up over his head. I never told him about my own experience, so was shocked by his description of the woman. Incidentally the little bedroom was my nursery, but I had to be moved into the back bedroom (where I had my experience) when I was three or four years old because I wouldn't sleep in there. Apparently I used to talk about something nasty being in the corner by the chimney breast...
The wise woman of Wakefield
In the 17th Century there was a woman who lived at Newton called Jennet Benton, between Stanley and Wakefield. It was said she was a witch who had formed an alliance with the devil allowing her to operate supernaturally by sorcery, charms and enchantment. The cottage she lived in had mud walls and a thatched roof, a black cat also roamed around the cottage hissing and spitting at passers by. There was a dispute involving Jennet Benton (the wise woman) and her son George with a nearby farmer over the pair trespassing on his land. The farm owner gave orders to one of his workers, Daniel Craven to stop the pair if he caught them trespassing again. Shortly afterwards Daniel caught the pair crossing the land, he was involved in a fight with George who threw a stone at Daniel breaking two teeth and cutting his lip. The matter was brought before the court where the pair was ordered to compensate Daniel. Afterwards Jennet made threats to the farm owner Richard Jackson, who swore that before the year was out he would fall foul to her curse. Following these threats the farmer’s wife became suddenly deaf and one of his sons began to have fits during the night, he had dreamt his body had been drawn into pieces and had heard loud music and dancing around him. The following night he had another fit, in which he claimed to hear the singing and dancing again. Nobody in the house had heard a sound during these ordeals. They did however all hear three heavy groans; the dogs then began to howl and bark at the windows whilst the doors in the house swung open and shut. Ghostly figures of large black dogs and cats were also seen around the farmhouse. Over that year the farmer lost 18 horses in addition to this a heard of pigs escaped from a locked barn, breaking down the doors. Convinced that his misfortune was the work of the witch he charged her at York Assizes in June 1656 with witchcraft, the evidence was given but the jury found the woman not guilty and allowed her to return home.
The ghost of Newland Estate
This story took place in the 1950s and was told by a well known local man of the time called Ernest Parkin. He was a real giant of a man, if you knew him you will know what I mean. He was not scared of nobody or anything, or so everyone thought…. Ernest worked at Pope and Pearson’s and to get to work he used his push bike, travelling up Birkwood Hill. One night on his way home he claims to have seen the ghost sat up a tree. Not wanting to hang around he sped off down Birkwood Hill. So shook up by ghostly goings on, he got his son to walk him to work the next day.
The ghost of Baker Lane
Opposite where Bramley’s Field was on Baker lane stood an old row of Houses built in the 1900s (a bungalow with an old gas lamp in the garden stands there now), rumour had it that before the row became houses it was used as farm buildings. The local men of the day used these farm buildings to play cards, gamble and get very drunk. Late one night the room was full of the locals playing cards, most of them had already had a gallon or two when it is said the devil appeared chains hanging from his arms and screaming. The men fled, shaken up by the ordeal never to return to the place. Was it a un happy wife playing a trick on her husband for staying out late? We will never know!Years later all the kids that lived in the row knew of the story, most were so frightened by it they would not get up in the night to go use the outside toilets. I have heard one story from an elderly man who lived in one of the houses in this row, now he said when he was a young child his bedroom was lower than the rest of the house having five steps down to his bedroom. His bed was on a stone shelf high up in an alcove on the wall, and one night he claims to have seen a ghost travel from the kitchen, down the steps and through his bedroom then disappear. What did you do I asked? Pulled the cover over my head and did not move until it was light the next day he said!
The ghost of Newmarket Pit
Over the years there have been several tales of ghosts at Newmarket, one of them is as follows; around 100 years ago workmen at the surface were doing a job at the pithead. They were bolting a section of safety guard at the side of the shaft entrance when a large nut was dropped, falling down the shaft. At the bottom of the 300 yard shaft an on setter who was new to the pit bottom was hit by the nut. By some unfortunate chance the nut hit the man on the top of his head, penetrating his skull and killing him instantly. He was taken to the pump house where effort was made to revive him. After the accident many workers claimed to have seen a ghost in the pump house.
There’s only me n thee in here
Back in the 1940s my dad Fred would use Stanley church yard as a cut through to get from the picture house back home on Baker Lane . One particular night it was getting late and the fog had come in so thick you could barely see in front of you. Using his normal short cut he passed the church when he heard a voice call out “there’s only me n thee in here lad”. Spooked he ran as fast as he could and didn’t stop until he got home. When getting home he told his dad what had happened to a reply of, “don’t be daft lad, there are no ghosts, and it will have been somebody messing about with you”. A well used saying then in our family from then on! “There’s only me and thee in here”
More to follow