THORNTONS CHOCOLATE SHOP, EASTGATE STREET.
Probably the most famous Chester ghost is Sarah, who haunts the Thornton's chocolate shop in Eastgate Street - a ghost after my own heart, spending eternity in a chocolate shop is some folks idea of heaven.
Sarah was said to be a charming young lady who fell in love with an unscrupulous rascal who jilted her on their wedding day. Sarah was so distraught she returned to her home in Eastgate Street and hung herself. Ever since she has caused havoc in the premises.
Most events happen in the top floor front room and the cellar, but can happen anywhere. She is never seen, but makes up for it in other ways. The manageress of the shop experienced what can only be called a possession when staff saw her coming down the stairs singing an unknown song and holding her hands out as if lifting a long and heavy dress in order to descend the stairs. She can offer no explanation for this.
An American tourist who described the stories of the ghost as rubbish was immediately pushed down the stairs by an invisible hand.
An electrician who went to read the meter in the cellar was not down there for long, and ran back up the stairs saying he felt he was being watched by something very unpleasant.
Sarah has also proved useful to the local police force - a burglar who broke in and stole the days takings from the safe fled in such a hurry he left behind all his tools and a full set of fingerprints.
Sarah was very upset by the Valentines Day display in the shop in 1991. The heart shaped boxes of chocolates were frequently found scattered on the floor of the shop, leaving the ordinary boxes of chocolates that had been stacked in front of them undisturbed.
Sarah was quietened for a while in 1965 following an exorcism, but has since recovered and still carries on her tricks to this day.
This case was discussed at the MAPIT conference in Ellesmere Port in September 2000, also included in the Chester Chronicle, the information has also been used with permission on various other websites.
On the minor road B5130 in Cheshire lies Farndon is a village on the banks of the River Dee, south of Chester, and close to the border with Wales. Nearby Holt in north Wales is its twin town. Farndon Castle is by the river; it was constructed in the 13th and 14th centuries, and it fell to Cromwell's forces in 1647. Central to the community stands a most attractive and historically important bridge.
This bridge is reputedly haunted by two very different sets of spirits. The first is said to be that of a 17th century royalist soldier, perhaps that of a member of a regiment involved in the battle of Rowton Heath, dressed in full dress of the time of the battle.
The second the more famous, and more regularly reported is that of two young children.
Many years ago the two young boys were entrusted into the keep of Roger Mortimer, earl of warren, by their father Prince Madoc. Unfortunately Mortimer was embroiled in a plot of treason against the prince. Mortimer held both his brothers and the children's love, and decided to use them in his plot. Madoc soon discovered mortimer's plans and set off to face him, he made for Farndon and arrived at the bridge, their stood Mortimer with the Children. The argument that followed was very heated, Mortimer threatened Madoc with pushing the children into the river, at this point he stumbled, and the two children fell into the depths of the fast moving River Dee.
Mortimer was captured and tried for his crimes, the Prince was never the same man again.
Now on certain night's the screams and sight of the drowned children can be seen as the episode is replayed.
The area is now somewhat a tourist attraction, many visitors and locals have reported their experiences to the UPIA and local media. Whilst UPIA were recently broadcasting on BBC radio Merseyside, this case was again reported by an online listener from the USA. This case is one of the areas most often reported paranormal occurrences.
This case was discussed at the MAPIT conference in Ellesmere Port in September 2000, also included in the Chester Chronicle.
THE COUNTESS OF CHESTER HOSPITAL 1829 BUILDING, LIVERPOOL ROAD:
Ghosts are troubling staff at a former Victorian lunatic asylum in Chester.
Staff at the 1829 building on the West Cheshire Hospital campus in Liverpool Road have reported a number of sightings including a mysterious woman in black.
The building, now home to offices of the Cheshire West Primary Care Trust, Mersey Regional Ambulance, and Cheshire Health Agency, was formerly known as the County Lunatic Asylum, Cheshire. When the asylum first opened its doors, the first pauper patients arrived from the workhouses and poor houses; others came as criminal lunatics Some patients with severe problems were chained up and restrained in strait-jackets while others were tied to their beds with belts. A number of patients died whilst staying in the building, which included padded cells, and staff fear that their ghosts are still stalking the building.
A number of sightings have been reported of a mysterious woman in black who is said have appeared on the wards ahead of a patient's death back in the 1800s. She is said to be still around today.
A security guard recently unlocked the building on arriving for morning duty and saw a figure sitting at a desk. When he turned to look again the figure had disappeared.
The issue of ghosts in the building was raised a month ago after a Unison union meeting at the hospital which is on the same site as the Countess of Chester Hospital. Stan Murphy, who works as a part-time nurse at the West Cheshire Hospital, was told by Unison rep Kara James that ghosts were troubling staff. 'Kara told me that staff were experiencing things and that things were happening. She said staff are terrified after seeing and hearing things,' said Mr Murphy, who has just written a book to commemorate the 175th anniversary of the West Cheshire Hospital. 'I took it all with a pinch of salt because there have been stories about ghosts in the building for years.'
Mr Murphy, of Dicksons Drive, Newton, Chester, began working at the hospital aged 15 and experienced a strange happening whilst on night duty when he was 20. He heard footsteps coming down a corridor and suddenly sensed someone was sitting next to him although he could not see anyone. Kara James says there have been stories involving ghosts at the 1829 building for years but says she has never experienced a poltergeist. 'I have not seen it myself but there is a story said to involve a woman in black,' she said.
Phil Houlston, director of the Cheshire West Primary Care Trust, said: 'There have been stories about ghosts here for years.
'People have said they have seen something and there are various stories, one said to involve a woman in black. 'People have said they have seen her from an outside window. '
The above article appeared written by UPIA founder Dave Sadler in the January 14th 2005 edition of the Chester Chronicle