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  • Sunderland Ghost Riot and Prophecy July 26, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    Sunderland Ghost Riot and Prophecy

    This story is interesting as a particularly elaborate ghost riot. Usually nineteenth century ghost riots took place when someone saw something or pretended to see something and next thing there were ten thousand people, a dozen injured bobbies and a lot of broken window panes. This one has a much more precise if curious rumour […]

    Fairies are Oh So… Neolithic July 17, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Prehistoric
    Fairies are Oh So… Neolithic

    In his early career as a fairyist, Beach gently kicked at the idea that fairies and vegetation were connected. All this modern nonsense about fairies in roses (‘she was small with pink taffeta wings and…’) was probably getting on his nerves. But he’d now like to apologise to folklorists, to historians, to fairy-believer and, should […]

    Review: Spirits of an Industrial Age July 6, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    Review: Spirits of an Industrial Age

    There are few pleasures greater in the second decade of the twenty-first century than picking up a self-published volume and finding that it is actually a good read. (For younger readers this simply did not happen thirty years ago). Enter from the left stage Spirits of an Industrial Age: Ghost Impersonation, Spring-heeled Jack and Victorian Society […]

    Norfolk Shape Shifter June 26, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    Norfolk Shape Shifter

    Here we have a fairly rare thing. A Norfolk ghost story. During the passing of the third decade of the present century [1830s] I had not reached my teens, but distinctly remember that the inhabitants of Thetford generally, and young folks in particular, were greatly alarmed by prevalent report of a frightful monster—which had been […]

    The Headless Bear and the Woman Who Became a Hoop June 7, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    The Headless Bear and the Woman Who Became a Hoop

    Headless bears must be one of the strangest of all British bogeys. Where do they come from, what do they mean? This is a question for another day. But here is the single most detailed account of an encounter with one. The events described too place 9 May 1584 in the house of one Stephen […]

    Review: The Bye Bye Man May 22, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Contemporary
    Review: The Bye Bye Man

    Robert Damon Schneck, The Bye Bye Man and Other Strange-but-True-Tales (New York 2014) RDS has built a reputation, in the last decade, for ‘strange stories’ well told with a strong bias towards the supernatural. This ‘new’ collection – actually originally published by Anomalist Press in 2005 as The President’s Vampire – has the typical RDS […]

    Neither Ghosts, Nor Bogeys, Nor Heat, Nor Gloom: Postoffice Workers and the Paranormal May 18, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    Neither Ghosts, Nor Bogeys, Nor Heat, Nor Gloom: Postoffice Workers and the Paranormal

    Beach came across this reference to postal messengers being delayed the inference being that this was because of a fear of Derbyshire bogeys: we are near the ivy-covered village of Longnor in the deep Peaks (UK 1874). For the guidance of our friends and neighbours we learn that our post-messenger will for the future be […]

    Early Modern Sentries and the Supernatural May 16, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    Early Modern Sentries and the Supernatural

    Beach has previously examined the frequent paranormal experiences of sentries in the nineteenth century: with the help of Chris from Haunted Ohio Books. It has, long-time readers will remember, been suggested that lonely, potentially violent men asked to spend the night, attentive to every noise and movement, might easily conjure up ‘something’. Here are two […]

    A Mediumistic Maid April 18, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Contemporary
    A Mediumistic Maid

    There is the need for a collection of all Arthur Conan Doyle’s gadding around in his ‘psychic’ years. And when that time comes Strange History will have several stories to offer up: sometimes ACD turns up as an expert on the spot, at other times the press use ACD as an expert or talking head. […]

    Hare Horror in Furness! Return of the Supernatural Bunnies April 14, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    Hare Horror in Furness! Return of the Supernatural Bunnies

    Beach has recently been enjoying the splendour of supernatural rabbits and hares. Yes, dear reader, do you remember the thud of paranormal poltergeist bunnies? What about the legendary Baum Rabbit? Or the Welsh ghost rabbit as big as a sheep? Or Boudicca’s sacrificial hare? Or the Mann witch trial hare? However, everything that he has […]

    The Spaw Monster April 6, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    The Spaw Monster

    This is a ghost account from 1839. It starts simply enough, but it has some remarkable features. One of those singular cases commonly classed amongst the supernatural, has produced a considerable sensation amongst the inhabitant of the district of Middleton and the surrounding villages. The following are a few of the particulars. In a small […]

    The Ghost of Coalville: Women in the Choir April 4, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    The Ghost of Coalville: Women in the Choir

    The village of Ravenstone (Leicestershire, UK) has, apparently, one church and Beach has not found anything in my books or on the internet about it having ghosts. However, this appeared in 1934. The old parish church of Ravenstone, near Coalville, is said to be haunted. According to villagers, during the evening services an apparition takes shape out […]

    Headless Mine Ghost March 24, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    Headless Mine Ghost

    This ghost story comes from a Derbyshire hill town, New Mills. It is deep in boggart country and it is very likely that the miners referred to the ghost as a boggart. Note Ollersett in the top right of the map. We are in 1914, the beginning of the year that would change the world. […]

    Thoughts on Poltergeists from Harry Price February 27, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Contemporary, Modern
    Thoughts on Poltergeists from Harry Price

    What do poltergeists like? Or, in more scientific terms, in what kind of environment do poltergeist phenomenon take place? Here is Harry Price, one of the most famous ghost hunters, with his views. Beach quotes this paragraph as part of a quest to understand what poltergeist phenomenon are. Price has the virtue here of concentrating […]

    The Mystery Footstep January 26, 2016

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern
    The Mystery Footstep

    A busy day, so a good and, let’s say, credible story from Llanfillin in Wales. This tale also involve a favourite Beachcombian theme, which cannot be revealed to the end without ruining the story.  An English man goes to live in Wales and is warned that the house he wished to rent is haunted. The […]

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