Why Pluckley should be the most haunted village in Britain is a mystery that may never be solved.
This is the most famous of all Pluckley ghosts. The terrible screams that are heard in the area of the Brickworks belong to a man working there who was smothered to death when a wall of clay collapsed on him.
The method favoured by highwayman Robert du Bois for ambushing his
victims was to hide in a dead hollow tree and jump out as they came
past, presumably with the highwayman's cry of, 'Your money or your
Unfortunately, du Bois didn't know when to stop and his hiding place became local knowledge. Villages decided to take matters into their own hands and ambushed the ambusher. He was killed and the phantom form of the long since vanished tree is seen and pinned to it by several swords is the image of du Bois lifeless body.
The other ghost here is to be found near the Pinnock stream. She is an elderly gypsy watercress woman who is thought to have burned to death when her clothing caught alight when she fell asleep while smoking her clay pipe.
This spectral vehicle has been seen by several people at various places around the village including at Pinnock Crossroads. The coach is pulled by either two or four horses and seems to have last been reported as being seen in the mid 1990's
The Church of St. Nicholas, is the centre for several hauntings. Bangs
are heard from beneath the church and, at the same time, flickering
lights are seen inside the church. It has been speculated that this is
caused by the unquiet soul of Lady Dering, who was buried within seven
coffins in what would have been a futile attempt to preserve her body
from decomposition. Maybe she is not happy that her mortal remains have,
'gone the way of all flesh'.
Lady Dering, if it is indeed her, also appears in the churchyard as either the Red Lady or the White Lady.
Another ghost to be found within the church is a woman who, from the clothes she is wearing, appears to be from the mid 20th century.
As can be imagined, any place with the title of the most haunted village
in England is very popular with 'ghost hunters'. And one place that
they often can be found is the haunted 'Black Horse' pub which was built
in 1430. One spectre enjoys moving and hiding things and has even
locked the landlady out of the pub several times.
Ther is also a room upstairs which dogs refuse to enter and where a young girl saw someone she described as being, 'a nice lady in a red dress'.
The unusually named, "Dick Buss's Lane" recalls the miller who once worked in the area. And it was here in the 1800's that the body of a schoolmaster was found hanging from a tree. He had committed suicide by hanging himself. The ghost of the man hanging from a phantom tree, was seen in 1965 by an author. He said that the ghost was wearing trousers that had stripes and an old coat.
And it's official! According to to the Guinness Book of Records, Pluckley does indeed hold the record for being the most haunted village to be found anywhere in Britain.
So, if you are in the area, it
is definitely worth a quick visit. And if you don't see anything, you can always console yourself by having a drink in the
Black Horse pub!