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Reading’s Most Haunted

Phantom vehicles, wicked witches and a hamster spirit that watches over Reading FC – here’s just some of the spooky sightings and scary spectres that haunt Reading!

A creepy car

In the dead of night, a ghostly car is said to creep, soundless, up Berkeley Avenue, with no lights or engine to speak of. Numerous drivers have spotted the phantom vehicle, and witnesses have claimed that the car gets so close that you can see the spectral driver, who is said to be a good-looking red-headed woman.

The Watlington House Poltergeist

A ghostly figure in red uniform has been spotted puffing on a pipe and gazing out the window of this grade II listed community building in Reading. The man is believed to be the spirit of Captain Edward Purvis, the first known occupant of the house in 1764.

Hamster hauntings

Supporters of Reading FC might be aware of the spectre of Miss Ellie – the club hamster buried on the goal line of Reading’s former football ground, Elm Park. It is believed by some that Miss Ellie’s spirit has prevented Reading from getting relegated – a lovely legacy for this beloved pet to leave!

Did you know? The psychic spoonbender Uri Geller was once invited to work his mystic magic on the team at a match in Elm Park. The match resulted in a draw, and Geller claimed that his psychic powers saved Reading from losing and therefore relegation… but rumour has it that fans were more convinced of Miss Ellie’s hand in preventing relegation than they were of Uri’s!

The poltergeist of Prospect street

The ghost of a six year old girl is said to haunt a house in Prospect street, and legend has it that the owners had organised for her to be exorcised. However, legend has it that the owners had a change of heart and called off the exorcism. Was she a friendly ghost? Did they make their peace with her? Does she still live there in harmony with the present owners? Guess we’ll never know…

The ballad of Betty Price

Legend has it that a local witch named Betty Price hid in the cellar of The George Hotel to evade capture from witch-hunters in the 17th Century. Sources vary on how she met her end: one account claims she died while in hiding, while another claims that she was discovered feasting on rats in the cellar after the owners ventured down to investigate a flood. She was then captured and sentenced to death for witchcraft.

One thing that both accounts agree on is that she placed a curse on the innkeeper and every person that had a hand in her capture before she passed away. She has since been spotted by staff and visitors alike, a wet and grimy woman wandering the corridors, letting out mournful cries and knocking on doors in the dead of night.

The annoying Admiral

The Roebuck Hotel in Tilehurst is said to be inhabited by one particularly annoying ghost – an old admiral who enjoys rearranging furniture, locking doors and windows, and banging on walls. His footsteps can also be heard across the gravel when there is no one there. This is clearly very irritating for the hotel owners, but it’s nice to see that the old man is having some fun causing mischief from beyond the grave!


We love all these local spooky stories, have you heard them before or have a spooky story of your won to tell? Head over to our Facebook page and pop us a message, scarier the better! 

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