Friar Gate accumulates a throng of Georgian houses on the edge of Derby city centre. Touring around the Friar Gate, you find few top haunted places viz. The Greyhound, The headless cross and the Georgian house hotel. Wade through each of these places and discover their paranormal connection.
If you are ever walking up the tree-line area of Derby known as Friargate you may well be tempted to stop off in The Greyhound.
And why not? It is certainly an attractive and pleasant public house. However if you are male and have a particular Christian name you had better be careful where you sit.
The Greyhound is home to what regulars refer to as the “cursed chair”. It gained it’s notoriety when people noticed that particular men – all sharing the same Christian name had died having sat there.
But the connections between The Greyhound and the spirit world do not stop there. People have spoken of ghostly footsteps where no-one was walking and various knocking and banging sounds emitting from empty rooms within the building.
But why should The Greyhound suffer from a ghostly presence. Why this public house and not others?
The answer may lie in the fact that The Greyhound is no average public house. It was built sometime in the 17th century and stood opposite Derby’s second County Gaol. It has been noted that many prisoners were allowed to drink on the way to the gallows after being sentenced to death by hanging. Many people have suggested that due to its location The Greyhound would have been one of the establishments visited.
Maybe there lingers something that is not ready to finish their final drink, before getting “back on the wagon”, and heading off to their date with destiny.
The Headless Cross
Derby suffered several times from the plague, perhaps being worst affected in 1592 when 464 people perished. Local farmers refused to trade with the townspeople and it is said that grass grew in the Market Place from lack of people and business.
As the plague continued, it was feared that there would be a famine until, at last, farmers in the surrounding countryside agreed to trade with the people of the town under the condition that money for the payment of provisions was left in bowls of vinegar at the Headless Cross on Nun’s Green. The farmers returned later to collect their money.
The ‘Hedles Cros’, or ‘Broken Crosse’, as it has been recorded, is thought to date from the 14th century and by the 15th it had been recorded as already having lost its top. At one time the cross was moved to the Derby Arboretum park, where it stood for many years, having a reputation even then of being haunted. Eventually the Headless Cross was moved back to the top of Friar Gate, probably quite close to where it originally stood.
Two ghosts have been seen near the Headless Cross, one of which is said to be that of a dog sitting. The other is alleged to be the figure of a lady in grey – although she is sometimes in white – ‘coming out of the stone’. Some claim that the ghost of another lady which is often seen on the Arboretum is in some way connected with the cross, whilst others believe that the same ghost now haunts both Friar Gate and the Arboretum park.
Georgian house hotel
This building in Friar Gate is believed to have been built for a naval officer who served under Admiral Nelson.
It was also the residence of a governor of the old Derbyshire County Gaol in Vernon Street and the ghostly figure of a man dressed in a blue suit has often been seen standing in the area of the hallway and also on the stairs.
Wade through these haunted places in Derby as well.