75. A Gaggle Of Ghosts: Part Five
After a recent visit to the village of Highgate I'd like to share with you some of the area's lesser known ghosts, as previous episodes of The Saturday Strangeness have covered the phantom chicken of Pond Square and of course, the 'vampire' once said to prowl the cemetery.
The Gatehouse Public House sits only minutes away from the gothic cemetery confines and the legend of the vampire has long been connected to a tall figure adorned in a black cloak, which is said to roam the pub long after closing time. The pub is one of the earliest recorded in the village and author David Farrant, in his booklet Beyond The Highgate Vampire spoke of the eerie figure that was also said to haunt the Old Gallery. Previous barmaids of the pub claimed to have sensed an overbearing evil presence and one legend claims that a previous landlord had his hair turned white overnight after he encountered a hideous apparition in an upstairs room.
Farrant added that in 1968 a Robert Melton took over the pub and would completely dismiss any rumour of ghosts lurking in the shadows. Mind you, since the pub became a Wetherspoons it's no wonder the ghosts may have left the building!
Another haunted Highgate pub is The Flask, which also has its own black spectral figure. Is such a figure behind all the reports from the village of a sinister apparition?
It seems that one of the ghosts of The Flask is a Quaker-type spirit, but Dick Turpin's spectre has also been reported as well as a female shade called Old May. Poltergeist activity was rife in the '80s, and a black figure has also been sighted outside St. Michael's Church – when sighted it is often described as 'non-human', evidence once again that the so-called 'vampire' of Highgate is more than meets the eye or indeed, one darkly adorned ghoul that likes to get around!
Photo by Matt From London on flickr