Creepy tales behind 10 of the most haunted places in Sunderland

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Sunderland has plenty of history to dip into and most places have stories to tell.

But what you may not know, is that Sunderland has a host of haunted buildings and pubs that are overrun with ghosts and poltergeists.

One pub in the city is said to be the home to the ghost of an infamous serial killer while Hylton Castle is said to be haunted by a murderous baron who killed a young boy.

Below are ten of the most haunted places in Sunderland.

Washington Old Hall



Washington Old Hall, Tyne and Wear
Washington Old Hall, Tyne and Wear

Dating back to the 13th century, Washington Old Hall was the ancestral home of the family of George Washington, the first President of the United States.

The building is rich in history and ghosts it seems after visitors reported seeing the ‘Grey Lady’, who can often be heard crying, wandering around.

Over the years, there have been various other spooky sightings including a woman who sits in the corner of rooms and a man who eerily stands in the hallway.

A man in 1940s clothing has also been seen in the garden and sounds of children playing can sometimes be heard echoing through the building.

The Royalty Theatre

The Royalty Theatre was originally built as a church during the late 1800s and has reportedly been a host to spooky occurrences.

It was once used as a soldier’s hospital throughout the First World War and has been plagued by sounds of moaning and whistling.

Footsteps are heard throughout the theatre and there is said to be a man seen sitting at the back of the auditorium.

Doors have also been slammed and people’s belongings have strangely gone missing.

Queen Street Masonic Temple

The Grade 1 Listed building is thought to be one of the oldest purpose-built masonic meeting places in the world.

It’s said to be one of the most haunted places in the city with a man in Victorian clothing seen various in the temple and strange footprints have appeared which no one can explain.

Those brave enough to enter have reported feeling a sudden sickness and some have said they feel like someone is watching them.

Some have even reported being touched by the unknown entity and have heard childlike singing through the building.

Hylton Castle



Hylton Castle
Hylton Castle

Hylton Castle has famously been haunted by Cauld Lad of Hylton for years.

The Cauld Lad of Hylton is a ghost of murdered stable boy Robert Skelton who was killed in the 16th or 17th century.

Several stories of how the boy was murdered have been told including one version which alleged that the stable boy was caught courting Baron Hylton’s daughter and was killed.

Another version of the story said that the baron ordered that his horse be prepared for an important journey, but Skelton had overslept.

It’s then said the enraged baron either decapitated the boy, stabbed him with a nearby pitchfork, or hit him on the back of the head with a riding crop.

Soon afterwards, strange events began to occur in the castle; the kitchen would be tidied at night if left in a mess, or messed up if left tidy and chamber pots were emptied on the floor.

A figure of a crying boy has also been seen in the castle.

Wheatsheaf Hotel

A little girl is thought to have been murdered at the Wheatsheaf Hotel a long time ago.

Her ghostly figure has been seen walking the halls looking for her father while her father has also been seen searching for the highwayman who killed his daughter.

Some people have claimed to have seen the murderous highwayman and have been too scared to enter rooms for fear of seeing him.

Strange noises that no-one can explain are also regularly heard making the Wheatsheaf a particularly active paranormal hotspot.

Ship Isis

This city centre pub is said to be home to Victorian serial killer Mary Ann Cotton.

Cotton, or the Black Widow as she is now known, is believed to have killed 21 people including 11 of her 13 children and several husbands.

Some believe the remains of two of Cotton’s victim lie on the site of the inn.

The pub has been dubbed one of the city’s most haunted inns of with singing, crying and screaming frequently heard coming from empty rooms.

There have also been sightings of a Victorian woman and a young child.

Empire Theatre



Sunderland Empire
Sunderland Empire

The Empire is said to have had so many paranormal sightings that stars including comedian Les Dawson have refused to return to the venue.

Actor Sid James suffered a heart attack during a performance in 1976 and died on the way to the hospital.

His ghost was later seen in his dressing room on the night of his death and is said to have haunted actors backstage ever since.

Meanwhile, the spirits of music hall star Vesta Tilley and stage manager Molly Moselle are said to haunt the front-of-house areas.

Molly Moselle left the theatre to post a letter but she disappeared down a nearby alley and was never seen again.

She has since been named the White Lady and is thought to have been there since the 1940s.

North East Aircraft Museum

Featured on the hit TV show Most Haunted, the North East Aircraft Museum is known for its spooky paranormal activity.

It’s said a sergeant who met an untimely death is one of the most active ghosts who is frequently seen and heard wandering around the museum.

The bottom half of a man has also been seen walking around the aircrafts and an old gramophone has been known to start playing by itself.

Visitors have reported seeing stones being thrown and dark shadows walking around.

The museum was first used as an airfield in 1916 and went on to play a key role in the defeat of the German army.

The Jolly Sailor

This much-loved pub in Whitburn is said to be home to the Green Lady, who is seen to be walking the passages.

She is said to have had her heart broken by a visiting coachman and haunts the upstairs of the pub wearing the green dress which she bought to impress him.

There is also a Grey Lady resident and the spirit of a man who apparently died of unnatural causes in the pub.

With all the ghostly figures, The Jolly Sailor is said to be one of the most haunted pubs in Sunderland.

Stadium of Light



SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 26: A general view of The Stadium of Light, home of Sunderland AFC during the Sky Bet League One match between Sunderland and Bolton Wanderers at Stadium of Light on December 26, 2019 in Sunderland, England. (Photo by Alex Dodd – CameraSport via Getty Images)

The Stadium of Light is said to be one of the most haunted stadiums in Britain.

Some players said that they were concerned that their chances of success were threatened by the ghostly figure which haunted their training ground.

Staff members reporting seeing a dim shape in a corridor and perceived it to be a supernatural being.

A second sighting was reported by Sunderland’s then-striker Stephen Elliot which fuelled the rumours of the club being haunted.

The spirit is known as Spottee, the 18th Century fiend who guided ships to crash upon rocks.

Read More On This At Paranormal – BingNews