A Pub Run By Phantoms
Nestled along Buckinghamshire’s London Road you’ll find the quaint market town of Amersham, a haven celebrated for its original charm and local breweries.
Amidst the town’s old-world allure sits The Chequers Inn, a beloved bed and breakfast and pub that has locals and tourists alike raising their glasses.
Here, you can savour delicious food crafted from locally sourced ingredients and enjoy fine wines and pints that are nothing short of legendary.
But beneath the picturesque exterior of Amersham lies a darker history – one marked by religious persecution, terror, and death. It is this macabre past that is said to be responsible for The Chequers Inn’s extreme hauntings.
If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to share a pint with a ghost, the Inn might just be the place to find out…
The Haunted History Of The Chequers Inn, Amersham
Built in the 15th century, Chequers proudly boasts a Grade II listing and was originally established as a coaching inn that catered to travellers journeying from London to the West Country. During these early years, it was known mainly for its hospitality and warm hearth.
It wasn’t until the early 16th century that the pub would earn its eerie reputation that it’s famous for today. It was due to a series of haunting events that changed its charm from a peaceful stopover to a place with ghostly tales.
In the early 1500s, a group known as the Lollards, followers of John Wycliffe, found themselves in the crosshairs of religious authority. They were accused of heresy and faced grave consequences for their beliefs.
Seven Lollards were quickly found guilty after a brief but harrowing trial; condemned to a grim fate: burning at the stake. Before facing their tragic fate, these Lollard martyrs were held captive at The Chequers Inn.
As the evening descended, the martyrs watched from the inn as townspeople gathered to witness their execution. The stakes were set ablaze, and their cries of agony echoed through the town.
Over time, the Inn became synonymous with strange happenings and ghostly sightings. Despite three exorcism attempts between 1953 and 1982, the eerie phenomena persisted.
Witnesses have reported sudden chills, agitated dogs, and ghostly moans and screams.
The Ghosts of The Chequers Inn
The Chequers Inn’s reputation for being the abode of terrifying ghosts is so well-known that it draws ghost hunters from all corners of the UK. Not a day goes by without a chilling tale from a staff member or guest who’s crossed paths with one of the spectral residents.
Simon Kemp, who’s a bar assistant at the pub, has even said that the “staff are too scared to go down to the cellar as there have been times when they feel something brush past” them!
The Amersham Martyrs
One prevailing theory connects these hauntings to the Amersham Martyrs, i.e. the Lollards who met a fiery end. It’s believed that their vengeful spirits continue to haunt the Inn – the very place they were held captive until their execution.
But they weren’t the only ones who were burned. A man named William Tylsworth was burnt in 1511. A decade later also saw the burning of one woman and five men.
The spirits at The Chequers Inn aren’t only limited to the seven martyrs. Their gaoler, the man responsible for keeping them imprisoned before their execution, is believed to still linger at the inn.
Witnesses have reported encountering the eerie apparition of a man in a hooded tunic lurking around the bar area, startling all who catch a glimpse.
He appears and vanishes, leaving behind an unsettling sense of foreboding as if he’s still overseeing his prisoners long after his own demise.
The Hooded Woman
The most commonly reported ghostly visitor appears as a woman in a white, hooded dress. It’s believed that this hooded woman is the daughter of William Tylsworth, one of the martyrs burned at the stake.
Late at night, guests in the upstairs bedroom have shared ghost stories of her sudden appearance, casually strolling around the room before disappearing through a wall.
The Chimney Sweep
In the 19th century, a grim discovery was made outside The Chequers Inn – a young chimney sweep’s battered body. The owner at the time suggested he may have crossed paths with thieves who left him for dead.
Today, the soot-covered apparition of the chimney sweep is said to wander the inn’s halls. Witnesses describe him as nonchalantly going about his business, seemingly unaware of the living observers.
The Grey Lady
What’s a proper English haunting without the classic apparition of a Grey Lady? The ghostly figure of a grey lady has been spotted roaming the outside Chequers. Many concerned individuals have even approached her to offer assistance, but were baffled as she vanished before their eyes!
A Creepy Coincidence: Ghostly Gatherings At Chequers Inns
If you thought that ghostly encounters were reserved for just one Chequers Inn, think again! It seems any place with the name “Chequers Inn” is a favourite haunting hotspot for ghosts.
- Chequers, West Farleigh – Now known as the “Tickled Trout”, the Chequers in West Farleigh has seen its fair share of ghostly encounters. In its cellar, guests and staff have reported feeling a touch and even ankle grabbing!
- Chequers, Oxford – Over in Oxford, this Chequers Inn boast a history that stretches back over eight centuries. This inn has seen it all – from animal menageries and resident giants to macabre sideshows, secret tunnels, and even ghostly monks!
- Chequers, Froggatt Edge – Don’t be surprised when you run into some unexpected company at the pub in Froggatt Edge. Rumour has it that the inn is home to lingering spirits, including a Roman soldier and individuals with a rather grisly history of body-snatching.
- Chequers, Smarden – The one in Smarden, Kent also has a reputation for housing peculiar guests. Room 6 seems to be a favourite haunt for a Napoleonic soldier’s spirit. The room itself appears to have a life of its own, with poltergeist-like antics and eerie footsteps echoing through the silence of the night.
Can I go on a ghost hunt to The Chequers Inn?
You certainly can! All the Chequers Inns mentioned are still open and ready to serve visitors.
You can enjoy a delicious breakfast, dinner, or lunch from their amazing menu before you tuck into the real spooky stuff. The one in Amersham, in particular, is an ideal location to explore on a ghost hunt with friends. You can book your stay through the Inn’s website. Plus, there are a couple of ghost hunt tours in Amersham that begin at the Chequers, such as the one offered by Wycombe Paranormal.
What is the most haunted pub in England?
From its historic charm to the chilling spectres that call it home, The Chequers Inn in Amersham, Buckinghamshire, is a place where history and the supernatural intertwine.
So, if you fancy sharing a pint with a ghost, this inn might just be the place to do it. Or you could visit one of the many other haunted Chequers Inns.
Cheers to ghostly encounters and haunted hospitality!