Langley Hall

The ruins of Langley Hall, built in the reign of Henry VIII and sited picturesquely on a hillside east of Durham, inspired a legend of a phantom coach. William Henderson in Folk-Lore of the Northern Counties (1866) records, ‘Night after night … when it is sufficiently dark, the Headless Coach whirls along the rough approach to Langley Hall, near Durham, drawn by black and fiery steeds.’

He adds that the death of one John Borrow, of Durham, was said to have been presaged by the vision of a coach drawn by six black pigs and driven by a black driver, and compares belief in Northumberland, where the ‘death-hearse’, drawn by headless horses and driven by a headless driver, whirling silently towards the churchyard, was a sure omen of the imminent death of some important person in the parish.



Haunted England : The Penguin Book of Ghosts – Written by Jennifer Westwood and Jacqueline Simpson
Copyright © Jennifer Westwood and Jacqueline Simpson 2005, 2008