In the Newcastle Magazine of June 1872 appeared an account of a haunting experienced by Mrs Brook, a dressmaker then living at Oakland, not far from Darlington. She had on one occasion to go and work at a public-house in Staindrop, where she was sitting sewing in the parlour when the landlady asked her to go up to the ‘long room’ and bring down some onions she would find there. As Mrs Brook came downstairs with the onions, she was terrified to hear invisible footsteps following her from the room – the sound of a person wearing clogs treading heavily on each stair.

Once downstairs, she nearly fainted, but the landlady, hearing her story, only uttered a scornful ‘howts!’ However, later that morning, at another house in Staindrop, on being asked why she looked so white and ill, she gave an account of her fright and was told that she had heard ‘Old Cloggy’. It appeared that someone formerly living at the public-house had had a son of unsound mind who hanged himself in the long room, and his unhappy ghost had haunted the house ever since. He was frequently heard, and also, after dusk, seen. When Mrs Brook, on returning to the inn, told the landlady what she had heard, the other laughingly admitted that it was true but said that she had not
wanted to frighten Mrs Brook. For her own part, she had heard ‘Old Cloggy’ so often that she cared nothing for it.



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

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