The Railway Hotel in Nantwich is also said to be haunted and many people have witnessed strange goings on.
When Nigel and Jane Hobson acquired the tenancy of the Victorian building in 1993, they were unaware it was haunted. They were left to learn about their supernatural guests from personal experience.
The Hobsons, who have four daughters, soon began to feel the sudden cold spots that occur about the place.
They also realised that the small objects which occasionally disappeared from their private quarters – pens, keys, coasters, and the like – usually re-appeared a day or so later, and that stools stacked for the night in the bar are sometimes found to be un-stacked by the following morning.
It was about two months after they moved into the hotel that Jane first saw an apparition.
One night she awoke and saw a girl standing in the doorway. She was wearing a loose, white, cotton nightdress-looking garment.
Thinking one of her four daughters was sleep-walking, Jane slipped out of bed and as soon as she moved, the girl turned and walked away.
Jane followed her along the passage, but lost sight of her when she turned a corner. She checked on her daughters and found them all to be asleep.
Three or four months after that, Jane went into the Hobsons’ private lounge and saw three small children huddled together on the floor by the fireplace. She just had time to note that they were wearing plain loose clothes before they disappeared.
These sightings all took place in the Hobson’s private quarters. Just one apparition has been seen in the public areas of the Railway Hotel, but it does return from time to time. Described as the figure of a pale-faced old man, wearing a mackintosh and a bowler hat, he stands in a corner of the bar. He has been seen by both members of staff and customers.
A team from the Supernatural Encounters Association held a vigil at the hotel in 2002. In the glow of the emergency lighting, their camcorder caught a small, blue light floating about near the bottom of the stairs.
They were also able to photograph a strange white mist which appeared on the stairs and lay there for some five to ten seconds. Unlike a terrestrial mist, it did not slowly gather and then gradually melt away. In an appearance typical of paranormal mists, it appeared fully formed and disappeared in an instant.
The team conducted a seance, and identified two of the resident ghosts as being those of Walter Jones, a landlord of the hotel during the 1940s and Fred Roberts, a former engine driver.