The Ancient Ram Inn, Woolaston
The Ancient Ram Inn in Woolaston, Northamptonshire, has been an inn for centuries. It is said to be haunted by a lady in white and a man in brown/grey clothing.
This famous pub’s history is ancient, with its establishment dates unknown but believed to have been 300 years ago. In the 1970s the inn was bought by former sailor John Chapman who was later forced into bankruptcy due to the strain of caring for his elderly mother. Mr Chapman then left Woolaston and abandoned the hotel, leaving it derelict for fifteen years until his death in 1994 when he was found dead under ‘mysterious circumstances’.
After the death of Mr Chapman, his sister Mary, inherited the Ram Inn in 2000. Ms Chapman died suddenly in 2008 from an undiagnosed stomach cancer, and like her brother, she was found dead under ‘mysterious circumstances’.
During her time of owning the Ancient Ram Inn, Mary Chapman gave tours to interested visitors on a regular basis. It was during these tours that Mrs Chapman told stories about the ghosts haunting the inn. Some of these ghostly encounters include:
• A lady in white who haunts one of the rooms on the second floor (Mary’s own bedroom) and is more likely to be seen by single guests rather than couples.
• A gentleman in old fashioned clothes; he was first seen sitting in the bar area, and has been seen on the staircase.
• The ghost of a young girl, who was said to have been murdered at the inn in 2010 by a local man named ‘Bobby’. Because of this haunting, visitors are no longer allowed to stay in Room 9. The room is now sealed off and has a sign on it saying “off limits”. It is believed that this could possibly be the ghost of Mary Chapman herself.
• A child crying at night which leads to lights flickering and a female voice shouting “get out”.
• A chair rocking back and forth by itself.
• A Grey figure also believed to be that of Mary Chapman. This was caught on CCTV, when a staff member reported seeing a ghostly figure walk past him through the pub before disappearing into thin air.
The Ancient Ram Inn is now owned by the husband and wife team of Nick and Nikki Shaw who bought the inn in 2011, but they have had their own share of paranormal experiences.
• Nikki Shaw has had a few paranormal experiences involving the water pipes. The first incident being while she was drying her hair with her hairdryer when the plug suddenly pulled itself out of the wall causing her to fall backwards and break her nose. Another involved a night when she felt something brush past her and then the curtains of her bed lift. The third incident involved bottles on the shelf suddenly falling off by themselves.
• Nick Shaw had his own sighting of Mary Chapman when he woke up to see a figure walk past his closed bedroom door before disappearing into thin air. Other sightings have included doors that open by themselves, lights turning on/off, and items being moved around in storage areas.
Of course, to be fair, the majority of these incidents couldn’t be called paranormal. They could simply be explained by poor maintenance of the inn’s building systems and equipment and also some that could just have been coincidental. The hotel has no shortage of events to keep visitors entertained, from regular live music acts to special nights like ‘Trip Out’ in which spirits are encouraged to interact with guests and the environment around them. The pub still stands as Woolaston’s oldest pub on its original site and will always hold a special place in town history.
The Ancient Ram Inn is located on Route 9 at Woolaston, Northamptonshire.