The city of Liverpool is renowned for many things such as being the birthplace of The Beatles, being the home of Liverpool Football Club, being designated as the European Capital of Culture and being one of England’s most deeply historical cities. The latter is reflected in its multitude of haunted landmarks and locations – so much so that paranormal expert Tom Slemen has written over 30 books on the subject! Here is a devised list of four of the most haunted locations and areas in Liverpool.
St. James Cemetery
Beneath the Anglican Cathedral on Hope Street – one of the world’s biggest church buildings – resides the Grade One Listed St. Jame’s Cemetery situated under street level. Originally used as a quarry until the early nineteenth century, it has now houses more than 55,000 graves dating back to the Victorian times.
St. Jame’s Cemetery is accessible to the public and many ghostly specters have been sighted through the years. One of the most notable apparitions is M. P. William Huskisson who was laid to rest after becoming the first person to die due to being hit by a locomotive in 1830. Others include alleged sightings of vampires and witches, unexpected apparitions of men, women and children and, more recently, a 17th Century soldier was photographed during a ghost tour in 2018.
Rodney Street is one of Liverpool ‘s most notoriously haunted streets. Among the most popularly sighted ghosts are the infamous William McKenzie, the lady in white and ‘Lantern Jaw’ – the apparition of a man described to have a huge jaw who has been frequently spotted in the area. There have also been many sightings of spirits within the buildings that date back to the Victorian era. The most famous of all Rodney Street’s haunted history derives from the story behind the Pyramid of William McKenzie.
This 15-foot pyramid was erected in 1868, lies within the grounds of the neighboring St. Andrews Church and is said to house the remains of the aforementioned William McKenzie. According to legend, McKenzie lost his soul to the Devil in a game of poker and was entombed alive in this pyramid sitting upright with a pack of cards in his hands. His logic was that if he was never buried then the Devil could never claim his soul.
Having previously lived on this street myself back in 2013, I have witnessed some of the spooky happenings and the undoubted eeriness of this area firsthand. There have been many additional sightings of apparitions, that were not previously known, since construction work disturbed the area during this time. Ghost tours operate through Rodney Street on a daily basis and many can take up to two hours to cover all of the street.
An internationally recognized landmark due to its links to the Beatles, Penny Lane has been frequented by tourists since the song’s release in 1967. Not as well known by those from outside of the city is Penny Lane’s terrifying reputation and the reports of spooky sightings on the street.
Number 44 Penny Lane in particular has suffered with ghostly visitations for decades and the ‘Penny Lane Poltergeist’ is one of the most malevolent spirits said to reside inside the property. Many people have claimed to have seen chilling apparitions since the Victorian period as well as hearing rattling walls, sinister footsteps and sudden loud bangs. Another known presence in the house is a young blonde girl who has been seen by locals staring out of the window while brushing her hair.
Built in the 15th Century, Speke Hall is one of the most haunted locations in the entire United Kingdom due to it’s infamous reputation and chilling past. The most significant spirit said to occupy the house is ‘Lady Mary’, a deranged Georgian woman that once inherited the property. According to legend, she threw her infant son out of a window and went on to commit suicide upon learning that her husband Lord Sidney Beaclerk gambled away their life savings. She has been witnessed floating through the walls of the property for centuries since.
Other sightings have been reported of a murdered priest, an old housekeeper, a Victorian gardener and a terrifying beast-like entity. The Tudor Manor house is accessible to the public for a small admission fee and the National Trust arranges daily ghost tours. Many sounds have been heard by visitors including a baby’s cries and a cradle rocking backwards and forwards through the unoccupied property. The words ‘get out’ have also been known to echo from the walls of the Blue Room…
There have been hundreds of known ghost-sightings and visited locations in Liverpool. Have you ever spotted a ghost or been to any of these haunted places? Please let us know in the comments!
Soraya Atherton is a content writer from the United Kingdom. She is a travel enthusiast that has most recently worked in Ibiza, Spain.