Wednesday, 28 April 2010
The Ghosts of Lewes, Sussex
The authorities do not like to talk about the ghost here, but local gossip has it that one of the corridors is haunted by a man in Victorian-style prison garb. He is said to have dropped dead of a seizure upon seeing his son enter the same block as a fellow prisoner.
To reach the battlefield, walk north along Brighton Road, bearing left along a surfaced drive signposted to the racecourse. The battle took place on the open downs beyond the racecourse. Otherwise, turn right along Western Road. The bookshop on the right, on the corner with Keere Street is haunted.
The ghost here is a charming and friendly old gent who potters about the building as he did when this was his home. He is seen most often upstairs, but ventures downstairs on occasion. Customers have mistaken him for a member of staff and tried to ask him a question about the stock, only to have the figure vanish abruptly from sight.
Continue along the High Street, passing the castle on the left. Turn left up Fisher Street to find the police station.
The ghost here is both a mystery and a clearly identifiable figure. He is tall with hair that is just beginning to grey at the temples. The ghost is dressed quite clearly in the uniform of a Chief Inspector from the 1950s and is seen so distinctly that one witness stated that he would have recognised the ghost if he had known him. And this is the mystery. The ghost has been appearing off and on ever since he was first seen in 1962. However, he does not resemble any known Chief Inspector living or dead. Who he might be is a total mystery, as is why he haunts this police station.
Retrace your steps along Fisher Street, over the High Street and along Station Street to return to the railway station.
This is an extract from Ghost Walks in Sussex by Rupert Matthews.