Saturday, 9 July 2011

The Ghost of Blue Bell Hill, Kent. England's most famous spook?

Stamina and the ability to scramble up and down steep hills is called for on this short walk, but the effort is repaid with sweeping views from the North Downs south over central Kent and the valley of the River Medway. The  ghosts are a disturbing lot, ranging from the truly terrifying to the barbarian.

1) Park in the side road at the foot of Bluebell Hill. Take the A229 south from Rochester, leaving at the slip road signposted to “Eccles” and “Barham”. Follow the slip road as it curves to the right and passes under the A229. Turn right immediately past the bridge and park near the top of the hill, where a footpath sign to the left indicates the way to “Kits Coity House”.

This stretch of road is possibly the most famous haunted highway in England, certainly it is well known in Kent. The spectre represents the supernatural at its most terrifying. Not that she appears all that frightening at first sight.

The ghost of Bluebell Hill is a rather attractive young lady with long blonde hair. She stands by the side of the road and jerks her thumb at passing cars as if seeking a lift from drivers. Some motorists have stopped, which has been their first mistake. Exactly what happens next varies between witness accounts, but all are agreed it is a quite terrifying experience.

Some drivers report that as they slow down the young woman leaps out in front of their cars, running forward as if intent on causing collision. They brake sharply or swerve, only for the woman to vanish into thin air an instant before impact. Others say that they pull up next to the girl, only for her to transform slowly into a twisted old hag who exudes a feeling of intense evil and malice before running off into the woods. Perhaps most bizarre of all are the few who actually pick up the young girl, only to find that she vanishes abruptly once in the car.

Now that the modern A229 bypasses this stretch of road, the reports of this terrifying phantom have become much rarer. But you might be lucky – or unlucky depending on how you look at it.


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