Friday, 25 October 2013

The Ghostly Hog of Burghill

Take, for instance, the strange story of the Burghill hog. Back in the early 19th century what is now the A4110 was then a major coaching route running north from Hereford toward Knighton and Shrewsbury.

Beside the road to Hereford a ghostly pig was seen several times in the later 19th century. The road climbs up north of the city near the village of Burghill.

On the crest of this hill there used to stand an elm tree, now sadly gone the way of so many that fell victim to Dutch elm disease in the 1980s. It was beneath this elm that the phantom Burghill hog used to be seen. The great pig, for it was a massive porker, used to be seen behaving as if it were tethered to the tree. It would watch approaching humans with some apprehension and then back away as if seeking shelter beneath the tree’s spreading branches. Then it would fade from view.

No story ever seems to have become attached to this odd spectre, though it was seen often enough. The tree has now gone and so, alas, has the ghostly hog.

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