The Black Lion
10 Bridge Street, Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire
Named after the heraldry of Queen Phillipa of Hainault and the Welsh family of Glyndwr, the Black Lion is a superb 17th century pub at the centre of the town. Before the building of dedicated mortuaries, people used it to shelter coffins and bodies prior to burial. Legend has it that the Black Lion exhibits ghostly manifestations. These include a number of ghosts and phantoms from that period. Although many of the manifestations are, for the most part, a dark misty figure, the most frequent to appear is a little girl in Victorian dress and a bonnet. Observers see her about the inn, usually standing still and at other times, in the bedrooms of guests. There have been accounts of people being in bed when someone turns the door handle from the outside and a person steps in. However, when the sleeper awakens sufficiently to investigate, nothing is visible. One man, a friend of the proprietor, reported that the bedroom door opened and someone got into bed with him. He put on the light to check. However, there was nothing there. He assured the licensee that he had felt the bed dip during the ghostly incident. There is also a considerable amount of poltergeist activity.