The Catherine Wheel
Station Road, Goring, Reading, Berkshire
The Catherine Wheel is a lovely village pub, over five hundred years old. In 1674, there was a dreadful accident when a boat returning from nearby Streatley after a fair overturned and 45 people and a horse drowned. Some of the bodies were carried to this inn for the authorities to attend and arrange an inquest. Usually, when inquests were held at inns, the bodies were kept there as evidence until the coroner’s verdict. Over the years, there have been accounts that the Catherine Wheel exhibits ghostly manifestations. these include a number of those who had perished. One , witnesses describe, as a woman in a long white dress with extremely wet hair, who is weeping. There has also been the harrowing sound of several children, all crying out. A Catherine Wheel was a wheel with spikes projecting inwards from its circumference. It was the type of wheel on which St Catherine of Alexandria was martyred. This wheel was adopted as insignia by the Knights of St Catherine, an order created to protect pilgrims journeying to Jerusalem. Early signs of the Catherine Wheel at English pubs indicated protection for travellers.