Macdonald Bear Hotel
Park St, Bladon
This is a seven centuries old inn where mysterious things have occurred. Items of clothing have disappeared and many possessions are spirited away to other locations. Footsteps, reporters have heard, in the early hours of the morning when no one in the hotel is moving and lights switch. The pub exhibits ghostly manifestations. These include the ghost of a Victorian valet. She died in mysterious circumstances. She was a small girl wearing a domestic head cover, sacking apron and carrying a bucket. The ghosts of Elizabeth Downing and her son, in and around Room 16, further haunt it. She was either a long-term resident or a senior servant. Woodstock Manor, nearby, was the birthplace of the Black Prince. Cromwell stayed there with his Parliamentary Commission in 1649. The ‘Royalist Devil of Woodstock’ beset them. Beds shifted about, throwing their occupants to the floor and broken glass sped about the rooms. Some were drenched with ditch water as they slept.