SEAN MCNEANEY completes his review of the ghosts to be encountered on Lincolnshire’s haunted roads, with particular reference to the infamous A15.
Sightings of the ubiquitous phantom coach and horses have become increasingly rarer since the advent of the motor car, but they are still occasionally reported. For example, a lady driving along the A169 between Louth and Grimsby, related her experience of this phenomenon to Jared Williams in the ‘Lincolnshire Life’ of April 1985.
She said: ‘I was driving down to Grimsby just as day was breaking. As I approached the village of Waithe I was surprised to see a horse-drawn cab ahead of me and going in the same direction. As it had no lights I thought I’d better over take and tell the driver. I did so. But when I looked in the driving mirror the road was empty. And there was no turning this cab could have taken.’
At ‘Double Tunnels’ between Fulstow and North Thorsby it was said that ‘something used to roll across the road and frighten horses’. Nobody liked to drive there at night and many accidents occurred where the thing was seen.
An extraordinary amount of paranormal activity is associated with the A15 north of Sleaford, near the Ruskington turn-off, in Lincolnshire. In 1998 the A15 shot to national prominence when it was featured on ITV’s daytime show This Morning. Dozens of viewers phoned into the programme to report sightings of a ghostly figure in black which ran out into the road before vanishing.
One witness had an unnerving encounter when driving home at 3am from Lincoln to Sleaford. He described seeing something that looked like a white bin liner float across the road, attach itself to his windscreen and morph into the shape of a man. He later described the apparition as ‘having dark hair, greenish pitted skin, and a sort of Mediterranean look’. The only other parts of the ghost visible to him were it neck and an arm that was held up in a ‘stop signal’.
Another witness was convinced she had run over a man dressed all in black but when she got out to check there was no trace of anyone. A number of theories have been offered to explain the phantom. Some believe it to be the ghost of a highwayman because of its tendency to appear in an area known as Hangman’s Haunt, once a notorious place for footpads and highway robbers. Another theory is that because the remains of the medieval village of Dunsby – wiped out by the plague – is nearby, the ghost may be that of a villager trying to warn people of the disease and warning them to turn back.