The Bell Inn Hotel, historically an important stop on the Great North Road between London and York, is one of the finest surviving examples of a 17th century Coach House. The apparition of a dark figure on horseback haunts the grounds of the Inn.
Renowned as the birthplace of Stilton Cheese and situated in the village of Stilton, The Bell Inn has stood on its present site since 1500, though earlier incarnations, (as long as 1437) have been recorded. Today's building dates from 1642, the date marked on the southern gable, and the year in which the Civil War began. It was originally built of oolitic limestone and slates of Colleyweston stone.
Records at Huntingdonshire show that Dick Turpin stayed at the Bell Inn for several days, shortly before his capture. Dick Turpin's spirit is believed to be one of the several ghosts that haunt the Bell Inn Hotel.
In 1962 a new landlord moved into the Bell Inn, after just several days he was complaining to locals of the atmosphere in one of the bedrooms. On one occasion in the bedroom, a fire that had been laid in the grate earlier that day suddenly burst into flames. The locals informed the landlord that the bedroom in question, was the one in which Dick Turpin is reputed to have slept in.
A year later in 1963 the landlord acquired a large dog which began howling soon after midnight and always on a Wednesday. It is said that Turpin's spirit at the Inn is more active on Wednesdays and that his spirits wanders the winding passages of the Inn.
Several guests over the years have reported seeing the apparition of a dark figure on horseback outside the Inn, other guests have reported been woken early in the morning to see a dark figure standing at the bottom of their bed. Several customers when settling the bill have asked after a woman dressed in period clothes whom they passed in the corridor and presumed worked for the Hotel.
Staff regularly report equipment being moved or disappearing from the bar area and kitchen only to reappear several days later. Staff also report the feeling of being watched and seeing shadowy figures in their peripheral vision.