Ghostly Goings-on at Bingham

Photo:Chapel Lane, Bingham

Chapel Lane, Bingham

Quite spooky, even in high summer...

One of the last cases of 'Laying a Ghost' in the country

In its edition of 16th September 1908 (p.8), the Newark Advertiser recorded the following anecdote about strange goings-on in the Nottinghamshire market town of Bingham in the late 17th century:-

"Dr. Brunsell, in his capacity as Rector of Bingham, is said to have been one of the last men to officially “lay” a ghost!

"Said ghost frequented Chapel-lane at Bingham, and much annoyed and perturbed the good folk of the town.

"One cause why ghosts “walk” is supposed to be owing to their “corpus” not having received Christian burial. A grave was accordingly dug in Bingham churchyard and a coffin prepared.

"Whether the coffin, with the lid invitingly open was left overnight in Chapel-lane, or whether by cunning incantations the graveless sprite was coaxed to enter it, I do not know; nor whether in the morning or at midnight the ghostly cortege moved, but this has been told to me by an old man whose grandmother heard it from her grandmother (all Bingham folk) that Doctor Brunsell, in wig and gown majestic, with the populace in procession, escorted that coffin borne on bier shoulder high, from Chapel-lane to the churchyard, where the solemn burial service was read and the coffin lowered into the grave.

"Thenceforth that restless spirit troubled no more the good people of Bingham, as he who doubts my story may prove, by keeping vigil by himself in Chapel-lane any night he likes!... " 

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