Six spooky drives for Halloween

Updated Tuesday, October 27, 2015 Have you ever been driving – alone and on a dark, stormy night, obviously – and suddenly had the feeling you may not be alone in the car after all? Ever seen a spectral form at the side of the road? Or been tailed by a ghostly coach and horses? If not, then take a trip along one of these roads this Halloween weekend…

A75, Kinmont Straight, Scotland

The most haunted highway in Scotland has been giving motorists the willies for over 50 years now, and so frequent are reports of paranormal activity that it’s now known as ‘the ghost road’. So what can you expect during a drive along the A75? If the stories are to be believed you’ll see anything from screaming hags to eyeless ghouls, as well as an unearthly assortment of animals, horse-and-carriages, and phantom figures emerging from the dark. One long-distance lorry driver was so traumatised at seeing a procession of emaciated men and women pulling handcarts along the roadside that he gave up on the haulage industry altogether as he couldn’t cope with any more nights alone in his cab.

Stocksbridge by-pass, near Sheffield, England

Stories of this spooky stretch of single carriageway began back in 1989 while it was still being built, when a couple of security guards reported seeing a group of children in antiquated clothing playing below Pearoyd Bridge. When they went down to investigate, the children were nowhere to be seen and no footprints had been left in the muddy ground on which they were playing. The next night the same watchmen saw what appeared to be a monk on the bridge, yet when they drove towards it the figure vanished. And this wasn’t just a couple of bad nights for the watchmen as there have since been numerous sightings of Victorian children at the roadside and the monk is said to have hitched a ride with some poor, unsuspecting motorists.

A9, Scotland

This road runs between Falkirk and Thurso, in the far north, and is either haunted by an array of Victorian apparitions or is favoured by elaborate fancy dress party-goers. Among the various sights spotted along this stretch of Scots highway are an ornate coach and horses, complete with bewigged footmen, and a despondent horse-rider decked out in Victorian clothing – could just be he’s late for the party and he can’t get a signal on his sat nav.

M6 motorway, England

It’s a little disappointing to learn that the UK’s most haunted carriageway isn’t a secluded country road near an ancient battlefield, but is actually its longest motorway – the M6 – which has seen more spectral sightings than any other road.
Motorists have reported sightings of ghostly Roman soldiers wandering the carriageway, the wraith-like figure of an upset lady trying to hitch a ride, and eyes peering out from bushes around the scene of a mining disaster near Manchester. Perhaps most worryingly of all are the reports of a phantom lorry driving the wrong way down the carriageway – if you happen across this apparition, it could be worth looking out for a “How’s my driving?” sticker and letting his employers know.

A229, Sussex to Kent, England

This stretch of the A229 is another contender for England’s ‘most haunted’ road as police have fielded calls from many a distressed motorist who have run over a pedestrian – most notably a woman in white, spine-chiller cliché fans – only to lose track of the body. There are also reports of a ghostly hitchhiker loitering around the Lower Bell pub near Maidstone – so if you pick up a passenger and he disappears before you reach your destination, there’s a chance you’ve had one too many spirits.

A541, Flintshire, Wales

If you drive along this impossibly dark stretch of country road in North Wales, look out for the ‘woman in white’ – presumably not the same one knocking about on the A229 – who fell down a well and died while running away from her stately home at Plas Teg to elope with a local farmer. To make matters worse, the ghost of the farmer boy is also said to stalk the area. So fearful was he that he would be accused of his lover’s murder he hung himself – not only saving the village the bother of a kangaroo court but also giving it another ghost to help terrify the life out of passing tourists. Once you've taken your road trip, why not try one of these spooky stopovers?

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