The Pied Bull

The Pied Bull

About The Pied Bull

Located in the ancient Roman city of Chester, The Pied Bull boasts being able to call itself the oldest continuously licensed pub in the city.

Built in the 11th century, this pub/hotel is located on North Gate, one of the remaining ancient Roman roads that cross through the city centre. If you look at a map of this city from nearly 2,000 years ago, you will see that the layout of the city has hardly changed, with the city walls still very much intact and visible to walk around today. Even though The Pied Bull is only 900 years old, its foundations are likely to be on the site of something even older.

It started off life as a convent for nuns at St Mary’s convent. Dwellings existed on this site until it was converted into an inn in 1571.

Its name is believed to come from an old cattle market that existed close to this site.

The Pied Bull’s most infamous ghost is said to be that of former owner John Davies who died in the cellar in an accident in 1609. He was walking down the steps whilst carrying a knife in his hand, but slipped and fell down, later dying of his injuries.

Is John still here? Some of the staff who’ve worked here certainly think so. There are stories of staff working down there, and turnin round to notice a man starring at them. The cellar is now used as a brewary so it can feel really warm down there, yet icy cold spots are often felt down there.

The stairs leading down to the cellar have changed over the years, but the original spot where the old entrance once was can be seen below.

The cellar of The Pied Bull, said to be haunted by John Davies
The exact spot where John Davies fell to his death. Now, the stairs no longer exist.

There is a second cellar at The Pied Bull that was once part of the property next door, but became part of this building after an expansion recently. A baby has been heard crying down there, and nobody can pin point why or who this could be.

There are three rooms that are said to be haunted. If you’re reading this while contemplating booking a room here, and don’t want to be in a room with a ghost, then avoid numbers 7,8,9. And its no coincidence that when guests check out on mornings and report strange occurances, staff always know that they have been staying in one of those three rooms. Even get onto Tripadvisor, people have left their spooky goings on on there too.

In 1789, a stable boy fell asleep on some hay in an old stable block, causing a fire to begin, and tear through the building. He was rescued and carried into the room that is now room 7. He was badly burned, and secumbed to his injuries. He is meant to be behind some of the hauntings.

A housekeeper is also seen between rooms 7,8,9, which conicidently form the front of the property. She has also been seen in the corridor and at the top of the main staircase leading up to these rooms.

In 2011, a suicide took place in room 7. The name and details of what happened are not something I want to share, especially with it being so recent, but it just adds to the dark goings on in this area of the building.

When I entered room 7 after checking in, I immediately felt unwell – my hand was shaking and I felt weak. I came downstairs and I felt OK straight after.

Room 9 is another strange one. Its the room where the front overhangs the front of the property. Its a larger room, and a lot of the activity that takes place in here is poltergeist activity. Barely two weeks before Dead Air went in to film, a couple sleeping in this room reported the bedside table crashed over.

One of the staff working here called Matt, told me that he had an encounter when furniture and footsteps could be heard from below in the bar area, yet Room 9 was locked, and no guests were staying in it.

Have a watch of the investigation. I loved every minute of it.

Since filming, I spoke to the building’s management regarding thr fire alarm incident, and they have no idea why the building’s alarms went off in the middle of the night. Could it have been paranormal? Was it the residual energy of the young 15 year old stable boy who died in the same room I was sleeping in after causing a fire?

Visit The Pied Bull

Address: 57 Northgate St, Chester CH1 2HQ


As mentioned, if you’re after a haunted room for the night, 7,8,9 are the ones to take your pick from. 9 is a luxury suit so will be more expensive, whereas 7 is just a standard room. Room 8 has had reported sightings but not often as they occur in room 7, so I’d say room 7 is your best bet, although if you have the budget, treat yourself to 9.

If you ask staff, they may let you have a look in the cellar where John Davies is said to haunt.

After filming and checking out, I explored the beautiful city of Chester and walked the Roman walls, I felt hungry. I genuinely think the food served in this place was most appealing than anywhere else in Chester so I went back for tea!