In September 2017, I was privileged to gain a few hours access to investigate the notoriously haunted Number 30 East Drive in Pontefract, which has stood empty since the Pritchard family fled after they were subjected to years of torment by the so-called ‘Black Monk of Pontefract’.
The poltergeist activity here is considered to be extremely malevolent.
A priest was summoned to perform an exorcism — but a candlestick appeared to float in front of him and unseen forces shoved him down the stairs.
One of the ghosts is said to be the 16th Century Black Monk of Pontefract, who was hanged at the gallows that stood on the land now occupied by East Drive. He raped and strangled several young girls.
Green foam appearing from taps and toilet even after the water was turned off, the tea dispenser being activated resulting in all the dried tea cascading onto the work surface, lights being turned off and on, plants leaping out of their pots and landing on the stairs, cupboards shaking violently, photographs being slashed and an endless list of levitating and thrown objects including a solid oak sideboard.
The activity reached a new climactic height with 13 year old daughter Diane’s long hair suddenly standing on its end, followed by her being dragged kicking and screaming up the stairs, an event that left her seriously traumatised and with clearly visible finger marks on her throat.
Art director, Bil Bungay, who bought the house four years ago, says mediums have told him an airing cupboard in the corner of the room is a portal for spirits to enter and leave.
Bil’s 2012 Horror film in 2012, When The Lights Go Out, was based on the story of the Pritchards.
“There is something very evil in there,” he said.
“One night I heard a kerfuffle at 4am. When I went into her room, her bed had been broken apart. There was no one in the house apart from me.”