When pub manager Katy Wichanski took over at The Gatehouse, in Highgate, three months ago, she inherited more than just a team of Wetherspoon colleagues.
The pub, in north London, is housed in a building which dates back many hundreds of years. As with any ancient sites, stories of ghostly goings-on are understandably par for the course.
However, after reports of paranormal activity and things going bump in the night, a local group of ‘ghost-hunters’ – North London Paranormal Investigations (NLPI) – came along to check things out.
Armed with infra-red cameras and white-noise voice-detecting equipment, the trio of investigators set to work at the pub.
Katy said: “We have two ghosts in the cellar, Francis and Stephen, and things sometimes fall off the shelves, when they shouldn’t.
“But they aren’t nasty ghosts, quite cheeky in fact, and have been known to pinch members of staff in the cellar.
“We also think that one of them said ‘Bryn’ on the white-noise detector, during the ghost hunt. Bryn Underwood is a shift manager at the pub.”
According to Mickey Gocool, founder of NLPI, Francis could be the spirit of the Renaissance philosopher and scientist Francis Bacon.
Mickey, pictured back centre, with Louise Roche and Pete Dickinson from NLPI and Katy (right), said: “Our investigation at The Gatehouse proved a success.
“There was so much activity in the basement; we felt a presence immediately. It was being so active that I had to ask the spirit to be quiet.
“Francis Bacon was a very knowledgeable man, aware of spirits through his experiments – and I am sure that he was aware of what we were doing there and took that opportunity to make contact with us.”