(Shadowtime Home)


Explore the author's map to discover strange stories from Mitcham and the surrounding areas.



  Front Cover


  Receive Updates

'Mysterious Mitcham' is the online sequel to the original 'Strange Mitcham', which contains stories not found on this website:

Second (2011) edition is now available.

Also available for Kindle.

  Part 1 - Mitcham:

  The Phantom Cyclist
  of Mitcham Common
  (update to Strange

  UPDATED Sep. 2013

  A Dark Figure on
  Mitcham Common

  Tales from the Vestry

  'Calico Jack': The
  Playful Ghost of
  Lacks the Drapers

  The Faces on the
  Walls: Hancock's

  The Haunted Cottages
  in Tramway Path

  The 'Haunting' of Hall

  The Spectral
 Soldier of Graham

  The Legend of
  Mitcham Fair

  Remember the Grotto

  The Phantom of the

  An Apparition at
  Woof & Sabine

  Haunted Rooms at Fry

  The Phantom Cat

  Mitcham's (not so)
  Haunted Mansion

  The Kingston Zodiac

  The 'Ghost Tree'

  Ghostly Gardeners,
  Medicinal Plants and
  A Magical Tree

  The 'Thing'

  The Wrath of God

  A Ghostly Experience
  in Morden Road

  Mitcham Clock Tower:
  When Time Ran

  The Rosier Family

  The 'Ball of Fire'

  UFO over Mitcham
  Common, 2004

  UFO over Tooting
  Bec Common, 1990

  Part 2 - South of
  Mitcham Common:

  Carew Manor

  The Ghosts of
  Beddington Park

  Beddington Parish
  Church & Churchyard

  The Figure in the

  Under Beddington

  A Spectral Cavalier

  Other Information:

  Author's website

  Heritage maps

Nothing to do with me
but thanks to the
Mitcham Society
and Merton Council
there are some very
nice new heritage
maps of Mitcham

Download for free
via this link.

  The Mitcham Ghost

  Strange Mitcham
  (2002): Errata

  Strange Mitcham



  Haunted Wandsworth

Ghosts and legends of the London Borough of Wandsworth (covers Balham, Battersea, Putney, Tooting & Wandsworth):

  Haunted London

Ghosts and legends of London:

  Haunted Lambeth

Ghosts and legends of the London Borough of Lambeth (covers Brixton, Clapham, North Lambeth, Norwood, Stockwell & Streatham):

  The Poltergeist Prince
  of London


The remarkable true story of the Battersea poltergeist:


Mitcham's (not so) Haunted Mansion

The most substantial relic of Merton Priory [1] was discovered by accident. When Sir Arthur Liberty established his print works on the old priory grounds, he had several of the more dilapidated buildings on the site destroyed, and in 1914 demolition work on one house uncovered a magnificent stone Norman archway.

Archaeologists believe this archway to have been the entrance to the Priory's Guest House. After the Dissolution, the arch was retained and used as the front door to a mansion house, which, according to W H Chamberlain in his Reminiscences of Old Merton (1925), later acquired a reputation for being haunted.

Unearthly Sounds

During the early years of the 19th Century, it seems that the mansion was a forbidding structure, standing alone and abandoned near the Priory's old burial grounds. Abandoned it may have been, but there were plenty of villagers who were terrified to walk past after dark because of the unearthly sounds that could be heard emanating from within.

In about 1820, a small band of brave souls elected to visit the creaky old building to discover the source of these sounds. Led by the silk printers Messrs Bradshaw and Wagland, the group armed themselves with sticks and candles and waited for darkness to descend.

That night, as they stood guard, the eerie noises began again and, listening carefully, the investigators determined that the disturbance was coming from the direction of the staircase. Rushing forward to illuminate that area with their candles, they found not ghosts but hordes of water rats swarming up and down the steps.

With the mysterious sounds thus explained, Bradshaw and Wagland decided to follow the rats' example and they moved into the building. The creatures were dealt with and the printers obtained the house at a low rental, made repairs and kept the property for several years. They were succeeded by a Mr Littler who took over their silk printing business and moved into the building with his family.

Later, the house passed into the possession of Messrs. Liberty & Co. Ltd, who decided to have it pulled down. At some point in the building's past, the Norman arch had been plastered over, but now it was revealed again. Because of its historical value it was carefully preserved and in 1935 it was rebuilt in the church grounds of St Mary the Virgin in Merton Park where it can still be seen today.


[1] There is a tradition that the site of Merton Priory is cursed - see Strange Mitcham for details.

[Source: Chamberlain, W H (1925) Reminiscences of Old Merton.]

© James Clark. All rights reserved. Should you wish to refer to material presented here you are most welcome to quote a short excerpt (of no more than one or two paragraphs) provided you give full attribution and supply a link back to this website. Use of longer excerpts will require the author's prior written permission - by all means feel free to ask! But please DO NOT steal my work by copying great chunks and posting them in their entirety without permission. Thank you.

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