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The Ancient Ram Inn



The Ancient Ram Inn is a Grade 2 listed building and has history from 1145. The land where the inn is built is on the intersection of 2 Ley Lines. People believe these places have high spiritual energy and using a map these lines can be traced to the centre of Stonehenge. It is also reported that the location was an ancient Pagan burial ground over 5000 years ago.

The Ram was originally owned by the local church St. Marys the Virgin and is thought to have housed the craftsmen an slaves that built the present church in 1283. On 19th August 1283 the Bishop Gifford of Worcester consecrated the ground where the building stood. St Marys is built on the foundations of a Saxon Church that dates back to the tenth century.

In 1311 St Marys Church was appropriated to St Augustine's Abbey in Bristol. Around about the same time a community of Crutched Friars who also followed the Augustin Rule were based at Wotton Under Edge and as the Church was attached to the Abbey in Bristol, it might well be that they occupied the Ram Inn for the short time there were residing in Wotton Under Edge.

Ancient maps show the original building was three times larger than today's building. As shown on a survey taken in 1763 there was a Tan Yard adjoining the Ram Inn hence the previous name of Tan House. Next door was the local Workhouse which later became an infants school, then a mortuary and car park. In the survey the whole of this land was identified and referred as Hospital land and church property time immemoria. On a map of 1889 it also shows a smithy to the other side of the Ram Inn.

For hundreds of years past owners and tenants were mostly involved in the woolen trade which was what the town of Wotton-Under-Edge was famous for. There is reputed to be a tunnel from the fireplace in the bar to the Church and another tunnel somewhere else in the building to Lacock Abbey. Originally there were cellars which have been filled in.

From 1820 onwards the Ram was Brewery Property with various Brewers and Landlords. This fabulous ancient building is owned and home to John Humphries since 1968. He saved the building from demolition and he has made it his life's mission to save the structure from falling apart.

Reputedly several ghosts who are said to haunt the inn are so well-known to visitors that they can be identified by name. One is Rosie who is the ghost of a little girl who was allegedly murdered at the inn. The little girl was an innkeeper's daughter and she was found hanged in the attic. A witch was said to be burned at the stake on the property in the 1500s. It was the persecution of people who did not believe and practice Christianity as sanctioned by the government. A lot of people believe that the woman's spirit still haunts one of the rooms of the house to this day as she is believed to have taken refuge in one of the rooms of the house before she was captured and killed. There is the Roman Centurion, once spotted by a plumber working at the inn, as well as the High Priestess, who surprises guests in their bedrooms in the middle of the night. And one of the most disturbing apparitions at the inn is the Succubus, who not only appears to guests in their rooms at night, but attacks them as well.

The most haunted room in the house is The Bishop's Room, where nine different ghosts have reportedly been seen. The different encounters include strange mists, disembodied screams, a woman hanging from the ceiling, and eerie ghost monks. One of the room's most faithful ghosts is a shepherd, who is seen standing watch at the door with his dog.

Visitors have claimed to hear the screams and cries of children at night. The innkeepers have put toys in and round the inn to keep the ghost children happy. According to John Humphries, there is less crying now that the toys have been scattered around. The Humphries family also discovered small bones and daggers when they were renovating the house, which they believe to have been the burial of a child sacrificed to Pagan gods. People have also claimed to hear footsteps, knocking on the walls, the sound of something or someone being dragged on the roof, and even the occasional voice saying "get out."

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