The Horse And Groom - 'A Groping Ghost'
The Horse and Groom is a small Inn situated on Eign Street which ia just outside of Hereford city centre. It's age is unknown but it is likely to be mostly of late 18th or early 19th century construction.
It is located outside of the medieval city wall on the main Western approach road into Hereford through Eign Gate (demolished AD 1787). Eign Street was originally called 'Guldefordstrete' (Gildford Street). The 'Gulde-' element possibly derives from Old English 'gylde', a golden flower which may have grown in the slow-flowing waters of the town ditch, just outside of the city walls and close to the site of the Horse and Groom.
At the side of the pub is a large, long car park bordered on the north side by the Eign brook. This space was once filled with stabling and outhouses for this busy Inn and coach house.
Next door was the site of a tannery which discharged it's waste directly into the stream, no doubt causing a disgusting and unpleasant smell for the customers of the Inn.
The first known landlord of the Horse and Groom was John Davies who took out a lease in 1770. He was followed by Thomas Hodges in 1786, and William Williams in 1822.
When William died his widow Elizabeth sublet the pub to C Brown who carried on the service until 1835 when William Taylor took over.
H King was landlord in 1856 and the main building was renovated and improved in 1913 , further work was undertaken in 1928 when Stroud Brewery took over the freehold.
The pub has experienced many supernatural occurrences over the years. Many women have been startled by the attentions of a cheeky spirit who pinches bottoms when no one else is around.
Loud, pounding footsteps and an unnerving sound of a heavy object being dragged across the floor have been heard upstairs from within empty rooms. Cold spots are frequently felt in different areas of the pub and a little boy whose family lived there many years ago refused to sleep in an upstairs room, he claimed that an evil presence tormented and scared him at night.
A psychic who once visited this pub claimed to be in contact with the ghost of a Cavalier Soldier, but was unable to detect any other spirits at the time.
The Horse and Groom has survived through many years and many changes and today it still provides an escape from the noise and bustle of the road outside. With a pleasant decor and ghostly guests, it?s well worth visiting this spooky Hereford pub.