Location: Bolventor, Launceston, Cornwall PL15 7TS
Small Description: The Jamaican Inn was originally built in 1750 as a coaching inn (the 18th century equivalent of a modern day service station for weary travellers). Some of the travellers were a little less respectable than most and used the Inn to hide away smuggler’s contraband that had been brought ashore. It is estimated that half the brandy and a quarter of all tea being smuggled into the UK was landed along the Cornish and Devon coasts. Jamaica Inn was remote and isolated so it was the ideal stopping place on the way to Devon and beyond.
In 1778 the Inn was extended to include a coach house, stables and a tack room, creating the L-shaped main part of the building as it is today. It is commonly thought that Jamaica Inn was so named because it was used to store rum smuggled into the country from Jamaica. However, the name is actually said to derive from the important local landowning Trelawney family, two of whose members served as Governors of Jamaica in the 18th century.
Ghost Story: The Inn was used as a temperance house during the early 1900’s but there has always been some kind of unexplained presence throughout the years. On a moonlit night you might hear the sound of horses’ hooves and the metal rims of carriages in the courtyard outside the Inn. Any attempts to find where the sound is coming from will end in disappointment. It has been reported on many occasions that pacing footsteps have been heard in the corridors outside a bedroom, upon investigation not a person was in sight.
There has been a report of a man in a hat and cloak who appears from nowhere and then shoots off through solid doors. Some managers of the Jamaica Inn have reported hearing the sounds of a foreign language in several locations. It is possible that this could be the sound of the old Cornish language, but this has not been confirmed. There have been many years of ghostly reports originating from the Inn, which recently prompted an investigation by the Ghost Society. They found a great deal of paranormal activity and identified the most haunted areas to be: the stable bar, restaurant, bedroom four, and the smugglers bar.
Bonus Spook: Many years ago a new guest came to the Inn. He was enjoying his beer, when he was summoned outside. That was the last time he was seen alive. The following morning he was found dead on the moor. The cause of death and the person responsible are a mystery to this day. Many believe that this man stills roams the area. There have been sightings of a man sitting on the wall outside the Inn. His description matches that of the man that died there years ago. He does not communicate or move.
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