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Bagdale Hall, history, accommodation and ghosts!

Bagdale Hall is a spectacular place to visit for those seeking an unforgettable experience from start to finish. Its history is intriguing, and a unique place to stay in a great location in Whitby. In this article, you can learn more about Bagdale Hall.

Bagdale Hall gives you a glimpse into the past, allowing visitors to experience the charm of an old English Tudor manor house. The building dates to 1516, but still holds many original features. Wonder at the breathtaking beamed ceilings, four-poster beds and stone-mullioned windows with leaded lights. Timeless artwork adorns the walls while magnificent fireplaces are interspersed throughout the manor, adding warmth and character – all complemented by traditional furnishings that blend perfectly into this charming setting. Bagdale Hall will give you a taste of Whitby’s timeless beauty and heritage. In this article, you can learn more about Bagdale Hall and how you can visit it today.

Bagdale Hall Plaque, by TonyMo22, licensed under CC BY 2.0

Bagdale Hall History

Bagdale Hall has a rich history dating back to 1516, when it was built for the Conyers family. They were one of the most important families in Whitby during the time. Located on the banks of Bagdale Beck and extending upriver towards the current high-level bridge, Bagdale Hall remained occupied by James Conyers, bailiff of Whitby, until sometime after he was appointed Sergeant-at-Arms under King Henry VIII.

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When James passed away, the house was passed down to his nephew Gregory who later sold it to Nicholas Bushell. It then came into the possession of Captain Browne Bushell, from whose family line it stayed until his marriage to a daughter of Sir Thomas Fairfax, Cromwell’s Chief of Staff.

In 1643, Captain Bushell served alongside his uncle Sir Hugh Cholmley in defence of Scarborough for Parliament. Despite Cholmley’s eventual surrender to the Royalists, Bushell managed to retake the castle – only later handing it back to the royal forces. This act resulted in his arrest by his father-in-law, imprisonment for three years and ultimately execution by the House of Commons in 1651.

With Bagdale Hall now sold to Isaac Newton – a Whitby merchant believed to be related to Sir Isaac Newton. The house remained in this family for over one hundred years. Then, in 1882, a famous ophthalmic surgeon named Henry Power acquired it. It required significant renovations that took two years to complete. During this time, Dr Power decided to add some extra touches; most notably, he had each fireplace embellished with Delft tiles and carved wooden over-mantles and surrounds. They can still be admired today throughout several rooms.

A four poster bedroom at Bagdale Hall

Bagdale Hall Today

Today Bagdale Hall is a guesthouse you can make your home for a trip. Bagdale Hall and Annexe is just a 10-minute walk from Whitby Harbour and Beach, making it an ideal destination for your next getaway.

Stay in one of the charming rooms that feature high ceilings and are complete with all the amenities you need, such as private bathrooms, TVs, and tea/coffee-making facilities. Some even come equipped with four-poster beds. In addition, with free Wi-Fi available onsite, you can stay connected to family and friends during your stay.

Start your day off right with a full English breakfast or vegetarian options served up each morning. Then, relax in the large lounge bar or stroll around Pannett Park Art Gallery & Whitby Museum, Captain Cook Memorial Museum, Whitby Abbey and harbour – all within walking distance.

The Annexe

No. 4 Bagdale (Annexe)

You can also stay at Number 4 Bagdale, an impressive Georgian townhouse with a stately and majestic appearance. It was likely constructed by a well-to-do merchant or shipping magnate. It was known as “The Bagdale” – a prestigious hotel many moons ago. It is only a stone’s throw away from Bagdale Hall.

Breakfast is served in the dining room at nearby Bagdale Hall. Eight luxurious bedrooms have four-poster beds, en-suite bath or shower rooms, central heating, TVs, and a tea and coffee hospitality tray. For your convenience, there is also limited free car parking to the rear of No. 4 Bagdale.

The Cottage at Bagdale Hall

The Cottage

Behind No.4 and near Bagdale Hall is The Cottage, Bagdale. It is equipped with all the local amenities you could wish for. The cottage provides parking for up to one vehicle and an outdoor table and chairs, a great bonus in this otherwise busy area. Boasting an open-plan kitchen, dining room, and living room with a log-burning stove for those cosy evenings indoors. The Cottage is fully equipped with all the necessary appliances, such as a washer, dryer, dishwasher, WiFi and central heating.

Upstairs are three bedrooms, two double bedrooms with king-size beds, plus a single bedroom. Complete with televisions in each room. One of the bedrooms has an ensuite bathroom. There is an additional family bathroom, a utility room, and a toilet downstairs. Two dogs are allowed on request – further charges may apply.

The lounge and bar area

Is Bagdale Hall haunted?

Some say that Bagdale Hall is the most haunted building in Whitby!

Throughout its many years as a hotel, Bagdale Hall has had reports from guests and staff of ghostly sightings. The most famous spirit is that of Brown Bushell, a notorious pirate who owned the building during the English Civil War in the seventeenth century. Bushell was known for frequently jumping sides during the war, betraying whichever faction he was currently allied with. This act of betrayal eventually led to his arrest and execution for treason. Since then, he has haunted the grounds of Bagdale Hall, evoking feelings of dread and doom from its guests whenever he appears. Guests and staff have reported sightings in various areas of the hotel, up and down the staircases, and waking people up at their bedsides. There have also been reports of the heavy footsteps of military boots being heard.

Two other regularly seen ghosts are a well-dressed, bowler-hat-wearing man who fidgets and tuts anxiously as he waits in the corner, while at the bar, a young woman with blonde hair daydreams, her white dress draped around her as she gazes at the fireplace. Other reports suggest lights going on and off, screaming and anguish and a black figure. If you have ever stayed at Bagdale Hall and had a spooky encounter, please tell us about it in the comments.

You can read more Whitby ghost stories here.

We hope that this has been a helpful introduction to one of Whitby’s most famous buildings. As you can see, it is a historic and beautiful building with much to offer. If you are ever in the area, we highly recommend visiting it. Thanks for reading!

Header image credit: Bagdale Hall, by TonyMo22, licensed under CC BY 2.0

2 thoughts on “Bagdale Hall, history, accommodation and ghosts!”

  1. Dear Sir or madam,
    Does bagdale hall have a bedroom on the ground floor?? Or has it a lift?
    My wife cannot climb stairs!!
    Mr Ron and avy Elliker


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