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St Nicholas Church

The Robber's Grave

Location of haunted place: Montgomery, Powys

Origin of the haunting: 1819/1820

Background: This parish church built in 1226 contains some impressive tombs as well as a small wooden cross outside, which bears the inscription "The Robber's Grave". The spirit of John Davies, the man buried here, tells the story.

Ghost Story: I was only trying to help the widow Morris and her daughter, Jane, run their farm. We turned it from a run-down business into a success. My hard work impressed Jane and we became friends, then the friendship blossomed and she abandoned her fiance in favour of me. We were so happy.

Our happiness made two others miserable. Robert Parker, Jane's ex-fiance was furious and teamed up with Thomas Pearce, a man whose ambitions to buy the run-down farm at a bargain price had been thwarted by my hard work. They carried out a violent robbery and left evidence implicating me. I was found guilty and sentenced to death.

At my execution a fearful storm storm erupted and thunder and lightning shook the town. I shouted above the noise of the storm that "if I was innocent, the grass, for one generation at least, will not cover my grave." As the trap fell I cursed the two men whose wickedness had brought me here. Parker died soon afterwards in a blasting accident and Pearce just wasted away.

No grass grew on my grave for many years and even now bare patches can be seen. If you visit do not tend my grave as it is thought that harm will befall anyone who does.

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