Tarmac has found Britain's Spookiest Road!

M6 is Britain’s Spookiest Road.

You’re driving alone down a dark, country lane.  The mist rolls in and the shadows cast by the full moon start to play tricks with you mind.  You feel the hairs on the back of your neck rise with fear and you wish you’d taken the motorway to your destination – you wouldn’t be feeling so spooked then.  Or would you..!

Research by Tarmac, the country’s road experts, to find the most haunted highways in Britain has yielded a very surprising ghoulish fact – the M6 could well be Britain’s spookiest road.

Tony Simmons, sightings co-ordinator for Tarmac says: “We’ve had more sightings of clarity reported from the M6 than any other road in Britain. We originally assumed Britain’s spookiest road would turn out to be a dark lane near an ancient battlefield.  But, when you think about it, it makes sense.  The M6 is one of Britain’s longest roads and it travels through many counties – and therefore an immense amount of history. "We compiled the top ten on the basis of the clarity of sightings rather than just the number of spooky experiences. At this time of year it’s easy to mistake swirling mist for something more sinister and we wanted to make sure we were listing truly spooky sightings.”

Sightings reported from the M6 include Roman Soldiers, phantom vehicles and the figure of a lone woman. Other roads to make the top ten are: The A9 and the road to Loch Bhuie in the Highlands, Platt Lane in Leigh, the High St and Suffield Rd in Great Yarmouth, Gloucester Drive in Finsbury Park, the B4293 in Wales near Devauden, the B3314 in Cornwall, the B1403 in Doncaster, and Drews Lane, Ward End, Birmingham.

Nina Ashby, teacher of psychic and spiritual development and energy healing says: “Ghosts are passed over souls who have an energetic existence rather than a physical one. Because ghosts exist at a subtle level and are nourished by electromagnetic energy, they are often associated with a place where there is a strong current or vortex. In an enclosed property the perceived effects are more obvious; severe changes in temperature, disruption of electrical items, objects moved or damaged or violent moods or influences in atmospheres where people are normally amiable etc.

"On roadways this is also taking place, but because people move relatively quickly along these routes, they are not subject to the same time to be able to experience or analyse these phenomena. Therefore they get glimpses of things, creepy feelings, coldness, a dark atmosphere or feeling of oppression for no apparent reason."

According to Tarmac’s research, almost half of drivers (45%) believe they have seen something unidentifiable while at the wheel although sightings vary from the vague to the very detailed.  With about 41.8 million drivers in the UK, this means that nearly as many as 20 million of us may have seen a ghost or other spooky sighting on Britain’s roads.

Top Ten Spooky Roads

1. M6
2. Highlands – A9
3. Platt Lane, Leigh, Manchester
4. Great Yarmouth – High St and Suffield Rd
5. Gloucester Drive, Finsbury Park
6. Wales B4293 Devauden
7. Cornwall B3314
8. Highlands – Loch Dornoch
9. Doncaster, S Yorkshire B1403
10. Drews Lane, Ward End, Birmingham

Spooky Sightings...
1. M6

Location: M6 near Lichfield

Story: Sue Cowley from Coleshill in Warwickshire reports: “We were coming home from my Aunt’s last Christmas, my husband and son were asleep and I was driving. It was dark and at that point we were the only ones on that part of the toll road. I was on main beam and in front I saw what I took to be animals crossing the carriage way. As I braked I realise that it was a group of 20 or more men, well I say men they were more like upright shadows than men, dressed in what I took to be Roman costume but it was indistinct. I think I remember it seeming as if they were carrying something on their shoulders but it is easy to elaborate after the event. However what I do remember because it was so odd was that they had no legs. It was as if they were just walking through the tarmac as you would walk through water. Nothing impeded their progress, not the barrier or the car that was travelling north. Needless to say the family didn't believe me but I know what I saw.”

Location: M6 in Cumbria, South of the Lake District

Story: Lauren Harrison reported her story, saying, “I was driving one night along the M6 to go and visit friends in the Lake District.  It was summer and about 10.30 so I think it must have just got dark.   As I was driving along, I thought I saw a car up ahead on the hard shoulder.  I slowed down and remember realising I didn’t need to indicate to pull out because there was nothing behind me.  As I got closer, I realised that it was actually a woman I was seeing.  She was in old fashioned dress of some sort but it was all pretty indistinct.  She was sort of floating because I remember realising she didn’t appear to have any feet.  What struck me most though, was the way in which she was just staring into the distance, as if she was looking out for something.  As I passed her I looked back in my rear view mirror as I was completely fascinated but she had simply disappeared.  It wasn’t frightening in any way, I Just felt very sorry for her for some reason.”

Location: M6, near Knutsford

Story: Robert Teese, Knutsford. Robert tells his story, saying, “I was driving back home alone one night and there was a misty clump of cloud/mist on the road ahead in the distance. As I drove on, I realised that it was getting bigger, when about 300 metres ahead – the clump of mist had become more distinct and formed a shape – it was like the shape of a massive train I thought at first. I blinked and could still see it. Then as it got closer, I realised it was like a lorry, that was coming straight towards me on the wrong side of the road. It was really realistic, just bright glowing white HGV. I remember looking in my mirror and thinking I wonder if the car behind me can see it – but I could only see small headlights, so they were far away. Then as it got closer, it didn’t disappear, it kept coming for me. I slowed right down and closed my eyes – this sounds stupid now but I did! I moved into the slow lane and then lorry came right by me, careering down the M6 the wrong way and I winced as it felt like it was going to rip off one side of my car. But I looked in my rear mirror straight after, I was sweating and my palms couldn’t hold the steering wheel, they were slippy – there was nothing, absolutely nothing. I didn’t imagine it, I know I didn’t, but I’ve never really told anyone else about it apart from my wife.

2. Highlands – A9

Location: A9 travelling north from Pitlochry towards Newtonmore

Story: Lizzie Lane from the Isle of Arran says: “My husband was driving, I was in the front passenger seat and my son who was 12 years old was in the back.  We all witnessed the scene it was completely awesome.

Like seeing through time we saw a coach, like one the Queen uses on state occasions. It was being pulled by immaculately groomed white horses.  Everything was illuminated in the most perfect glittering detail - the golden ornate coach, coachmen, white wigs, white stockings knee length breeches, embroidered jackets...  One man stood on a little box footplate at the back of the coach intently looking back as if checking all was clear.  At first I thought I must be seeing a film set except there was no other people around and I realised they would never be filming at such a dangerous and stupid location. “Other motorists on the busy A9 road were oblivious of the coach. The horses weren't spooked by the traffic and didn’t seem to notice it.  The coach was facing into the oncoming traffic all be it at the side of the road. I soon realised no one else could possibly be seeing what we were or there would have been a road accident as everyone would have been clambering to see. As we drove by we all turned our heads to look back as the  flow of traffic meant it was impossible to stop safely anywhere which meant  my husband did not get the chance to see as much as me and my son.  However, he saw enough to leave him convinced.  He used to be a total self confessed sceptic of such things and now he’s a complete convert.”

3. Platt Lane, Leigh, Manchester

Location: Platt Lane that runs between West Orton and Atherton in Leigh

Story: Platt Lane has long been associated with Spooky goings on.  For many years, miners on their way to Pretoria Pit would report the sound of a horse running passed them. However, the nature of the haunting changed following a freak accident.  Brian Lowe is one witness to the more recent spooky goings on “Every Sunday night, 20 years ago, I would drive down Platt Lane on my way to Band practice. Most weeks I was sure I could see dozens of eyes looking out of the bushes at me.  I later found out that many years before, 368 men and boys had been killed in an accident at Pretoria Pit.”

4. Great Yarmouth – High St and Suffield Rd

Location: High St and Suffield Road, Great Yarmouth

Story: Mrs. A from Gorleston has had two sightings of a phantom animal – like a dog but with longer legs running at top speed around Great Yarmouth.  Both sightings have been late at night – 10.30 – 11.00.  The first sighting was on the High Street, near Mr Chips.  The second sighting, which was only this year, was on Suffield road. Mrs A says “The second time I saw ‘it’ my dad wanted to walk home and unbeknown to him I was driving round the block to make sure he got home safe as he'd been ill.  He was walking down Stradbroke Rd towards Lowestoft Rd. It was on Suffield Rd heading the same way close to the police stn. I saw it frantically running on the path by the railings near the bus stop, again for 2-3 seconds then it vanished into thin air.  My dad had seen nothing at all. If it was an animal my dad would have seen it pass too, but he didn’t.

I drove round looking for an animal, to disprove my sighting but found nothing. I don’t want to see it again, but would be interested if anyone else has!”

5. Gloucester Road, Finsbury Park

Location: Gloucester Drive, Finsbury Park

Story: Andy Harbourne of Finsbury Park has experienced the well known phenomenon of Gloucester Drive.  He says “I used to live on Gloucester Drive – just around the corner from where I live now.  I’d heard all the rumours of scary goings on but never believed them.  One Saturday night I’d actually decided to have a quiet night in and spent the evening chilling out with a pizza and a couple of DVDs. At about 12.30 I thought I could here kids running up and down the street.  I remember thinking it was a bit late for young kids to be out and about and looked out of the window to see what was going on.  There was nothing to see so I got back to relaxing. About 15 minutes later I heard running again and then a knock at my door. I answered the door but there was no one there. I assumed it was the kids messing about so went back inside and looked out of the window in case they came back.  That’s when I heard the running steps again, this time right outside my window – but there was absolutely no one there. The steps were so close and the sound so clear.  If I’d been drinking I’d have put it down to the beer but I hadn’t had a drop.  It was actually very scary.”

6. Wales B4293 Devauden

Location: B4293 at Devauden

Story: Dean Llewellyn from Ludlow tells his story “My wife, Sue, was travelling home alone to Abergavenny late at night on very quiet country roads. The B4293 is a very twisty wooded route. After she passed through Devauden she approached a severe bend in the road.  From beside her she heard a soft, calm voice tell her to stop. Taken aback she slowed and pulled onto the side of the grass verge.  Almost immediately a car came towards her with no lights on, travelling at a very high speed and on the wrong side of the road. Had she not pulled over she would have had a serious accident.  Sue searched the car and the roadside for any sign of her 'guardian' but to no avail…”

7. Cornwall B3314

Location: B3314 to Tintagel

Story: Eighteen months ago, H Talbot was driving down to Tintagel to visit friends and encountered something really trange that she can only explain it as aranormal. “I was driving along the B3314 not far from Port Isaac; it was around 9:30 in the evening and the weather was dry and humid.  As I was driving along something or somebody walked straight in front of my car. “My first thought was that an animal had shot out of the hedge, and ran directly into my car. I pulled over and looked out of my rear view mirror and saw a figure of a lady, just standing in the middle of the road staring at me...then it just disappeared.  I have never been so scared and couldn't believe what I had witnessed. I know that she wasn't dressed in modern day clothing and can only guess that she was from the Victorian times. I'm not sure how I drove onto Tintagel that night but when I did I explained the incident to my friends, they all laughed, but I know what I saw that night!”

8. Highlands – Loch Dornoch

Location: Dornoch

Story: George Morrison was holidaying in Dornoch and decided to do a spot of fishing.  He picks up the story… “I had fished many of the lochs in the area but couldn't fish Loch Bhuie previously because landslides had caused the road to be closed for about 1 year. I was looking forward to this year as the road had re-opened.  Off I went with myself and the pregnant Mrs. Morrison. Taking the road for the loch we had to endure single track roads in a valley on a mountainside, coming of the mountain road we drove what seemed to be a long straight piece of road covered at both sides by trees, like an avenue type of road.  Half way down the road I stopped the car abruptly, my wife asked what was the matter with me, I said “what you can’t see that?”  She said she couldn’t and I told her it was a large white horse with a gentleman dressed in what looked like Victorian dressing upon the horse.  In a split second the horse was getting further and further away as was the head of the gentleman on the horse. The horse was the last thing to fade into the distance, to this day I have still to fish Loch Bhuie 6 years on from my experience.”

9. Doncaster

Location: Doncaster, just off B1403

Story: Lynne Shaw from Retford says: “It was late summer last year in September and there was a storm. I hate thunder storms and still get very scared but my boyfriend convinced me to go out to the top of Gringley on the Hill and watch it from a distance. After watching the storm for a while, we moved onto a bendy lane called The Cannon Ball run. It was really spooky with the storm going on in the distance. I was sat with my window right down but faced toward the driver’s seat looking out that window at the storm instead. We had the headlights on and suddenly I saw a shadow. I turned around not thinking anything of it, but to my amazement I saw a soldier... it was very strange you could see his hat and his shiny buttons on his military jacket all the way up to his neck. He wasn't looking at us, he was marching straight past.  My boyfriend was really scared and started the engine but I grabbed his arm and told him to wait. The soldier walked in front of the car and then disappeared I the headlights. It was very, very spooky.

Never at one moment did I feel frightened or threatened.  The pure detail in his outfit was amazing though and it wasn't like on movies where you could see through a ghost, he wasn't transparent at all. It was a great chilling experience!”

10. Drews Lane, Ward End, Birmingham

Location: Drews Lane, Ward End

Story: Jackie used to live at Drews Lane, Ward End in the mid 1970’s. She explains, “Between house number 175 and the corner shop, I used to hear cars that used to roll over while driving. 100’s of cars have been heard and seen upside down with no reason or rhyme. There were a couple a week sometimes, nothing to explain it. There were never any other cars involved, just that when they came down our road, they would turn over. I used to say to my husband at night when I’d here them ‘there’s another one’. It was very weird.”

Part of Anglo American plc, one of the world's largest mining and natural resource companies, Tarmac Group is the market leader in the UK in aggregates, mortar, concrete blocks and asphalt and number two in ready-mixed concrete.  Through its enhanced network of regional production units and plants it provides a vast range of products for the construction industry nationwide.

For more information on Tarmac and to play their Spooky Roads Game, please visit www.tarmac.co.uk