The Busby Stoop Inn, at Kirby Wiske – a village near Thirsk in North Yorkshire – takes it odd name from the 18th century owner Thomas Busby and the hangman’s gibbet across the road from where Thomas Busbys remains were displayed after he had been hanged for the murder of his father-in-law in 1702. Since then, his ghost has appeared many times with his head lolling and a rope around his neck. Outside the inn a noose still dangles from a gallows arm.
The Haunted History of the Busby Stoop Inn
Within the pub it is said a chair that Thomas – whilst in a drunken stupor and dragged from and taken straight to the gallows – was cursed by Busby and he swore that anyone who sat in his chair would die as violently and suddenly as he himself was about to.
Simon Theaskston, whose brewery owned the pub until 1998 said the legend may be odd and vague, but it is a matter of record that in the last 200 years or so, death has indeed struck anyone who dared to sit in the char within a very short time. It is said that many who sat in the chair were dead within days or even hours!! Eventually the chair was moved out of harms way and can now be found in Thirsk museum.
It has to be said that many of the chairs victims of the last few decades could be categorised as `high risk`. They include a RAF pilot who was killed the following day, a motorist who crashed the next day and died of his injuries, a motorcyclist who died on his bike shortly after leaving the pub, a holiday hitch-hiker who was knocked down and killed two days later and a local man in his late thirties who died of a massive heart attack the following night. But the odds against all of them dying so soon after sitting in the Busby Chair must be high enough to suggest this was no mere coincidence.