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Rock Cemetery Catacombs Ghost Hunts


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Rock Cemetery Catacombs
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire


The Rock Cemetery Catacombs is one of the most unique locations in Nottingham, not just because of its historic underground caves, but because the cemetery is built on the site of the old Gallows Hill, where many men and women were hanged for their crimes. With dark, mysterious catacombs and a sinister history of death, what will you uncover on this spooky night?



Before the Rock Cemetery, this land was once a working sandstone mine, where large quantities of sandstone rock and fine grains of sand were dug out and used for building material and to sell at markets. Sandstone has long been layered underneath the city of Nottingham for millions of years, and the fine sand still found in the caves today originated from modern day Leicestershire, some 300+ million years ago when the area was a desert. Wind blew these fine grains of sand towards Nottingham over time, which back then the Nottingham area was completely underwater.

Fast forward to the late 17th Century, and this site was famously known in Nottingham as 'Gallows Hill'. It was at Gallows Hill that many men and some women were hanged. The criminal such as a murderer, a thief, a poacher and even a tax avoider, would be tried at the Shire Hall on those charges, and if found guilty were sentenced to their death. They were forced to walk up what is now Mansfield Road, accompanied by guards and the executioner. A custom was made by the landlord of the nearby Nag's Head Pub where the Gallows came into view, in which the landlord would stand outside and offer the unfortunates a pint of Nottingham ale, their final drink before death awaited them. There was even one account that a man was offered a drink before making his way to the Gallows, but he promptly refused and continued his way up the hill. Sadly for him, a messenger followed soon after with a letter reprieving him of his execution, but it was too late. Had the man taken the offer of an ale, he would've lived to see another day and many more.

Crowds gathered at Gallows Hill to witness the hangings take place, with many collecting bits of cut up rope afterwards, which is where the saying 'money for old rope' comes from. The guilty would step up to the gallows and have the noose tightened around their neck. The executioner would then denounce their heinous crime to the public, before pulling the lever and having the criminal drop down through a trap door, dying of slow strangulation until their final breath. It wouldn't be until the late 1700s when breaking of the neck was introduced. This continued at Gallows Hill until 1832, when hangings moved to the Shire Hall. 2nd April 1827 was the final time someone was hanged at Gallows Hill; his name was William Wells and he was sentenced to death for highway robbery.

The site was left untouched for many years, but was eventually founded as Church Cemetery (later becoming Rock Cemetery) in 1848 and designed by Edwin Patchitt, a clerk to the County Magistrates and whose body is buried on the site. A lot of landscaping and work was needed to be done, as it was a sand mine for many centuries and then a execution site. Over 20,000 tons of earth had to be dug up and relocated. Fundraising began in 1851 and 181 shareholders represented a contribution of 959 £5 shares. The tenancies for the land was arranged in 1853, and in 1856, Church Cemetery officially opened. The site was consecrated and sanctified by the Reverend John Jackson, the Bishop of Lincoln. Despite the name having 'Church' in it, a Church wasn't built on this site until a short time after the place had opened. A mortuary chapel was built and opened on 14th August 1879. It costed £2,600 to construct, roughly £300,000 in today's economy. Some of Nottingham's most notable people like James Shipstone and Watson Fothergill are buried here.

Located on this site is Robin Hood's Cave, a place discovered in the 19th Century during landscaping by local clergyman George Oliver. He believed that the set of caves he discovered were part of an ancient druid temple connected to the classic ballads and tales of Robin Hood. The likelihood is that they were just caves leftover as a by-product of the sand mining the couple of centuries before then. This area was originally known as 'Ropewalk', because rope makers worked there. In 1892, the cave became known as Robin Hood's Mammoth Cave, but over the years it was just Robin Hood's Cave.
A war memorial was added in 1920 following the First World War, and is Grade II listed, where many soldiers who sacrificed their lives now lie in rest.

Currently the site is owned and operated by Nottingham City Council.



There's a few interesting and unique hauntings at the Rock Cemetery and the Catacombs, and given the number of hangings and death that took place here, it's not surprising there's lots of spiritual energies lurking behind the veil.

The Robin Hood Cave holds a special energy. One because of the sandstone surrounding it, and two because of the belief that this was once used as a Druid Temple. Reports of strange chanting and whispering are heard coming from this cave, but is this a case of Stone Tape Theory holding a recording in the fabric of the stone?

The apparition of a Victorian Lady dressed in White has also allegedly been reported walking around the cemetery at night.

In the Catacombs, a ghostly miner is said to roam the darkness in the entry way. It's known that a man fell to his death through the pit ceiling some time between the 1700s and 1800s, unaware of where he was walking, and some visitors during tours have felt a male presence move around them.

A darker presence is also felt within the fingers of the Catacombs. Who hates visitors wandering in his area, sending cold chills running down your spine, and frightening anyone who sees his tall shadowy appearance. Who is this negative entity, and why does he get angry wanting to harm others?



Your night of ghost hunting with Brookes Paranormal is guaranteed a fun, safe and spooky one. Experience this historic location with exclusive access after dark, as you explore the eerie rooms and areas in search for the ghostly spirits that haunt here. Here at the Rock Cemetery, you will get to investigate the fascinating Robin Hood's Cave and the never-ending dark and distraught Catacomb cave system.

Our team are friendly, professional, approachable and knowledgeable with paranormal investigating, and we will guide and support you to make sure you get the most out of your investigation. We welcome everyone from all walks of life, as our events are a safe space for all who love and enjoy the thrill of ghost hunting. Whether you're a paranormal novice or an experienced investigator, you'll be well-looked after and treated like family.

This is an honest ghost hunting experience, so there won't be any fakery or trickery during the night. We believe that if activity happens, it happens for real.

On your ghost hunt, you will be split into smaller groups to give you the best, personal experience possible. You will also get hands on with various pieces of ghost hunting equipment and participate in interesting paranormal experiments.
​ While we encourage everyone
to get involved in the night's vigils, you don't have to partake in experiments like Ouija Boards and the Estes Method if you don't
want to, we have plenty of other equipment for you to use.

You will also have a break during the night, where we provide you with unlimited refreshments and snacks.



  • Group photo of all guests which gets published to our page

  • Small group extended vigils

  • Refreshments and snacks like teas, coffees, hot chocolates,
    bottles of water, biscuits, crisps and chocolate bars

  • Full use of ghost hunting equipment like K2s, EMF Meters,
    REM Pods, Mel Meters, Spirit Boxes, Motion Detectors,
    Dowsing Rods, Laser Grid Pens, ITC Apps and SLS Cameras

  • Paranormal experiments like Ouija Boards, Glass Divination,
    Table Tipping, S
    éances, Estes Method and Human Pendulum

  • An introduction to ghost hunting equipment and techniques
    for guests new to the paranormal


  • All attendees MUST be 18 years or older

  • Heavily pregnant women are NOT allowed on these events

  • This location is NOT wheelchair accessible

  • This location has NO sleepover facilities

  • We operate a STRICT No Alcohol/Drugs Policy on our events, and if caught or believed to be under the influence of any alcohol or drugs, you will be removed from the event immediately and banned from all future events - No refunds

  • All attendees MUST bring a torch to the event, as we will be investigating in dark areas and low light conditions

  • Sensible footwear is required for the location's environmental conditions

  • In the colder months we advise to wear warm layered clothing, and bring a warm coat with you as the night will get cooler as the event progresses

  • History tours are sometimes provided at this location, but we will talk briefly on the location's past

  • Ouija Boards are brought to events at this location, however we don't force you to take part in them

  • Please ensure you are able to attend this event; deposits are non-refundable and non-transferable, and full payments and remaining balances are non-refundable and non-transferable
    four weeks prior to the event date


ADDRESS: Church (Rock) Cemetery, 49-51 Forest Road East, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG1 4HT


Ghost & History Tours: 6:30pm - 8:00pm

Paranormal Nights: 9:00pm - 2:00am (Arrive at 8:45pm. Please wait patiently outside the black gates until a member of our team greets you there)


  • Victoria Centre Car Park

  • Local Street Parking

Please note parking charges may apply.

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