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Malcolm Bull's Calderdale Companion : Foldout

Foldout : John Almighty Whiteley
The haunted portrait

In 1810, John Almighty Whiteley became landlord of the Star Inn, Sowerby when he married Alice Jennings, the widow of the former owner.

In the 1950s/60s, several reported hauntings at the Star Inn, Sowerby – many involving the sounds of singing, and the opening and closing of doors and movement of the door-latches – were associated with a portrait of John Almighty Whiteley which hung in the tap room there. These events caused so much concern that the portrait was taken down and put away in the loft. Whenever a new landlord hung the painting back on the wall, the mysterious happenings would start all over again.

In the 1950s, the painting hung in the offices of Whitaker's Brewery. It was sold at auction when the Brewery closed.

When Mr Allan Kenny bought the painting and took it home, he and his wife reported unexplained events:

It has recently been suggested that the painting may be by Branwell Brontë.

The frame is inscribed

See John Whiteley Firth

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© Malcolm Bull 2017 / [email protected]
Revised 13:09 on 5th July 2017 / ww_8 / 7