This majestic yet foreboding building started life as the private holiday residence of the Banks family. The head of the family was George Banks who was one of the leading cloth merchants in Leeds, where he served as Lord Mayor in 1818. Eventually is was used as the home of George Banks and his only daughter Georgina. In his will there was a stipulation which said that upon his death the house's ownership would pass to Georgina only if her spouse agreed to change his surname to Banks.
Georgina married Rev Robert John Sharpe the Vicar of Loversall and they were blessed with a large family before finally retiring to Scarborough both passing away by 1887.
In 1928 the house went up for auction and was sold including all its contents some of which remain the building to this very day.
On Friday 25th July 1930 the ‘Ministry of Health’ sanctioned a loan to purchase St Catherine’s for the sum of £25,177,-11s-7d. Building work commenced in March 1931, and authorization was received from the ‘Board of Control’ allowing St Catherine’s to operate as a ‘Certified Institution’ under the terms of ‘Mental Deficiency Act of 1913’ In 1933 a school was briefly opened in St Catherine’s Hall, in 1959 it was named St Catherine’s Institution, changing to St Catherine’s Hospital in 1959. The hospital for a short time also contained 2 children’s wards, a psychiatric unit, chest unit and a sanatorium.
This building leaves visitors and staff feeling distinctly anxious with reports of: -
- Unseen hands touching people
- The spirit of the Grey Lady making her presence known
- Soldiers seen wandering aimlessly through its many halls
- Ghostly footsteps being heard
- Doors being slammed
- Bloodcurdling screams being regularly heard
What will happen on a Haunted Britannia event?
- Full medium walk round
- Psychic and ghost hunting experiments using the very best technology to date
- Old and new techniques including psychic circles, human pendulum and Victorian séances
- Lone vigils
- Full access to our highly experienced team and all our equipment
- Full refreshments
- Your chance to join a real ghost hunting team and be part of the team yourself!
Experienced and knowledgeable team who’ve worked with Channel 4, Living TV and Most Haunted among others...Including International Medium Andy Hopkins.