As Halloween is almost upon us, here's something which may appeal to the gory-loving, ghost hunters out there. There are a whole load of London bus tours offering various trips around the City by day. But if you fancy exploring London by night, then look no further as there's a big black, slightly sinister old 1960's route-master bus raring to take you through the ghost-ridden streets of London. It's time to hop aboard The London Necrobus aka The Ghost Bus.
You board the Ghost Bus at a stop just off Trafalgar Square and instead of a regular, bright red bus, this eerie big black route-master creeps though the dark, and is suddenly there behind you, virtually tapping you on your unexpecting shoulder, saying 'Boo! Climb aboard. If you dare..' Okay, I'm getting a bit carried away now, but you get the picture.
I was kindly invited to give this haunted joy ride a whirl, so I took my brother along and have to say it was a highly entertaining and spooktacular experience! I wasn't sure what to expect and to be honest, was worried it might be a bit cheesy and cringeworthy. But it wasn't at all. The 75 minute Ghost Bus trip was a theatrical, informative, scary and comedic ride to remember. London is steeped in dark history involving toe-curling executions and eye-watering murders which understandably means there must be an abundance of tortured ghostly souls lurking out there. Some fictional. Most of them, very real...
We and our fellow passengers took our seats aboard this rather fabulous bus where the interior retains its old charm, classic blood-red leather seats and additional velvet curtains and dimly-lit table lamps. The atmosphere was perfect as the Necrobus Conductor gave us a brilliant running commentary infused with grisly, yet fascinating tales of historical gruesome deaths. There are a couple of screens on the bus so you can keep an eye on the CCTV footage which is very reassuring. Or is it? Your eyes may deceive you. Not to mention the rats. Oh, and we had another passenger on board our bus. A strange character by the name of Mr Hinge, who appeared quite unhinged in my opinion. Especially when he discovered traces of blood on the bus...
There were plenty of ghoulish innuendos from the Conductor which added to the nervous laughter - my favourite being about people 'tossing themselves off the top of The Monument' (snigger). In fact, I was fascinated to learn that only 6 people died in the Great Fire of London, yet there have ironically been 12 deaths associated with The Monument which was built to commemorate the Great Fire. Some died building it, whilst others decided it was an ideal suicide venue.
The Ghost Bus took us on our merry (I mean scary) way, twisting and turning past so many well known streets and landmarks including Whitehall, Downing Street, Fleet Street (with that demon barber), St Paul's Cathedral, Smithfield (renown for boiling people to death in oil), the Tower of London, Tower Bridge and London Bridge. Finally winding up safely back where we started. Phew! As we disembarked, there was a collective sigh of relief as spooked passengers hurriedly tipped the Conductor, then scurried away into the night, and the warm safe haven of a nearby eaterie, of which there are many, should you fancy a pre or post tour bowl of spookhetti.
Oh, and before I go, why are ghosts so bad at lying?
Because you can see right through them!
(Okay, okay, I'm gone...)
The Ghost Bus Tour
Starts & ends from Northumberland Ave (off Trafalgar Square)
7.30pm & 9.00pm daily
Tour lasts 75 mins
Book tickets online or by phone 0844 5678 666
Ghost Bus Tour also operate in Edinburgh and York