|Photo courtesy of Wikipedia|
On his way to the gallows, Busby asked to stop at the pub and have a final drink. When he finished, he cursed the chair saying, "May sudden death come to anyone who dare sit in my chair." Busby was dipped in pitch and left in a gibbet before the townspeople finally hung him at Sandhutton crossroads, right outside the pub.
In 1894, a local chimney sweep and another man left the pub. The chimney sweep decided to sleep on the roadside. The following morning he was found hanging on a gatepost next to the old Busby gibbet. Locals report that even though the death was determined to be a suicide, the man had been sitting in Busby's chair the previous evening.
During WWII, crews from the Royal Canadian Air Force would frequent the pub. It is rumored that airmen who sat in the Busby chair never returned home.
In 1978, a delivery driver made a delivery to the cellar. He told Mr Earnshaw how comfortable the chair was (after sitting in it) and suggested that it should be moved into the pub. Hours later, the delivery driver drove his vehicle off the road and was killed instantly.
Earnshaw sent the chair to the Thirsk Museum where it now hangs from the ceiling to prevent occupancy.
The Busby Stoop Inn closed in 2012. Outside, Busby's noose still dangles from a gallows arm.
|Photo courtesy of Google Maps|
Is this just superstition and happenstance? There are several details that didn't quite add up when I was researching this story. But would I sit in this chair and tempt fate? Probably not.