A Grey Lady (belived to be the ghost of Sarah Siddons) has been seen drifting across the auditorium. She has also been seen sitting quietly in the back of the stalls.
In 1782 during the reign of George III the Lancaster Grand Theatre opened its doors to the public, the theatre was built by Joseph Austin and Charles Edward Whitlockat and it was known simply as “The Theatre, Lancaster”. Over the next 100 years or so the theatre entertained the gentry of Lancaster and the surrounding areas.
In 1884 the theatre went under several renovations and was renamed to ’The Athenaeum’ and re opened to the public. A few years later, the theatre was badly damaged in a great fire and was subsequently rebuilt in the same year of 1908. It was decided with this second re-opening that the theatre should be renamed to its present day title Grand Theatre. Lancaster.
Apart from this rebuilding period, the Theatre has been in continuous use for 200 years and has become quite the spot for ghost hunters and those interested in the paranormal, for its been reported by several guests and visitors to the theatre that a ghost of the Grey Lady has been seen sitting in the stalls and passing in front of the auditorium. Further investigation by both the staff of the theatre and by those interested in ghost hunting report that the ghostly figure of the lady is an actress who used to walk the boards known as Sarah Siddons.
Sarah Siddons (Sister-in-Law of Charles Edward Woodlock who built the theatre) was best known for playing the part of Lady Macbeth at the theatre in 1795. The ghost of Sarah has been seen many times as well as a male spirit who has been detected by paranormal investigators and who have later found out to be a travelling actor by the name of Harald, who stayed at the Midland Hotel around the year 1937.
With over 228 years of history the theatre is now providing guided tours of the third oldest theatre in England. With its beautiful Edwardian style, you will have the chance to learn about the theatres long and lively history and how it has developed into what you see today, If you are lucky, you may even see the ghost!