Hell's Kettles, also known as ‘Kettles of Hell’ or ‘Devil’s Kettles’ located at Oxen-le-Hall, in the south of the parish of Darlington and have been the subject of numerous legends and superstitions.
These three, supposedly bottomless pits are rumoured to have taken the lives of people and animals; drowned or eaten alive by the Pikes and Eels thought to infest them. Believed to contain the souls of sinners, many reports claim that the bodies of victims can be witnessed floating in the pools when clear.
Thought to have been created by a ferocious earthquake in1179, the water is believed to be hot as a result of reverberation. The sinkholes are fed by artesian water and have been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) for their ability to support a hard water "fen" flora.
Read more: Hell's Kettles - County Durham
Corpse roads provided a practical means of allowing the transport of corpses to cemeteries that had burial rights. In Britain, such routes are have been given similar names such as: bier road, burial road, coffin road, coffin line, lyke or lych way, funeral road, procession way, etc. These "church-ways" have developed a great deal of associated folklore regarding wraiths, spirits, ghosts, and such-like.
Read more: Corpse Roads
Most people know the rhyming proverb 'Fairy folks are in old oaks'.
'The Gospel Oak' or 'The King's Oak' in every considerable forest had probably a traditional sacredness from unremembered times, and an oak coppice in which the young saplings had sprung from the stumps of felled trees was thought to be an uncanny place after sunset. An oak coppice was often considered an evil and dangerous place to travel through at night, especially if it was a blue-bell wood.
Read more: The Oak and Oakmen