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Patrick has kindly given his permission for us to use the following story. Taken from the book GHOST STORIES of ERDINGTON.

STATION ROAD

The haunted phone box and monk.

Down Station Road, under the shadow of the blue bricked Victorian Railway Arch, there used to stand a red 1930's phone box. Nothing unusual in that as there were thousands like it throughout the country. However, this phone box was different as it was the place where the caller was of a different world. On several occasions people waiting to use the phone became agitated and impatient as a woman inside the box seemed to be there for an enormous amount of time, leaving a row of people queuing up outside. However, one cold, dark evening, a young man's patience snapped and he marched up to the box and flung the door open only to see the box completely empty. ( The veracity of the young man's story wasn't questioned as he was a student priest, visiting the local abbey). When asked to describe the lady in the box witnesses said she was young, in her thirties, wore clothes that could have been from the 1940's and was always distressed as she made her call. BBC Radio Heartlands took an active interest in the case and a reporter went along with a clairvoyant to investigate. As both huddled in the box they endeavoured to establish contact with "the other side". What proved interesting was that the clairvoyant claimed to establish contact with a spirit but it was a spirit of a Victorian woman and not the distressed caller from the 1940's! If a Victorian lady is present then it is probably haunting the station and not the phone box as the lady would have died before it was listed. A possible explanation could be the distressed caller made her call during the Second World War and was a victim of an air raid during or shortly after telephoning. Alternatively, as it was war time she might have been desperately seeking news of a loved one in the forces who was perhaps missing or killed in action. Then there is the sighting of a third ghost that can be seen under the railway arch, the ghost of a monk from the nearby abbey of St. Thomas. The story of the monk haunting the arch way has long been woven into Erdington's folk lore. However, no reason why this gentle cleric should walk abroad has never been given. What makes the story plausible is that an order of German monks built the abbey in Erdington in the nineteenth century and stayed there until the outbreak of the First World War. Is the monk who, with his burning lamp, haunts Station road the one who decided to stay behind ?

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