WHETHER rattling chains, drifting through walls, wailing at the moon or appearing to travellers on stormy nights, everyone loves a good ghost story.
And Alderley and Styal have spine chilling legends to satisfy the most ghoulish appetites this Halloween.
From haunting visions of a Victorian woman wafting through Styal Mill to ghoulish goings on in Apprentice House attics, Styal has landed itself the title of third most haunted National Trust property.
It looks set to rival Alderley Edge’s legendary lady in white, Nell Beck, last seen drifting across Artists Lane in the 1800s, scaring a group of Alderley boys out of their wits.
But this year’s paranormal spotters have their eyes firmly fixed on Styal after National Trust historian Sian Evens published a list of the top ten most haunted properties, based on research for her book "Ghosts".
Ranking Styal third spookiest, she reveals that people have witnessed the apparition of a woman roaming through the top floors of the commercial spinning and weaving mill.
A spokesman for Quarry Bank Mill said: "We have heard of one sighting. A visitor claims to have seen a woman in Victorian clothes in the upper floors of the mill. The building does have an atmosphere, like any old building."
Sian said: "Although the records of fatalities and deadly accidents in the Mill have been consulted, none of them appear to have involved women, so it is not known who this female figure may be, or why she haunts this site."
The Styal estate encompasses a village, farmland, gardens, mill owners house and also the Apprentice House, formerly home to children who were brought to the mill to work as apprentices.
Workmen renovating the Apprentice House during the 1980s claim to have seen a white lady in the medical room and others claim to have seen a woman in the attic, once directly behind a house interpreter.
But Alderley’s favourite spook, Ellen Beck, has not been spotted for nearly 100 years.
The lady in white who hovers near Artists Lane, became entrenched in local folklore after claiming to have seen the Iron Gates of Merlin’s legend.
An "unfortunate" servant girl, she reportedly worked at Fallows Hall in the mid 1700s and later Old Hall, where she fell in love with a fellow servant who refused to marry her.
Spurned, and possibly with child, she took poison and died. As the verdict of her death was suicide, Ellen Beck's body could not be buried in hallowed ground and so lies under a hollow bank in a field near Brindlow Wood, marked by standing stones which have now been removed.
In his book Around Haunted Manchester, Peter Portland reports she was last seen around 1881 when a group of boys were "tolling" passers by for money on Artists Lane at dusk.
He said: "At this juncture their pleasant sport was suddenly interrupted by the unexpected appearance of Nell Beck, who emerged from a recess by the wayside and glided lightly before them. They all plainly saw her pass and all saw her disappear into a bush on the other side of the road."
Spooked by their encounter, the boys reportedly ran all the way down Artists Lane to the cross on the A34.