Aptly named The York Ghost Merchants, this shop first opened its doors on 16 August to a host of curious onlookers. Inspired and created by owner Angus McArthur, there are countless hand-painted miniature ghost replicas to peruse and there is no doubt that this venue will leave a lasting impression upon anyone who dares to enter.
It only stands to reason that The York Ghost Merchants is located within a building that can trace its history back to at least the 1780s. Not only does this lovely Georgian atmosphere contribute to its overall ambience, but hidden sections such as an original fireplace have been rediscovered during recent renovations. Secret cupboards, traditional woodworking and creaky wooden floors further contribute to the allure of this unique establishment. It therefore makes a great deal of sense that this shop has become home to a kaleidoscope of modern-day handheld ghost statuettes.
It should also be mentioned that the tradition of ghost making within York has existed in one form or another for centuries. It is thought that the original "ghost merchants" offered their services as far back as the 1400s. They would carve tiny ghost figurines and sell them to travelling pilgrims who were looking for methods to ward off evil spirits. This practice further evolved when Britain was an empire of the seas. Sailors would likewise cause small ghosts out of whale bones using a technique known as scrimshaw. So, it is clear that these practices have become an indelible part of York history as a whole.
Visitors who enter The York Ghost Merchants will be immediately transported back in time due to the sheer authenticity of the environment itself. Even the employees dress appropriately; imbuing a decidedly haunting flavour to the entire shop. Guests will likewise appreciate the fact that there are over 1,200 ghost statuettes to choose from. There is indeed something here for everyone. Each is entirely handcrafted with its own unique elements, so no two are ever alike. There is no doubt that The York Ghost Merchants will leave a lasting (if not immortal) impression upon the entire region.