Lincoln Lunatic Asylum was opened in the nineteenth century as one of the first in the world to attempt to treat the insane with kindness rather than cruelty. Until then, anyone showing signs of madness, which could range from slight eccentricity to out and out paranoia and all stops between, would be treated very harshly and death was often quick and welcome. Families wishing to tidy away inconvenient members often resorted to incarceration in lunatic asylums and the Lawns, as the Asylum was later known, would not allow these types of admission, although most of its patients were privately funded.
The site has a long history apart from as an asylum and this includes a Roman burial ground and a plague pit, although it has to be said that both of these are anecdotal only. But the place definitely has an atmosphere, with many people having heard footsteps with no one to make them, sibilant whispers in empty rooms and also gasps and cries. Staff of the hospital when it was still in operation became quite accustomed to these phenomena and although it was a little creepy in certain areas at night, they ignored such things as clutching hands and screams, by and large.
The hospital closed in the forties and remained derelict for quite a while, before being refurbished as a hotel. This time as a ruin has not lessened the ghostly activity and indeed might be said to have increased it. Cold spots are not uncommon and many people have claimed to hear footsteps following them along corridors or to be heard approaching around a corner, only for there to be no one there. Dark shadows can be found in any room, as everyone knows, but at Lincoln Asylum they tend to suddenly start moving around, which is rather more unsettling. With doors which open and close by themselves, this is one haunted building!