The fearsome wolves of Yorkshire: Inside the mysterious Wold Newton Triangle

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The Yorkshire Wolds may be home to rolling green hills, hidden valleys and ancient villages, but this seemingly peaceful stretch of Yorkshire is harbouring a much darker side behind its picture perfect appearance.

The mysterious countryside has long been awash with rumours of paranormal activity, with whisperings of werewolves, vampires, sea serpents, fairies and dragons among just a few of the inhabitants said to have roamed here.

Filey Brigg

Filey Brigg

The Wold Newton Triangle

Stretching along the coast from Bridlington, past Flamborough Head and Filey towards Scarborough, and as far west as Ganton, the Wold Newton Triangle has been riddled by stories of strange goings-on over the years, but it is perhaps best known as being a haven for wolves.

According to legend, wolves which roamed the countryside up until the 18th would dig up bodies from graves which would them turn them into werewolves.

While many a tale has been told about wolf sightings in the area, the most famous - and fearsome - is that of an eight-foot tall beast which was said to terrorise the area.



Known as 'Old Stinker', the half-man, half-wolf creature was famed for its foul breath and devil-like red eyes, and has been spotted several times over the years, with the most recent sighting being just two years ago.

Locals reportedly caught sight of the beast lurking on the banks of the Barmston Drain near Beverley, causing widespread panic in the area and sparking plans to hunt the creature down on the next full moon.

The Barghest and Padfoot of Yorkshire

While having the eight-foot Old Stinker on the loose somewhere is bad enough, it's not the only beastly wolf said to be roaming about as legends of phantom black dogs have plagued Yorkshire folklore for years.

The full moon

The full moon

Referred to as the Barghest (or Padfoot in the Leeds and Wakefield area), the black dog-like creature is believed to have huge sharp teeth, huanting eyes and the ability to shapeshift.

It is said to prowl the streets of Whitby and the surrounding countryside at night, and sightings of a black bear-like creature with yellow fangs have also been spotted in York over the years.

Rumour has it if you hear the chilling howls of the creature during the night, then you won't live to see the dawn.

Filey's parkin-eating dragon

Reports of terrifying wolves are a dime a dozen in this mysterious part of Yorkshire, but they're not the only creature said to have stalked these parts, with Filey boasting the most peculiar tale of all.

Local folklore claims that Filey Brigg, a low headland which juts out into the bay, was formed by the Devil with the purpose of wrecking ships.

It is believed he dropped his hammer into the sea while making it, but upon reaching for it he grasped a haddock and supposedly shouted, 'Ha Dick', giving the fish its name and explaining the distinctive finger print-like markings on the fish where he held it.

Another equally fantastical tale is that the Brigg is actually the skeletal remains of a dragon which used to reign over the town.

Legend has it the dragon was enticed into eating a great amount of sticky parkin by locals, which caused its jaws to stick together and forced it to jump into the sea to clean its teeth.

The villagers then seized their opportunity to ambush and kill the dragon, and the rocks near the town are said to be its fossilised remains.