|Also Known As||Goddeloze Singel|
Goddeloaze Singel (translation: Godless Canal) is a small canal that runs by the village Faenwâlden in Friesland. Several uncanny tales revolve around this canal, among which the haunted house Goddeloas Tolhûs (translation: Godless Toll House), which does not exist anymore since 1934 or 1935 and has since been replaced with a different building. Elsewhere along the canal on a crossroads with Oastein street is a bridge which has likewise been replaced in 2015, known as Skilige Pypke (translation: Skewed Pipe). It is nowadays part of a highway.
The Canal's Name
According to people from the region, the canal derived its name from the many stories that surround it. For instance, a skeleton was found under the bridge close to the toll house during restorations. It is possible it belonged to an ice skater who sank through the ice under the bridge late at night. He called out for help, but a ghost prevented people from saving him. It is known that the canal derived its name from Goddeloas Tolhûs. Unclear however is which specific story spawned the canal's fearsome name. Most people link it to the tale of Gerben Klazes Boskma who used to live inside the toll house, though it is well documented the house was already notorious before he started living there in 1812.
The Haunted Canal
Townsfolk tried to stay away from the goddeloaze single whenever they could, especially at night. If they had no other choice, it was adviced against talking to strangers, following any lights or walking in the middle of the road. The "ljochtskouwe folk" (translation: the light-shy folks) - as they would call it - came out at night and roamed around the canal. Among these creatures belong ghosts, hellhounds, witte wieven, will-o'-the-wisps and strange funeral processions. Those who obstructed a cortege were said to be picked up and put on the other side of canal.
Many unsettling stories revolved around the canal, most of which involved death or murder. The area used to be full of bandits, and then there was the Goddeloas Tolhûs, which was believed to be a source of many haunting activities. A skeleton was found underneath the bridge nearby the house which quite possibly belonged to an iceskater. It was said townspeople heard his plea for help but could not get close to him because of a ghost. Another story tells of two men in a boat who drowned a third man by pushing him underneath the vessel. Yet another story tells of a man who traveled along the canal with a bulk of cash. Worried that he would be robbed and killed, he hid himself under an upside down boat. Bandits indeed came and sat on the boat, waiting for him to arrive. Only when they got up and left did the man come out of hiding.