BRADFORD - the world’s first UNESCO City of Film - has long been a magnet for film-makers.

And its atmospheric landscapes - misty moors, Victorian streets, sprawling mill sites and historic buildings - have made it particularly popular for horror films.

This Halloween, we’re looking back at some of the spooky films shot in and around the district.

* The Limehouse Golem: The 2016 British horror-mystery, an adaptation of Peter Ackroyd’s murder mystery novel Dan Leno and the Limehouse Golem, stars Bill Nighy, Olivia Cooke and Douglas Booth.

The film, about a series of murders in the docklands of Victorian London, was shot in Keighley’s Dalton Mills complex, which was used for several films and TV productions, including Downton Abbey and Peaky Blinders, before the Grade II listed building was gutted by fire in 2022.

The Limehouse Golem production crew transformed an entire floor of the former mill into a music hall, with an ornate gold stage, and a prison. Cobbled areas between mill buildings were turned into two outdoor sets - a Victorian street and a harbourside, complete with a huge boat.

* Polterheist: This comedy horror, shot in Bradford, is about two smalltime crooks who kidnap a psychic to find out where their deceased boss stashed stolen loot.

Polterheist started out as a 20-minute film made with just £1,000. Supported by Bradford City of Film, it went on to win awards in America, Brazil, South Africa and Europe, and won Best Short Film at Bradford’s Drunken Film Festival.

The success of the short film led director and co-writer David Gilbank to create a full-length version. He and the production team initially raised £45,000, and filming took place 2017, in Keighley, Saltaire, Idle and Thackley.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Polterheist was filmed around the districtPolterheist was filmed around the district (Image: Newsquest)

The crime caper, shot with Bradford actors, was screened at film festivals around the world.

Dave Gilbank, who wrote, directed and produced Polterheist with Paul Renhard, told the T&A: “It’s the first UK gangster film to touch on modern multicultural British life, with a supernatural twist.”

* Ghost Stories: Written and directed by Ilkley’s Jeremy Dyson, from The League of Gentlemen, and Andy Nyman, Ghost Stories was a London stage play before it was adapted into a film.

Nyman plays Dr Phillip Goodman, an academic and arch-sceptic, who sets out to debunk claims of the supernatural. When he finds a file containing three unsolved cases of terrifying hauntings, and is tasked with finding rational explanations for them, his belief system and his sanity are thrown into question.

The 2017 film was shot in locations including Saltaire, Leeds City Varieties music hall, the Harewood Estate and Harrogate.

* The Woman in Black: The chilling adaptation of Susan Hill’s 1983 book is set in early 20th century England.

A young recently widowed lawyer travels to an isolated village, where he finds out that the ghost of a scorned woman is terrorising the community.

The 2012 film, starring Daniel Radcliffe and Ciarán Hinds, was shot at Halton Gill, north of Settle in the Yorkshire Dales.

* The Burning Girls: New horror series, which premiered on Paramount+ this month, has a link to Bradford.

The drama follows Reverend Jack Brooks, played by Samantha Morton, who, with her daughter Flo, moves to the sleepy village of Chapel Croft, a community with dark secrets.

Tragedy has followed Jack. Her husband was brutally murdered at his church in Bradford when Flo was a baby.

As the tension rises, it emerges that Jack may be running away from secrets of her own, with a malevolent force tracking her down.

Chapel Croft legend has it that 30 years ago, two teenage girls vanished from the village. As Jack looks into their disappearance, she’s warned about the ghosts of the Burning Girls who haunt the chapel - the spirits of eight-year-old twin sisters burned at the stake in 1556, during Queen Mary’s purge of Protestants. The girls are commemorated by twig dolls left around the village.

Samantha Morton described the filming as “intense”.

“You read the book and you go, that’s from The Shining, that’s from The Omen,” she said. “I’m a cinephile and grew up watching films like The Omen and The Exorcist and The Turn Of The Screw. So this is a genre I love.”

* Abduction, 13 and The Moor: In 2020 Bradford film-maker Adam Mawson told the T&A that he planned to shoot his third short film, The Moor, on Baildon Moor.

The horror short begins with a van driven onto the moor by a group of people intent on fly-tipping rubbish in the dead of night. What they don’t know is that something sinister is lurking on the bleak upland.

“They are brutally attacked by some kind of monster - that’s how the film starts. The wild moorland has just the right atmosphere,” said Adam, who had already made two films with no budget.

Adam’s first film, Abduction, was about the disappearance of six children from a village under mysterious circumstances.

It stars Bradford actor Danny Cunningham, who played Shaun Ryder in the film 24-hour Party People.

Also filmed in Baildon was Adam’s second film, 13, a paranormal thriller based on events he said took place in 1991 in a house in Bradford. “What people witnessed and recorded was truly terrifying - one of the most authentic paranormal evidence ever caught on camera, today known as the Barmby Place Ghost,” said Adam.