Burley is famous for its history of witches among other urban legends.
The Burley history books tell that a white witch named Sybil Leek roamed the Burley village in the 1950s wearing a black cloak with her pet jackdaw riding atop her shoulder. Media attention surrounding Sybil reached breaking point, with some villagers rejoicing in the media attention that she brought the village with other’s strongly against it. The angry villagers eventually overruled and Sybil took her witchcraft to the US.
There is said to be a coven of white witches still practicing magic in the area today. You can just picture them all in the woods, surrounding cauldron!
Regardless of the locals negative opinion of Sybil, much of Burley’s culture is derived from witches with shops and restaurants following the witchy theme. Almost every shop has at least one reference to the witch that put Burley on the map, turning it from a sleepy New Forest village to a tourist destination. (One of) The local tea rooms have witch’s hats on the table numbers:
One shop is literally called A Coven of Witches and the ceiling is covered with hanging witches on brooms. This shop also has a tarot card reader who for a fee of £20 will read your tarot cards and a fireplace with a memorial to Sybil.
Burley legend also tells of a dragon that lived in the Burley Beacon, terrorizing the villagers. The dragon was defeated by a young and brave knight who coated himself in bird line and ground glass for protection.
Not only is Burley historical, it’s a gorgeous little town tucked away in the New Forest.