THE headless horseman of Kirkley, the faceless phantom of Oulton Broad, the grey lady of High Street...

They may sound like a sinister set of characters, and certainly not the type you'd want to meet in dark alleyway.

But the enduring fascination surrounding these and other macabre tales has prompted a Lowestoft historian to revise his popular book on the town's most grim and ghostly legends – 35 years after it was first published.

Ivan Bunn, known to many through his local ghost walks, researched and wrote the first edition of Haunted Lowestoft in 1975, along with help from the Borderline Science Investigation Group, of which he was a member. The A5-sized pamphlet proved very popular and sold many copies at 50p each, prompting him to update it for a new edition in 1988.

Now, in response to public demand, Mr Bunn has produced a third edition of the book – with a bit of family help.

The new edition – Haunted Lowestoft Revisited – includes a cover image designed by his daughter Emma Bunn, and it was edited and proof-read by his 14-year-old grandson Henry Baker, who also oversaw the lay-out and graphics and wrote its foreword.

'It has been a real team effort,' said Mr Bunn. 'The idea of doing a new edition was something we first bounced around about a year ago but it took a while before I fully committed to it, prompted, I think, by Henry goading me to do it.

'Since then it has taken three months of intensive work, working with Henry at evenings and weekends...

'I got him to proof-read it as his command of English is far better than mine. He noticed 120 grammatical errors in the previous edition!'

The new edition is about double the size of its predecessor, with a host of additional information, some new tales, and the complete story of the Old Man of Hopton, which relates to sightings of a ghostly figure crossing the A12 near the village.

Mr Bunn said it was the wealth of new material he had on this particular story that helped convince him to update the book.

'I had a whole filing cabinet worth of information, so I thought it'd be great to air it,' he said.

The new edition of the book is printed by Rondor Printing Co in Lowestoft, the same company that printed the original in 1975.

But, having invested his own money in reprinting the title, Mr Bunn is confident there is a market for it.

Not only does Waterstone's in Lowestoft have a waiting list for the book; it also has its own facebook page – with 250 members.

'It has also continued to be a popular book with borrowers at Lowestoft Library, and I hear that one or two have gone missing over the years,' said Mr Bunn, who works at Lowestoft Record Office.

'I think that while there are people, there will be ghost stories.

'Everyone seems to have a story of their own, or a ghostly experience, and that fuels and maintains the interest.

'Since we finished this edition, I've heard two new stories so the book already needs another reprint... I've told Henry that I'll be in the next one myself, though you'll have to wait 20 years for that.

'I'm not ready to go just yet!'

Henry, said that he had thoroughly enjoyed helping his grandfather update the book, which he became fascinated with as a small child.

'I've already sold a few copies to people at school. My friends think it's great,' he said.

'We've already talked about doing another project which could be a book about the legend of Black Shuck.'

Ivan and Henry will be signing copies of the new edition of Haunted Lowestoft at Waterstone's in London Road North, Lowestoft, on Saturday, December 18.