Nicola Kirk: Author and Collector of Paranormal Stories and Other Strange Encounters

Archive for the ‘Incredible coincidences’ Category

What Is Going On Today!?

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We’ve all had days like it.  You’re out and about, minding your own business when everything just seems to Go Wrong.  I had a day like that at the weekend.  I went to a picnic to celebrate my brother’s birthday – lovely!  The kids were good, the weather was fantastic and we had a great day.  Until I went near my car.

Usually I will be the first to admit if I’ve done something a bit daft (at least to myself, anyway) however on this particular day, things just seemed to happen that were not of my creation.  On the way there, my engine light came on.  Fortunately, I knew it wasn’t anything serious, just a sensor misbehaving, so I carried on.  Then a little light popped up to advise me my tyre pressure was low.  Huh.  My dashboard was starting to look a little Christmas tree-like.  Okay, fine, fine, I can get these bits sorted out, I thought to myself as I trundled over the Dartford Bridge.  Then coming home, a guy quite literally took my wing mirror off as he came around the corner on my side of the road.  That was a bit of a shocker, I can tell you. We stopped, checked we both retained all of our limbs, he apologised, I collected the bits of my mirror from down the road and I thought with slightly gritted teeth, okay, it’s fine, it can be fixed, and I pushed what remained of the now smashed mirror back into place so I could at least get home and went on my way.

I made my way back towards the Dartford Bridge with my car feeling a little under the weather and me feeling a little paranoid that people were looking at my freshly shattered mirror and silently judging me as they went by, when I had a moment of horror as I saw a large stone hurtling towards my face.  Fortunately the windscreen took the brunt of it but the glass was left with two nice big chips in it.  “Oh, for goodness sake!!” I snapped.  “Really!? Anything else?!  Could there be anything else that could happen!?”

Then the petrol light came on.

But epic as my journey seemed at the weekend, it’s nowhere near as bad as this poor chap’s day, so I shall count my blessings:


And then there’s always the times that animals are hell-bent on wrecking your day too:


But then there are the times when… well, there is just no hope for some people, it was destined to not go well right from the outset:




©Nicola Kirk 2016 and

Death Clicks: When Death Snaps His Fingers

ghost flying out from an old radiator on a moon-lit night

Cooling Pipes… Or Death Looking For A Way In?

Paranormality defines ‘Death Clicksas: “a strange phenomenon that has its origins in Samoa.  Like the wailing banshees of Ireland, believed to predict the imminent death of someone in the household, death clicks are the sudden onset of persistent and loud clicking that sounds throughout the house of someone who is going to die soon.”

My house seems to be full of things that bang, pop and click (including my mother -in-law), but I’ve recently conducted a head count and, touch wood, everyone still seems to be lurking where I left them.  Fortunately, it would appear that Death is not trying to get my attention just yet.  Who am I kidding, what with the general chaos that’s usually going on at home, we wouldn’t hear him knocking anyway!

But should you panic if you hear the strange knockings of, say, the Deathwatch Beetle?  The film ‘Practical Magic‘ suggests pulling up floorboards to conduct a frantic search for the little bugger is in order if you wake up in the small hours to hear the peculiar knocking noise they make.

WARNING: the following clip is a guaranteed blub inducer, get thy tissues at the ready:

There is, apparently, an old superstition that if you hear three knocks that seem to come from nowhere then, in a nutshell, someone you know is going to peg it.  Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow but… you get my drift.  There are quite a few stories out there from people who have indeed experienced this strange occurrence for themselves – click on the following link to read about those who have been dragged into the fateful game of:


So, now I’m somewhat confused.  What do I do if I hear someone knocking at my place of residence? I can’t help but feel it’s a little bit rude to yell at them to ‘use the doorbell or I’m not coming to the door!’  Or maybe I should just board the front door up for good measure and wait for Death to come crashing through my window in a flurry of highly charged black nylon and plastic scythes like this guy:

My fellow Researcher of Much Spookiness and  Head Sifter of You Tube Clips, Tarryn, has also come across some records of strange knockings that preceded deaths: Click Here for more tales of ghostly knocks in the night…

Meanwhile, in the distant land of Can’t Understand What You’re Saying,  from what I can make out, this lady appears to have experienced mysterious knocking sounds in her house and the perpetrator can not be located.   Or… she could just be looking for her kettle:

A further donation from Tarryn comes from SeeksGhosts Blog Spot, who also has a few stories about strange Knocks of Doom:

“The Irish and the Scots both have traditions that state three knocks on a door or three taps on a window especially when heard at regular intervals – lasting for two minutes-means death.

According to several Native American tribes when the thumping of a stick 3 times on the ground is heard or the beating of a drum 3 times is heard it means someone will die.  This superstition also pops up in Arab and Jewish traditions.”

If you have had any strange experiences involving Death Clicks (or Death Knocks or Death Trying to Climb Through Your Window), please feel free to leave your stories in the comments section below!

But please, no knock knock jokes…


©Nicola Kirk 2016 and

While I’m lurking on line…

Being a parent myself, I often find myself laughing at the things my kids say to me.  Fortunatley they don’t often creep me out but I wanted to share this blog post with you that I came across today because it appears there are some kiddies out there who are determined to well and truly freak their parents out:


via Flickr – Boris Thaser1. The Man With The Snake Neck While changing my daughter in front of the open closet door. She kept looking around me and laughing. I asked her what was so funny. She said, “the man.” To which I replied, “what man?” She then pointed at the closet and said, “the man…

via 42 Creepy AF Things Kids Said To Their Parents That Absolutely Chilled Them To The Bone — Thought Catalog


Time Travel There's an app for that,funny pictures,auto,demotivation,time travel,app

Afternoon everyone!

I receive regular newsletters from a paranormal website called Phantoms and Monsters – it’s a great way of keeping up with the latest events in the World of the Weird and I’d highly recommend a visit to the website if you are interested in anything from vampires to UFOs.  It covers everything and then some.

Anyway, I came across the following article in today’s newsletter and it really caught my interest so I thought I’d share it with you lot too.  I’d love to hear your thoughts on this one:

“A few weeks ago, I received an interesting inquiry referencing an incident that occurred in the vicinity of Baltimore, Maryland in June 1992. The information was forwarded by a now-retired attorney who continues to live in the area. At the time of the incident, he (who I will refer to as MB) had a private practice with several offices in the Baltimore / Washington DC metro area. He also provided pro bono legal services for the State of Maryland, particularly representing clients with mental disabilities. Since receiving the first email, I had 2 more conversations with MB…which were recorded with his permission. I am going to write his allegory as it was given to me…the resulting statement was approved by MB. Many of the specific and personal details will not be included for MB’s confidentiality and privacy:

Statement – MB – Baltimore, MD – 4/5/2013

* In June 1992, I was assigned a pro bono case / client who was being housed, by court order, in one of the State Hospitals located in the metro Baltimore area.

* I interviewed the client at the State Hospital facility. I informed him that he was facing a weapon possession charge (a vintage Marlin Derringer handgun and ammunition were found in his pants pocket) and other local vagrancy violations.

* The client told me that he went by the name Morris Winthrop. He stated that he was from New Jersey and lived most of his life in New York City. The file showed that there was no record of him residing in the State of Maryland.

* When arrested, Morris wore a high collar white shirt and a brown frock coat and pants. I examined the clothes…later I would discover that these were very similar to Victorian era men’s clothing from the 1870-1880s. He also possessed a silver metal case…similar to a cigarette case. Inside the case was a square piece of black colored material that resembled hard plastic. He was allowed to retain this object while at the facility.

* Morris looked to be in his early 30s, though there was no hair or stubble on his face…just thin eyebrows. He had wispy blond hair and a very pale complexion. The eyes were very deep blue…almost violet in color.

* During the interview, he would look directly at me and smile. He answered few questions other than his name, that he was living in New York City and that he didn’t know how he arrived in Baltimore.

* The physician at the hospital stated that he may be suffering from shock and that there may be some memory loss. I didn’t get that impression while in Morris’ presence. It seemed to me that he knew exactly what was transpiring. To this day, I still do not know why I felt that way.

* At the end of the interview, I told him that he was being held at the facility under court order and that I would seek a hearing date. Morris’ reply to me was ‘thank you for your service. I will contact you…I promise.

* The next day I was contacted by the Baltimore County State Attorney’s office and informed that my services were no longer needed in this case. No further information was provided.

* I contacted the physician who was treating Morris. He stated that Morris was no longer at the facility. I asked where he was taken and told that I would need to contact the State Attorney’s office.

* For almost 2 years, no official information was available in regards to Morris.

* In 1994 I was approached by an attendant who had worked at the State Hospital during Morris’ brief stay. I was told that Morris had suddenly disappeared from the ward after his late meal. There was a thorough search conducted without results. Morris’ clothes were retained by the State Attorney’s office. All other items, including the silver metal case, were missing. I have never found out where the weapon was stored…though I assume it is at State Police headquarters.

* At that time, I conducted a private search for Morris Winthrop. I hired a private investigator who found very little information other than that a single 32-year-old man named Morris Winthrop had resided in New York City in 1877…until he went missing without a trace. All his property (in Manhattan) had been left behind. The police found no evidence of foul play.

* After 19 years, I never found another reference to Morris Winthrop. This has become a bit of an obsession for me. I have hired other private investigators over the years but nothing has been found. If Morris was a ‘time traveler’, I wonder if he’ll contact me as promised? MB

NOTE: Like I stated before, this is the final statement approved by MB. Could this be a case of ‘time travel?’ I would have preferred more information but MB is quite wary of how others would interpret his quest into Morris’ identity and deposition. He asked me not to conduct a private inquiry. It seems his long-term investigation has ruffled the feathers of a few local and state officials over the years.”

With thanks to Phantoms And Monsters.


©Nicola Kirk and 2013


Ouija boards… I’ve seen many mixed reactions from people when it comes to the use of Ouija boards.  Some are openly terrified of them.  Others, such as myself, think they make a very nice table mat when they’re not being used (although I did eventually have to put it away as people often spilled their coffee when they realised what they were using as a coaster).  I am the proud owner of two Ouija boards (is this Ouija broadband?) and I’ve got to say I have not been subject of any interdimensional invasions, possessions or paranormal terrorism.  Perhaps this is just sheer luck or maybe the paranormal world just doesn’t find life at home with the Kirks that appealing.  Perhaps an invasion has been attempted but the Wraiths From Beyond got fed up with treading on my son’s Lego and decided to try somewhere less dangerous instead.

Anyway, this particular novel goes a bit like this…

Lisa, Lex and Rena are best friends – they do everything together, but when an evening’s fun with a Ouija board gets a little out of hand they soon find out just how deep their friendship actually runs.

Ouija is a fictional novel about three women who suspect their Ouija board might just be a direct telephone line to Satan.  Some would say that on its own is terrifying enough, but when a murderous Occultist and her demons set their sights on the women as potential sacrifices for their nefarious rituals, things look pretty dire for the three friends.




©Nicola Kirk and 2012

Book Cover Image and Design ©Nicola Kirk 2012


Dreaming Of The Impossible Again…

I was paying attention a blog I read last night. It had said that the best way to go about being noticed in blogging is to read other people’s blogs. This sounds like a sensible thing to do, but I haven’t been doing it. I have been too absorbed in writing my own. So last night I set some time aside to have a read of some other people’s blogs – and I’m glad I did. One person, Mountain Hollow Paranormal, wrote that they liked looking around graveyards with big old gravestones.  So do I! I really don’t go in for these uniform graveyards where people are reduced to little diddy stones all of the same size. Where is the atmosphere? Where is the individuality we had when we were alive? Oh, woe is the uniform graveyard! Anyway, I read a few blogs, left some comments (because as a blogger I love receiving other people’s comments on my blog, so share and share alike) and went to bed.

And then… the dream struck. And I’m afraid I must firmly point the finger of blame for this supremely weird dream at my fellow bloggers. Yes, my friends, you woke the ‘monster of weirdness’ who was quietly snoozing deep in my subconscious.

I Don’t Do Summer Dresses!

I dreamed I was sitting in the garden of a lovely manor house which was a bit run down and the gardens now resembled a small, somewhat overgrown meadow. It was the most gorgeous day and the sky was blue with a few wispy clouds and I was wearing a pretty little summer dress (I don’t think I’ve owned a pretty little summer dress in my life – it’s boots and jeans all the way, I’m afraid). I had the distinct impression I was just a little girl but that was only to begin with. As the dream went on I seemed to gain a few years along the way. I was sitting on the grass, looking around and on the end of the gabled part of the country house was the date 1531. This, for some reason, seemed very significant to me. It was a date I had to remember. I got up and began walking along a path formed of shorter, already trodden down grass towards a little road between two houses. I had a doll in my hand and was slightly unnerved to hear a dog running after me. It sounded like a big dog too. I tried to hide my fear and looked around to see a great, hairy, black German Shepherd running after me. But, fortunately for me and my dolly, this dog was friendly – it meant me no harm. I was even vaguely pleased to see it, with its great tongue lolling out of its mouth. It seemed to me that I had acquired my own Black Shuck.  Who would have thought it? Even in my dream I felt as if parts of my research into the World of Weird were rolling together to form one big crazy dream. I wondered if I had got the setting for the dream from the book I’m currently reading: The Favoured Child by Philippa Gregory. She writes some amazing books… anyway, I digress.

As I walked down the road between the two houses, it appeared that the road led to the churchyard. Along either side of the road were planks of wood and (you know how you just know things in dreams) I knew they were made of yew. This I put down to the knowledge that yew trees are commonly grown in churchyards. While I stood to one side of the road, I saw a group of Chinese people heading my way.  They were wearing dull grey robes edged with dark red.  They were all hooded and carrying tiny bundles in their arms, which were also wrapped in dull grey fabric. There were other Chinese people also walking along the planks on either side of the road and I understood this was because they were the ‘overseers’ and they were important enough to warrant walking on the planks in the belief that if they did so, Death would not be able to follow in their footsteps – I thought this detail was oddly insightful (or should I say creative) for me. The other people walking in the road were not offered this luxury. I could only see their mouths under their hoods and they were all forming an ‘O’ shape, reminiscent of the Dementors from the Harry Potter movies. The tiny bundles in their arms were dead babies that they were taking to the churchyard. This, I think, was brought to my dream partly by some research I have recently done to try and find the location of a grave for someone and Mountain Hollow Paranormal’s blog that I read last night where they had noticed there were a collection of children’s graves in the corner of the graveyard they had recently looked around.

What Are You Doing In My Dream, Scary Chinese Man? 

As we walked along together, with me trying to be as invisible as possible and the Chinese group not even giving me so much as a passing look, I noticed an old rundown bookshop at the top of a short winding set of stone stairs which were covered with dead brown leaves. Those who know me will know that book shops of any kind are like magnets to me and I was in there like a shot. There wasn’t a soul to be seen at first and I noticed a strange looking green paperback book which I picked up and started leafing through. The book seemed to fall open to a certain page and as I began reading I was stunned to find it happened to be all about the incident I’d just witnessed outside and I understood what I’d seen had actually happened a long time ago (I wonder if that’s why the 1531 seemed particularly relevant – had it happened in that year?) and I’d most likely been watching a bunch of ghosts reenacting a very sad past event. Where the Chinese element came into it, I have no idea. Perhaps I was feeling particularly multicultural last night. Who knows.

I noticed, when I was in the book shop, that I seemed to have become rather more advanced in years and I was no longer a little girl in a summer dress. And not only that, there were three other men in the book shop with me. If you thought the dream had been weird up to now, I was in for another example of how devious and wacky my psyche can be when it wants to.

She’s Got To Get Everywhere These Days…

Outside the book shop, down a different flight of steps was the ladies toilet. It reminded me more of a dungeon, but it was, strangely enough, nice and clean (brownie point for the book shop owner). I went down to have a look only to find… Lady Gaga. Unfortunately for Gaga, she wasn’t looking her usual exuberant self. Actually, she was a bit dead. Very dead, as it goes, because she was more skeleton than flesh (and, contrary to belief, baby, she wasn’t born that way…). This was, as you can imagine, a rather horrifying discovery and I ran out of the toilet, looking for the men to console me. Men will make everything better, a little voice in my head told me. Whilst looking for the men, I looked out of the book shop window and could see there was a gent’s toilet across the other side of the road, but it was inundated with flies which were pouring out of the entrance. One of the guys I’d seen in the book store was trying his best to see where the flies were coming from and, to my horror, I realised that the owner of the book shop had somehow died in the toilet and that’s where all the flies were coming from. Horrors! What was going on here?

I joined up with the three men outside the bookshop and I was feeling particularly overwrought by now, words pouring from my lips in a slightly hysterical but slurred rush (I suspect I may well have been talking in my sleep at this point, but I don’t recall my husband giving me a shove, so perhaps I was doing it quietly).

By this time I was back at my current age (don’t ask, I’m not telling you what it is), and one of the men I was with was looking at me intently while I was babbling on about what I’d seen and wondering what it could all possibly mean. Then he leaned in to give me a kiss. Which was nice, at first, and all rather exciting until I noticed I had a bit of KFC in my mouth. Well, I hadn’t been eating KFC so, I thought, somewhat disgusted, it must have been his. Then I found another bit… and, oh yuck, was that another bit? I was going off the man who was kissing me more and more, and it didn’t help matters when he started to giggle in a rather psychotic way. Now, this part of the dream I can partly put down to the fact I’d had some KFC before bed (won’t be doing that again in a hurry)…

As with most people, I dream but don’t often recall all the details like this. I wonder why it is some dreams are more vivid than others and stay with you for a long time. And so, dear fellow bloggers and readers with a curious bent who have stayed with me through the course of the above dream, it is time to crack out the psychology and dream books. What did all that actually mean!?  I look forward to reading your comments.


(c) Nicola Kirk 2012 and 2012


Working at a museum can be anything but dull and dusty – you never know when history will reach out to grab you.

To receive a free copy, click The Final Chapter.

Format: PDF file


©Nicola Kirk and 2010


I See Dead People!

On Friday 15th October, I arrived at 7pm with my husband and Sally, the museum curator, arrived with her other half, Keith, and a friend, Kelly.   Flossie from Almost Haunted, looked a little horrified that there were so many of us.  Perhaps she thought we were going to run riot around the museum and steal their digital cameras.  As it goes, I thought we were all very well behaved, quietly settling down in one corner of the museum with some of Sally’s best coffee (I love the chewable quality of Coffee Mate) while Almost Haunted set up their equipment.  Then came… ‘the talk’.

One of the first things that Flossie came out with is that we should not, under any circumstances, touch the medium (i.e. her).  Apparently doing so would result in ‘a smack in the mouth’.  I glanced around at my husband and friends and was pleased to see that no one from our little group looked remotely interested in molesting the medium.  I thought back to various programmes of ‘Most Haunted’ where mediums who were well away with the faeries were frequently caught up in bear hugs by one of their team members whilst people shouted ‘come forward!  Come forward!‘ at them.  Their team members always managed to walk away with all their teeth after touching the medium, I wondered why Flossie was so different…

Flossie also insisted that there was to be no whispering (as apparently hearing whispering on tape caused their sound technician no end of orgasms until he discovered that it wasn’t the spirit world trying to get into contact but people discussing a film they’d been to see).   It’s very difficult not to whisper in a museum, especially under those circumstances, because your initial reaction is to keep your voice down .

Dowsing Rods:  No Batteries Required…Thank Goodness

Flossie then asked us if we minded if she cast a circle of protection around us all – I thought it was rather nice of her to ask first, rather than just going ahead and doing it (not that we would have known either way).  While I was admiring the latest additions to Sally’s museum displays, out came the dowsing rods.   Flossie’s dowsing rods were traditional bits of wire bent over at right angles, but instead of just holding them in her hands, she had little loose-fitting sleeves over the handles which meant the slightest movement made them swing around with carefree abandon.  Watching Flossie’s hands, I was a little bemused to see that she was moving her hands back and forth an awful lot, the end result being that the dowsing rods were flying around like helicopter blades.  She moved over to where I was sitting and declared that my energy was causing some disturbance to her readings because I was pregnant and was carrying a ‘new soul’ (and yes, being 8 months pregnant at the time, this was something I and everyone else was well aware of; no news from the paranormal world was coming through there).   The base line tests were quite interesting to watch too, especially when there was a buzz of excitement as an EMF meter began to click away excitedly.  Was something trying to manifest?  No – the technician was standing in front of a television which was turned on.  Then there was a problem with the voice recorder.  Strangely enough, even with fresh batteries it didn’t want to work… perhaps a spirit was draining the energy!? Oh, no, wait a moment… they’d put the batteries in back to front.  Oh my…

When the lights were turned out for the first vigil, Flossie said that she could sense two children in the museum, one of whom was rather mischievous.  One child was quickly forgotten about while Flossie focussed on the naughty child.  His name was apparently Peter or Paul (or Percy or Boris – Heaven only knows what happened to Robert: see part 1 of this post) and he had died of consumption when he was seven years old.  Unfortunately, Peter/Paul wasn’t in the mood to stop for a chat; he quickly got bored and ‘wandered off’.  Flossie said that she could see some orbs around me (presumably these ones were pretty glow in the dark ones that she alone was able to see) and she said I wasn’t to be frightened, they were only curious because… I was pregnant.  This would be a reoccurring theme for the evening: “The spirits are angry/don’t want to talk to me/have all gone on strike because… Nicola is pregnant!”

Once the vigil in the museum was finished, we went for a brief walk around the grounds where there were some old buildings where ‘people of importance’ used to live before they turned the buildings into offices.  The most interesting thing we came across was a fat old hedgehog ambling across the lawns.   Flossie said she could see, in her mind’s eye, that there had been some sort of mini riot beneath an archway just across from where we were standing.  She said that she could see an old carriage and a man wearing evening dress.  He was most upset over the fact that he had to get out of the carriage to sort out the problem.  The people that Flossie saw involved in the riot were apparently all sporting ‘big moustaches’ and her description reminded me of a posh rugby scrum.   As the evening progressed, I couldn’t help but think Flossie was just coming out with things that couldn’t really be checked up on too easily and were rather generalised.

The New Must Have: Sod iPhones – Get A Red Indian Spirit Guide!

When we were back indoors, I asked Flossie about her psychic abilities.  I went for the politely curious approach, rather successfully, I thought, masking my scepticism.  I asked if she was able to turn her psychicness on and off at will – how did it work for her?  She said that she had guides who helped her, but she only spoke with them on her terms.  I desperately wanted to ask if one of her guides was a red Indian (well, every medium worth their salt seems to have one these days) but I resisted the temptation.  Flossie said that her guides weren’t allowed to hassle her night and day and they were most definitely not allowed in the bathroom.

Over at ‘the Store’, Flossie said Room 1 and the room directly above that, Room 5, left her feeling nauseous and she didn’t like them.  Upstairs in Room 5, we left Almost Haunted to do their investigating and when they were finished I asked Flossie what she had found.  She said that she was in touch with a spirit called Edward Banks who was 48.  Flossie said Edward looked older than his years and had greying hair, a pinched face and wore round glasses.  He had allegedly worked for the police and had died around 1910 but he didn’t want to tell her what he had died of, for some reason.  She said that he had a terrible stutter which made communication rather difficult and that he dealt with accounts and figures and was autistic.  She said when he was asked too many questions he began to get distressed and would rock back and forth.  “It’s like upsetting a seven-year old,” Flossie declared, “I don’t like doing it.”

Pride of the Police Force:

Edward Banks, We Salute You!

Flossie said Edward was on a ‘loop’, constantly doing his accounts.  A few things struck me as odd with this information.  Firstly, it seems highly doubtful that back in the 1900s the police would have employed someone with autism to do their accounts work.  Seeing as the police have always been rather strict about the health of their employees, it didn’t seem feasible.  The other thing I wondered was, if Edward was autistic, wouldn’t his peers have had him forcibly installed in an institution somewhere – wouldn’t they have classed Edward’s autism as a form of insanity?  The other thing that didn’t ring true was when I asked Sally how long the store had been on the site, she advised me that the house had only been built in the 1920s, a decade after Edward had apparently died, and that the only thing that was there before then was gravel pits.  Also, the house had never been used as an office and where Edward was apparently sitting at his desk had only ever been someone’s bedroom before the house became a store for artefacts.   It appeared that Flossie’s ‘spook radar’ was also in need of a change of batteries…  Anyway, Almost Haunted locked off a camera near the desk and left it to film for a bit.

Bare Fist Fighter: Was Biff Just A Big Pussy?

So.  Room 1 of the store.  This is apparently where all the fun took place.  Flossie said she didn’t want me to go into Room 1 whilst they conducted their experiments (despite the fact I’ve been in there before) because there was the spirit of a particularly nasty individual in there who had a nickname that sounded like ‘Buster’ or ‘Biff’ (or Bill or James or Derek…).  She said he was a bully and always tried to upset women although he was a bit more wary around the men, especially if there were a few of them.  Flossie’s concern was rather touching, although I would have preferred it if I could have just sat down in the corner somewhere and observed the experiment like everyone else.  After all, if a spook was that desperate to come and get me in particular, I’m sure there would be nothing to stop him leaving Room 1 if he wanted to.  Flossie said the mean spirit was some sort of street fighter from the 1890’s and had a nose that had been broken on many an occasion.  He had apparently been jailed for getting into a fight; he had punched a man who had fallen over, hit his head and died.

My Precious! – Will Biff Ever Find His Ring?

Flossie told me that ‘Biff’ wore a distinctive gold ring with a sort of skull and crossbones motif on it.  Later she described it as having a flat face to it and then it was more like a sovereign ring or was perhaps something that a Hell’s Angel would wear.  I soon began to lose count of how many different types of rings ‘Biff’ was supposedly in possession of.  The ring, Flossie declared, would have left a distinct impression on his victim’s faces.  She said ‘Biff’ was a big chap with next to no teeth and looked as if he’d had a hard life.  Apparently the children who haunted the museum were scared off by him and the spirit liked to stand behind women and other lone individuals and give them a ‘spiritual beating’, until they were left with headaches and a general feeling of poor health.  So, I stood out in the hallway to keep Flossie happy as she said she wouldn’t be able to protect me from ‘Biff’ if he started getting feisty.

DJ Death:  It’s Not A Ghost – It’s A Bloody DJ!

During their investigation of Room 1, Almost Haunted brought out a detuned radio as part of a new experiment.  Fortunately I’ve seen this sort of thing before so I knew what they were up to.  I got the impression that they were trying to keep this new experiment top secret for some reason.  They set the radio so it constantly flicked through the various radio stations from one end of the gauge to the other, picking up snippets of people talking, and then… they start asking questions.  I understand that the idea of the detuned radio is that the spirit trying to make contact will pick words out from radio broadcasts that make an appropriate answer, however some people are more of the opinion that it is the spirit itself talking through the radio.  You have to listen really hard because of the static and I can’t help but think people generally hear what they want to hear with this sort of experiment. Anyway, Almost Haunted didn’t have long to wait until they started getting responses from someone they called ‘William’.  Perhaps this was ‘Biff’s’ real name. Here’s how the questioning went (where I haven’t written anything after the question means there was no response – at least not a recognisable one):

Q.  Are you being vain?

A.  Might be.

Q.  How did you die?

Q.  Are you a bad man?

Q.  Tell me about the ring.

Q.  Have you hurt anyone?

Q. Who took your ring? (A faint response but we couldn’t hear.)

Almost Haunted then decided to change the radio setting from FM to AM instead to see if that made a difference.   They tried again:

Q.  Do you have a problem with women?  You seem to frighten women.

Q.  Who took the ring?  I know you don’t want to talk.  Did they take the ring after they hung you?

Flossie then told us that William/Biff was using offensive language and that the ring was somewhere in the store house.  The questioning continued:

Q.  Are you from Scotland?

Q.  Where are you from?

A.  Scotland.

Almost Haunted thought they heard the word ‘Perth’ in amongst the static but someone else in the group said they heard ‘no’ instead.  One of the members of Almost Haunted said he kept hearing the same voice coming through on the radio.  This comment made me close my eyes and count to ten.  I found it hard to believe that Almost Haunted couldn’t see that as the radio was constantly flicking through the same radio stations over and over again, they would of course be picking up the same DJs over and over again.  I sighed and continued to listen in…

Q.  William, were in Scotland are you from?

Q. (From Flossie) Why are you calling the boys Jessies?

Q.  What ring are you here for?

Q.  Is the ring connected to the crime?

A.  No.

Q. Who was killed?

Q.  How many people were killed?

Flossie declared that ‘William’ had been hung for murder although these days it would be classed as manslaughter because the person he had attacked had fallen, hit their head and died.

Q.  What is your nickname?  Biff, Buff, Biffer?

Flossie told us that ‘Biff’/ William was mainly in the store at night  looking for his ring and that if they were to leave his ring out one night, it wouldn’t be there the next morning.  Eventually Flossie knocked the session on the head saying that William was horrid and to just leave him alone.  Someone said they heard the word ‘sure’ come through on the detuned radio at that point.  The rest of us could make nothing much out of the roar of static.

“I’m getting a surname,” Flossie said mysteriously just as she was about to leave the room.  “Possibly be McGrowly.”  McGrowly?  What, really? How Scottish and relevant to William’s nasty personality…

Later that night I asked Sally what she had thought of the experiment.  She said that no items of jewellery whatsoever were kept in the store.  She said there were a few knuckledusters there and harboured suspicions that Flossie had seen the display in the museum where Sally had laid out some of the more interesting looking knuckledusters and that may well have been what Flossie was trying to describe.  Whether Flossie had subconsciously noticed these knuckledusters in the museum or not is difficult to say.  Perhaps she assumed that because there were some in the museum there were more kept in the store and had hoped Sally might have made the connection.

Upstairs in Room 5, Almost Haunted tried a similar experiment with the lights off (of course).  Once again, I stood out on the landing and listened, scribbling copious notes as I did so.  Flossie then began to talk to Edward Banks, the autistic spirit. Once again, she said that he was in a loop, sitting at his desk doing his accounts work.

“It’s figures all the time with him,” she said with a scowl.  “He doesn’t realise he’s dead and that he was killed in an accident.”  She asked Sally if she would try and ask Edward some questions while the detuned radio fizzled and squeaked away to itself:

Q.  How did you die?

Q.  Why are you still here?

Q.  Do you know you are dead?

A.  He knows.

Flossie pounced on those two garbled words with relish.

“Having worked with some autistic people, they sometimes refer to themselves in the third person,” she told us smugly.  “Edward is quite sweet but he’s getting agitated.  He’s started rocking.”   Again, I found myself asking why the police would have employed someone so mentally unstable?  The medium said Edward was always sitting at his desk in his time, and there was also another desk and an armchair in the room with him, too.  Someone commented that they were getting a different voice through on the detuned radio to the one they had downstairs – and, again, I found myself cringing at the fact that these people didn’t seem to realise they were just picking up different DJs.

Sally asked if Edward knew her and apparently Almost Haunted heard a faint ‘yes’ on the radio.  The rest of us heard nothing but static.

Q.  Are you aware of Sally?  Are you aware of anyone else who comes here?

Q.  Do you know Bob Smith (name changed)? (Apparently Bob visited the store on his own twice a week).

Q.  Tell us what you do.  Do you work for the police?

At this point Flossie decided it was time to leave Edward alone.  She said she didn’t feel much in the other rooms.  At this point, we were all starving and fortunately Almost Haunted decided it was a good time to wind up their investigations.

It will be interesting to hear what, if anything, they found on their recordings.

No, Really, I’m Sure It Is… Somewhere…

Follow up:

I have been in touch with Sally since this investigation.  Sadly, nothing paranormal came to light after Almost Haunted went through the photographs they took, other than some of the faintest orbs you could imagine that had to be massively highlighted  by the team – dust or spooks, the ‘great orb debate’ lives on.   Personally, I can’t help but feel if you have to look that hard for the evidence, chances are it’s not there to begin with.

Flossie also confessed to Sally that she had a terrible memory – perhaps that’s the reason why the mischievous little boy from the museum had a few name changes – she couldn’t quite remember what she had named him during the pre-investigation.

Speaking of pre-investigations, I am not sure why Almost Haunted felt the need to do one.  The sceptical side of me wonders if it just gave the team time to have a nose around, get an idea of what the place was all about, and then weave some suitable stories in preparation for the official investigation.   Who knows?

Meanwhile, Sally and I will keep our eyes and ears peeled for any paranormal evidence at the museum… but we won’t be holding our breath.


©Nicola Kirk and 2010




Ghost Busting: Alas, it’s never like the films…

The other week I was fortunate enough to be invited to a paranormal investigation, purely as an observer, but it was a treat nonetheless – these events generally are.  I have changed the names of people and places to respect their privacy (and so they can’t hunt me down and lob rotten vegetables at me) but, at the end of the day, it is the experience itself that matters, isn’t it?  And for this particular experience, if I was to play some theme music to it, the Benny Hill theme would suit it down to the ground.

My good friend, Sally, is the curator of a rather nice museum and she had been approached by a paranormal group, let’s call them… Almost Haunted, and was asked if they could investigate.  Sally agreed that they could.  A few weeks before the actual investigation, Almost Haunted‘s medium, (ummm, let’s call her Flossie) and one of her technical chaps had popped along for a pre-investigation investigation.  During this pre-investigation, Flossie and her colleague had a brief wander around the museum while it was still daylight and the medium declared she was in touch with the spirit of a young boy of about six years old called Robert.  She said Robert particularly liked the area of the museum that was full of 1970s artefacts but he was annoyed that Sally had recently moved a clock that had been sitting on top of a television there.  Why that particular item being moved would bother a child considering that the contents of the museum are changed and swapped around on a regular basis, I don’t know.  However, Sally was a little surprised by this piece of information because she had indeed moved the clock.  When she was alone, Sally had a closer inspection of the area around the clock to see if there were any tell-tale dust marks that might have indicated to Flossie that the clock had been moved, but she couldn’t see anything.  A lucky guess, perhaps?  Who knows?

Where’s Casper when you need him?  At least he was chatty…

Another spirit that Flossie picked up on at the museum was  a Victorian looking woman called Emily who was apparently stuck on what Flossie referred to as a ‘loop’, meaning she was carrying out the same task again and again.  Flossie said that the woman was ‘extremely busy’ and didn’t have time to stop and talk because she had people to feed.  Furthermore, there was also a rather unpleasant spirit  called George who was dressed as a farrier.  George was not keen on the little boy, Robert, perhaps because Robert sounded like a bit of a brat.

As well as running the museum, Sally also has the use of an old house nearby where she keeps excess artefacts.  She refers to the house as ‘the store’.  I’ve been to the store myself a few times, and although it does have a bit of a musty smell to it, no carpets and an air of long disuse, there’s nothing particularly horrible about it, but I suppose the sheer fact that a house is unlived in is sometimes enough to give it an uncomfortable atmosphere and Sally particularly hates having to go in there alone.  She told me that she was once downstairs working away in what was once the living room when she heard distinct footsteps coming from the room above her.  She was completely alone at the time.   Yup, feel those hairs rising on the back of your neck, ladies and gentlemen…

During the brief tour around the store in August, Flossie said that she didn’t like Room 1, which is just on the left as you walk in (the old living room).  In Room 2, just behind Room 1, which is currently full of old uniforms and tunics, the medium said she sensed a man called Ted who was dressed in what she thought was some kind of railway uniform.  Upstairs, she found a little girl who liked to play with Robert at times – Robert had apparently followed Flossie and Sally over from the museum to the store, and the little girl liked to watch Sally and her colleagues working sometimes – not creepy at all…

Ghostly Footsteps: Who was stalking Sally at ‘the store’?

Moving  upstairs to Room 5, Flossie discovered the spirit of a chap called Edward who was also on a ‘loop’, sitting at a desk, busy slaving over some accounts.  Now, is it just me, or does there seem to be an incredible abundance of ghosts running amok in the museum and store?  It seems to be packed to the rafters with all things dead and who are too busy to stop and chat.

Flossie’s technical assistant took some photos while they were there but unfortunately they failed to show anything of interest, and the EVP recordings (electronic voice phenomena) were sadly blank too.  Again, I find myself wondering that if there were that many ghosts/spirits/whatever you want to call them, all floating around the place, surely one of them might be a little bit interested in making an appearance on film or voice recorder? But no, not so much as a peep from mischievous little Robert or the ever busy Emily.  It would appear that, mediums aside, no matter how many spooks are allegedly crammed into your abode, getting them to appear or stop for a chat is a mission impossible.  You’d have thought the dead would relish the chance to scare the pants off the living.  I know I would, but then I’m a bit evil like that.

During an EVP session the voice recorder turned off after about 30 minutes and Flossie declared that the batteries had been mysteriously ‘drained’, although Sally suspected the batteries may have just died of natural causes because she had overheard Flossie asking one of her technical chaps earlier if they had remembered their voice recorder – possibly because Flossie’s batteries weren’t very fresh to begin with and she was worried they might die during the preliminary investigation.  Which they did.

Why doesn’t it work? Try new batteries…

At this point my imagination was beginning to run riot over what the actual investigation in October was going to be like…

But I’ll have to tell you all about the official investigation in the second part of this post.


©Nicola Kirk and 2010


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©Nicola Kirk and 2010

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