Location History & Information
The Royal British Legion Club in Enfield has been a Legion Club since the 70’s. Before then it was an active Fire Station.
Members of staff at the club have made a few reports regarding certain areas of the building. Uneasy feelings, shadows, breaking glasses and moving doors are amongst these reports.
The staff also reported that it was possible that there had been three deaths on the premises. The first may have occurred back when the building was still being used as a Fire Station. We were told that possibly during a party in the upstairs staff quarters a woman drunkenly stumbled and fell head first down the pole opening and died from the fall. The second was believed to be that of a Fireman who was crushed to death by a tender. The final one was that of a Steward / Barman (former) who died of natural causes in the bar cellar on the ground floor.
As this was my first investigation with ISP I was apprehensive, but to be honest I was looking forward to it. Although I enjoyed the Paranormal Tour, I thought this might be slightly different. I know Jim and co would be using CCTV, camcorders, etc to investigate. I know that they also touch on the spiritual side of things and do a few things such as glass divination, but to be honest it’s the technical and debunking aspect of investigation I’m interested in.
The location on paper sounds quite good; it’s quite large and has quite a few different reports of activity in several locations. I was looking forward to helping out ISP and getting involved in their investigation.
However, I did have a few reservations regarding the location. I had tried to do a little research and had been unable to prove the deaths had occurred. Were these just stories which had grown and changed over time?
ISP Vigil One – The Loft
Once everything was setup and following a quick break we climbed the high ladder up into the loft space. We gathered in the main boarded area in the loft on the seats available. Even with the lights on movement around the loft is restricted to the boarded areas. With the lights off, walking around is simply dangerous. Luckily we had Jim and his torch to light the way.
Most of us remained seated, but Jim, Martin and Marc (the medium) headed over towards the opposite side of the loft. I think Marc was picking up on something, but not sure what! Jim followed Marc over, firstly lighting the way, but he was also armed with an IR thermometer. I don’t know why Martin went, possibly for the reason I should have gone and felt the need to take some pictures, but didn’t.
For a little while the three moved up and down the boards, Jim constantly checked the temperature with the IR thermometer. From time to time his light would come on, possibly for safety. None of us wanted to fall through the floor.
Marc confirmed he was picking something up, but was unclear to what. Jim reported some temperature fluctuations. Lofts are commonly draughty places with variable sources. Outside the building on that Saturday night the wind had already picked up. Personally I wouldn’t be able to rate these temperature variations as the environmental conditions were not controlled enough.
Without history any loft can appear spooky, particularly with its low light and low temperature. A female member of the staff stated she doesn’t like going up into the loft at all. It makes her feel uneasy and scared. Cliff picked up a name whilst we were in the loft, but I can’t remember what it was. He did mention ‘Carpentry’ or ‘Carpenter’.
This Vigil didn’t hold much for me though, no feelings or anything to myself that was unusual. Perhaps I have been up in too many dark lofts.
We then climbed down the ladder and took a break to lead us up to midnight, when the Legion closed.
ISP Meeting with the Legion Staff
Once the members had all gone home we headed downstairs to meet with the four staff members who wanted to join us for the evenings investigation.
The Legion Staff asked a few questions which Jim and Martin answered.
We then split into two groups, ‘Spiritualists’ and ‘Skeptics’ as Jim called them. However, Marc (the medium) joined our group, ‘Skeptics’. We headed upstairs to conduct our Vigil there.
ISP Vigil Two –The First Floor
We began by sitting around a table and quite literally calling out. It wasn’t long before Jim and Martin were off taking temperature readings and generally looking around the first floor.
We had already locked off the kitchen area. Jim and his team set a CCTV Camera with a motion detector and a voice activated digital recorder. We had been told that the kitchen swing door moved by itself. I think Jim’s aim was to try and capture this and establish if this was being caused by a natural means or that of the unknown.
The only thing we did pick up was some clicks or tapping on the digital recorder. We tried to recreate the noises, but the team then became split between it being the door or a tapping on the tea urn. A second check had some more taps and a lot of external noises from the street.
As it appeared that the activity was on a low we kind of eased off the investigation a little. Myself, Martin and Marc stood near to where the old fire man’s pole used to be. Jim and Ian stood at the opposite end of the room on the stage (near the CCTV screen). A final member of the team was looking around the back bar area. All of a sudden Jim asked if we heard something, specifying Jim asked if we heard someone say ‘hello’. None of us apart from Jim and Ian heard it. Ian grabbed his camcorder from the table in almost the middle of the room, which had been recording the whole time. Ian began to rewind it to see if he had caught anything. As he did so we talked amongst ourselves, double checking what we had said and what was heard. Ian found the location on the camcorder and played it, Jim instantly recognized it. Ian made it clearer by hooking it up to the nearby TV. It was as we listened to the recording that the theories on what was being said began. Initially it was thought to be ‘hello’, but it went from that to possibly being a name ‘Marlene’, the female member of staff thought it was an ‘old boy’ speaking.
ISP Vigil Three – The Ground Floor
Our team headed downstairs to conduct our Vigil in the Ground Floor Bar area. We started off with a little wandering around to get our bearings and a feel for the area. We then settled in one of the raised seating areas and talked a little. A couple of the team thought they heard some noises, but these could have easily been environmental. I took a few pictures and was reminded of ‘Flash Etiquette’.
Then Marc picked up on something, but yet again he didn’t feel as if it was a spirit, more of an energy. He moved from our location to the front of the Bar, but nothing seemed to come of it.
I decided to investigate behind the Bar and it wasn’t long before Ian (his camcorder) and Marc joined me. We entered the Cellar area and Marc conducted a mini Vigil in there. In the almost pitch black. I think he picked up on something once again, but again he didn’t specify or elaborate. After a short while trying to make contact we left it alone and returned to the raised area.
The rest of the Vigil was uneventful and it wasn’t long before we decided to call it a night and began to pack up.
We re-joined the group upstairs and switched the lights on. I helped collect the CCTV cameras and gather up the kit ready for our departure.
My Thoughts and Feelings on the Investigation
My personal feelings on the evening’s investigation, was that it was very different from the Paranormal Tour. It was interesting to see the team as they setup their equipment and done their best to cover the possible hotspots. It was also interesting to be a part of an actual investigation and discuss theories regarding the cause of certain phenomenon.
All in all an excellent experience, both educationally and personally.
Do I think Enfield Royal British Legion is haunted? My initial reaction is ‘no’, but saying that the recording places me right on the fence. If I hadn’t been in the room at the time and been there as it developed I may have disregarded the evidence. However, because I was there its credibility rates higher with me.
If, as we may believe the voice on the recording is a spirit. Not one of us, which we know it’s not, then the source is unexplainable. However, as a piece of evidence the circumstances under which it was obtained may slightly invalidate it. The reason for this is that it wasn’t a controlled environment that it was recorded in. Someone could easily explain it away as being one of us.
EVP by itself is difficult as a single piece of proof anyway. Ideally two types of evidence which validate each other are better, for example EVP with Video.
As we know though the paranormal doesn’t conform to laboratory conditions and likes to make it hard to obtain good evidence.
The Enfield Royal British Legion may not be haunted as such, but there could be something there. In my opinion this location requires further investigation. Hopefully we can then obtain further evidence.
Perhaps Marc’s theory regarding a kind of energy possibly related to some kind of bad luck, maybe what haunts the Legion.
Another part of this which needs looking into is the building history. Are the stories of the three deaths true and provable, or are they exaggerated accidents. I contacted the Police regarding the deaths, but they could not return any supporting reports. However, they did mention that some accidents which may have occurred whilst the Legion was a Fire Station may have been recorded by the Fire Service. Surely if a woman had fallen down the pole drunk and died, this at least would have been a matter for the local police.
I guess the jury is still out on this location and further investigation is required in my opinion.
As ever please feel free to let me know what you think, just drop me an email.