Sage Paracon 2017 – Warwick Castle Investigation

Some Thanks First

I want to first say a massive thank you to Jo Woolley for inviting me along with her to investigate Warwick Castle as a part of the kick off for this years Sage Paracon. Jo was lucky enough to win two tickets to the overnight investigation of Warwick Castle about a week before the event.

Due to my personal commitments I couldn’t make the entire weekend this year and in all honesty I was probably in a slight para-sulk because I was going to miss out. For me it wasn’t just the chance to stay at Warwick Castle all weekend, meet and talk to a number of big names in the paranormal field, but also that I wouldn’t have my annual catch up with some great friends that I have met over the years.

I also want to take this opportunity to thank MJ Dickson, as ever she has worked really hard to deliver a fantastic event. Overcoming many challenges along the way.

Enough of all that emotional hugging, let’s get knee-deep into this awesome investigation.

Gathering in the Undercroft

Our evening began with us all meeting up in the Undercroft Restaurant area of Warwick Castle, as this would be our base for the night. Most of the group were staying in the near by Knights Village, which is a beautiful spot in the woods along the river. A mixture of beautiful wood cabins and medieval glamping tents makes the Knights Village an excellent place to stay. Especially if you happen to find yourself investigating the historic Warwick Castle too.


As the gathering of paranormal investigators grew, we were joined by many of the guest speakers too. During the investigation the guest speakers were in various locations around the Castle and in groups we would move between these in order to experience the varying locations and different styles that they each had in regards to the paranormal.

This was also an excellent time to catch up with old friends, make new ones and this time  round say hello to a couple of my actual family. My cousin, Medium Clare Hinks was a guest speaker at this years Sage Paracon UK 2017. It was amazing to catch up briefly with her and her husband Richard whilst we waited to begin our investigation.

After a short wait MJ placed the investigators in groups and started to send us off to our first location with our first guest speaker. As my cousin headed off to the Kenilworth Room with Robert Murch to play with Ouija Boards, I took my place in a group with Richard. After all this was Richards first ever overnight investigation and what a way to start.

The Stonemasons Den with Brian J Cano

The first area that my group headed to was an area of the Castle called the Kingmaker Area and our for this area we would be with Haunted Collectors Brian J Cano. Brian is a fantastic investigator, that I first met back in 2014 and I soon realised there was more to him than what you see on the TV. Actually a hell of a lot more. I really enjoy Brian’s approach to investigation too.

We kicked things off by walking around the area to find anything that may pick up our focus. Straight off, Paula and Wayne believed they saw a light anomaly float towards the stairs near the map of the UK. I have a feeling that they may have caught it on film, but I’m not sure.

After a little while the whole team gathered in the Stonemasons Den with Brian to work as a group together. Brian had us stand in a circle so that we could give a group EVP session a go. Now what I found fantastic here is that Brian took the time to explain the EVP concept for people new to investigations, like Richard. He also told us better ways to perform the session rather than a clinical approach, which just isn’t a natural conversation.

Brian began to record and we each asked a question in turn around the circle. As we did so we tagged any noises too, including the chiming church bells towards the end. Once completed Brian plugged in a handy speaker and we reviewed the audio for possible oddities.

First up was a slightly breathy voice, but this was a little bit of a stretch and if in doubt ‘chuck it out’ right.

However it wasn’t long before we realised that we had captured something odd. Just before Amelia asked her question, there was quite a clear ‘two’ that could be heard. After further review this did sound a little like a sequence of numbers too, possibly like ‘4 3 2..’.

We followed up our EVP session with a little bit of pendulum work. Now I am going to just put this out there, as I have a funny feeling that the launch of the new Apple iPhone may have influenced our possible communication with spirits. Brian decided to use his Apple earphones as a pendulum on this occasion, which was interesting. That said the session did yield some interesting responses. We established a ‘yes’ and ‘no’ before proceeding to ask a few simple questions.

Whatever was communicating through this setup seemed to associate itself with he numbers captured in the EVP. We then tried to establish the location of our communicator and oddly this was confirmed to be with John Zaffis. Brian then decided to try and send the word ‘stab’ back to John as he would most likely be using the Echovox.

As we came towards the end of our session with Brian we decided to give the Psychic Projection Experiment a try. Once again Brian explained this experiment in good detail for those new to it. We actually tried this twice. On the first pass, we focused on the recording device using the word ‘stab’ and on the second pass we used the word ‘believe’. Unfortunately on these occasions the words didn’t appear on the device. This is an excellent little experiment, which is so quick that I think we should be trying it more and documenting it too. At least the circumstances in order to understand why it may work and why it doesn’t.

After a fantastic start to our nights investigation, we headed back to the base room for some refreshments, before moving on.

The Music Room with John Zaffis

Next up we headed to the Music room with the ‘Godfather’ of the paranormal, John Zaffis. John has forty plus years experience in the paranormal field and has studied under his aunt and uncle; Ed and Lorraine Warren.

We setup in the Music room by sitting pretty much in a circle near the piano. John kicked things off with an Echovox (I think, I didn’t get a great look at the app) session, but what I found quite interesting was the way in which John communicated with this ITC app. I have seen many use various ITC apps in the field used, but often investigators will pose more clinical questions. However John pretty much spoke to the app as you would a normal person, responding to its answers and attempting to keep the flow of the conversation going.

A few times whilst using this the name ‘Ed’ could be heard too, which was very interesting. Especially as John would respond by asking him to let others come through.

However it wasn’t long before the focus of this session was gained. Richard picked up on the name ‘Robert’, which John confirmed as being picked up by a previous group too. As we asked questions, we seemed to establish that possibly Robert may have been gay, but had to hide this from everyone. It was possible that he was a member of the family that resided at Warwick Castle, but this was a little vague to be fair. We did establish perhaps that Robert was stood in the corner of the room behind Richard and I.

We done our best as a group with John’s assistance to continue communication with Robert and other spirits by using classic knocks for positive and negative response.

I time with John passed at speed and before we knew it we were heading back to the base room wondering where we would be heading next.

The Bear Tower with Greg Lawson

Our next location was the Bear Tower with Greg Lawson, which was going to be an odd one of course. Simply because the Bear Tower is one small room above a large pit. Plus I also knew we would be in for a treat as Greg’s approach is a little different.

After a brief discussion outside the tower, Greg lead us inside and advised us to read the three pieces of information on the walls. As I stood there I found myself wondering about more than paranormal aspects, but the historical back stories that related to them; just like Greg had mentioned.

Then Greg took the rest of the group outside for a few minutes and left three of us in there alone in the dark. Oddly Danny, Amelia and I seemed quite at home in there, so I decided to ask them both what they were feeling. Which was interesting. Some relating to the probable history of the location, but otherwise certainly not too scary.

When Greg returned with the rest of the group I communicated that I was finding myself questioning what we were presented with, the evidence so to speak wasn’t quite right. Greg continued to tell us of how he had spoken with Frank Cinelli about various things which had lead to his own re-evaluations of how he looked at the paranormal. Something which places us as probable important elements within the paranormal experience. An approach which I totally agree with, as without an observer we must question if the activity ever occurred in the first place. Its the old; if a tree fell in the woods without anyone around would it make a sound analogy.

This questioning of the facts lead us to grab a torch and peer into the pit below us to at least quantify that it was bigger enough to house bears. Which it was, but it was evident from all this that where we stood was more like a gallery area with the bears below. Still I wanted to understand more about this area in order to tie in any probable paranormal elements.

Closure of the Bear Tower vigil came around far too quickly for me as I was getting into research analysis mode. So, I would just like to stop here and thank Greg for reminding me of the importance of following the facts.

Debunking a Strange Light with Carl Hutchinson

When I returned to the base room I bumped into Carl Hutchinson, who asked me to take a look at a couple of pictures he had taken in the courtyard of the castle. In these pictures there was a odd looking little light and in the Live Photos the light danced around like it was alive.

Carl instantly knew that it was something to do with the Apple iPhone (seriously this post isn’t sponsored by Apple) that was causing the oddity, but wondered if I had ever seen something like it.

Weirdly I actually had looked into recently as I had been sent a picture by someone that featured this very strange light. It’s a blue colour around the middle of the picture below.


Also seen in this picture too.


After receiving these I too like Carl thought they were a technical issue and soon concluded it to be so. This was proven though when Francesca Chiorando (Access All Areas) posted a beautiful picture on Facebook of the sun breaking through into the dark wood. Sure enough in the picture was that little blue light again.


However this wasn’t quite enough for Carl and I we had to go through the recreate process to ensure that this was a phone fault and that we weren’t seeing some kind of weird supernatural animal. So, I headed back out into the Castle courtyard to see if I could create a little blue light of my own.


Turns out that whilst you take a photo in low light scenarios like this and when the phone is slightly angled the small little light appears. It also seems that once the little light falls into the focus box this becomes more prominent. Tech issue for sure, debunked!

It’s fantastic to catch up and chat about stuff like this with Carl again.


The Chapel with Jeff Belanger

My groups next location was to be the Chapel with Ghost Adventures and prolific paranormal author Jeff Belanger. We began by discussing a little of this areas history and sharing some of Jeff’s candy corn. I’m still not sure whether accepting candy from Jeff was a good idea, especially given that it was a little addictive and full of sugar. Still thank you Jeff for the candy. Yes I am aware we call them sweets in the UK, but when in Rome.

The actual front of the Chapel wasn’t accessible, but Jeff explained how the motion sensors had triggered the alarms earlier even though there was no one there. As we all discussed this we theorised the possibility that the IR lights from the teams cameras may have set off the motion detectors. Shame we couldn’t test the theory.

Oddly or not so oddly the Chapel was relatively calming for me, well up until Wayne started using a FLIR device. As he scanned the device around the room identifying the various temperatures he discovered something a little odd. There appeared to be a warm patch on the floor registering around 22 degrees. What was particularly interesting is that this warm patch on the floor just wouldn’t dissipate. We tried comparisons by having one of the group sit near by to the patch. After they moved their heat signature soon dissipated. There also didn’t appear to be any light shining into the room that could cause it. It was certainly odd and we struggled to define an explanation.

Now unfortunately we don’t know if this appeared whilst we were there or if it was always there. So, understanding more about it is difficult. Still very interesting though.

Over the weekend this played on my mind a little and one possibility could be that this particular patch of flooring was more shiny than the rest. Thus the FLIR was bouncing back creating a false reading. I seem to recall reading about such a thing previously where during an investigation a false reading was picked up from a mirror, which in the dark wasn’t identified as such.

We all headed back to the base ready for our final location of the night.

The Kenilworth Room with Robert Murch, Nikki Folsom and Clare Hinks

The Kenilworth Room is best known and mentioned several times by me on this very website. Especially due to its connections Aleister Crowley and that very strange photo that MJ took in the room too. Its a part of Warwick Castle that has never really let us down activity wise and holds a certain fascination for me.

As ever our journey to the room was lead by one of the guest speakers, Robert Murch. We walked up stairs, along a corridor, into one of the bedrooms, past a few manikins and then along a long small passageway above the banquet hall to the room. As I stepped into the dark wood panelled room I noticed that my cousin Medium Clare Hinks was playing with a Ouija Board.

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Robert quickly filled us in on some what had already occurred and then a little about the board. Then he invited some of us to join him and Clare on the board. I jumped at the chance of course.

As we played on the board listening to Roberts instructions, some information came through. A little perhaps related to Crowley, a little perhaps related to the resurrection ritual which is reported to have taken place there and other information related to those in the room.

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Many of us including Robert, MJ, Clare, others in the room, on the board and I asked questions and the board appeared to respond. Obviously there are a whole lot of probable reasons why Ouija Boards work, but in situations like this I often find it best to go with it and simply see what happens. I often see divination tools such as this as a kind of link to the unconscious.

After a short while many of the large group that had gathered in the room decided to head down to the dungeons. However on this occasion I decided to remain and work with my cousin on the board a little more. We were also joined by Nikki Folsom and on occasion Robert too.

There was some interesting information coming through board associated possibly to the location. However all of a sudden communication just a appeared to stop! We tried a few things, but still the connection remained absent. Then weirdly we began to receive a little information. I think it was fair to say that at this point both Clare and I may have recognised our spirit communicator. This was confirmed shortly when the board spelt out ‘H W Knibb’. This was our grandfather and in all fairness not the first time he’s turned up during an investigation.

Obviously there’s a distinct possibility that as we were both on the board our unconscious minds directed the planchet towards someone that has passed and connects us both. In all honesty, however it worked it was a really nice way to finish the night. If it was truly his spirit letting us know he is about, then that in itself is good to know.

In a flash it was over…

As many investigations for me, Warwick Castle flew by, but for all the right reasons. The location is undoubtedly haunted in some way, a location like it that houses so much history and still today has an abundance of visitors, really has to have something paranormal about it.

It was great to visit a few different locations from my last investigation of the castle, but also fantastic to return my very favourite room; the Kenilworth Room. As ever Mj’s setup of the investigation giving us access to the various guest speakers during the night, was spot on and enjoyed by all that attended.

This year saw pretty much completely different approaches from all the guest speakers too in the various locations. There was EVP, Psychic Projection, Pendulum Work, ITC, classical knock communication, analysing what you do and don’t know, adding yourself into the equation, looking at the history, debunking, looking at all possibilities and communicating through the Ouija Board.

To be quite frank there are not many investigation events out there that give you this many paranormal celebrities, techniques, approaches and all in a fantastic location such as Warwick Castle.

As far as paranormal events go, in my opinion this was a ten out of ten.

A Little Thanks

I would just like to say a massive thank you to MJ Dickson for putting the whole thing together, great job. I would also like to thank all the guest speakers that helped make this night a fantastic experience all the way through. So, in no particular order Brian J Cano, John Zaffis, Greg Lawson, Jeff Belanger, Robert Murch, Nikki Folsom and Clare Hinks; thank you all and great job guys.

Lastly, thank you to everyone that attended, what a great bunch of people you are. I believe MJ calls you all the Sage Tribe.

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Fort Widley with Brian J Cano and Sage Paranormal – The D-Day Tour
Sage Paranormal’s D-Day Tour with Brian J Cano

The D-Day Tour with Brian J Cano

This exclusive tour of three amazing haunted locations was put together by Sage Paranormal who worked extremely hard to book these locations and also manage to get Brian J Cano from across the pond into the UK. I think what’s also really important to note here is that given the locations, the presence of Brian J Cano and that there were limited numbers; for the price this was excellent value. Often with events such as these the numbers can be upwards of thirty guests attending and this in my opinion can simply ruin a good ghost hunt. Too many numbers equals too much location contamination and not enough of the hosts and special guests to go around.

Virtual hat tip to MJ Dickson and the Sage Paranormal team for putting together such a good package for a reasonable price.

Also, big thank you to Brian J Cano for coming over to the UK and making this such a unique event.

As you can see from the Sage Paranormal advert, the tour hit three amazing locations from the 3rd March to 8th March. Starting with Fort Horsted in Kent, then one of my favourites The Explosions Museum in Gosport and finishing up at Fort Widley in Portsmouth. Now that I have been to all three locations I can happily state that they are each well worth a visit, from a historical point of view and not just because they are all pretty cool. The Explosions Museum has also been a location I’ve returned to and never come away disappointed. The other two were equally interesting and I would certainly return at some point.

Fort Widley Tour

Once we had all arrived and settled in we began with a tour of the areas of the Fort that we would be investigating. However what was apparent early on was that once again Sage Paranormal had done an excellent job in not flooding the event with guests and this would in turn help change the event into more of a team investigation. Often this can change the entire night, especially for those that have some experience investigating. On this occasion everyone apart from me had attended the previous two D-Day Tour investigations and had become an excellent team.
We left the large meeting room that we used for our HQ on this occasion and descended the near by staircase to the lower lever and entrance to the tunnels we would be investigating. MJ guided us along the first tunnel all the way into where the spiral staircase ascended towards the parade ground. At this point we all familiarised ourselves with how sound travelled around this part of the location. Suffice to say it wasn’t exactly how you may think and perhaps could easily be mistaken for paranormal activity on occasion. From there we headed down the North tunnel to explore and familiarise ourselves with the location. The tunnel opened out into a vast area at the end, with two levels. We looked around and quickly identified where the area was exposed to the elements. It was certainly going to be a chilly investigation that was for sure.
The North Caponier

It was certainly an interesting area and we were looking forward to investigating it, so we headed back up towards the centre spiral staircase.
The Spiral Staircase to the Parade Ground

On this occasion we couldn’t venture down the east tunnel as this was blocked off for use by the local emergency services. As time was ticking away from us we left the tour of the west tunnel too and returned to the HQ too.
The Fort Widley Team

It was time to regroup over a hot drink and grab a radiator to warm us up a little. Brian J Cano took the opportunity to jump onto Facebook Live and introduce us all to the world. I’ll let you search Facebook for that particular video. Not only does it introduce our team brilliantly, but it also showcases a very special impression that shouldn’t be missed. There’s also an important announcement from MJ and Brian regarding the Sage Paracon 2017, which sounds epic.

EVP in the North Caponier

Our first vigil took the whole team down to the far North Caponier to investigate and conduct a full team EVP session. Its odd, but when you make the walk down to this location you really begin to realise the truth size of the area under investigation. I also couldn’t help think if the walk through the tunnels could also be an attributing factor to some of the paranormal activity experienced at the location. Whether this was psychological due to the environment and its history; or perhaps the underground element in the dark which caused a little sensory deprivation could increase our ability to connect with whatever was there. Either way it certainly added to the experience as a whole.
The North Caponier

Once we arrived in the North Caponier we setup on the second floor and most of the team sat on a few available chairs there in a circle. It was clear to see how far the group had come by this point too as they operated like a well oiled machine, many of them with their Digital Voice Recorders and MEL Meters ready to go before the last of us settled.

For this particular session we would once again attempt to work as group and each ask a question, which I believe was prompted by Brian J Cano by means of a quick shine of the torch.

However this again highlighted how far the team had come in such a short space of time. Rather than the mixed bag and random untagged noises, the group tagged both noises they made and ones that could be heard externally too. Impressive work guys.

As ever MJ listened live, but I noticed a couple of others were also trying this out too. Once we had been around the circle we listened back to the recording using a speaker. We identified a few minor oddities, but nothing that was particularly crystal clear or significant. Although it did seem to show some responses to our questions at times. During this MJ swapped her seat with another of the team and was filming the area a little.

This was also when we seemed to experience a little battery drain on a few devices, which occurred at the same time that some of the group saw a few light anomalies. Light anomalies and battery drain was also confirmed as something that had occurred previously when MJ’s team had investigated Fort Widley.
Brian J Cano leaves the North Caponier

With batteries draining, the cold creeping in and time running away from us we headed back to our HQ to warm up and take a break.

Duel Blind Spirit Box Experiment

Following our break Brian and MJ came up with the idea to run an experiment based on the use of the Spirit Box. For this experiment they would require two volunteers, so Victoria and I of course volunteered.

Basically for the experiment two of us would listen to the same spirit box device using headphones. Whilst we did this it would be hard to hear the questions being asked. Actually with the white noise in between music and voice, it was near on impossible to hear the questions being asked.
The Duel Spirit Box Experiment

Once the question was asked, indicated by a torch-light being shone on the table in front of us, each of us would note down what we heard from the Spirit Box. When the torch was shone on the table again, we would draw a line under what we had written in order to separate the questions.

We settled in and started the experiment. Noting down anything that made sense from the Spirit Box. Although there was a lot of white noise and music rather than actual words to begin with. Meanwhile MJ and Brian asked ten questions.

Once the ten questions had been asked, it was pens down and earphones off, nothing like an exam honestly.

We then compared the answers we had to the questions that were asked looking for specific matches and not things that could fit. Unsurprisingly none of our ten answers really matched the questions asked. Interestingly few of our answers matched either, with possibly an average of one word per question.

This really poses the question, do we often attempt to fit what we might be hearing from devices like the Spirit Box to the questions that we are asking?

Duel Blind Spirit Box Experiment with One in the Tunnel

Not content with our first experiment as a one-off, we decided to retry it. After all in order to properly experiment you need to repeat it over a few trials to understand things properly. Obviously during an investigation at a location that’s often not that easy, as time is against you and you’re there to experience the location more so.

However, on this occasion we decided to run the experiment again with both me and Victoria in the HQ. However this time around we placed the Spirit Box into a Faraday Bag and also sent Jo down the tunnel with the rest of the team to attempt it from there with a different Spirit Box.

Although these additional elements in effect change the entire experiment, it gives us a different perspective to work with. After all this is an experiment which we could run from home rather than on location in reality. Still its good to get the old grey cells working.

Once setup with our walkie talkies relaying question changes to Jo in the tunnel, we began again with Brian asking the ten questions. Again shining the torch in front of Victoria and I each time the question changed.

Interestingly on this occasion I heard what sounded like physical taps on the earphones. It’s fair to say once again none of the answers from Victoria and I matched the questions, but Jo had at least one which came very close. Also, less of the words that Victoria and I heard matched up this time around. Oddly what I heard and noted down although there were gaps of white noise and music between them seemed to create sentences. Ok, not perfect English sentences, but pretty close.

For example; ‘After drug way happy’, ‘Tell him 34 paint’, ‘its a boy’, ‘Tim leave’.

Now these didn’t match the questions, but were amusing to read out loud to the group, including my personal favourite (thanks Spirit Box); ‘Airport naked bounce’.

Its interesting too how we often look for patterns and familiarity in everything too. I even found myself trying to fit those answers with the questions, previous and after the one they related to.

West Tunnel ITC Apps

Our next vigil took us down the West tunnel, where on route some of the group found a swastika with the initials AH and a possible date protected by some perspex. We decided that this may be a good place to attempt a little communication. This time Brian J Cano used the iPad ITC Apps.

As previously at Fort Horsted we came up with a password, which I think was ‘tunnel’, but MJ had also written some words down in HQ before we headed out.
Wall Art in the West Tunnel

To begin with the Apps iOvilus and EchoVox gave us quite a few random words and sounds, some of which could be associated to the location and the communication we were attempting. However they were reluctant to deliver the password. That changed about ten or so minutes in, when a few of us (including me) heard the word ‘tunnel’. Was this a random occurrence or was spirit communicating through these apps? In all honesty, for me I still need to play around with these apps a little more and perhaps understand more how they work. That said if you can obtain some kind of communication in relation to other recorded changes, that would be quite interesting.

The Apps certainly delivered some interesting and varied communication which could be related to the tunnel or indeed the use of the tunnel or location.

Singapore Theory Experiment

As our time at Fort Widley was drawing to a close, we decided to finish on a high and attempt a Singapore Experiment around the spiral staircase area of the tunnels. This would be a location where many would have passed through on their way to various parts of the Fort. Little did I know that I was about to tap into the inner Sargent Major in me.

In order to attempt this version of the experiment we recorded the sound of an air raid siren and would utilise this to hopefully ‘stir up’ activity a little. As the siren played out through the tunnels I would circle the staircase shouting orders as if I was ordering the soldiers to take up their positions. Whilst I done this the rest of the team would setup around the entrances to the various tunnels using devices to capture audio and detect changes in the EM field.

Oddly as I took on the role of a military man shouting orders I have to admit it did feel a little weird to say the least. Once completed we regrouped to see if anything had been captured.

Unfortunately there hadn’t been anything seen on the devices monitoring EM fields or movement, but MJ managed to capture a short EVP following my reference to ‘Smithy’ as walked around the spiral staircase. I’m not going to say what we believe was captured as I have added the clip below for you to listen to. It’s a little enhanced, as this particular recording was recorded when MJ played what she captured on her device. Basically I have brought the volume levels up, but not cleaned it up. Please feel free to comment on what you believe you hear and if you hear nothing say so as that’s equally valid.
Once we had run through the clip a couple of times and I was suitably embarrassed by my poor impression of an officer, we decided to head back to the HQ as our time at Fort Widley had come to an end.

Round Up

Fort Widley was another fantastic location which I would love to return to for another investigation in the future. Sage Paranormal and Brian J Cano delivered an excellent investigation experience which on this occasion allowed for a little outside the normal approaches. It’s good to see a more involved event rather than a kind of ghost tour. Great work guys, I look forward to the next time I can join you on an investigation.

It was clear from talking to others in the team that the D-Day Tour hadn’t just been three events over less than a week, they had been a learning experience thanks to MJ’s and Brian’s approach. From Fort Horsted to Fort Widley the group had grown and learnt a lot, each becoming excellent investigators.

Fort Widley had delivered some interesting EVP results, a possible apparition sighting by one of the team and some odd experiences. I am sure that Sage Paranormal still has a lot of audio and video to review, so perhaps some additional pieces may come from that.

Once again though through some of the techniques used at Fort Widely it has become apparent that there is a significant emotional tie to activity. Regardless of whether the information presents itself telepathically or not it seems that an emotional link is required to make that connection more stable, so to speak. This is a fascinating concept that also could help us understand why a clinical scientific approach doesn’t always work. Especially as emotions are a very personally unique thing.

For more information on future events with Sage Paranormal or Brian J Cano, please check out their websites:-

Sage Paranormal –

Brian J Cano –

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The Mill Theatre in Sharnbrook NGHD Investigation 

National Ghost Hunting Day – Worldwide
National Ghost Hunting Day

I won’t go into excessive detail about what National Ghost Hunting Day was, as its kind of self explanatory. Plus I would much rather redirect you to their website in order to ensure that everything is covered and you can get involved next time around.

So, please check the National Ghost Hunting Day Website for more details on the event itself. Also, please check my previous post  Haunted Collector’s Brian J Cano Talks To Me About What Could Be The Worlds Largest Ghost Hunt For my interview with Brian J Cano ahead of the event. 

Fundamentally, the aim originally was to hook up as many paranormal investigation teams as possible across the US in a kind of synchronised ghost hunt. However this soon grew and went international bringing in a few teams from England, Scotland, Australia and more I believe. The idea was for all the teams to follow a couple of broadcasts over Facebook by Brian whilst also broadcasting themselves onto Facebook. As they did this they would take part in an experiment using very specific questioning, Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) and Instrumental TransCommunication (ITC) devices to capture possible responses. This part was called the Bridge Experiment I believe. The EVP part was in the first hour consisting of four questions and the ITC part in the second hour consisting of another four questions. 

It still amazes me how the technology of the internet can bring us all so much closer together, but as this experiment shows, many groups worldwide can work together towards a common goal. This working together approach is the only way that we will see results, gather data and eventually begin to gain an understanding of the unknown world. I understand it doesn’t quite fit the materialist version of standard science, but sometimes you have to try things a little differently before a true understanding can be found. 

Our NGHD Location – The Mill Theatre

The Mill Theatre in Sharnbrook was formally known as Stokes Mill and was exactly that an old working water mill. The Mill itself was mentioned in the Doomsday Book, but its highly possible that a Mill has stood on the site for a number of years prior to this entry.
The Mill Theatre

From about 1500 to 1817 its possible that the property was owned by St. Johns of Bletsoe and Melchbourne, who made substantial improvements to the building. Some of these are still present in the current building which date back to around 1703. 

From 1817 to about 1929 the building underwent considerable changes, this included refurbishments, extensions and also an extra storey. They literally raised the roof of the building by 12 feet, which is odd considering its function as a theatre nowadays. 

By this time Frank Hipwell had taken ownership of the property and it seems they invested heavily to make their business a success. 

These days Stokes Mill is the home of The Mill Theatre which opened back in 1979. The original Mill House is now a lovely hotel with the same name. The former Mill yard and buildings have become a small business park. 

All in all its a location that holds considerable history, set in the beautiful picturess countryside next to the Rive Great Ouse.  

Previous investigation teams and those that frequent or work at Mill Theatre have reported numerous types of activity throughout the building. The Main Foyer has been a location where Mediums have picked up on the presence of a spirit woman, possibly called Helen that may have committed suicide. Also, the presence of a man called Don has been encountered here too. 

Down in the Cellar Mediums have picked up on a man dressed as a woman, each to their own or pantomime perhaps. In the props and set design area of the Cellar the presence of a Mr Godfrey, a young girl called Lilybett, a small boy called Tommy and a Labrador Dog have made themselves known to Mediusm. This area also has reports of the smell of tobacco and the odd sensation of someone blowing on the side of a persons face. 

Up in the main auditorium the activity gets a little more physical with reports of some seats moving by themselves from one position to another. However even more interestingly is that this has sometimes occurred on request, not an easy thing achieve. There has also been some interesting EMF interaction in this part of the building. 

A Combined Effort – Meet The Team

This particular investigation was lead by the Sage Paranormal Team, but included some other excellent investigators that were invited to join them on this monumentus event. 

Making up the team from Sage Paranormal were MJ Dickson, Carl Hutchinson and Liz Cormell; a great team with a lot of investigation experience between them. It was a great honour to be asked to be involved in this event by MJ and represent England. 

We were also joined by Alan Smith of Skepticide Paranormal, which took me by surprise as I actually knew Alan and had investigated (I think) with him once before. It’s always good to cross paths with investigators you know again especially when its been a while. 

Our last couple of team members were Lori Shaffer and Matthew Harris from WARTS Paranormal Society, whom I’ve not met previously, but as ever in this field its great to meet new people. It is one of the fundementally important aspects of the paranormal to me, meeting new people and talking about their interest in the paranormal is always quite interesting. 

I knew right away that we had an excellent team for this investigation and this very unique event, thank you to MJ for bringing us all together for this. 

Initial Walk Around

Once we had established our HQ for the night in the large room just off the bar area and setup a table ready for the NGHD experiment later we decided to have a walk around of the location.
Mill Theatre Layout

We headed down through the stage into the large dressing room to the rear of the stage. Right away the theatre began to deliver. Both Liz and Alan picked up on what they could only describe as a classic ‘spooky wind’, but we didn’t discount the possibility that this could be an outside vent. We also believe that one of the digital voice recorders batteries may have drained too, but again this one isn’t concluded. It was around this point that Liz heard what she believed were footsteps coming from the stage area. 

I followed Liz out onto the Stage where she said she believed she could sense something from the upper part of the stage set. She could visualise a man stood up there with his elbows on the rail and had his legs crossed. Liz sensed that he may have passed as recently as the last fifty or sixty years and maybe had been in his forties. 

Shortly after this the rest of the group joined us both on the stage and after a brief moment Lori mentioned that her stomache was hurting, keep your eye out for this as it becomes a running theme throughout the night with a few members of the team. Around the same time Carl also registered and EMF spike of around 6.2 MG around the first row of seats. 

At this point MJ picked up on a male conversation near to the auditorium entrance, then Lori said she felt watched and MJ agreed. 

After this we headed down into the Basement area and as we stood in the main area of the basement, a few of the team could hear talking or even a conversation coming from upstairs. Others like me couldn’t though, which is ficinating in its own right. Were some of the group becoming relatively tuned in to the more spiritual residents at the theatre? Perhaps there was a logical explanation like distant sound of the water passing under parts of the building, as this was suggested at one point as a possibility. 

We moved into the Props and Set Design Room also in the Basement, which I believe was incredibly close to the water flow. At this point on entering this area Carl mentioned that his legs felt weak all of a sudden. As we settled into the room MJ believed that she heard the voice of a child say ‘mama’.

Shortly after this we all headed back up to our HQ room for a break and re-group. 

Whilst in the HQ we tested our live feed to Facebook ready for the experiment with Brian J Cano and all the other National Ghost Hunting Day Teams later on in our investigation. 

Not long after this Mj returns from downstairs towards the Foyer stating that she feels as if she has been hit in the stomache. It was also during this time frame from about 1am to 1:30am that the group were acting a little odd, we all seemed a little more exciteable than normal and possibly even a little hyperactive. This could have been the sudden sugar rush of our break and being a littl tired, but it seemed to pretty much hit us all at the same time.

Our Second Walk Around

At just after 1:30am we headed back to the Auditorium for a more detailed investigation of the area. Alan, Carl and I sat on the seats overloooking the stage, whilst Liz, Lori, Matt and MJ sat on the Stage. We hadn’t been sat long and Carl heard tapping. We decided to chuck some tech into the mix and used the Spirit Box and Digital Voice Recorder. 

After a few questions, MJ asked ‘how did you pass?’, the Spirit Box reply was ‘drowning’!

Carl sweeped the area using a FLIR, but picked up nothing of note at this point. However all sat on the stage felt a cold breeze or draft from one side. Liz’s then noted that her right cheek was very hot and at this point MJ had moved to the seats and was pointing a camcorder at the stage. MJ points out that she has seen a mist on the viewfinder which appears to be located between Liz and Lori on the stage. This is swiftly followed by Lori stating that she felt something grab her right sleeve. If all that wasn’t enough, the Spirit Box then adds ‘the right’ then ‘trust me’ following MJ asking if that was the spirit that grabbed Lori. MJ then felt a light blowing on her neck. 

This was a remarkable sequence of events once you note it down, but was this a possible spirit interaction or even attempted manifestation? There are of course other alternatives, such as psychological contagion too. As ever we must keep an open mind. 

However this wasn’t completely the end of the sequence, as moments later Carl saw three red flashes at the back of the stage, then MJ felt really uncomfortable and then Carl saw a small shadow behind Liz on the stage. Of course I saw this as an opportunity to chase and headed onto the stage and behind Liz then upstairs to the raised area. Interestingly enough though as I headed towards the back of the stage where the shadows headed, it did feel a little different. However this could be directly related to why I was there in the first place, hence expecting to find something or even looking for something can change your perception. 

Shortly after this we returned to the HQ leaving a Digital Voice Recorder running in the auditorium.

Whilst in the HQ room MJ heard footsteps on the stairs to the Foyer. She felt this was an old gentleman that was very tall. It was also around this time that Lori saw a light anomaly around the stairs to the Foyer. It was becoming apparent that this area was relatively active in its own way too. 

NGHD Experiment – Hour One

3am for us meant part one of the NGHD Experiment and this didn’t kick off without a few problems. As we managed to login and see Brian J Cano live, shadows on those stairs to the Foyer were seen. Although it could have easily been a technical problem related to the device or network, I think its still worth mentioning that the ipad we were using decided to freeze too. 

Brian started things off with an invocation. He then ran through the four questions for the EVP section of the experiment. 

Following the second question some of the team heard footsteps downstairs. Then following question three more footsteps were heard in the Bar area. Then after the fourth question its possible that a male voice was heard, but this could have equally been background noise. 

Once this first part of the experiment is concluded Liz picks up on feeling stabbed in the stomache, there it is again.  

I believe the group headed back to the Props and Set Design room in the basement again where both Liz and MJ may have picked up on the same person independently of each other. Liz gets the name Reginald as MJ gets Regi. Liz then adds the surname ‘Smithson’. Alan throws what he feels is something very much like a football chant into the mix. 

Liz then tells me that she thinks the word ‘Habanero’ is in Brian’s envelope. This wasn’t the word in Brian’s envelope, but Liz did realise that this word was related to one of her friends a few weeks later. Sometimes stuff just jumps into you mind and often for no apparent reason. 

NGHD Experiment – Hour Two

4am brought with it the second part of the Bridge Experiment and our hook up with the other teams across the globe. This time it was the chance to use ITC devices whilst Brian asked another few questions to all the teams. 

For our part in the experiment we ran a Spirit Box and Obilis, with a Digital Voice Recorder to capture the audio. We also had an iPad broadcasting us to the world via Facebook Live. 

Following the first question, ‘Is the technician or anyone from timestream still able to communicate with us?’, the Obilis replied ‘automatic’. After question two, ‘Are any stations still operating on the other side?’, the Obilis responded with alright’, whilst the Spirit Box gave us ‘Habanero’. Curiously a word that Liz had mentioned earlier in the evening and would later relate to her friend weeks after the event. Then as we completed the third question, ‘How can we improve contact?’, the Obilis gave us ‘Alright, Lay, Video, Carol’, whilst the Spirit Box said ‘apple’ and ‘disaster’. 

It would be easy to work these words into the questions and attribute some kind of meaning, but personally the connection for me is rather loose and so much more work needs to be done in this area. However it was certainly interesting.  

Following this we decided to conduct a little more investigation of the location before calling it a night. 

Final Parts of Our Investigation

The last parts of our investigation consisted of a little walk around, but mostly a few Obilis / Spirit Box sessions coupled with a little Mediumship to see what we may pick up. 

Between them, the more sensitive of the group did begin to pick up on some bits related to the location. Although some may still require some additional research to confirm. 

Most of this did seem to be focussed around the concept of one or two hangings in the wheel pit. It wasn’t clear thoug if this hanging was a suicide or punishment, but if it was a punishment then it may be likely that it was something the locals may have seen through due to a horrific crime. 

As we were about to call it a night, pack up our kit and head home, MJ picked up some movement on the stairs to the Foyer. she also believed there was a name connected to this; ‘Molly’. Unfortunately as quickly as this had actuated it was gone. So, after a long eventful night we decided to head home. 

Investigation Round Up

The Mill Theatre was a brilliant location to investigate and personally I would like to return and try some other approaches in order to gather more information on the possible activity within its walls.
The Mill Theatre Entrance

The NGHD Bridge Experiment went reasonably well we believe and at the very least it was amazing to be involved in such a huge event. That’s not even considering that the event ran simultaneously across loads of teams across the US an the Globe. I have to admit from my perspective it was very interesting as part of my own research deals with telepathic interaction and the possibility of a global consciousness or collective unconscious as Jung would have likely put it. Which reminds me I must catch up with the guys from NGHD at some point to see where they’re at with the results. You see as a part of this experiment each team had to submit a report similar to this I guess, but with a timeline of the evening. This report was posted to the Paranormal Database Website for review and comparison to other teams. Hopefully this will show some interesting results. 

There is without doubt more to the Mill Theatre than meets the eye and we will need to return at some point for another investigation where we can focus on some of the information picked up on this visit. 

What was particularly interesting was the several instances where oddly three of the team all reported the same feeling. This was of course the pain felt in the stomache, which was both described as either ‘punched’ or ‘stabbed’ in the stomache. This was also reported by all three female members of the team and none of the males. These three also made reference to noises or activity in the stairs area which lead back down to the Foyer too. Perhaps they were all picking up on or even feeling the same thing related to perhaps one particular entity. 

The sequence of events that occurred on the stage was also very interesting. Whether it was an attempt by a spirit to make itself known or if it was psychological contagion, its not that often that we experience that number of oddities in one go. It certainly made for an interesting nights investigation. I’m looking forward to returning (hopefully in 2017) to see if the location was as active or if the Bridge Experiment actually increased activity there somehow. 

Either way the Mill Theatre was an excellent location and I thank the volunteers that keep the theatre running for allowing us in to investigate and use it for our NGHD location. 

If you’ve visited the Mill Theatre or even investigated there please feel free to comment, especially if there are any similarities in our report to our own experiences there?