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.

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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.

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Also seen in this picture too.

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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.

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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.

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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.

If you’ve enjoyed this post, please like, share and comment below…

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Sage Paracon UK 2016 – The Warwick Castle Paranormal Investigation

Warwick Castle, Amazing Location, Enough Said!!

 

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Warwick Castle

Right first things first, I cannot express how much of a fantastic location that Warwick Castle is! Seriously, I literally had to pick my lower jaw up off the floor as I walked through the grounds. MJ and the Sage Paranormal UK team truly outdone themselves on this one. Now there are a few places like this around the UK that often catch me off guard and completely throw me, but this truly knocked my socks off! So much so that I forgot to take any useful video footage or even photos, slight school boy error on my part. In fact school boy, could not be more perfect an explanation. Just like the Kelvedon Hatch Secret Nuclear Bunker, walking into Warwick Castle threw me a little and brought out that inner child. Problem is that inner child takes his eye off the ball and fails to gather good photographic or video to work with later.

So, hands up and apologies for not having anything to show you that I captured. However if you are reading this and you were there with us, please feel free to share you photo’s and videos with on my Facebook Page (link on the right).

Sage Paranormal’s Ghostly Visit Before Hand…

Now usually this post would be all about the night in question, which was the Friday night when Sage Paracon UK kicked off. However like an excellent investigator and event organiser she is, MJ from Sage Paranormal visited Warwick Castle before hand. Also, in order to understand the location she shot a few pictures. One such room was the Kenilworth bedroom which was more than a little famous for paranormal activity.

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The Kenilworth Bedroom

 

This particular room wasn’t only associated with some rather odd spiritual stuff that suggested the possibility of a girl being raised from the dead in the bed, but the room was also associated with Séance activity held by no other than Aleister Crowley. A guy that was connected to some very interesting, but possibly dark occultism in his day. He will have to be a subject of a future post all by himself I think.

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Aleister Crowley

Right, so now I’ve set the scene and in order to gather some understanding of the location MJ visited the Kenilworth bedroom and began to take some photographs. In particular she took a picture of the information plaque at the foot of the bed.

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Kenilworth Bedroom Information Plaque

Now at the time she was alone in the room and simply took the photo then headed off. When she looked through her photos later at home she was surprised to find a figure in the window on the right. However not one to jump to conclusions MJ contacted Warwick Castle to confirm she was both alone in the room and that there were no wax work dummies in the room. There were neither! The question now becomes, who the heck is guy in the window?

Our Ghostly Night at Warwick Castle

Back to the Sage Paracon UK 2016 event at Warwick Castle and after I managed to pick my jaw up off the ground, we all gathered in the cafe area I believe. After MJ ensured that everyone was there and ready to go, we started the evening with a tour, which would equally identify the areas we would be holding vigils in later that night.

The tour of Warwick Castle was actually really good, as you can imagine it would be for such an iconic location. We started off our tour in the Ghost Tower, then onto the main building where we passed the library, the Kenilworth Bedroom, the main hall and a few more amazing spaces. We also stopped off at the dungeons, which included a room full of mirrors, never a good thing right?

The tour ended back at cafe for a break before we began the evenings vigils. Which was also chance to move around the room and chat to a few of the people attending.

Vigils at Warwick Castle

The Sage Paranormal UK Team lead this part of the night by allocating the guest speakers; Jeff Belanger, Frank Cinelli (Dr Spectre), Greg Lawson, Graham Smyth and I particular areas in Warwick Castle. Graham and I were given the Ghost Tower, so headed off there with our first group.

Although both Graham and I may have been considered a slight double act (we are serious researchers and investigators honest) we done our best to get our groups involved in the investigation of the Ghost Tower, with some interesting results. Our initial approach was to talk with our groups to see what gadgets they had brought to the tower, but also if any of them were particularly ‘sensitive’ to spirit. Luckily for us all the groups we had did have an excellent mixture of both.

In one of our first vigils we tried communicating using one of the groups own gadget. Alan Smith’s small device would pick up changes in the static field (I believe) when something moved closer to it. Placed on one side of the highest room in the Ghost Tower we were asking various questions and on a few occasions we did appear to receive some kind of response via the device. As it illuminated a few times as if someone or something had moved closer. We attempted to back this communication up using other devices, but unfortunately only Alan’s device reacted. As ever it’s not definitive proof of communication and it is very subjective as we dont have all the data on a very variable environment, but heck whilst you’re in a darkened room that has the name Ghost Tower, it was interesting.

If anyone that was present has any audio or video footage of that Vigil or other Vigils that night, I would be interested in looking at it and you never know it might make a future post on my website and YouTube Channel .

Other Vigils in the Ghost Tower were more spiritual in my with less tech and more information being passed through the group via mediumship.

I remember that a couple of the guests picked up on quite a few things related to the location including a very dramatic fire there. Some of this information also appeared to centre around one particular woman. I always find this transference of information fascinating.

In a later group, which included Rach and Selwyn from the Royal Oak Pub in Swanage where I conducted the Victorian Seance Singapore Theory Experiement; we had some interesting communication or telepathy depending on your perspective. One of the guests picked up on a very specific unique piece of information that to her seemed very random and possibly incorrect. However it became apparent following the Vigil that this information she picked up on was actually had a direct relationship to another member of that group. Unfortunately its not really my place to post what that information was here as it relates to an individual, but should they wish to share their story please use the comments below. Suffice to say this was a great example of localised Telepathic Interaction. Oddly this group also picked up on a name directly to Warwick Castle and one of the guests too.

Free Time Vigils

The last part of the night began after a final break where all the guests could venture out to a location of their own choice. For me I had to visit the Kenilworth Bedroom and investigate that area a little more. This wasn’t just because of its connection with the infamous Aleister Crowley, but oddly because some of the panelling was bugging me a little. I never got to the bottom of the panelling really, but we did spend some quality time in the room. Earlier on during the night another group picked up some interesting stuff in the Kenilworth Room, I believe on device one of our American friends Susan had with her. I would be interested to see that footage too.

Suffice to say I left the Kenilworth Bedroom wanting more, that room needs a thorough investigation and quite possibly a good old fashion Séance. Maybe one day I will get back in to do that.

Warwick Castle Round Up

Warwick Castle is a fantastic location, which needs far more than just one visit as there is so much to be had there. You need a good weekend there, hmm!

The Sage Paranormal UK Team ensured that we all had a great night at a fabulous location, a night that I will long remember. The location houses so much history and possible hauntings that its going to need a few more visits I think.

In all fairness we had a great bunch of people there that Friday night, all the VIPs, Guest Speakers, the Sage Paranormal UK Team and the Warwick Castle Guide were great and influential in ensuring we all had a great night. So, thank you to all.

If you were there that night, please feel free to share your experiences of Warwick Castle in the comments below.

After Investigation Party

Ok it wasn’t so much a party, but a small gathering outside when we returned to Wroxall Abbey, those involved know what I mean! I just thought it was important to mention that its good to have a sit and chat following a good night at such an epic location. Something else that my investigations of the paranormal has given me is the friendship of some very interesting people the world over now. Often its not just about investigating haunted locations,  but the friendships you gain along the way. Its most definitely not always the destination, but the journey itself that helps you grow. So, this is a small footnote mention to all of you out there in the paranormal who I am lucky enough to call friend, thank you all. As MJ of Sage Paranormal might say, you’re like my para-family.

Wherever you may be investigating next, good luck and enjoy the journey.