Warwick Castle is not short of haunted happenings, as deputy editor and self-confessed scaredy cat Laura Kearns found out when she joined a team of paranormal investigators.
I am the biggest wuss out there. Pretty much every horror film I’ve ever watched has been from behind a cushion.
So when Mariehanna Dickson invited me to join her on a ghost investigation around the castle my first thought was ‘absolutely not’.
Just weeks before Mariehanna and I had spoken at length about a ghost she had accidentally taken a picture of in the castle’s Kenilworth bedroom.
So putting the job first, and after a lot of deep breaths, I decided to wrap up in my biggest scarf (ideal for covering my eyes) and meet her and her team of investigators at the castle one Friday evening.
Mariehanna is a true inspiration, organising the investigation and a paranormal convention ‘Sage Paracon’ all while battling cancer, which thankfully she has now had the all-clear from.
She arranged for some of the best investigators across the globe, many who even have their own tv shows, to join in her investigation.
For starters we went for an explore around the castle. It’s not so scary when the lights are on.
But then we were divided into groups, given a torch, and the ghost hunting began.
I was in the beginners group and was given an electro magnetic field reader, which apparently peaks when a spirit is near. It remained still for the entire night.
Some of the people in the more advanced teams own thousands of pounds worth of equipment in a bid to communicate with the other side. It all looked very confusing, and very technical, but they swear it works.
To start, myself and a group of around 15 others set off towards the Kenilworth bedroom, where Mariehanna caught her ghostly figure on film. Settling down in the dark we watched a specialist camera which picked up when a ghostly presence was near. The screen remained blank.
While we kept our eyes on the screen we tried to ‘speak’ to any spirits which could have been in the room. The device used was a recorder which picked up different frequencies used by spirits. This was my first brush with the paranormal.
We heard several responses to questions, with voices sounding like they came from a man and a little girl.
With the equipment it is hard to hear exactly what they say, but seasoned investigator Mariehanna was on hand to translate.
The answers were simple ‘yes’ ‘no’ and we also heard the name Daisy – which turned out to be the name of a former owner of the bedroom we were in.
Just before we left the room there were gasps from those who held the cameras – they had all cut out at the same time.
Through all of the strange things that happened in the room, not once did I feel scared. Maybe it was being with a group, and people experienced in such matters.
My journalistic nose to know what was happening was getting the better of my usual wimpy self.
We moved on to the Kingmaker exhibition.
We sat at various points around the room where nothing happened. The statutes in the middle of the room were scary enough so I was quite glad when we left.
The seven of us moved through to the next room where one of the investigators suggested we try and get a spirit to move something. I watched as she and two others placed their hands softly on the top of a stool. The minutes dragged as she continued to ask the spirit to move the furniture.
I was watching like a hawk to ensure none of those with their hands on the stool moved it instead.
After about five minutes and just as we were going to leave, it jolted making all us jump.
I got out of there pretty quickly after that.
Other groups had their names called out, felt nauseous and swear they saw things on their way around the castle.
Before I went on the investigation I wasn’t sure whether I believed in spirits and ghosts. Now I can categorically say I do, but oddly I have lost my fear.
Next time Mariehanna and the team at Sage Paranormal hold an investigation I will be the first in line, to learn more and see what responses we get.
If like me you do not know whether you believe or not, a trip around a darkened haunted building with the team will definitely make your mind up.
Visit www.sageparanormal.co.uk to find out more.