Saturday, 30 May 2009

What Do You See?


On Friday the 19th of October, 2007, West Midlands Ghost Club members had the great fortune to be able to - inedependent of any other groups and commercial concerns - investigate the magnificent fortress of Warwick Castle in Warwickshire. Accompanying group members for the first part of our visit was Radio WM DJ, Danny Kelly and three BBC staff members....

The investigation itself incorporated three separate sections of the castle which are allegedly associated with numerous reports of paranormal activity: the Barbican, the Dungeon and the Fulke Greville Tower (popularly dubbed 'The Ghost Tower').

During the early hours of the morning, group members were being interviewed by Danny, for a forthcoming radio broadcast, at the base of the Fulke Greville Tower. While the session was being recorded, one of the W.M.G.C. members had busied theselves taking photographs of the proceedings.....

One of the resulting photographs - shown above - caught the attention of Danny following the investigation and was mentioned to some length on a number of his shows...... W.M.G.C. members stressed that the image involved was certainly not 'of a paranormal nature' and almost certainly a by-product of close proximity contamination. In this particular instance, the effect shown is most likely the breath of the photographer - or a nearby group member - being picked out and illuminated by the camera flash.

However, despite our protestations and due to the media coverage on the shot, the picture - dubbed the 'Hoodie Ghost' by Mr. Kelly (Laugh!!) - ended up being sent (emailed by BBC Radio WM) to about 40 different destinations around the world!!!

Unfortunately, the bulk of alleged 'paranormal images' that are seen today fall into the above sort of category - i.e. an easily explained effect of camera technology and external factors. The best example of this sort of anomal is the (so called) 'Orb'.... nothing more than a simple digi camera / C.P.C. 'glitch' which has now been invested with paranormal significance.....

While the key problem with this sort of photograph lies in the technology (being used) itself, the main 'complication' with such things - from a research point of view - definitely originates within the psyche of people becoming exposed to such imagery. To part-plagiarise something written by a W.M.G.C. member on the subject of orbs: "At a core level, the acceptance of the Orb (as an aspect of ghostly phenomenon) is undoubtedly rooted in societys current ‘quick fix’ attitude to most matters. Interest in the paranormal has never been so strong and, as with any topic that attracts the attention of the masses, there invariably follows an overwhelming need to immediately ‘experience’ a subject first hand. For many, the quirks of camera technology provides the opportunity to fulfil this requirement without question or too much effort, no matter the end cost to the field concerned".

Within the past week and a half of writing this post, the W.M.G.C. have been contacted by three separate sources offering photographs showing circular / orb-like anomalies. After first explaining what such things usually amount to, we have - in all instances - offered to still take a look at the shots concerned in an endeavour to try to be sure of the type of phenomenon being depicted. In all instances, after our explanation - and despite promises of the sources mailing the shots concerned - none have surfaces in our inbox.

The optimist in us 'would like to think' that our explanation was just possibly enough to put the sources minds at ease and the pictures were not sent because it was now realised that they were probably non-paranormal in nature. The pessimistic side of us pretty much 'knows' that the sources concerned probably continued to contact ghost related groups until they found what they were looking for in an association who also believed that orbs were somehow ghostly in nature......

Regards to all,

The W.M.G.C.

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