Sunday, 7 August 2011

Edited Version of Main Website Update for March 2010.

Leicestershire Investigation:

On Friday, November the 6th, 2009, W.M.G.C. members conducted an investigation of the Dixie Arms Hotel in Market Bosworth. The visit was organised by group members Marianne Barker and Deborah Green. The Dixie Arms has a somewhat varied and colourful history, parts of the building having previously been utilised as a court room, bicycle shop, boxing ring / gym - by the black, American boxer, Larry Gains, in the 1930's - and a prison for local 'n'er do wells'!!

Ghostly activity at the site is as varied as it's history. Previous owners have allegedly reported seeing 'indistinct figures' gliding from doorway to doorway and there is a long history of animals behaving strangely - for no apparent reason?

Staff visitors and workmen alike have spoken of uneasy feelings in the cellar; a place where seances have allegedly been carried out over the years. One such event is said to have led to a lengthy conversation with a long dead owner of the hotel, containing pertinent data about the name of his favourite dog!! (Cue suitably spooky laughter, a la Vincent Price!!! Laugh!!) One recent occupant at the site reported seeing something described to the group as a 'patch of dark air' floating in the doorway to the room she was in!

Whatever the ghosts said to haunt the Hotel, it was customarily quiet throughout the group visit. Still - an enjoyable investigation was had by all.. no doubt helped in part by a midnight, pizza feast in the bar!!! Laugh!!

South Staffs. Investigation:

Friday the 13th of November - spooky laughter again!! Laugh!! - saw group members pay an overnight visit to the magnificent Pendrell Hall in Codsall Wood. This investigation was organised by John Conway.

Despite its historic appearance, Pendrell Hall was only built in the middle of the 19th Century by a local businessman. By the late 1800's, the house had become the property of the nearby Giffard family, of Chillington Hall. The property shortly came into the hands of art connoisseur, Frank Gaskell, and was finally purchased by Staffs. County Council in 1955.

It would be sad to imagine that such a gothic-looking building might not contain the odd ghost or two and, thankfully, Pendrell Hall certainly doesn't lack in this quarter! Numerous apparitions have been reported at the site, including those of a couple - a man and a woman - in period costume seen walking through walls and closed windows, by a number of witnesses.

In other parts of the property, the ghost of a young, blonde boy has been seen by visitors, sitting on beds and seemingly playing in corridors. One of the most startling encounters reported concerns a staff member being approached by the solid-looking figure of a period-dressed maid in one of the utility passage ways... The figure is said to have walked into a tiny room off the passage and vanished without a trace!!

Footsteps have been heard in empty rooms, along with oppressive feelings of being watched. The movement of objects has been reported - a bottle of whisky being one such popular 'toy' - as well as lights playfully switching themselves on and off in the empty and locked building!! As with most of our investigations, the group visit passed without event.... though it was an absolute pleasure to be able to spend the better part of a night in such an atmospheric setting!

Shropshire Investigation:

On Friday the 20th of November, 2009, a return visit was made to the luxurious Prince Rupert Hotel in Shrewsbury. Accompanying us on this investigation was our old mate Wayne P. of the Black Country Paranormal Society. The event was organised, once again, by John Conway.

Our first visit to the Hotel was carried out in January 2009 in the presence of Chris Kennedy and Martin Wood of the popular Shrewsbury Ghost Walk. The haunted history of this (in parts at least) 'ancient' site is long and chequered. As well as being the site of inexplicable, poltergeist-like activity, the shades of two suicide victims are alleged to haunt separate rooms in the building. Both of these poor unfortunates have allegedly been seen 'dangling' from ropes attached to ceiling beams by occupants of the rooms concerned!

Three ghosts are said to haunt the cellar area - our favourite part of the hotel by far - and these are said to be the shades of a young boy, a maid and a very angry spirit called Henry! The latter is said to show great disdain at the presence of visitors to the cellar - his anger greatly acerbated, no doubt, by the appearance of the local Ghost Walk, as it makes one of its regular stops in the area concerned!! During the filming of the movie 'Scrooge' during the 1980's, a 'Wee-Willy-Winky-style' apparition was reputedly witnessed by a film-crew member in one of the upstairs corridors....

Below: the group 'chilling' in the haunted conference room....

West Midlands Investigation:

On Friday, December the 4th, 2009, West Mids Ghost Club members conducted an investigation into alleged ghostly happenings at the 'Withit Witch' Knitting Centre in Halesowen.

The group had initially been contacted and asked to investigate the site by its current owners Nici and Andy in the early Autumn. However, news of the haunting was carried by a local newspaper prior to our being able to visit the site and this coverage alerted another local group to the matter. This resulted in their conducting their own investigation at the shop before the W.M.G.C. could react - heavy case-load and all that - thus 'pipping us to the post', as it were....

It has to be mentioned here that a lot of the alleged activity at the shop has been reported as being 'picked up' in conjunction with 'sensitive' or 'psychic-types', so the data concerned has to be treated accordingly. However, the smell of cigarette smoke - as mentioned in the article noted above - is said to have been experienced by a number of people visiting the site at the same time. This activity has been ascribed (by one sensitive) to the spirit of a man called Edward and - when the smoke is now subsequently detected - 'he' is politely asked by staff to conduct his anti-social habit elsewhere...!! Laugh!! ....And, apparently, this is said to work!!

The sound of footsteps have been heard by more than one person in empty rooms above the shop and a feeling of being watched from a first floor, rear window reported by people using the nearby car park. On one occasion - but one occasion only - Nici says she looked back at the property to see a vague face staring down at her from the aperture in question. The shop was locked and completely empty at this time. During the investigation held by the other local group, one of their members also spoke of seeing someone passing a ground floor window at the rear of the premises....

It goes without saying that any spooks associated with the shop were impeccably behaved at the time of our visit and not even the slightest whiff of a Woodbine was detected! Laugh!!

West Midlands Investigation #2:

On the 4th of January, 2010, group members carried out a most interesting investigation at the Express and Star Offices in Wolverhampton City Centre. Accompanying the WMGC on the night in question were a small number of staff members and interested parties attached to the newspaper itself. The visit was co-ordinated by John Conway in conjunction with the Ex. and Star staff.

The building itself has a long standing history of ghostly activity, much of which is ascribed to the spirit of a little girl - Alice - who is said to have died in a fall down a lift shaft in the 19th Century.

A few years ago, a night watchman was in the building after closing, when he saw the figure of a small girl at the end of a corridor. He chased after the figure and, when he got to the place where she had been standing, he found a door swinging, as if someone had just gone through it. A subsequent check of the premises showed that there was no one else in the building but him....

In a ladies toilet, a pair of red, girls shoes have been seen on numerous occasions under cubicle doors and the sound of giggling heard. In the area of the printing hall, people complain of being poked and prodded by something unseen, while photographic timers - set by members of staff - have been found altered (turned back to the beginning of a cycle) when no living soul has allegedly been near the area concerned....

Midlands Investigation:

On Saturday, March 20th, the W.M.G.C. paid another visit to one of our favourite sites - an unidentified, historic location, previously investigated numerous times by the Club over the past 4 years.

Ghostly activity reported at the spot includes poltergeist-like occurrences and sightings of groups of figures dressed like Roman soldiers. People staying at the site report having been 'physically attacked' by shadowy figures - one such terrifying occurrence allegedly happening to a gentleman while he was in the process of taking a bath!!

There is a lot of ancient history / archaeology associated with the area in question - some dating back to prehistoric times - including potential burial mounds. It is said that some researchers have apparently discovered a crossing of 'Ley-Lines' at a particular spot in the grounds of the property, a spot where, coincidentally, numerous people have reported uneasy feelings....

During past investigations by the group, two members were seated in a car outside the property when they heard a fleshy knock or thump come from the rear window of the vehicle.... despite the fact that there was no one else in the area. On a separate occasion, a group of people situated inside the buildings heard - for some while - noises coming from a nearby entrance area which sounded like someone entering the property and moving a chair along the floor. There was no one there when the sounds were checked out....

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