Thursday, 28 July 2011

Edited Version of Main Website Update for Mar. 17th 2008.

Sandwell Investigation:

On January the 18th, the W.M.G.C. conducted and investigation at the Sandwell Council Training Centre - the first paranormal research organisation to have ever visited this property - in Oldbury. The event was organised by group member John Conway.

Over the years this former school has allegedly been the site of a number of ghostly encounters. A piano has been heard playing in one particular room, but, upon investigation, it was discovered that the room was empty and the piano covered with a dust-sheet.

The figure of a little girl has been seen traversing a corridor outside the canteen area and - within the canteen itself - staff have seen the figure of a woman dressed in grey.

Elsewhere in the property, the feeling of being followed has spooked cleaning staff and the figures of two 'caretaker-style' men - dressed in brown cowgowns - have been reported....

W.M.G.C. interest in the Training Centre generated a degree of media interest and articles concerning our visit appeared in a number of local newspapers. Our investigation of the site was conducted (in part) in the presence of an Express and Star reporter.

Group members would like to extend a massive 'THANK YOU' to Lorraine Binsley for allowing us to visit the Centre. Also, to the ever patient Mr Singh for looking after us on the night in question.

Warwickshire Investigation:

On February the 16th, W.M. Ghost Club members paid an overnight visit to the historic Town Hall in Alcester, Warwks. The investigation was arranged by John Conway.

The lower storey of the Town Hall was built in 1618 for the then Lord of the Manor, Lord Brooke-Fulke Greville. The site was originally used as an open market place for traders, replacing the original market cross. A basement prison known as 'The Hole' - used for jailing local offenders - is still extant in the building, it's original door hanging on the wall of the Town Hall entrance area.

In 1641, the timbered, upper room - with impressive hammer-beam roof - was added to the property. The ground floor was enclosed during the Victorian period and rented out, being used as a fire station and local court........

With regards to resident 'ghosts', local legend has it that Sir Fulke Greville himself allegedly haunts the site. (Seemingly sharing his time between a handful of properties, including Warwick Castle). Less auspicious ghosts associated with the building are those of a small girl - heard crying in an empty, upstairs room - and that of an unidentified 'grey lady'.

One witness to peculiar activity at the Town Hall was working in the upstairs kitchen whilst expecting the arrival of a friend. Having heard footsteps in the main hall, he opened the door and was surprised to find no one in the room. Despite this, the footsteps appeared to continue across the floor, while the witness reported that it was noticeably cold and a sort of mist or fog hovered near the roof......

Despite being regarded as a no-nonsense, sensible man, the witness was sufficiently scared as to never go in the hall again on his own!

While having remained an - until now - 'undiscovered' haunted site, the Town Hall shares the same section of the village with some more, reasonably well known, sites. Directly across the road stands the former 'Angel Inn' - a building of considerable 'haunted' repute. Nearby St Nicholas' Church has also been the site of ghostly activity in the past, with - again - the apparition of the ubiquitous Sir Fulke Greville having put in an appearance during the early 20th Century!!

The W.M.G.C. would very much like to thank the people of Alcester - and in particular Vernon Munton and John Ross - for allowing us to visit their magnificent Town Hall.

Repeat Investigation:

February the 22nd saw group members paying a re-visit to one of the regions most famous haunted hostelries: the 3 Tuns in Sutton Coldfield. The visit was arranged by Stevie Chew.

The W.M.G.C. first visited this site on Halloween night, 2000, with members of the 'Black Country Paranormal Society'.

The site is reputed to be haunted by the ghost of a Civil War period drummer boy, who is said to have been murdered in the cellar by Parliamentarian troops.... The current landlord has only been in the property for a matter of a few months, though he is already aware of his staffs dislike for for the cellar area. His partner has also reported a feeling of being followed in an upstairs bedroom...

Steve Chew has recently been told by an ex-staff member that no one wanted to venture into the cellar because of a feeling of being followed or watched. Other employees had reported the sensation of being touched on odd occasions and Steve's confidante had personally seen a pint glass slide along the bar of it's own accord. Strangely, upon hitting the floor, the glass shattered about 4 seconds after impact....

Our visit of the 22nd was made with the help of Sutton Coldfield media students - Craig, Megan and Emily.

W.M.G.C. thanks go out to Rick and Rich of the 3 Tuns for allowing us to visit their historic hostelry.

Unnamed Investigation:

On Friday the 7th March, group members conducted an overnight investigation at a magnificent Midlands house - the name and location of which will remain undisclosed. The visit was organised by John Conway.

People involved with the historic property concerned have frequently reported numerous, potential ghostly happenings - mainly comprising of poltergeist-like activity.

A number of years ago, a gentleman and his wife were locking the house up for the night when they heard two women 'whispering' in an empty room. Around the same time, footsteps were heard traversing a corridor one morning when the building was completely empty save for the witness.

More recently, a plaque has been seen moving across a desk by two people before falling to the floor. Other people have also reported seeing objects seemingly moving of their own volition and falling off shelves.

A monk-like figure has been seen on the main staircase - the general area around the stairs having been reported as having an adverse effect on security guard dogs at times. Strange noises have been heard in the property, along with eerie feelings in certain parts of the building and a smell like rotting cabbage. Quite recently, one person has reported being touched on the shoulder in an empty toilet......

Immeasurable W.M.G.C. thanks goes out to the management of the site concerned for allowing us to visit the property. Also, a massive 'Thanks' to Barry and Gavin for being so accommodating during our visit.

Shropshire Encounter - Can You Help?

In late February, the Shropshire Star informed the W.M.G.C. of a recent, peculiar encounter just outside Telford. Subsequently, the group was contacted by Tina Smart - wife of witness to the aforementioned incident, Garry Smart - who supplied us with a copy of their original e-mail to to the press. The details are repeated below, in full:

"My name is Garry Smart I live in Trench and have done so for the past 37 years, which also gives away my age. I have been married now nearly 18 years and have three children. I work as a lorry driver.

I have been on walks by the sugarbeet factory for around 30 plus years now, starting as young as I can remember with an uncle of mine and progressing into me rabbiting there when I was about 15 years old, then walks with my wife and children and dogs and continue to walk with my dogs to this present day, there has never been a set day or time that I walk there so was amazed to what I believe I saw on Sunday 24th February at 17.30pm.

I was walking by the sugarbeet factory, taking my two dogs for a walk, the pup who is aged 9 months began barking, the other dog didn't and I looked to see what he was barking at, therefore looking into the direction the pup was looking, which was towards my vehicle parked at approximately 20 feet from me. I saw an elderly man that was wearing what looked to be a long gown used by farmers for milking the cows which was a sandy brown colour and a flat cap. He appeared old but the face wasn't clear. I said "alright" to him he looked towards me and continued to walk without acknowledging me, I thought how ignorant he had been.

I picked the pup up as he was still barking but couldn't see this man, I walked about 10 paces and looked in the direction the man had walked but he was nowhere to be seen. The man had been walking on a pathway used by farmers to get onto fields, there was a 6ft chain linked fence on one side and a small brook / stream on the other with a scattering of trees either side of the brook / stream. I believe if the man had gone in the direction of the trees you would have heard twigs break underneath his feet or the sound of the trees being moved whilst walking through them, there was no leaves on the trees. The path was straight - so to me it was a mystery as to where he may have gone without being seen.

Me and my wife are intrigued to know if anyone else has had this experience by the sugar beet factory? Does anyone know who this man maybe? Are there any photographs out there that we could see of this man, Is it an anniversary, i.e. birth, death or a place that this man loved or lived, any information would be greatly received. There were people ploughing in a nearby field over the other side of the railway would this have any bearings on this possible sighting".

Both Garry and Tina - and, indeed, the W.M.G.C. - are desperate to know whether anyone else is aware of such happenings within the region concerned? Alternatively, do any of our visitors possibly have an idea of whether there is 'any' history of hauntings surrounding this general region?

Needless to say, any pertinent information on this matter can be sent in to the group via the contact details given on our index page.

Media Watch:

Once again, over the past few months, W.M.G.C. affairs and activities have featured in the local media a number of times.

*On December the 14th, group member Steve Chew appeared on the Danny Kelly Show (Radio W.M.) speaking on the subject of (so called) E.V.P. recordings. Further Club appearances on the same show took place on January the 22nd and 23rd.

*On November the 29th, the Black Country Bugle printed an article (written by the W.M.G.C.) concerning the (now demolished) Blue Ball public house in Oldbury.

*News of our investigation at the Sandwell Council Training Centre appeared in the Express and Star, the Walsall Advertiser, the Halesowen News and on the Sandwell Council web site.

*Details surrounding the group investigation of Alcester Town Hall appeared in the Alcester Chronicle and Redditch Advertiser in Mid-February.

*Our 3 Tuns investigation was featured in the Sutton Observer on February the 29th.

*And - finally - the Telford 'Spooky Farmer' incident resulted in a W.M.G.C. mention in the Shropshire Star in early March.

No comments: