Posted in Blogtober

Blogtober Day 28: My Family’s Paranormal Experiences

We’re so close to Halloween now! To honour the fast approaching spookiest day of the year, I thought I’d do something a bit different for today’s Blogtober post. Here are some weird things that have happened to me and/or my family members that are possibly paranormal.

Poltergeist in the house?

This is one that my mum has told me about as it happened before I was born. When my mum and dad first moved in together, for a short while they lived in a house only a stone’s throw from the one we live in now. It was a brand new semi-detached property with nothing obviously spooky about it, except from the wealth of weird things that happened there. One time they went out only to come home and discover all the windows were open when they had been shut when they left, another time they got back to the house to find all the clocks set to different times. Things would move and turn up in places that both mum and dad were sure they hadn’t left them and the kitchen tap turned on by itself. Most spooky of all was when there was a powercut and my mum was carrying a candle up the stairs to light her way in the dark when the candle suddenly went out and she felt a presence right before her. She told it to go away and the presence seemed to move off. Eek, I don’t think I’d have been so brave.


This one involves my Nan and again happened way before I was even born but she has told this story the same all my life so I definitely believe her. She was walking home from the shops one day and had to stop on the route to put the heavy bags down for a moment before continuing on the journey. When she did, she happened to glance up at the sky to see a grey cigar-shaped object which then shot off with flames firing out the back. When she made it home no one believed what she had seen until the next day’s local newspaper reported that the teams coming off a nearby football pitch had seen the exact same thing.

A haunted jukebox?

Ok, exciting times for me because I’m actually in this one. This one relates to my Nan, not the one in the last story, my grandmother on the other side of the family. She was a big spirit in life, she loved her family and putting on a spread for us all when we went around, even if she was a bit old-fashioned. After she died, we kept feeling like she wasn’t really gone. We had a few weird electrical faults and the song we were going to play at her funeral seemed to come on the TV or radio every time we mentioned her (it still did for a long time afterwards). Then the funeral happened and we all went to a local function room for the reception. There was a jukebox in the room but obviously they knew no one would be playing tunes at a funeral reception so it was switched off. But, somehow the jukebox burst into life and starting playing, of all songs, Every Breath You Take by The Police. In the end, someone went and unplugged it.

Also, I don’t fully know how to explain this one and this really did only happen to me so I haven’t got anyone else’s words or recollections to help me here so bear with me. One time I was at her house, visiting my granddad and I had a glass of orange juice while I was there. My parents arrived to pick me up so I was going to take the glass to the kitchen and wash it up but as soon as I attempted to take a step into the kitchen, I was filled with an overwhelming feeling. The only way I can describe it is that it was like a wave crashed over in my mind and suddenly I was thinking about her, only her, and it was so sudden and fierce I stopped dead in my tracks and felt frightened – not by her, just by the feeling. I’ve never experienced anything like it before or since. I feel like maybe it was her way of saying to me not to worry about washing up that glass, she was such a keen hostess in life, I know she wouldn’t have wanted to clean up at her house if she was there. I ended up just reaching into the room from the doorway and leaving the glass on the side.

This was a very different post from me as I don’t usually talk about my family on this blog but I hope this was interesting. I know these experiences aren’t nearly as extreme as what some people have seen but I promise they are all true. Feel free to share any spooky experiences you’ve had in the comments because I love hearing other people’s stories. Bye for now!

Posted in Blogtober, TV

Blogtober Day 19: Thoughts on Ghost Hunting TV Shows

In today’s instalment of my Halloween Blogtober series I wanted to talk about ghost hunting TV shows. Usually they’re all over the TV at this time of year and I have to admit they are a guilty pleasure watch for me.

I grew up watching Most Haunted. It was the same format each episode, Yvette Fielding, her husband Karl Beattie, a psychic medium and a production crew would investigate a supposedly haunted building at night and attempt to catch footage of a ghost in the flesh… well, in the ectoplasm, I guess. Since the show began back in 2002, it took fifteen years for a potential ghost to be caught on film by the team. Whether it really is a ghost is, of course, up for debate but the footage clearly shows a figure walking down some steps. But, if it took all that time to finally catch a ghost on camera, what has kept the show going so long? Until 2018, the show was mostly filled with odd phenomena, ranging from tapping to objects being moved, EVP recordings to spooky assessments from mediums and even the odd Ouija Board session. And honestly, it was entertaining. It was good spooky viewing, especially at Halloween and it was up to the audience whether they wanted to believe the show was genuine or not.

The thing is, you can’t really speak about Most Haunted without mentioning its controversies. Most notably this came in 2005 when an investigation into Bodmin Jail (Bodmin’s third mention this Blogtober!) saw the show’s resident psychic medium, Derek Acorah, caught lying about being possessed by the spirit of a man called Kreed Kafer. What he didn’t know was that the show’s skeptic at the time, Ciarán O’Keeffe, suspected not all Acorah’s possessions were real so he made up a fake entity, whose name is an anagram of ‘Derek faker’… ouch, and fed this information to the medium. Acorah then claimed to be possessed by this particular spook on the show. O’Keeffe came forward after the show aired and Acorah was subsequently replaced for future series.

Although the evidence is pretty damning against Acorah, I do have sympathy for the situation. When you’re making a show that thrives on the audience expecting to see some paranormal activity, there is pressure to give that to them, whether it’s real or not.

Ghost hunting shows are presented on TV as entertainment shows, they aren’t scientific documentaries. However, there is a question to be asked as to whether it is ethically ok to create shows using potentially faked evidence of the paranormal. Here’s how I see it, theres’ a fine line when it comes to ethics and the paranormal. I don’t think it’s ok to knowingly deceive an individual into thinking that you have access to a dead loved one of theirs or to ask for money for something intentionally faked. But, what’s harmful about a ghost show? It’s not picking on individuals and the only ones paying for it are the TV networks who get the viewing figures as their reward for the broadcasts. As it doesn’t really hurt individuals and, for the most part, people aren’t paying their TV licenses just to watch ghost hunting shows, I don’t think there’s any malice in them.

I should also say I’m not accusing every ghost hunting show of fakery. I feel like I can say with confidence that a lot of potentially paranormal activity captured on TV has perfectly reasonable explanations. There are some moments though that aren’t so easy to explain away. There are clips from ghost hunting shows that are truly spooky and I don’t believe are faked. That brings me back to the Most Haunted footage of the figure walking up the stairs. A big part of me wants to believe it’s real and I actually think it could be.

Whether they’re fake or not though, as I said at the start I love a good ghost hunting show and they’ll always be one of my spooky guilty pleasures. What do you think of ghost hunting shows? Let me know in the comments.

Posted in Blogtober

Blogtober Day 10: Top Ten Haunted Locations in the UK

The UK is filled to brim with spooky spectres and tales of haunted houses, castles, pubs and more. Here are my top ten haunted locations in the UK, some of these I’ve been to already and some I’ve got on my bucket list of places to visit.

1. Hampton Court Palace, London

This is one of my all-time favourite haunts. This is because it’s a beautiful building with an extensive history… and a thriving ghost population. There’s a Grey Lady who’s been spotted on a staircase, phantom screaming along the Haunted Gallery and who can forget the chilling CCTV footage of a hooded spectre opening and closing two huge fire doors?!

2. The City of Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a city bubbling over with history and hauntings so I decided to wrap the whole city up as one spooky location. At Edinburgh Castle, there are reports going of a headless drummer boy. In Mary King’s Close, there is a whole stack of toys left for Annie, the ghost of a little girl said to be just one of the ghosts that haunt the abandoned streets beneath the city. And, most sinister of all might just be the spirit George Mackenzie, a persecutor of Covenanters, who has been known to attack those who venture to his “Black Mausoleum” in Greyfriars Kirkyard.

3. 30 East Drive, West Yorkshire

Unlike most of the other spooky sites on this list, 30 East Drive looks just like your average family home. It’s the terrifying reports of the Black Monk that put this house on the map. Some of the activity seemed quite innocent, from puddles of water appearing in random places and odd things being moved around. At his worst though, the Black Monk was said to have slashed photographs and even dragged a young girl who lived in the house up the stairs by just her hair. Despite exorcism attempts, spooky goings on are still reported to this day.

4. Chillingham Castle, Northumberland

Considered England’s most haunted castle, Chillingham has quite a few stories to tell. One of the most famous comes from a spirit known as the Blue Boy. This particular ghost was said to been seen as orbs and even full-body apparitions until renovation work on the castle uncovered the body of a little boy in a blue outfit concealed in a wall. After this discovery the Blue Boy’s spirit seemed to have found peace. However, more recent reports suggest he’s back to his old ghostly ways once again.

5. The Village of Pluckley, Kent

With at least 12 ghost cases alone, Pluckley was given the title “most haunted village in Britain” by the Guinness Book of Records in 1989. There’s a Red Lady who haunts the local graveyard, a highwayman who hides in the trees and phantom horses are sometimes seen riding by.

6. Tower of London

This brutal site of imprisonment and execution spanning centuries of British history undoubtably has a spooky aura. Two of the most compelling ghost sightings are the Princes in the Tower, likely murdered by their ambitious uncle Richard III in 1483, who have been seen to walk through the walls and former queen of England, Anne Boleyn. Anne has been spotted in multiple places by various witnesses walking headless in the grounds.

7. Pendle Hill, Lancashire

Pendle Hill has been considered a creepy location ever since it became the epicentre of one of England’s most infamous witch trails way back in 1612. The testimony of nine-year-old Jennet Device led to the guilty verdicts of ten people accused of consorting with the Devil. This included her own mother, sister and brother. After her entire family were executed, Jennet’s name pops up in the record books once more. She herself was tried and executed in 1634 on the grounds of witchcraft.

8. Aston Hall, Birmingham

The ghosts of Aston Hall date back to its first ever owner, Sir Thomas Holte in the seventeenth century. Holte was a cruel man who locked his daughter in her room for 16 years for wanting to marry a man he thought below their social standing. Her soul is said to still be trapped in the house to this day, along with that of Holte’s housekeeper and houseboy.

9. Bodmin Jail, Cornwall

This is an incredibly spooky building with a gruesome history. A formerly overcrowded prison and public hanging site, Bodmin Jail is a place of sadness and fury. Not all who were locked up here where thought to be guilty though. After Charlotte Dymond was murdered on Bodmin Moor, local boy Matthew Weeks was found guilty for the crime despite no evidence. Charlotte is believed to still roam the moors, possibly because her true murderer was never convicted.

10. The Town of Tenby, Wales

Tenby in Wales is a beautiful seaside town but it does have quite restless history of paranormal stories. From witches to fairies, a ghost walk in Tenby is truly fascinating. One of the most frightening stories might just be the ghost ship that was stopped by Tenby residents one spooky evening.

Thanks for reading! Have I missed any great ones? After all this talk of haunted houses, I think I’m in the mood for a good Halloween movie so bye for now!

Posted in Blogtober, TV

Blogtober Day 9: Halloween TV Shows

In honour of The Haunting of Bly Manor dropping on Netflix today, I thought I’d revisit some spooky TV shows I’ve enjoyed and share some from my to watch list.

The Haunting of Hill House

The Haunting of Hill House

The OG (Original Ghost) show when it comes to The Haunting series. This show spooked me well and good. I don’t think I’ve ever jumped so much at a TV show and though I’m terrified to start Bly Manor, I’m also so excited because Hill House is that good. Part of the joy of this show is finding out the deeper meanings and things you missed in the background. As soon as you know there are loads of extra ghosts in the hidden in certain shots it gets to the point where you’re not even scared when you seen them, you’re proud you managed to finally spot one. And, I’m not talking about the Break-Neck Lady here, she’s definitely an in-yer-face kind of spirit.

Stranger Things

Stranger Things

This is one of my all-time favourite shows despite not having a clue what’s happening half the time. Look, the science goes beyond me but Stranger Things is such a smart show and it’s filled with fun 80s references. It also has just the right blend of edge-of-your-seat scary scenes and heartwarming and hilarious moments. I love the whole show except for season 2, episode 7. Let’s just pretend there isn’t a season 2, episode 7, ok?

Being Human (UK version)

Being Human

Another one of my long-time faves. Being Human is a horror, comedy and drama all at once and it is glorious. The story follows a vampire, a werewolf and a ghost who all co-habit in a houseshare. There’s a little more to it than that, of course, there’s a group of vampires intent on world domination and Annie has to learn to face the man who murdered her. There’s a lot going on and it’s so addictively watchable.

Scream Queens

Scream Queens

To be honest, this is one of those shows where the first season was brilliant but it really should have ended there. If we’re just focusing on the first season though, it’s filled with horror movie references as this slasher sees a college campus deal with the murder spree of the Red Devil. It’s a show that will keep you guessing and constantly changing your mind about the identity of the killer until the final reveal and the way to the end is filled with dark humour and tense moments. It’s a must-see if you need a Halloween binge.



This BBC comedy is the perfect anti-horror Halloween watch. It’s about a couple, Alison and Mike, who inherit a stately home only for the Alison to develop the ability to see ghosts. After years of history, the house is home to several spooks from across the centuries who all have quite a lot to say about Alison and Mike’s plans for their new home.

Shows On My To Watch List (and where I’ll be watching them):

Ratched (Netflix)

Always A Witch (Netflix)

American Horror Story (Netflix)

Truth Seekers (Amazon Prime)

La Révolution (Netflix)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Amazon Prime)

What Halloween shows would you recommend? Let me know in the comments.

Posted in Blogtober

Blogtober Day 6: Thoughts on Ouija Boards

If you type “Ouija Board” into YouTube, you’ll find countless clickbaity videos of groups of friends who claim to have summoned a demon or had a spooky experience with a spirit board. Although I highly doubt the validity of most of these videos, Ouija Boards have managed to capture the minds of horror fans and ghost hunters for well over a century. Blogtober got me wondering where Ouija Boards came from and how they came to be so big so here’s what I found out.

The Origins

Ouija Boards as we know them today are a direct product of the rise of spiritualism and the growing interest in mediumship in the nineteenth century. A Baltimorean businessman called Elijah Bond got the patent for Ouija Boards way back in 1891, though talking boards were already popular at this time. There isn’t really much more to say about Elijah other than this fairly creepy detail, his gravestone has an Ouija Board engraved onto the back of it.

William Fuld is the next person of note in the mass-production of Ouija Boards as he oversaw the manufacture for Elijah. Eventually he became so invested in the product that he and his brother leased the Ouija Board name and set up a business together making them to supply the increasing demand. A feud drew the brothers apart though and resulted in William suing his brother for selling talking boards that were near replicas of the official Ouija Boards. William was making so much on Ouija Boards he even started creating Ouija-themed jewellery!

These days, the rights to Ouija Boards are owned by Hasbro, a toy and board game company.

The Scientific View

Aside from the whole, it can easily be faked explanation, scientists think there is another, more psychological theory as it how Ouija Boards work. This is the ideomotor phenomenon. Now, I’m no scientist but the basic gist is that the ideomotor phenomenon can explain how our unconscious mind can make our bodies move without our conscious mind recognising it. An example of our unconscious taking the reigns would be reacting when something is thrown at you without having to consciously think about it.

Our brains are so complicated and most psychologists and neurologists agree that there is so much we don’t know about them. What is known is that the power of suggestion is mighty. Most of the time, if someone attempts an Ouija Board session they are a believer in the paranormal and they probably want the planchette to move. This means their unconscious mind could respond by telling their hand to move it without them even being consciously aware of their movement.

My Verdict

All this brings me back to the start of this post, Ouija Boards make a great YouTube video. Watching that planchette move and spell out some message allegedly from the other side is undeniably spooky. But, for me, at least most of the time, a faked video is possibly all it is. Here’s the thing. I believe in ghosts and in cases of poltergeist activity, I do think it’s possible for ghosts to move things. Therefore, I think it’s plausible that a ghost could be moving that planchette but as for unlocking some portal to a ghost realm or this inanimate object being a hub of demonic activity, I don’t really buy it.

Slightly weird disclaimer before I go but I just want to say that although I don’t think Ouija Boards are demonic, just in case are, I wouldn’t recommend trying one because… well, you never know.

What do you make of Ouija Boards? Let me know in the comments and I’ll be back tomorrow for Blogtober Day 7.

Posted in Blogtober

Blogtober Day 1: Why I Love Halloween (and How I’ll Be Celebrating It In 2020)

Happy October! The spooky season is once more upon us and I’m so excited. I know 2020 has felt like a never-ending horror movie but Halloween is still one of my favourite days of the year and I’m determined to celebrate it… safely, of course!

In true 2020 style, Halloween has fallen on a Saturday which is really great considering no one can really go anywhere or do anything that doesn’t involve staying in their own home. COVID has left a lot of people asking whether Halloween should just be cancelled altogether. Hell, even Strictly Come Dancing (one of my guilty pleasures) isn’t getting a Halloween episode this year.  But, regardless of whether it’s celebrated or not, the 31st October is fast approaching so I’m still going to enjoy a bit of spookiness this month. In fact, welcome to the first in a series of Halloween-themed posts for Blogtober.

This is probably a strange decision considering I disappeared from this blog for about a year but if anything is going to make me come crawling back, it’s the chance to talk about ghosts, ghouls and all things spooky.

So, why do I love Halloween so much? It’s because I believe in nearly everything. I’m definitely more of a skeptic than I used to be but I still really want to see something I can’t explain. I think there is more to the world around us than we know and I’ve made it a life goal of mine to see a ghost myself… just not in my own home preferably. I want to see one, not live with one, y’know?

Halloween is the one time of year when everyone around me seems just as interested as I am in the idea of the paranormal. It’s the time of year when the darker evenings come back and people start sharing their spookiest stories. It’s the time of year when films about ghosts and witches and vampires start cropping up on the streaming services again. It’s the time of year when curling up with a good Gothic novel and a steaming cup of hot chocolate just hits the spot. Plus, who doesn’t love a good chance to dress up in a ridiculous costume and eat their bodyweight in sweets?

So, given I love Halloween but 2020 seems determined to cancel the festivities, I am dedicating this blog to Halloween all month-long to keep the festive fear (it’s a pun on ‘festive cheer’… I know, it’s a lame joke if you need to explain it!) going.

As for how else I’ll be celebrating, I’m planning on watching some scary movies (and some not so scary ones but more on that soon) and still, as always, devouring as many sweets as humanly possible. Hey, the less trick-or-treaters we get this year, the more sweets for me!

So, here’s my trick or treat, depending on how you feel about Halloween-related content, the first of a bunch of spooky posts coming your way. Bye for now!