Monday, 19 April 2010

The harm that woo does.

On Saturday 17th April '10 a small group of us visited the Llandoger Trow in the city of Bristol to spend some time there to see what conclusion we could reach about the supposed haunting there. It wasn't a full investigation - more of an experience evening for some curious friends. I walked away from the location feeling rather uncomfortable about what we had discovered and I'm not talking about something strange and unexplainable that we witnessed, but rather what we uncovered with regards to the supposed haunting and the effect it has had on the building.


Throughout the time spent there we conducted various vigils (for want of a better word) in various area of the location with nothing out of the ordinary happening. With it being quiet we decided it would be interesting to conduct a ouija board experiment on the second floor. The experiment was a simple one - we all took part in a normal ouija board seance for a while and then I wrote down a word on a piece of paper and placed it on a table away from the others who then asked the 'spirit' or whatever it was that was making the planchette move to spell out the word I had written down that nobody had seen.

It didn't.
The group with the board. The board that didn't pass my test :/

The place felt very calm and normal and not at all sinister as we had been told it would, however, the most interesting thing of the night occured as we sat at the table with the ouija board. 
A member of staff who lives in the staff quarters walked into the room we were in on her way up to her room and upon seeing the board utterly freaked out and started saying how scared she was of the place. 

We asked her what she had experienced and her reply was nothing but she was still scared of what she had been told was there. She soon left us alone after we explained to her how the ouija board isn't dangerous and is just a game. We carried on and a little while later whilst having a cup of tea and a break we were joined by what I presume was the manager/supervisor who got chatting to me and a couple of other members of our team. She too told us of how scared she was of the building and the ghosts that were there.

 Here I can be seen demonstrating my ability to shoot light from the top of my head.

Tom, one of the team, asked her what she had seen or experienced and her reply was the same as the other girl we had met - nothing, but she'd been told by other teams what was meant to be there. She asked me which one of our team was the psychic or medium. When I told her none of us were she was shocked as 'teams normally have one when they come here.' She told us of a local team (whom I shall not name because I can't bring myself to type their name) whose "sensetive" members had picked up on all sorts of spirits and activity. They had apparently done glass divination and it had been so active that the team had left early because they were so scared. 

This is where I got really pissed off because that is so unethical of that team to do that to the people who live and work at the location. It's one of the least scariest places I have ever visited. I would happily sit in that building on my own over night and yet the people who work there have had it drummed into their head by numerous teams that there is something there, something scary that they should be wary of. It's got them really, really frightened and that's not right. 

In the bar area of the pub there is a shelf with certificates from the paranormal teams that have visited the location previously and those teams should be utterly ashamed of what they've done to the people at the location. 

On our way home we were discussing what we had discovered and we all agreed that it was likely the other teams had visited the location because of it's reputation because they wanted to find a ghost and they did. This is the issue with modern ghost hunting. It's tacky. It's tacky because anyone and everyone seems to go to a supposedly haunted location with their medium, try to find a ghost using out dated techniques just to prove to themselves that their belief in an afterlife or the existence of ghosts is right. 

It's as though they don't even stop to think about what they're doing. Go and do your divination and seances in your own homes but for goodness sake don't go to somebody elses home or place of work and do that sort of crap because it scares people, it misleads them and you are doing nothing but forcing your personal beliefs down their throats. 

I now will have to go out of my way to go and visit the location during the day to talk them through the issues I have stumbled upon because I am genuinely worried about the staff members who are scared. I've never actually come across people who have been so badly effected by the actions of a few close-minded woo-woo ghost hunting teams.

Shame on them.

2 comments:

  1. The ethics of ghosthunting are an absolute minefield. Ian Baker, Ciaran O Keefe (and possibly Matt Smith) wrote an excellent little piece in the JSPR on it. Can you ask any of them if they can show it to you? I'd like to publish it but it's copyright the SPR.

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  2. Interesting post - I'm part of a local Bristol team and have considered the Llandoger as a place to investigate.

    I completely agree with what you say about the seances/boards etc. in people's homes. No way they should be done (unless requested by the residents themselves...and only then if they all agree).

    I am an open-minded skeptic and as such like to think of any events from both sides. If you were interested, my site is www.ghostsandmore.info. It would be great to hear your opinions on some of the events we discuss.

    Many thanks for the interesting post and keep up the great work you are doing.

    regards

    Jason

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