Being a serving police officer, I'm usually quiet sceptical when it comes to farfetched stories. But as this happened to me twice, I can't discount it as my imagination or being overtired.
After a long shift with on 7 hours before the next one started, I decided to stay over at work. We have a basement room with folding beds for occasions like this. By the way, work is the Palace of Westminster, better known as the Houses of Parliament. This building has been there since 1097, so there is a awful lot of history to the building and surrounding areas.
After settling down for the night, I had turned off the lights and drifted off to sleep. I recall waking up sometime later and feeling a presence in the room with me. At first I thought nothing of it until suddenly I felt this presence pressing down on my chest forcing me into the mattress. It felt like I was paralysed, unable to move my arms or legs and was physically unable to move any of my body away from the mattress. This seemed to last for about 30 seconds until I was able to regain my mobility. I put the lights on, opened the door and spent the rest of the night drifting in and out of sleep. In the morning I put this down to my active imagination.
Over the next few days I mentioned this to a few colleagues at work who also used the room and they too said they had felt a presence in the room, although nothing physical had happened to them. One of these would only sleep with the lights on and the door wide open. So much for big brave policemen. Apparently a contractor on the building had hung himself in a basement room and had only been found three days later. I have been unable to confirm if this was the same room.
A few weeks later, whilst again sleepover, the same events occurred. Only this time, with a little more knowledge, I was slightly better prepared with more calmness than I expected considering I was being forced into the mattress again. I said, "I know you are here, I do not want to harm you, I just want to rest before work." With this, the pressure was released and I have never been bothered by this presence since. Although I am still wary when sleeping there.
Whilst on about work there is one place I try to avoid on night duties the West Front Corridor in the House of Lords. Every time I walk down here I can again feel there is a presence in this area. The heavily wood paneled walls just seem to close in on you and I expect something to jump out on me at any point. Although this is in a newer part of the Palace built around 1840, it is only 10 metres away from Westminster Hall the oldest part of the Palace where Charles I and William Wallace (Braveheart) stood trial before execution. So there has been quiet a history of violence within its walls.
Is this type of physical pressure common?