I would like to share a few experiences I have had over the years. In my life I have lived in 5 different houses; 2 have had no kind of activity whilst 3 have been very active indeed.
My first experience with the paranormal was when I was 7 years old. My parents sent me to a local Sunday school- not because they are in the slightest bit religious, but because, as an only child, it was another way for me to socialise and make new friends.
It was a beautiful spring day and we headed out to the countryside to look around an old church called Publow which is located in the village of Pensford, about 30 minutes from the centre of Bristol. At 7, I had a child's fascination with death and would flit carelessly amongst the crumbling headstones seeing how old people were when they died. I soon found myself away from the main group and drawn to a bush in the older corner of the cemetery. I lifted the bushes back and underneath was a small wooden cross, akin to what you would bury a pet with. Suddenly, my eyes lifted and about 8m from me was a brown hooded figure, clear as day and solid looking. I could make out his brown robe but his face was obscured by his robe. I wouldn't describe it as a feeling of fear, more fascination, as I was rooted to the ground staring as he floated past and disappeared into nothing. I ran back to the group and told them what I had seen but no one took it seriously- given I was known for having an over active imagination!
Later, when I was 9/10, my parents had split up and my step-father had moved in with us. We lived in a 1960's style house which had been built on uninhibited farmland which would give no reason for anything of the paranormal to occur- boy was I wrong. I wouldn't call it a ghost, but more of a haunting. I could put it down to the in-between age I was at and the emotional trauma of being separated from my father, but things started changing. As an only child, I had the largest bedroom to myself which was beautifully decorated in a cheerful blue and yellow. It was a favourite hang out of my friends and I and I often had sleepovers. One evening, me and one friend were about to go to sleep when an almighty knocking sound came from within the walls and proceeded to continue for 15 minutes. Scared witless, we ran to my mum who blamed the boiler. The boiler was nowhere near my room and the sound came from within the walls where no pipes were located- go figure! For the next year or so, when sat in the living room, we would hear heavy footsteps emanating from my room, however as I got older and more settled, they died away. I always felt uneasy in my room.
My third experience was the second flat I moved to with my partner. It was located on the first floor of an Edwardian house and was our first proper home together. I loved the flat, despite the house being very dark with a bit of an atmosphere. At the time, my Nan was very ill. We all thought she would pull through again, but working as a PA to a pathologist, I knew differently and the night before she passed, I said my goodbyes. My boyfriend was on the early shift the next day and left the house at 5:30, leaving me to lie in. Shortly after he left, I heard heavy footsteps coming up the stairs to my bedroom, heard my door open and felt someone watching me. Thinking my boyfriend had forgotten something, I turned to face him and saw nothing there. The door too was shut. That was the beginning of a lot of extreme activity.
I had always felt uneasy in the bathroom and would shower with the door open, as it felt like something was watching me. With my job, I was able to work from home occasionally and one morning I felt a breeze come from the bathroom, swing right by my legs and flutter the papers I was working on to the floor. All the windows were shut. My kitten stared intently and followed the breeze around the room before settling down again. The defining moment came one evening when we had fallen asleep on the sofa. I heard a terrible groaning sound, like someone choking. Then I could hear a sound like sweet wrappers being scrunched up and batted around the room. Thinking it was my kitten playing with our chocolates I sat up to chastise her, only to find her asleep on my pillow. That was the final straw for me. As it was winter and I finished work before my boyfriend, I got tired of wandering around our local supermarket or sitting in the pub waiting for my boyfriend to finish as I hated being alone in the flat. I got my uncle involved who is a spiritualist and had been involved in clearing my friend's student flat (another story)!
He came to my flat and straight away picked up on the fact I had been uneasy in the bathroom. He told me I had an old man visiting who liked to use the bathroom as a through way, like he had in life, to get from one house to the other. If I explain the layout. We lived in a terraced house. The next door house was not connected to ours at all. I laughed it off, until my normally placid kitten started trying to attack my uncle as he spoke. I ended up having to lock her in the kitchen whilst she struggled to get out. The atmosphere was thick and the hairs on my arms raised. My uncle said the spirit had moved on and that we should not be scared as he was just passing. I left the flat hurriedly with them that night and we moved soon after.
The funny thing is, when I spoke to my landlord, he told me that yes, the two houses had been bought my an older man in the 1920's and there had been a doorway in my bathroom before they were converted back some 60 years ago. Go figure! At 26, I now live in a beautiful Victorian flat with a resident but non-intimidating spook who it seems I can feel. I don't run screaming from the house in terror and it lives in harmony with me, my partner and our now fully grown cat!