Thursday, 24 April 2014


Dusk had settled and night was closing in on Beach Cemetery at Hell Spit, on the old Anzac battlefields of Gallipoli, when Fairfax photographer Joe Armao opened the shutter on his last series of pictures for the day – and captured something inexplicable.

Only three people were at the cemetery, or anywhere, so far as we were aware, within kilometres: Armao, guide and local author Celal Boz, and me.

Celal was standing among the silent graves, the only person – no more than a silhouette in the gloom – in the camera's field of vision.

By the time the shutter closed, what appeared to be another ghostly figure had been captured by the camera.
The shadowy silhouette of a figure in a wide-brimmed hat appeared in the frame.

In the foreground is a flower that grows between the gravestones.
The spectral figure appears in only one of a series of three near-identical frames shot by Armao over 40 seconds. The camera angle had changed no more than 15 centimetres over the series of pictures, and the shutter had been set for a 2.5-second exposure because of the gathering dark.

Armao saw the unexplained apparition when he checked the frames a few seconds later.
He could offer no explanation, but he said the hair stood up on the back of his neck. When he showed Celal and me, we packed up and left the empty cemetery.
Armao, a Walkley-award-winning photographer of 25 years' experience, said he had never seen anything remotely like the picture that appeared on his screen.

Hours of close and sceptical inspection of the frame, including extreme digital enlargement, comparison with other frames and lively discussion of a number of theories about shadows from the flower, tricks of the light and movement of the camera during the 2.5-second exposure offered no conclusive explanation.

It was simply a moment in a darkening graveyard, 99 years since Anzac soldiers stormed ashore at nearby Anzac Cove, captured by a closing shutter.
We offer it for your judgement.

Source: SidneyMorningHerald

Monday, 21 April 2014


Due for DVD release this coming June 17th 2014, is a new paranormal movie entitled, `Cathnafola`, with a free bonus investigation at Leap Castle, reputedly one of the world`s most haunted castles.

Cathnafola centres on a real investigation of a very remote and derelict Irish mansion called, Cathnafola House which was shot as a joint participation between Haunted Earth and October Eleven Pictures.

Directed by the award winning movie and TV Director Jason Figgis and produced by Chris Halton of Haunted Earth TV, the investigation was filmed following a compelling video sent to Haunted Earth late last year by a group of investigators based in Ireland.

The original video was actively spiritually intense, and showed a number of strange and frightening occurrences captured to film by these investigators which warranted further investigation to confirm or deny the content of their video which they claimed to be genuine.

After lengthy negotiations with the site owner, we were allowed to film a follow up investigation which (without revealing too much information), was one of the best events ever captured by Haunted Earth with hardcore and quite terrifying activity caught to camera. The First Assistant Director, Jason Shalloe was visibly affected during this shoot which he regards to be the most frightening experience of his life!

The movie premièred in Dublin at the Irish Film Institutes, `Horrorthon`, and was aired to a nearly full large cinema capacity audience with good and positive feedback from the critical horror genre fans in attendance.

Here is what one person from the audience has said on the movie:

`I saw Cathnafola at the Irish Film Institute Horrorthon. It is one hell of a scary movie. The hair on your neck just keeps creeping up. Looking forward to getting in on DVD and seeing the bonus film, which I don't know.`

Ordering for U.S and Canadian readers:  (DVD is region free and can be played anywhere)

If you enjoyed the trailer, and want to see the whole movie (with bonus video, `Leap into Darkness`) you can pre-order from this Amazon link to receive your copy on release.

Just click the Amazon logo to enter the websites pre-buy page to order the DVD!

Cathnafola - A Paranormal Investigation (trailer) from Pop Twist Entertainment on Vimeo.

 The Legend of Cathnafola House

In a far forgotten corner of old Ireland lies the ruins of what was once a magnificent late Gothic revival mansion. Now lying hidden some two miles from the nearest country lane, this once proud dream of wealth, circumstance and social acceptability is now all but a faint echo of a past life.
Built in 1855 by Hubert Vazey-Asquith, for his pregnant wife and expectant child, Cathnafola House was beset with problems from the day the first brick was laid.
The site chosen for this project lay across the remains of an almost forgotten ancient battle site where Irish chieftains battled for three days and nights for territory control, yet despite the hundreds of dead and dying warriors left to rot where they fell, there was no overall winner.
As the Vazey-Asquiths learnt to their bitter dread, the area named historically as Cath na fola or `battle of blood` belonged to nobody of this realm and particularly not to English settlers who were given these lands via a descendant of Cromwell`s bloody Irish campaigns .
Shortly after starting the build, his wife gave birth to a healthy son named Grayston, but because of complications during child-birth, she unfortunately bled to death.
Hubert was grief struck, but with a small child as heir he felt he owed it to them both to finish the project.
A few years after completion of the house Hubert suffered a second loss as his son died of an apparent food allergy to eating sweet chestnuts harvested on the estate.
Hubert then shut himself away from the society upon which he had previously wanted to be part of. He rarely left the house, and was beside himself with grief as he could see no more purpose to his now lonely life.
One morning, a young maid despatched to take breakfast to his bedroom was shocked to find Hubert dead having hung himself during the night from a rope attached to a first floor balcony.
In his dressing gown pocket a suicide note written by Hubert was found which confirmed the loss of his wife and son as the reason for ending his life.
As there were no immediate heirs, the estate was passed to a distant relative living in Britain who had only ever met Hubert once as a child, and had very little interest in Ireland or indeed Irish affairs.
   This inheritor, a man named Sefton Villiers-Vazey had no need of the house or the estate having already owned a profitable and less worrying house and horse stud in mainland Britain.  However he continued to run the estate through agents and was for the most part an absentee landlord having only visited the house twice within 15 years of ownership.
In 1880 Sefton died on a business trip to Portugal, and his son, Montague who had no interest in his fathers properties ordered that the Cathnafola estate be sold by auction in Dublin through the family solicitors.
The house and the estate was sold sight unseen by to a new owner, one Darby Hesmondwicke, a 50-year-old successful London businessman who wanted a country estate in Ireland to eventually retire to.
Darby arrived at Cathnafola as a single man in 1881 and immediately began restoration work on the house and estate after some years of neglect.
Darby had no problems finding workers and artisans to complete the work, and in return paid his workers a fair wage and ensured no estate families would suffer during this terrible period.
He soon made the estate self-sufficient and profitable, and was regarded by the Irish staff and tenant farmers as a firm but kindly man.

Elizabeth Hesmondwicke
In 1882, he met the beautiful Elizabeth O`Donnell, a lady of noble Irish ancestry from Dublin, and importantly to Darby, a recent convert to the Protestant faith.
Being some 20 years younger than Darby, she was regarded by many as quite a catch.
Beth (as she was known) was a dark-haired beauty with deep brown eyes, whom it was said may have had Spanish blood in her ancestry which was perhaps evidenced by her latin temperament.
Despite her lineage to alleged early Irish royalty, Beth knew that outside of Dublin society, she was little more than a traitor to the predominantly Catholic Irish, and to polite English circles nothing more than an Irish whore.

However, at Cathnafola as wife to the gentlemanly Darby she was regarded as the lady of the house and enjoyed there at least, a modicum of respect from the estate workers.
For some years the couple tried desperately to have a child, but always without issue.
This brought a strain on an otherwise happy relationship, and after acknowledging failure of an heir, Darby started to lose interest in the estate and increasingly travelled between Cathnafola and London where he conducted an interest in stocks and shares.
Beth however, was tied to the affairs of running the estate`s business and refused to join Darby in London.
By 1890, Darby`s absence became almost permanent, and by arrangement with his wife he recruited as an estate manager, a 39-year-old Englishman from the London Home Counties to assist her in Ireland.
William Trentham
The appointee, a single man named as William Trentham came from a respectable  middle-class family who had returned from colonial service in India some years before.
William was regarded as a thorough and efficient manager of a tea plantation in Assam, and had impeccable references which more than qualified him to run Cathnafola`s 40,000 acre estate.
However, what was not shared to his new employer was Trentham`s cruel disaffection towards the natives of India, and indeed against anyone not deemed to be British enough to his tastes.
Within that umbrella of bigotry, Trentham clearly saw the Irish as no worthier than the Indians, and  shortly after arriving on the estate he set about unravelling the good work his employer had achieved in Anglo-Irish relations.
Trentham was known to walk the estate with a heavy indian rosewood walking stick which he used frequently to beat workers whom he regarded as `erstwhile savages`.
He also had perverted sexual tastes and upon young female staff members he indulged in what he called `horseplay`, but in modern terms would regarded as rape through sodomy.
Rumours of his behaviour soon spread not just across the estate, but to nearby villages and hamlets. There was little anyone could do as Trentham employed local thugs to mind out for him on his daily rounds and the local resident magistrate shared much of Trentham`s hatred towards the Irish.
Technically Beth was Trentham`s employer, but as he was highly efficient in running the estate profitably, and also of course relieving much pressure from her shoulders, she turned a blind eye to many of his misdeeds.
As the month`s passed Beth grew increasingly frightened of Trentham, who was an overbearing bully whose fiery temperament gradually wore down Beth from the status of employer to that of his mistress.
Within a year, Trentham, or `Master William` as he preferred to be addressed, had moved from the manager`s cottage and into the matrimonial bedroom.
Here he continued in a sordid affair with Beth and also with other female staff in service.  As a consequence some fell pregnant through him and were immediately dismissed from the house and estate.
Darby knew nothing of this, and instead read accounts that showed a profitable business and no complaints from his now estranged wife.
This unhappy state of affairs came to a head almost two year`s later when Beth too became pregnant by him.
As everyone knew that Darby the absent father could never have been the father, Trentham panicked, and this recklessness was to drive him from the status of rapist to that of a cold-blooded murderer.
In late February 1893, Beth went into labour. An abortion at Trentham`s insistence months before was ignored by her and despite being whipped because of it, she was still able to reach full term.
As staff prepared the master bedroom to assist with the delivery, Trentham refused to contact the local doctor to deliver the child. It was believed that her battered and scarred body might reveal the full extent of Trentham`s evil upon her, and as a consequence he decided that he would deliver the baby himself.
Around midnight, Trentham ordered the domestic staff to leave, and from threats of being sacked, the women reluctantly left the master bedroom to Trentham and Beth.
It is said that not only did Trentham deliver the live birth of a baby boy, he immediately tore the child from her clutches and after separating the umbilical cord, he wrapped the screaming child in a bedsheet and took it (whilst Beth pleaded hysterically) down into the cellars where he had prepared an open chamber and that the still crying baby was walled up alive after bricks were cemented into place to permanently seal the crime.
The crying it is said, continued for an hour and then was heard no more.
A few days later a bereft with grief Beth flung herself from an attic window and died during the fall after impaling herself on railings below.
By now the truth of the monster that was William Trentham had turned even the thugs in his service against him, and fearing reprisals from the estate workers, it was rumoured that Trentham was left unconscious in the house as it mysteriously caught fire burning and incinerating both the body of Beth and Trentham.
A search of the ruins a few days later revealed the remains of a man and woman, and the entire matter was covered up by the resident magistrate who feared his own inaction to earlier complaints might go against him should the real truth be revealed.
When Darby later heard the official account of an accidental house fire that was recorded as probably caused by a dropped oil lamp, the matter was closed by him, and the surrounding farmland and tenancies were sold to neighbouring farmers.
Darby never returned to Ireland.
Many years later, it is alleged that a cellar wall within the ruins was removed for storing poteen (illicitly distilled whiskey) by a farmer, and inside, and still wrapped in a faded and rotten bedsheet were what appeared to be the remains of a human baby.
The farmer apparently fearful of the Garda discovering his illegal activities buried the remains in a nearby field.
Today Cathnafola exists as grand ruins sheltered by tree`s and undergrowth, and very little visited by modern man.
It is rumoured that the remains are still haunted by William Trentham and Elizabeth, and that sometimes her baby can be heard crying as she roams the house calling for her child.
Trentham (according to legend) is sometimes seen as a malevolent entity that gloatingly follows Beth on her nightly vigil, and because of the house`s fearful reputation nobody will travel there at night.

Saturday, 19 April 2014


A FAMILY were spooked when they discovered ghostlike pictures of a little girl in Victorian costume shadowing them from room to room around a museum.

John Burnside came out in goose bumps with he found the images of the child lurking in the background on his phone two years after they were taken.

They were taken two years ago – when he popped into York’s Castle Museum with partner Shona Backhouse and their son Johnthomas Burnside, then just 18 months' old.

John, 27, a labourer, of Wakefield, had no explanation for what had happened.

He had never seen the little girl before until he found his old memory card in the pocket of his pyjamas and transferred the contents onto his new phone.

He was sat next to Shona, 25, on the couch when they spotted the extra figure in the photos.

He said: “It was weird. I didn’t notice anything at first then I thought I was imagining it. So I asked Shona and she said ‘Yes. It’s a little girl.’

“When I phoned my mum she at first thought it might be a little girl that my sister lost but my dad spotted the girl in the picture was in Victorian dress.

“It’s enough to make you paranoid. It gives me goose bumps every time I think about it.

“I don’t like the idea of ghosts or anything like that. It gives me panic attacks. There was not little girl like that on the day at the museum.

“It was pretty dead there to be honest all through the day. Anyway, it looks like you can see right through her.”

There have been claims in the past at Castle Museum is haunted.

A crew filming an episode of Derek Acorah's Ghost Towns programme in 2006 insisted they had heard shrill voices and seen ghostly children running around.

Shona, who works in a tanning salon, said: “I don't know that the thing is. It is like it was following us because it was in the last picture of me taken outside.

"It is really weird. I never noticed it until other day when we looked through the pictures.

"But I told John when was at the museum that I had funny feeling and didnt like it there.

"The room one of pics was taken in I wouldn't go inside. It gave me goose pimples and shivers.

"Our son was around 18 months' old at the time. I can't really remember if he sensed anything - but I know I didn't like it at all though."

Source: YorkPress

To me, these photographs look fake. The first behind a grill looks more like an old photograph of a woman and child merged in with the background. The quality of the images are extremely poor quality which helps to mask any suspected fraudulent images.
And of course, the images lay unseen for 2 years before they were `shockingly` discovered...
I wasn`t there, I could be wrong. But from experience, these images look highly suspect.
But at least the images owners got their 15 minutes worth of fame ..

Friday, 18 April 2014


Amateur ghost hunters claim they have made contact with the spirit of Richard III, next to the bed where the king reportedly spent his last night.

Members of the paranormal investigation group Haunted Heritage said they recorded the spooky encounter at Donington le Heath Manor House, Leicestershire, last year.

But they said they did not want to publicise the recording at the time because of the furore surrounding the discovery of the king's remains under a Leicester car park.

It is believed that King Richard III spent the night at the house before riding out to the Battle of Bosworth in 1485 and dying on the battlefield.

King Richard III was defeated by Henry Tudor and the battle is regarded as one of the most defining moments in British history.

During a recording, the group ask: 'What is your name' a reply of 'Richard' can then be heard. The group then say: 'Thank you so much for that.'

Medium Gill Hibbert, 56, from Coalville, Leicestershire said: 'It was in the main room upstairs in the manor house - it was coming up to the witching hour.

'We had been there since 8pm. At about 11.45pm, we started the call-out session.
'We were standing in the dark, but there was a bit of light coming in through the window.'
Mrs Hibbert said she asked if anyone was there and then said: 'come forward'.

She then switched on the ghost box - a modified radio which allows spirits to 'speak' through white noise - and called out again.

She said: 'Then we heard the name, 'Richard' - it was so clear. We were blown away.
'The night was quite uneventful up until then - we had a few knocks and bangs - but when that came through it was the icing on the cake.'

Mrs Hibbert said the voice was one of the best examples of paranormal contact the group had witnessed.

They have given the recording an 'A' grade because of the clarify of the sound.
The group has now contacted professional paranormal investigators so that the recording can be analysed further.

Mrs Hibbert said: 'We're not saying it's Richard III.
'We're trying to get a historian from Donington le Heath to look into other Richards who have lived there.

'But no one has found anything yet. We are being careful about saying it's Richard III because we can't prove it.'

Richard's remains were discovered by archaeologists in 2012. His body was buried in what was Grey Friars Church, Leicester, after his death. The site later became a council car park.
A legal row is now ongoing between those who want him re-interred at Leicester Cathedral and others who say he should be laid to rest at York Minster.

Source: DailyMail

To be fair to the investigators, they are not claiming it is Richard III, but the media are alleging so.
Nothing like over-hyping a fairly run of the mill paranormal story, and yet ignoring anything that has real substance. That`s the media ..


A video of cake dish cover flying off a counter top is causing quite the stir in Gilford, N.H. Mainly because nobody can be seen flinging the large glass object.

Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray and the rest of the Ghostbusters were not called in to investigate, but yesterday a professional medium and ghost hunter did arrive at the Ellacoya Country Store to see if they could discover why the dish jumped off the counter and crashed into a thousand pieces on the floor.

Video captured by the store's surveillance camera shows the glass top quickly moving up and off the counter, as if it had been pulled by a string. Yet the peanut butter squared on the dish itself remained untouched. There is nobody else visible in the video clip (see below). The fact that this happened did not come as a huge surprise to the store owners as the colonial-era building, constructed in 1745, is no stranger to ghostly apparitions.

"In 2002 when we opened the store, I had looked and I had seen a man standing, and it disappeared as fast as I saw it," said Lisa Ferraro-Giles, store manager.

The medium Karen Tatro immediately got into the spirit of the event saying she felt strange "vibes" and had a sense that it felt very heavy in the room, particularly near where the cake dish was sitting.

This would coincide with other incidents noticed in the store.

"It's little things. You'll turn the lights on, and they'll go off. Or turn them off, and they go on. People say they've felt somebody tapping them on the shoulder, when there's no one there," saidFerraro-Giles

"It almost feels like someone kind of stays in this particular area, and is observing the store and what's happening," Tatro said. "(It) felt like a woman. Felt older."

A more skeptical Parapsychologist Brian Cano wasn't so sure. While admitting that something mysterious did happen in the store, he could not say one way or the other that it was a ghost that caused the damage.

Despite the destructive nature of the alleged ghosts, store workers said they were not afraid, but would like some answers.

Perhaps the store needs to upgrade its surveillance to a full home automation system to include motion sensors and HD cameras to properly track down its poltergeist.

Source: TechTimes