Investigating Tewkesbury - July 2006

We did a very special ghost-hunt on the anniversary of the Battle of Tewkesbury (early July 2006).  The Gloucestershire town is surrounded by an ancient battlefield which saw a great loss of life in 1471, during the English Civil War.  We have done many ghost-hunts in this area as we find the old battlefied a hot-bed for paranormal activity (see below).  This time we visited the area with a group of 5 of us in all, including 2 mediums from the Cheltenham Spiritualist Church, armed with several digital cameras, a digital thermometer and an EVP reader.

The first image, above, might look like an exceptional orb, but in fact it was the full moon that night; an auspicious sign for a great night!

It was a warm evening, and the area was awash with the sounds of Led Zeppelin.... Perhaps an unusual tribute to the ghosts of lost English soldiers, but that seemed to be the music of choice for the people hanging around the area that evening.  For we were not alone!  A battle re-enactment had taken place that day, and there was a party going on in one of the fields.  We adjourned to another, quieter field and stopped about two thirds of the way into the field.  It turned out to be an oddly fine choice...we discovered a place of high paranormal activity, a vortex of sorts.

We took hundreds of photos that evening.  Many of them had orbs on them.  Some people have suggested that these orbs are insects.  If they were, we must have been travelling through a locust swarm!!  This first photo shows what we suspect to be an actual insect captured in flight by the flash of the digital camera.  You can see the difference between this irregular bright shape and the orbs.    We captured a second similar image later on; another insect, we think.  So, the orbs can't be insects as well.  Are they specks of dust instead?  These next two images are VERY strange indeed, and are food for thought:

All of the other photos have focussed in the middle distance.  Yet, these two images seem to be focussed on a point closer to the camera.  Like the camera is trying to focus on something other than the people in the centre of the images.  This is very odd behaviour for this new 6 mega-pixel camera.  The camera doesn't seem to have focused on anything at all, but it sure did pick up a lot of orbs!  Yet they're not entirely in focus either.  Is the camera trying to focus on a spirit materialising in the field between the photos' subjects and the camera?  Is such a materialisation accompanied by these myriad orbs?  It seems strange that such a mass of orbs should appear on the out-of-focus photo...It's almost like the camera has taken a picture of a sheet of glass covered in water droplets.

These next set of images are more in keeping with our 'normal' orb photos:

Take a look at the middle image of the three.  To the left of Dave is a shadow across the ground...at least it appears to be a shadow.  I doesn't actually seem to be cast by anything, though, and there are several good orbs around it.  Is this further evidence for the materialisation of a ghost?  We think so...this is a shadowman.  This appears to be the entity which had been creating all these orbs.  It was centred around a certain spot on the field; the orbs would appear there, but nowhere else.  We marked the spot with a stick; the centre of the vortex. 

This picture shows the stick; the grass around it appears to be flattened in an unusual manner, with a circular dark patch around it.  We didn't notice this in the dark, but it is evident here; almost like a swirl of energy has transfigured the spot.  Our mediums, Martin and Marilyn, certainly seemed attracted to it.

We began taking temperature readings around this area.  Now, remember that this was a relatively warm and clear summer evening.  We had taken a lot of background temperature readings at about 12 - 15 Celsius.  What we were getting here in the vortex was much, much lower; down to 2 Celsius.  Don't believe us?  Here's a photo we took of one of the readings:

This was way too cold for a summer night in Gloucestershire just after sundown.  We have had various sceptics suggest to us that our equipment must have been malfunctioning.  Piffle.  We took a range of readings over a period of time.  When we moved away for the 'vortex' the temperatures climbed.  After we left the battlefield we took more control readings and they were above 10 Celsius.  There really was a cold spot in that field, and we could all feel it as well.  It was pretty chilly!

It was around about this point that Martin exclaimed to the group that his left hand had suddenly gone very cold indeed.  He felt that he was in physical contact with the entity in our midst.  We immediately took some photos, one of which is on the right here.  Note the wonderful orb! Martin is holding his left hand up for us to take laser digital temperature readings.  We ran a little experiment, taking the temperatures of three of the group, Martin, Dave and Marilyn.  Martin's hand registered a temperature of 6 Celsius; he was clinically dead, folks!  We took recordings of Dave's hand, then Marilyn's hand.  They both registered about 30 degrees.  We went around again; Mart 7, Dave 29, Marilyn 30.  Then again; the same, then again, the same! This is not the first time that we have visited this area and Martin's hands have become much colder than the rest of the group - check out our Halloween 2005 investigation (below) for more information.

The thermometer was not malfunctioning.  It consistently recorded anomalous readings on Martin's cold hand, and consistently registered normal temperatures on the control group.  That's science, folks.  You can't disregard the data, just because it's damned weird.  You just have to try and explain it. 

We suggest this was paranormal. We had a myriad of orbs, a de-focusing camera, a shadowman captured on camera, a vortex whirling the grass, a temperature drop around the vortex and now a refrigerated hand on one of our mediums.  Sceptics will have to come up with something a bit better than 'malfunctioning equipment' to explain this lot away...

The 'orbs-are-dust' argument suffered a fatal blow that night, too.  We caught our mother-load of orbs in a quiet field literally off the beaten path.  But we later went into the field where the re-enactment crowd were gathered.  We took photos along the entrance to their camp, which had been churned up by bikes, cars, vans, people.  And guess what...we took about 40 photos, and very, very few orbs were found.  Yet this area must have been more dusty than the quiet grassy field we had found the vortex in.  Figure that out, dust-sceptics.  The orbs we took pictures of weren't dust particles.

Here are two images of our mediums, Martin and Marilyn, showing large orbs on or above their shoulders.  I would suggest that these orbs are connected with their spirit guides.  If the one at Martin's left shoulder is a dust particle, then why is the light from it translucent?  You can see his shoulder through it, perfectly! It's hard to figure out how a speck of dust could create that effect.

More images to come from the other cameras, including triangulated orbs.

Written by Andy Lloyd, 27th July 2006

If you have any examples of orbs or ghosts on your digital photos that you are happy to see published onto our websites, please e-mail details to gloster_ghosts@hotmail.com

Update: October 2005

We finally capture our first ghost on film

Many of the photos on this page had to be lightened up in a paint package so that you could see the detail in the picture. We have had this photo (below) on our sister site (http://darkstar1.co.uk) for over a year and thought that it just showed Dave (who is standing to the left of the picture) with a bright orb in the top right corner. It was not until we altered the contrast as it was being transferred to this site that we spotted what appears to be a figure in the mid left of the picture (just visible if you look closely in the original picture). The next picture (below left) is zoomed in and light enhanced so that you can there is something strange just to the right of Dave. The next picture has been zoomed in and light enhanced showing the figure. The picture second from the right really picks out the features of the figure which we believe could be that of a Yorkist soldier.  Other than zooming in and adding brightness and automatic saturation in a paint package, these pictures have not been altered from the original.

This is the original picture.
This is the original picture with the ghost on it. We didn't realise until a year after the photo was taken that it actually contained an apparition on it.

This is the brightened and zoomed in areas of the same picture.

 

The same shot as above, slightly zoomed and lightened.

A close up of the figure which appears to be standing with hands in pockets and legs crossed

Very zoomed in shot of the apparition.

Artists impression of Yorkist soldiers

The 'figure' appears a lot shorter than Dave, which basically rules out it being a mistaken identity of either Martin or Andy because all three are practically the same height. We were using two cameras, but the orbs were picked up on only one of them.  We noticed that the other camera had a slower shutter speed set, and was subsequently blurring static objects, like distant street lights.  Yet no orbs appeared on those photographs at all, perhaps indicating that the orbs are only picked up on a very fast shutter speed.  For future investigations we will set the camera to the 'Sports' setting.

For suspense, energy, and significance of outcome, few episodes in British history are more breathtaking than the events which led to the Battle of Tewkesbury in May 1471.

Twenty-two months previously the Yorkist king Edward IV had been imprisoned by his cousin and former backer, Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick the kingmaker. Edward regained his freedom within weeks. Warwick fled to France, sided with the Lancastrians and invaded England in September 1470. Caught unawares, Edward left the country. The following spring he came back, reclaimed London and killed Warwick at the Battle of Barnet.

That same day, 14 April, Margaret of Anjou, the wife of the restored Lancastrian king Henry VI, arrived in Dorset from France. With her was her son, the Prince of Wales. Their hope was to rally sympathisers in Wales. A race ensued, with Margaret and the Lancastrian force striving to link with their allies, and Edward force-marching to overtake them. The river Severn was a problem. The Lancastrians needed time and opportunity to cross it. On 3 May Edward caught them up, at Tewkesbury.

Combat opened next morning just outside the town. Withstanding an attack provoked by their own bombardment, and anticipating some of their opponents' tactics, the smaller Yorkist force caused a Lancastrian collapse, driving the disintegrating army back on to the abbey and town. Most of the Lancastrian nobility were killed or taken and executed afterwards. Among them was the young Prince of Wales. Henry VI was murdered 17 days later. Margaret was imprisoned.

Hallowe'en Ghosthunt 2005

Hallowe'en night is, of course, an excellent opportunity for a ghost hunt. The evening got off to a flying start even before we left Andy's house!  Martin witnessed a ghost materialising in the hallway, but it disappeared before distinctive features could be made out. Not the first time things have been seen in Andy's hallway, it has to be said.

The weather that evening was perfect, as the three of us headed off for Tewkesbury to look for ghosts on the battlefields.  We weren't the only ghost-hunters out and about; we came across a coach-load of punters listening to stories of the ancient town's spectral denizens.  Most of them seemed to be really getting into it, if you take into account the fact that they were dressed in mediaeval garb!

A temperature reading of Martin's right hand which was only 7.5 celsius?But we weren't as interested in the stories as much as the real ghosts.  We meandered across the field behind the Abbey, taking photos and monitoring the background temperature (around 5 Celsius on average).  Martin's right hand went really cold at one stage.  He felt that something supernatural was holding his hand. 

We trained the temperature recorder on his hand and arms, and there was indeed a tremendous drop on the hand in question.  Other areas of skin showed readings of about 25-30 Celsius, as one would expect on that chilly evening, but his right hand would not climb above 8 Celsius (see image to the right). 

This went on for some considerable time, and we carried out many controlled experiments to check whether this was just an experimental anomaly. Other hands showed 'normal' readings.  Doggedly, the temperature of Martin's right hand stayed low...

Then we totally freaked out a group of teenagers hanging around in the field!  I guess they thought we were barking mad, but there can't have been a lot of entertainment for them in the centre of that huge field that evening.  Perhaps their presence kept the ghosts away, but they were helpful in a different way because one of the kids recommended that we explore the 'main' battlefield behind the council offices, and gave us directions.  Off we went.

The kid was right.  We were in for quite a night of it.

A guide to the battlefield.

The 'real' battlefield at Tewkesbury is a bit off the beaten track.  There is a common area of land set within groves of trees and bushes.  It felt removed from the reality of the suburb it sits next to, and one could imagine being back in mediaeval times during the Civil War there. 

Anomalously, we experienced a huge temperature drop in this environment.  The temperature had been consistently about 5 Celsius, or above, all evening.  But in this sheltered spot it plummeted, reaching a incongruous minus 3 Celsius.  Now, it shouldn't have been anywhere near that on the evening in question. There was no ground-frost, or mist, or dew falling (although the ground was already wet from rain earlier in the day).  Yet, the air became icily cold whilst we walked about.

The photographs we took in this battlefield were full of orbs, mists and strange lights:

Mist appeared on this photo only.

We tried to recreate the mist effect from condensation from exhaled breath

This mist only appeared on the one photo, and is very strange indeed.  Condensation from the photographer's breath would not have risen into the air like this, and if it was condensation, then why does it not appear on other photos?  There are orbs to the right of the mist, and a single orange light above Dave (to the left), which may have been a street light.  We can make out faces in this mist, the biggest one of which dwarfs Dave, and actually looks like it's about to eat him!  We tried to recreate the mist effect from condensation from exhaled breath, but didn't get very far, as you can see from the photo of Martin on the right.  Not really of the same order of magnitude, is it? (Looks like Martin's about to break out into song, nightclub singer-style!) 

We noticed on several photos that a red light kept appearing around Martin.  Initially, we thought this was a street light too, but then remembered that Martin was generally farther into the field, and so any photos of him had an entirely dark backdrop.  Here's a selection; (and we wouldn't put you through having to look at the third one of these mugshots unless we absolutely had to!)...

Martin together with the red light and a bright orb

The red light reappears

 

The red orb again just visible on the right of the picture

Notice how much the red light varies in height, which is a bit odd if it's a static background object set back some distance, like a street lamp.  You would expect it to retain a roughly similar height with respect to Martin if it's set back several hundred feet.  But despite this, we can't entirely rule out the possibility that these particular photos were taken at a point when Martin's back was to the road.

Another anomaly that we experienced was that Andy's camera kept draining energy and turning itself off.  This has only happened once before, and that was at Winchcombe when we experienced a similar inexplicable drop in temperature.  Make of that what you will.

Then we had orbs a-plenty.  Too many to do justice to here, anyway.  And that red light's appeared again...

A bright orb to the right of this picture

A whole group of orbs and the red light

Nice shot of Martin taking a photo and orbs just in front of him

Zoomed in picture of an orb

All in all, quite a good, spooky night.

If you have any examples of orbs on your digital photos that you are happy to see published onto our websites, please e-mail details to gloster_ghosts@hotmail.com

Tewkesbury Battlefield - October 2004

Continuing our investigation into the phenomenon of 'orbs' on digital photographs, the 'Gloster Ghosts' team visited a famous old battlefield in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, to see if we could record further examples. We were not to be disappointed.  We deliberately chose a clear night in early October 2004.  It had rained heavily during the day several times, which should have cleared the air of dust particles, pollen etc.  There was also a good autumnal breeze and the stars were very clear, indicating good atmospheric conditions.  A low orange moon provided a nice backdrop as well, as can be seen in the middle photo below, next to a blue orb:

A very bright orb

Many orbs with the orange Moon visible in the background

Another bright orb

We started by visiting a field on the outskirts of Tewkesbury, just at the end of the 'Battle Trail', which marks the area of the Battle Of Tewkesbury in 1471, during the War of the Roses.  The battle claimed 2000 lives.  Both Andy  and Martin witnessed a moving blue orb, low to the ground in the field during our short visit. However, the camera did not pick up anything unusual.  We next visited the fields adjacent to Tewkesbury Abbey and set about taking many digital photographs.

Quite a few orbs on this one

Two orbs

 

Martin, who has sensitivities towards the spirit worlds (and would be called a 'Physical Medium') heard some anomalous sounds in the field; musket fire in the form of a volley of shots, drums and the sounds of a child crying.  All of the sounds were quite loud to Martin.  Dave heard the crying noises, Andy heard nothing at all.  Perhaps the crying was from a nearby residence, although that was some distance away.  It's odd that we didn't all hear the same things; precluding a misidentification of a natural or mechanical noise.

One of the things we all noticed is that on several occasions when the flash of the camera lit up the area, we could see the orbs with the naked eye, which seemed to encompass quite a large area, possibly as far as 2-3 feet.  But this certainly didn't happen all the time, meaning that it wasn't a constant phenomenon, like dust.  Also, the orbs that have appeared on the photos are much less numerous than what we experienced visually.

Martin looking at an orb

 

Mart and Dave with bright orb

These pictures seem to show Martin looking directly at orbs. Also note the blue orb in front of Dave's right shoulder, and the apparent motion of the bright white orb.  Apart from that one white orb, all the rest that appeared on the photos were blue.  None of them were grey, which we captured so many of in Birtsmorton.  Those transparent grey 'orbs' seem more likely to be dust, possibly as a result of the harvesting going on in the area that day, whereas these blue and white orbs are something completely different; as noted previously, the atmospheric conditions in Tewkesbury were perfect that night.

Article
© Dave, Martin and Andy
2006
Cosmic Conspiracies Investigator  

 Battle of Tewkesbury facts courtesy of Richard Morris from the Council of British Archaeology. 

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