Saturday, 29 October 2011


On Monday, October 10th 2011 I carried a story on the haunted history of Muncaster Castle in Cumbria.
Now there is a planned survey of the castle to determine why people have paranormal experiences there.


If this is genuine and meaningful research, then much could be learnt and shared. 
However, I also harbour some reservations with regard to research by some academia who have a tendency to profligate a biased viewpoint of paranormal activity, and end up marginalising themselves by offering an opinion rather than any hard or absolute facts.

 Paranormal activity is often sporadic and difficult to measure at the best of times.
Academics prefer to have a measuring stick on any type of research, and the paranormal has no rules by which events can be empirically assessed.

 So the real danger is that this type of research devolves to an opinion, and with all good academic experts, they try to attribute peoples experiences to that of say, Electro Magnetic Fields, (EMF`s) affecting the brain or even natural gasses imparted from the ground!

Of course, these opinions do not reliably answer Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP`s) caught on recording devices, nor indeed actual ghost captures on cam. 

So I, like many others will sit quietly and wait for what this research may, or may not discover. But I will not hold my breath!:)

Story source: North West Evening Mail
RESEARCH is being carried out into why people believe they have paranormal experiences at Muncaster Castle.
A machine capable of monitoring the human body 400,000 times a second will feature in the series of studies being carried out at the castle over the coming months.
The machine measures emotional responses and has the capacity to assess how people respond to frightening environments.
Dr Jason Braithwaite, lecturer in the Behavioural Brain Sciences Centre at the University of Birmingham, plans to use the device to monitor the physical reactions people have to parts of the castle that are thought to be haunted, and compare the results with readings from the same person in other parts of the castle that are not associated with ghosts.
The volunteer test subject would not know which part of the castle they were in.
Dr Braithwaite said: “The device is the most sensitive device of its type in the world and I am really excited about being able to use it at Muncaster over the coming months. We want to know what makes certain spaces feel haunted and spooky while other spaces feel completely fine. We also want to know if rooms and spaces associated with such experiences just happen to contain those features and, as such, might help to explain some of these experiences.”
In the past about 30 per cent of people taking part in Dr Braithwaite’s scientific studies at the castle have reported experiencing things they could not explain, such as “corner of the eye” type sensations, feelings of being watched or sensing a presence, and hearing unexplained sounds such as footsteps, ringing/tingling sensations, door handle rattles and faint voices.
Muncaster is reputed to be one of the most haunted castles in the country. Most of the reported ghost sightings have taken place in the Tapestry Room.
A black, featureless figure has reportedly been seen walking into the room before vanishing.
It is said a child is frequently heard crying towards the window end of the room and that sometimes a lady is heard singing, apparently comforting a sick child.
Study findings are expected to be published in international peer-reviewed academic journals.
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