Monday, 4 February 2013


London`s Dominion Theatre

Among the superstitious, it is said a resident ghost in a theatre is a sign of good fortune.

If that's true then Tottenham Court Road's Dominion Theatre may be one of the luckiest theatres in London after a photo has emerged of a supposed ghost lurking in its stalls.

The chilling photo was taken by We Will Rock You patron Stuart Cheveralls and uploaded on to the theatre's Facebook page.

Irrefutable proof of the afterlife? Add the real life events surrounding the site of the theatre, and you have what may be a compelling case.

History tells of a terrible disaster 114 years before the Dominion was built, when the Meux and Company Brewery occupied the same site as the present building.

On 17 October 1814 a huge vat containing 3,550 barrels of beer - over a million pints - ruptured, causing a tsunami of alcohol to sweep the area, flattening buildings and killing those in its path.

An eyewitness wrote in New York magazine The Knickerbocker: "All at once, I found myself borne onward with great velocity by a torrent which burst upon me so suddenly as almost to deprive me of breath. A roar as of falling buildings at a distance, and suffocating fumes, were in my ears and nostrils."

Eight people drowned in what became known as the London Beer Flood.

Is this a photograph of one of the poor unfortunate souls claimed by the worst industrial alcohol accident in British history? Or simply a fake? Take a closer look...

HuffPost UK Culture tracked down the intrepid photographer to get the full story of 'that' picture - read our interview with Stuart as he tells Dominion Theatre's 'ghost' story:

Firstly, the question we would all like to know the answer to - is the photo genuine?

Although most people [on HuffPost UK] have said that the photo has been photoshopped, I can guarantee that the photo is genuine and has not been tampered with in any way. I would be more than happy to meet with a photo or computer expert to prove this.

When you took the photo, who, or what, was behind you?

Just before the show We Will Rock You started, I took the photo holding my iphone 4 phone at arms length, with the camera view flipped so that you can see yourself on the screen . The theatre was busy and we were seated on the end of a row. Natalie assures me that the two seats directly behind us were empty when I took the photo, the seats were eventually taken by two guys who arrived late. We had a great night and really enjoyed the show.

The next morning I was flicking through the photos and noticed the pale-faced girl between us - it instantly made the hairs stand up on the back of my neck. What freaked me out was that there was no colour in the girl's face, yet the wall at the side and back of the theatre had kept its colour.

Who do you think is in the photo?

On returning home I did some research into the theatre, I found that people had said they had seen the ghost of an old brewery worker and others said they had heard the sound of a child giggling. Then I stumbled across the story of the London Beer Flood and read that a 14-year-old barmaid named Eleanor Cooper was killed in the flood when a wall or building collapsed and buried her. [Below: a street scene on the site of the Dominion Theatre a year before the London Beer Flood.]

If the image is not a ghost, what other explanations do you think there are?

I always look for logical explanations, but this has certainly got me stumped! There weren't any statues or pictures on the walls around us. I forwarded the photo to my niece, who is a professional photographer. She studied it and showed other photographers - they all found the photo to be very strange and spooky, they said that a digital camera catches exactly what is there and had no explanation for there being no colour to the girl's face.

Both myself and Natalie have never had any paranormal or spooky experiences in the past and hopefully won't have any in the future!

Source: HuffPostUK

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