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Investigator recalls first ghostly experience

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Elements of the Eternal Soul
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Posts: 1988

« on: May 28, 2018, 10:28:38 am »

What it's like to see a ghost - according to a paranormal investigator

Mark Egerton saw an apparition aged just 15




Abigail Rabbett,
05:00, 13 MAY 2018
Updated11:59, 13 MAY 2018


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Mark Egerton has had a few brushes with the paranormal. Picture: Warren Gunn




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We’ve all heard tales of ghosts and ghouls and things which go bump in the night.

For many of us, the idea of the paranormal is something to be feared and results in leaving the light on at night.

But that’s not the case for Huntingdon-born Mark Egerton, who is spending his retirement exploring the world of the unknown.

Mark, 57, from Southhoe near St Neots, has been investigating the paranormal for more than 40 years. His explorations have taken him to some of the most haunted sites in the East of England and have enabled him to write his own book.

“I think the really interesting thing about the paranormal is everybody has a slight affinity with it,” Mark said. “If you ask the people who you trust the most, near enough every one of them will have experienced something which they can’t explain.”

Mark's first paranormal experience

Edge, as he’s known to his friends, had his first experience back in 1977 when aged just 15, he encountered what he believed to be the ‘ghost’ of a monk.

“One day, I biked to my friend David’s house in a small village called Midloe and when I got there I parked my bike in the old washroom, which was at the time being used for storage.

“It had always been the darkest room in the house but it was by no means scary. As I was leaving I felt an unpleasant freezing chill. It didn’t last long but when I looked over to my right, I saw what I believed to be the figure of a monk stood by some old baker's ovens.”

When Mark told his friend, David revealed that his home did have a monastic history, as it had been owned by an abbey. David said that he and his family had had several strange experiences in the farmhouse.

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Mark said: “When I went home that night and told my parents about what I’d seen they were very dismissive and told me to 'stop being so daft and forget about it'.

“If I’d have known the history of the farmhouse beforehand, I could have quite easily convinced myself it was just my mind playing tricks on me. However, I was just a young lad and the only thing I knew about the place was that it was a very old farmhouse.

“Luckily for me, my... aunt Marilyn and her husband Trevor Kenward did believe me."

Mark’s uncle Trevor was a part of the ‘Ghost Club’, a which bills itself as the oldest psychical research organisation in the world.

The club was started after fellows of Trinity College in Cambridge began discussing the paranormal in the mid-nineteenth century, and it still existed, though it is now based in London.

Legend has it the founders promised to meet up after death in a room at the college.

Mark credits his uncle and his own experience at David's farmhouse with his interest in the paranormal.

A cheeky poltergeist

Since that spooky summer’s day in Midloe, Mark is yet to see another ‘full-bodied apparition’ but has encountered a number of other unexplained experiences.

Perhaps the most memorable are his dealings with Fred, a tubby country bumpkin who visits Mark’s childhood home and was a bit of a flirt with the ladies in his day.

Fred has a knack for making things disappear and turn up weeks later - what Mark calls "poltergeist activity".

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“He likes to play tricks on people, just to remind people that he’s still about," Mark said. "When I was a child things would disappear for two to three weeks, only to then re-appear in the most obvious of places."

Usually, Mark takes mediums and psychics with a pinch of salt but when he moved back into his family home in 2013, he enlisted the help of a medium called Kevin.

Kevin revealed that Fred was a cheeky character and ladies' man who had "often been ferried home blind drunk on a horse and cart from a local hostelry”.

Mark told the News: “I never feared Fred or thought he meant any harm, and after a while, I just came to accept him as part of my life."

"She was hysterical with fear"

Mark conducts paranormal investigations around once a month with a group of friends who call themselves Rising Phoenix Paranormal - and says that the most intriguing moments happen when two or more people see the same thing.

One example was during an investigation of Ramsey Rural Museum last October.

Mark said: "I was asked to lead a small team of four people to investigate a large barn. In order to reach this barn we had to pass through a smaller barn.

"While standing in the larger barn two women in the group stopped dead in their tracks, both claimed to have seen a figure in the doorway linking the two barns.

"It frightened one of them so much that she tried to escape via a locked door, but the only way out was through the doorway where she’d seen this figure looming. She was hysterical with fear.

"We returned to HQ and one of the ladies sketched what she saw. The other woman confirmed it was what she had witnessed too."



Some of the kit Mark uses to detect the unexplained. Picture: Warren Gunn

After major surgery left Mark unable to drive for nearly a year in 2012, he decided it was time to write a book about the ghosts and legends in his area: The Haunted History of Huntingdonshire.

“I always promised my late aunt Marilyn I would write a book and when she died I almost felt like I owed it to her to do it. After 40 years of dedication to the subject, I’ve got a fair bit to say."

But one of the most important things Mark claims to have learned in his years of detecting is accepting that sometimes old houses do make noises, and sometimes things do just go bump in the night.

After 40 years of investigating and experiencing all manner of weird, spooky and strange things, we have to know, does Mark actually believe in ghosts?

“I believe in something,” he said. “I can’t believe that after all this time, everyone who’s ever seen or experienced something unexplainable is mistaken, lying or just seeking attention. Whether these things are caused by the spirits of the dead, still remains unproven."

To read more about Mark’s ghostly goings-on, his book The Haunted History of Huntingdonshire can be purchased from Waterstones or online here.
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