OK, not strictly speaking a poltergeist, so this one can go on my personal blog not POLTERWOTSIT. The following three images are actually the same shot, taken by Janet Turner on the night of Saturday 5th February at the Playhouse Theatre, Cheltenham, during a ghost hunt organised as part of the First Cheltenham Paranormal Festival. The photo is (c) Janet Turner, and if anyone is interested in reproducing it, please ask me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll pass on your request to Janet.
Just before we look at it —
Have you seen a ghost???
Becky and I are always happy to look at ghost photos, but more importantly have you ever had a weird possibly “paranormal” or otherwise deeply strange experience, while healthy not under the influence of drugs or alcohol? Becky still needs more responses for her PhD study. Please help, both by publicizing her research by telling friends you know have had this kind of experience (it’s grounded theory so does not need a random sample) or by sharing her questionnaire address on your Facebook or similar. So if you can help, the address is www.strangesurvey.com
The Playhouse Ghost?
Now the Festival is over, Janet has no connection with the Playhouse, and I have known her for a couple of years and can vouch for her honesty and integrity. She does not even live in Cheltenham, and has no reason to hoax anyone, and I asked for permission to show these pictures – Janet simply asked me if I could work out what they are…
The photo is taken from the auditorium, looking stage left, to a sort of gallery area. Here is the relevant part of the photo —
It does look to me like there is a chap there looking down. Can you see him? Janet tried playing with the image – here is a second version of the shot, after she has altered the settings in a programme – I’m afraid I don’t know how
I’ll show the other image Janet sent me, a sort of high contrast shot with just the “figure” shown…
This appears to me one of the most convincing looking ghost photos I have ever seen – but Becky pointed out to me something I had not noticed, which is the scale. She estimates the figure would be at most two to three foot high! Here is the full original photo, which shows the gallery.
It looks like a bloke with a beard to me, in evening dress – not like anyone i recall seeing on Saturday. I’m pretty certain it’s part of the original image, not something photoshopped in, because of the lighting etc – and because I know Janet and her husband to be honest reliable folks. So the mystery is what is it? I’m pretty certain it’s not someone standing on the gallery, for the reason Becky puts forward, but we could be wrong. If there is an arch or doorway that the figure could be through, or if the figure could actually be at stage height and viewed through the gallery floor, the size would be right.
If is is a person, real or ghostly, what is the “shark fin” like curve in front of the figure? Becky and I will go back and have a look if the Playhouse let us in one day this week, and try to work it out — but it is certainly very intriguing. Feel free to share this blog post, but do not reproduce the pics without Janet’s permission. We are all baffled by this! Could it just be a case of pareidolia? We honestly don’t know, but do comment!