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Tinkering about after dark in Tod

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Yes people! It’s that time of year…

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No, not duck or rabbit season – but ghost hunting season.


Saturday night we spent the evening raking about in Todmorden Unitarian Church while the rain lashed down around us. 


I see a little silhouette of a man, scaramoosh scaramosh et etc

I’m not loving the official Visage Paranormal photo though because I seem to take up too much space.  Big hair, big Shadwell coat. All-encompassing an expanding body. Next time I’m wearing a smaller coat, tying my hair up and going at the back. And why are Linda and I holding our hands like that in front of us, all pious and ting?


Anyway, I digress. You want to know if there were headless horsemen galloping through the vestry. Faceless nuns gliding down the aisles.  Furniture stacked in unlikely ways.


In a word. No.

I did however see a small black shadow coming out of a pew near the floor and this was within 5 minutes of arriving at the venue. Full lights on. Towards the end of the night, also with full lights on I saw and ran (well, walked in a hurried fashion) after another shadow. Taller this time and not as dark, as it went across the the main door and round into the kitchen area. I thought I may have mistaken it for another guest heading to the loos, but there was nobody there.

Usual collection of unflattering selfies and randomness in my phone photos but as yet, no evidence of any class 3 roaming vapours (“I think he can hear you Ray”)


Did have fun raking about in the cellar and the bell tower. Somehow, against all odds, managing to obey the rules (dem da rules) and not pull the bell ropes.  T’was very tempting though.


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A couple of other people saw similar shadows to me so it wasn’t just my eyes. 

The only other excitement was Linda winning some Milk Tray on the raffle, but it was an enjoyable night regardless. Love chatting to the folks at Visage about other places they and we have explored after hours.  Looking forward to their Halloween event on November 2nd at Armley Mills, where fancy dress is optional, but naturally I will be getting involved. Am going to revive this number from various school trips there, in the hope of coaxing out even more spectral action that the past few times I’ve been there.

And to those mockers and sceptics – put your mockery and your money where your mouth is and come along. There are 3 spaces left for the Armley Mills night…if you dare.



Come out, little children (again with the pious hands)

in need of something but not sure what

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I was meant to be heading south this weekend to visit some pals and have a curry and some drinks.  There was even loose talk of getting hold of a “hot tug” and sailing it to Harlow, but I don’t think that came off.  Maybe next time, when it’s warmer.


Stock Photo from Google Images


As it goes, I haven’t gone.  I started with the snots when I got back from Chester over the Easter Weekend, which was awesome by the way (the Easter weekend in Chester – not the snots).
I also had a clairsentient gut feeling that I should stay home & leave it til another time.  I’ve learned it’s best to pay attention to these things, so here I am.  At home. In the rain. Not ever wanting to see another Easter Egg in a long time and feeling rather cross at why people can’t just commit to a long planned arrangement or answer a text from time to time in a civil, unfacetious fashion.

I know everyone has their own little lives and shit but FFS!




So what have I done instead?

    Ventured to Sadford Town to return a pair of silver Doc Martens.  Not mine I hasten to add.  Seems my eldest wants to go for the Gary Gliiter, Glam Rock aesthetic for her birthday this year.  It’s not ’til June, but these boots she wanted were on offer in Foot Asylum. 

Ordered them. They arrived.  But are neither the right size not the requisite shade of silver apparently.


Had one lovely spring-like day on Wednesday so ordered some new garden furniture.  Natch it has pissed down ever since.  Furniture currently clogging up the hallway and kitchen ready to be assembled.

Still no washing machine because the fucker needs yet more parts.  Bastarding Hotpoint.  ‘Oh we’ll replace your washer if it can’t be repaired’.  Repair dude just laughed at us and said that almost never happens.  It can be repaired….eventually….when he comes back for a third time on Wednesday.  That’ll be over 3 weeks since it initially broke.  I’m running out of neighbours to impose upon to wash my smalls, my mediums and my larges!

So anyway, the trip into Sadford, usually a cure-all when you’ve got the blues, did not help in any way whatsoever. It was like accidentally stumbling through the set of the Walking Dead.  Normally this type of thing makes me feel less inferior. Better about myself.  It could be worse etc.  Yesterday it just made me feel sad and full of gloom that I was doomed to die here. That I had failed as a mother and I had condemmed my offspring to a miserable life in a miserable place.

“Hello is that the Emergency St John’s Wort & Evening Primrose Oil hotline? I’d like to place an order please!”

The best part of the day was when I smuggled some tech into an allegedly haunted shop in my handbag, for a mini lone investigation, Sadly the recorder failed. Coinicidence? Supernatural? Or operator ineptitude?  You decide.  Either way, it had a most oppressive atmos (but did sell the most amazing bits, bobs, tat and oddments).  There was a man in there talking to the shopkeeper about his imaginary friends as she listened unjudgementally and with sound advice.   I may have found my spiritual home.


Boyes store however lit up my K2 device like a gay pride parade.  Too many mobiles on in the vicinity? Or it being so full of the elderly and infirm that the veil between this life and the next is ridiculously thin – the afterlife almost tangible through the smell of wee, lavender bags and the scent of decrepitude?  Again – you decide.


from Google Images


I didn’t want to be one of those olds.  Complaining in the cafe upstairs in Boyes that the tomato soup was sold out, or that so and so hadn’t turned up today and did they think she might have died over the weekend.
But I also felt like I was skidding quickly towards being one of those people (but with less friends).

This time last year we were in Orlando, yet it doesn’t seem two minutes since we were only just planning it and it was 18 months away!


Poss my fave pic from last year’s hol


Life is short.  Do stuff.  Fun stuff.  Sometimes wrong stuff.  But stuff. Be kind.  Be nice. Go out. Have fun. Make some memories to keep you warm when you’re waiting for death in a cafe above Boyes in Bradford and the soup is off and your mate hasn’t turned up.


                                         Gravitating towards the water, as per



Fun after dark & that time I was saved by lesbians

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Last weekend I spent Saturday night raking about in the dark at a medical museum in Leeds that used to be a workhouse back in the mists of time.

What energies could possibly be lurking about there then?

Imagine my geeky joy when the company running this after hours event uttered the magic words;

“Feel free to go off on your own, just as long as you let us know roughly where you’re headed”

Get in!!


So, a ghost hunt, in the dark; free reign to wander with my equally geekish pal, and it was in a museum full of bizarre medical implements with a buffet laid on to boot.

What is not to like there?   Cue such phrases as; “I’m quite partial to an iron lung”,Ooooh trepanning” and “let’s pretend we’re in an Isis video”.



That time I helped Karl Pilkington amputate a leg



That time we pretended to have been captured by Isis


Good times.

  The next day I took a wander up the road to the store.  When I got there I realized I didn’t have my phone. I thought perhaps I’d left it at home.  I retraced my steps anyway but no joy.  No luck at home either.  What a pain!  Rang the mobile company to suspend the account while youngest rang the phone just in case anyone had it.

They did!

She passes the phone to me and I hear a masculine voice say “Remember them two lesbians you passed on the bridge?”  I remembered passing two girls who looked as if they were doing the Sunday morning walk of shame home.  I wondered why this dude on the phone was bringing them up??

“Well that’s us”, says the ‘dude’.

Ah. Now I see.

It seemed they had seen me motor past them in a hurry.  My phone must’ve slipped from my hoodie pocket.  They saw it on the ground and picked it up.  Shouted me (but I had headphones on, lost in the Metallica zone).  They tried running after me, but both had massive chunky platform shoes on.  They couldn’t find me at B&M or Morries (because I was in Iceland) so when they got home they put an appeal out on FB to locate the phone owner.  Of course, I sacked FB off last year (very soul cleansing – I recommend it!)

Anyhow, seems they live down the road on the council estate so I said I’d go round and pick it up.
I made youngest come with me (eldest was out) just in case I got sex-trafficked (more likely she would TBH) or if they were homicidal lesbians, who lure victims to their killing lair by taking their phone hostage.

Turns out, they were good people.  There are actually some out there.  Who knew?
I gave them each an Easter egg as a thank you (had bought them for workmates – so pardon about that!)   I also offered them a tenner reward but they wouldn’t take it.

So, no need to get a new phone.  No need to get it blocked. And I got out of the ghetto down the road without too many shouts of “Hya Miss!”  Man am I glad I don’t live down there – for more reasons than just avoiding students I teach.

A good weekend indeed.


On half term now and thank fuck for it!  I was about at the end of my last nerve.  Definitely need two weeks off for Easter. 

 This is probably the best thing that will be on TV over the Easter weekend though.  They just don’t make shows like, ‘Easter with Liberace’ anymore…probably just as well.


Pretty sure this is where they got the idea for Donnie Darko

Ciao Ciao & be kind y’all.




They’re behind you!

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Another weekend. Another night spent pratting about in the dark with my pal. 


On the way to our latest venue last night, we called for petrol and saw a colleague from work & his mate.  They were on their way to an evening of Dungeons & Dragons. Am pretty sure that this wins in a hand of Twat Top Trumps and our Garage Forecourt Geek-Off (but it’s a close call, as at least their evening was free!)



Armley Mills after dark.  It could only have been improved if there had been less people there, or even better – just Scoob and I left to our own devices.
There were 10 noobs there and 17 experienced twats idiots loons paranormal investigators of varying degrees of hopeful skepticism and belief.

During the introduction and health & safety talk in the brightly lit meeting/cafeteria area, I was tugged on the hood (not a sexual euphemism) although nobody was anywhere near me. So that was a good start.


When the over-long intro part was finally done, we all followed Pammie PamPam ‘please call me Pamela not Pam’ on a tour of the museum.  I’ve been a few times and it did feel strange to be there in civilian garb.  Usually when I’ve been, it’s for a school trip about Victorians and we’ve all been dressed up like this:-

Sepia Kit

Assume the position for your caning


Last time I was there, a couple of years ago, I was poked in the back of the leg when all my young charges were accounted for.  The time before that, my work mate thought I was stood behind her in the school room until she realized I was across the other side of the room. Again, all the children and other staff were accounted for.


First we entered the carding room area, with the huge carding machine and the old looms.  This room is alive (or should that be dead) with residual energy and is where I was prodded last time.  A very definite “They’re heeeere!” moment in this area.


I often get a whoosh of something or other next to the carding machine.  Possibly just thinking about how many severed extremities are probably still within its spikey workings.  In fact one of the other people there said his grandfather had met his end whilst cleaning such a machine at a different mill, when someone switched the machine back on and he was dragged into the mechanism!


I was keen next to go in the cinema area – not an original feature of the mill of course. It was the old Armley cinema. Fixtures and fittings moved and reassembled exactly the same.  One of my friends refuses to go in there at all on school trips. She doesn’t like the vibe at all.
I had no fear of it, although we did feel that there was a man watching us, somewhat amused. Probably thinking,
“WTF are these dumbarses doing buggering about in the dark?”  Whoever he was, the sod touched me on the shoulder. And I mean a hand on the shoulder touch, not like there was a moth on me or anything.  I felt it and I jumped.  And there was nobody else there.

Admittedly I did not jump as high as when I turned and was face to face with my pal in the dark, who I thought had walked off.  I properly babbed myself then! LOL.


Fooks Saaaake Scoob!

When on our own in the sewing machine room, someone walked between the two of us. A very definite rush of cold air, with no open windows or doors and we both felt it at the same time.

The sewing machine room

Usual meaningless bollocks on the ouija boards – I don’t trust them, or rather I don’t trust the people around the board. Fascinating though it may be from a scientific and psychological study point of view.  I  was getting distracted by some quality parabolia on this heater – a relation of Wilson the ball maybe?

I had a clamber about taking pics underneath the machinery.  I figured if I was a dead child still lingering about, I’d be hiding underneath or behind some shit, giggling and getting ready to prod the unsuspecting living for a laugh. What with lurking about for years in the nether, possibly being a bit dull.

Don’t let the brightness of these photos fool you.  The flash on my camera is super bright.  It was black as pitch in there.

Nice light anomaly on here (prob just torch flare)

Very entertaining evening. I only wish we’d had more time to explore on our own without 25 other people making a load of racket.

Next time – Nottingham Galleries of Justice in November.

Ciao for now MoFos. xX


A night at the institute

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At the start of the year my friend and I embarked on our first ‘ghost hunt’ together and now we’ve been on about 6 and are no more informed than when we started.
I do get asked why we bother, but to be honest, they can be huge fun, as long as you don’t mind the dark and occasionally mixing with people who believe every last belly gurgle or door creak is
proof of life after death.


I’m not scratching my arse with my torch – honest

Friday night we went on another one, this time at an old building near Keighley.  We arrived an hour late by mistake and they weren’t expecting two women – the only missing name on their list was a Dave Subborn.  Feck knows who he is or why his name was associated with my email booking and my deposit.  Must be paranormal!



We were snuck upstairs by some of the staff to the chapel area where the 26 strong group had already started (including a 10 strong hen party with sashes and veil!)  They were all holding hands in a circle and attempting a ‘human pendulum’.  For the uninitiated, this is essentially someone standing up inbeweteen 2 other people and the spirits are then asked to push the person in the middle either forward for Yes or backward for No. (#notconvincedbyalongstretch)

The man doing all the calling out seemed to have a military background, possibly in the inquisitorial squad at Guantanamo Bay.  “Are you a male? Yes or No”, “Are you from this building? Yes or No” – as he marched around the circle barking his questions. “Do you mean us harm? Yes or No”, “Do you know you’re dead? Yes or No”.  He continued marching around the circle, occasionally tapping someone else on the shoulder to have a go at being the human pendulum.  At this point my friend whispered that it was like a really slow version of Duck Duck Goose and that it was also a bit like he was playing Guess Who, as she whispered “Are you wearing a hat? Yes or No” and then dissolved into barely suppressed giggles which then set me off.  Both of us sniggering away in the dark, trying to pretend we just had a cough.

After a bit more of an explore, it was break time. Like being at a very strange wedding reception, with a running buffet of various sandwiches, crisps and cake, some of which ended up a bit soggy after my pal spilled her coffee over it when I made her laugh

We checked out various areas of the building.  A small theatre, a swimming pool (now boarded over).  We did ouija boards, where strangely a Dutch woman came through and as if by magic, one of the staff members, spoke Dutch.  Everybody felt freezing but the room temperature was steady.One lady left the room because she felt sick and I almost fell asleep (nothing new there).  

Time for another tea break, where for reasons I forget now, we ended up laughing hysterically about whether anyone had ever investigated Martin Bashir as a serial killer – the Harold Shipman of the showbiz world.  This led onto reading online about a conspiracy theory that Oprah Winfrey or Jeffrey Daniels of Shalamar may have had Michael Jackson killed.  One to further their status in the Illuminati, the other as vengance for stealing their dance moves.  I’ll leave it up to you to work out which.


After a bit more investigating.  Another fruitless ouija session and then an equally pointless game of boggle with the spirits where we had to make up our own answers the questions asked – Countdown style.  This was clearly open to abuse.


What did you die of?…..


By this time, I’d pretty much had enough and it was 3am.  Time to set up camp – yes, this time it was a full sleepover.  Just time before bed to recreate the famous death scene shots of the Heaven’s Gate Suicide Cult evidence photosLike you do…


I think we need to grow up and stop arsing about

I got about 2 hours sleep before we got turfed out and then spent the rest of Saturday feeling almost jetlagged. 

All in all I think the most entertaining things of the entire evening were us two. The rest of the group were nice and all but the spirits were nowhere to be seen or heard – I didn’t even get so much as a tingle of the old spider senses really and when I tingle, you know shit’s about to go down.

Doing it all again next Saturday at Armley Mills, where I’ve seen and heard strange shit in the daytime, so lights off should be a right scream.

Adios todas Xx



Let’s go round again…

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Well it’s almost time to begin a new academic year.

It doesn’t seem that long since last September and the last academic year. But what a year it’s been.  Going in all cylinders blazing last September, ready to take on the system. Lead my new, (albeit smaller) but fabulous little team.  Ready to jump in at a moments notice to impart knowledge and wisdom with a smile and pocket full of amazing lesson plans.

Yeah. That lasted til Spring and then it all went west side.



Me, from March to June in my kitchen


Until recently when I no longer felt like that, I hadn’t really realised how low and off-kilter I actually felt.  Let’s not go there again if we can possibly help it.

My philosophy at this juncture can probably best be summed up by this meme:-


Am I right?


There will always be plenty of people having a shittier day than you, which is crap (for them) but a silver lining on your own grey cloud. That’s as good as it’s probably going to get for most of us – and that’s okay.

So before I return to the coal face and my optimism and enthusiasm die a fiery death wane within weeks, I’d like to celebrate the great things that happened this year and the people who stopped me from totally losing my mind. The ones who sent me notes, hunted for spooks with me for fun; sent me memes, love tokens; not always helpful but somehow amusing texts; sent me jigsaws in the post. And thanks to my husband who, despite his usually unsympathetic nature and poor inference skills, managed to be kind, thoughtful and not get annoyed when I didn’t appear to have moved for hours.  Also my Childerbeast for not freaking out at their mother freaking out.

Naturally I have to summarise in pictorial form because , as my childerbeast told me recently, “Mum, you photograph everything”  Good job really. Then I can look back at images like these, on the days when everything seems pointless, and I’ll remember that it’s not.

In the words of my childerbeast…. “Blessed”.









So back to school tomorrow.  I am going in this year with no expectations. That way I can’t be disappointed or annoyed. I’ll go in. Do my thing. Hope for the best and then come home, sleep, then go back the next day and try again.


Bring it on Booms!  We can do this.


And to end a perfect summer holiday of sun, treating myself to a new vacuum cleaner (small pleasures) visits with friends, festivalling, glitter and music – my parents dropped by today for an impromptu visit.

Good times.


Life (today anyway) is good.  Not always. Not for everyone. But today, it’s alright for me & mine, & that’ll do.

Ciao MoFos



Who ya gonna call? (prob not these two)

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On Friday night, my friend and I went to Abbey House Museum in Leeds on a Most Haunted Experience. We booked it months ago on the promise of being able to rake around in the dark listening for taps and knocks alongside Karl Beatty and Yvette Fielding.  We found out not long ago though (after we had paid in full of course) that Yvette would be replaced by Stuart Torvell.  Not quite the same, a lot less hair for a start, but there you go.

We knew it would be amusing and entertaining. Perhaps not as much as 30 East Drive because we wouldn’t have the pre-show laughs of The Chequerfields pub and its patrons with their stories. It couldn’t be anything but funny with us two TBH, making our own amusement as usual.


Look. It’s all over Twitter how funny we are.

It started before so much as light even went out, when the crew came outside where we were having a pre-ghost hunt snack. They were shouting out names to check everyone off on their list.  We joined in, asking for I.P freely, Amanda Huggenkiss, Seymore Butts etc and finding ourselves hilarious.


Pretty sure other Team 1s were trading their lanyards for Team 2 to avoid being with us

One of the crew said something about a back passage as we were taking a picture of this sign on the door and thus the puerile level of immaturity was set for the evening.


After bemoaning the decline of the use of the word knob in English signage – one doesn’t see it written down often enough – it was finally time to make a start.  Or so we thought.    Already 45 minutes in and we’d done nothing but eat club biscuits, the crew finally showed us an overly dramatic Health & Safety video with creepy girl from ‘The Ring’ style graphics & scary music. Then they brought out Karl & Stuart (Karl taller in real life than you’d think and also swearier).  It was then time….for more snacks and tea. While the superfans monopolised the ‘Pros’.

Eventually, we all trooped downstairs to the Victorian Street area where we were shown all the tech we could use.  We were shown where the locked-off cameras were and which ones would be live streaming on FB and YouTube. Then the lights went out and off we went in our groups.  Our group went into the pub area (sadly no longer working) and fired up one of the many ouija boards. 


Do you have a message from the afterlife?

Now I am what could best be described as a hopeful believer. I don’t see any reason why there can’t be such a thing as ghosts, but I need to ensure all scientific possibilities have been exhausted as a reason for anything unexplained. I have experienced things that cannot be explained by science or common sense in the past but I am going to need more proof.

What I don’t want is to spend half an hour of my life I’m never getting back, as part of a farcical display of fraudulence from a lady who was clearly in full charge of the planchette and claiming that she was in communication with her partner’s dead dog.

A dog?

Because apparently in the afterlife, animals know how to read and spell.


We abandoned our group fairly sharply after this and tagged on the end of another, but not before a comedy scare moment when my friend shone her torch into one of the shop areas and cacked herself when she saw a man!  Once we had finished pissing ourselves with the giggles, having realised it was just the other group – we went to join them.  This could be much more interesting as this group was led by Stuart from Most Haunted.  It wasn’t!
In his own words, he said a whole lot of what they do is, “standing about in the dark waiting for Fuck All”.

He’s not wrong.  So, you need to amuse yourself.

Namely by texting your mates a heads up to get online and going to find the livestream cameras.


Can you see me Mum? I’m on telly!

I’m not sure Stuart and Karl and the other crew members knew what to make of us two.  In fact I am pretty sure they were hiding from us. While others were jumping at every moth, tap, stomach gurgle and phantom dead dog, we were wandering off alone and laughing about whether or not the CCTV in the gift shop would still be on.  Thought it best not to test it out.  Nobody wants a disciplinary at work for being seen livestreamed on FB pocketing souvenir pencils and rubbers from the gift shop*.
On one of our reccies we discovered some unattended giant character heads.  I’m only sorry I couldn’t see where I was going or we could have done a little dance in front of the livestream cameras.


I think he can hear you Ray

You don’t see Zak Bagans and Aaron Goodwin doing this shit!

After a few hours uneventful wanderings and sitting about in the dark watching bits of tech occasionally light up. We did another ouija session in an upstairs room where there was no communication whatsoever until our friend from earlier joined in and lo and behold, the fucking dog came back through from the other side.

Fuck off you charlatan before I stick that planchette up your arse!

We once again opted to bomb this group off and went downstairs alone to the allegedly haunted giant shoe (don’t ask). Not a dicky bird in there. The only thing unusual was my sudden inability to whistle when calling out to ask any ghosties to copy me.  I suddenly turned into King Julian from Madagascar. “Phhfffffffftttttttttt”.  Probably deformation of the palate from eating too many club biscuits while we waited for this shizzle to start!

Had another wander off on our own into the one room my friend said she didn’t get a good feeling in.  We had hoped for the level of poltergeist activity that the actual Most Haunted Team witnessed whilst filimg for the TV show.


Happy Land people – not scary in any way whatsoever


Funnily enough, the little people that had seemingly sailed through the air with gay abandon in the company of Karl and Co, were uncharacteristically still and silent.

Make of that what you will.

Our time was almost over but not before we had a chance to cross over the road to Kirkstall Abbey. A fabulous monastic ruin and even more impressive at night time.

Dare you get inside one of the stone coffins they said?

Sure? Why not. But I’ll check it for fox piss before I lay down.


In retrospect, I should have put my torch elsewhere


We listened to some owls calling to one another for a while and then went back over the road.  A mini photo op with the ‘Pro’s after a ‘casting couch’ joke from Karl and what is clearly a cheeky feel up from Stuart (now we know why he left Yvette behind).  Then it was time to go.


He is clearly trying to cop a feel – and why not?


Stuart seems less affectionate in the official photo

I have had scarier shits than this ghost hunting night if I’m honest. But I did have a right laugh with my best ghost busting buddy.  Our warped sense of humour and fun is perfectly suited to stumbling about in the dark taking the piss in the hope that one day (night) we will actually find some proof of existence after death.

Bolling Hall at the end of the month and Armley Mills in October – both venues pretty creepy in the day time to be fair so I’m sure there will be laughs aplenty there (though probably no more giant heads).



Lidl’s new range of blow up sex dolls were not a big seller




*Obvs we wouldn’t dream of such a thing, we were merely saying it was very trusting of the museum to let a bunch of whackjobs wander about unsupervised after hours.