I’m unfortunate enough to be employed in one of the most haunted buildings in Canterbury; what was once an Elizabethan inn, where three children died in a fire in the late 1500s. During interior renovations, in the early 2000s, workmen started to report eerily activity throughout the building – mostly on the stairs and a certain room on the third floor, where remains of hair and fingernails were found. Supposedly belonging to children.
In the Hollywood movie series, Paranormal Activity, it usually begins with random and innocent knocks, footsteps and whispers. This is true for my working environment; I tend to be on my own for at least an hour or so, and occasionally hear the sound of footsteps following me; running, whispers and the sound of children laughing or playing. Noises will immediately halt if I go to investigate the source of the occurrence, and start again, if I stop paying attention to it/them.
And this is where the similarities stop. Of course, there are different types of hauntings and activity, but Hollywood depicts a reality of carnage and legions of demons. There have been some major frights for me; having my name called, when alone, and doors slam on the third floor. Again, when I’m alone. But, alas, no demons are entertaining me.
I’m almost certain (and I swear on my own life) there have been two occasions, in which I am positive, I saw a child or figures. My scepticism was pushed to the extreme with those incidents. But, unlike the movies, I was not pulled, pushed or dragged down the stairs. People tend to ask me, routinely, how I can work in a reputedly haunted building and the answer is quite simplistic. 99% of the time, nothing happens. There tends to be short and precious moments of activity, followed by tranquility for many months.
Like the protagonists in Paranormal Activity, we don’t gather round and discuss the haunting; only if something occurs. As much as I enjoyed the movie series, especially the third installment, I have to confess a real haunted building is quite tedious.