Have a go at… ghost hunting at the old gaol

The ghost of Mary Ann Parr

Are you a fan of all things frightening, or a firm believer in fact?

Armed with two fellow ghost hunters, I was given the chance to try one of the Galleries of Justice Museum’s monthly ghost tours – read on if you dare, to find out all about my adventures, afterhours.

Visitors to the Galleries of Justice Museum are treated daily to performance led day tours around the museum. For just one evening a month (the first Wednesday – book now for August) the brave are invited back for a tour of the gaol to discover the paranormal for themselves.

The atmosphere in the building adds to the eerie ambience, with cold chills and a deathly silence. You are greeted in the Shire Hall by a haunting figure; the tour guide who leads you through a duskily lit corridor to the court room.

If you’ve ever been in the court room at the Galleries during the day, you will know that it’s a magnificent, imposing room – let alone once the lights are out.
It’s amazing what new things you see (or think you may see) once the museum is plunged into darkness.

The group (no bigger than ten brave thrill seekers on this occasion) are asked to wander the galleries alone – making their way carefully through the gaol by flickering light. Tension is high as people shuffle closely one after the other, eyes wide – adjusting to the conditions and looking out for the slightest hint of paranormal activity.

The guide joins the group at certain intervals to regale the audience with a heady mix of tall tales, truth and terror – leaving you to make your own mind up as to what you may or may not see out of the corner of your eye.

Not one for people afraid of the dark – you are plunged into darkness more than once –whether being shut into a Georgian gaol cell, or deep beneath the galleries in one of the caves.
It was during my time in the Georgian cell where I began to feel most overwhelmed, convincing myself I felt something brush against my foot – the tour guide is full of similar examples of visitors who have had many a sensory experience whilst visiting.

The guide played a great part throughout the evening, slipping between performances (including a haunting re-enactment of past inmate Mary Ann Parr) and narrative (sharing stories both legend and true). The mood switched quickly from spine tingling nerves, to laughter, and somewhat relief as we were brought back out into the light for the end of the tour.

Camera trick or spooky spectre?

Camera trick or spooky spectre?

I won’t share examples of stories told down in the cells – I will leave that for you to find out for yourself, but it certainly gets your imagination fired up. And even if you don’t believe in all things spooky, the chance to see the museum when the public and staff leave for the night is fascinating – but be sure not to get left behind in one of the cells!

The tour provides an entertaining evening for both the firm believer and true sceptic. Shadowy figure or candlelight flicker – what will you see? Book your place quick as spaces are limited. If you prefer horror which is a little more gutsy and ‘in your face’, why not try one of the new Terror tours on the last Friday of each month, for a real scare?

Posted on 05 July 2012
Featured author: Lynzi E-Marketing Officer

Often found roaming the Notts countryside. Spaniel Lover. Stargazer. Sweet tooth.

Comments (4)

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  • […] Click here to read about their ghostly experience at Nottingham’s iconic heritage site […]

    Posted by ‘Experience Nottinghamshire’ have a go at…Ghost Hunting! | Galleries Of Justice Museum
  • Ghost hunt
    The Galleries of Justice (Shire Hall), is a great place to spend a night and I have seen lots of things, both in the Court Rooms and in the Prison. Most of the time the Criminal Court is full of orbs, some times towards the back of the Court were the steps to the prison are. Also some times to the front, were the Judges bench is. I have also seen a Judge looking down at us from the Galleries at the top of the building. A few months ago I went on a ghost Hunt with a ghost group and was allowed in to the court on my own on arrival. I walked into the Court and walked down to a gate to the right of the Judges bench. Opening the gate I climbed the two steps and walked through. I then had to go through another gate to get to the pews. This gate has a butterfly lock on the inside and as I closed the gate, I locked it turning the butterfly anticlockwise. I then sat down to open my camera bag and take out my cameras I then put my bag on the pew at the side of me and as I looked up I saw the gate was now open. On the right hand side of the Judges bench is a window, with a upper glass and a lower one. I have seen images in both these windows. In the top, a Judge in his wig and gowns and in the bottom window, a Victorian Policeman.

    Posted by Derrick Thomas White
  • […] Click here to read what our friends over at Experience Nottinghamshire experienced when they attended Nottingham’s most talked about Ghost Tours! […]

    Posted by Our next Ghost tour is on 5th September | Galleries Of Justice Museum
  • […] Click here to read what our friends over at Experience Nottinghamshire experienced when they attended Nottingham’s most talked about Ghost Tours! […]

    Posted by Ghost Tour Nottingham | Galleries Of Justice Museum

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