'Help! My House Is Haunted' is available to stream exclusively on Discovery+ from Friday, June 25. We spoke to the show's newest investigator to find out what we can expect.
The countdown is on for the return of 'Help! My House Is Haunted' and its newest team member says the new series is a "rollercoaster" and promises that series three will be the show's "best series ever".
Scunthorpe-born Ian Lawman joins fellow investigators Barri Ghai and Jayne Harris as they travel the UK visiting houses and families troubled by hauntings
. All 12 new cases will be available to watch on demand on Discovery+ from June 25 and will air on the Really channel later in the year.
Ian takes over from US medium, Chris Fleming, who has been a regular on the show since its first episode in July, 2018. The change to the show's lineup is due to travel restrictions in place because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which meant Chris wasn't able to take part in this series.
Ian told us that he's aware he has big shoes to fill, "it's quite daunting, Chris is so popular and it's always hard coming into an established role."
Despite the difficulties and restrictions imposed by the pandemic, the new team have been on quite a journey together as they've filmed the 12 new episodes. Ian said, "there were some really dark emotional moments, there was some really intense moments, and then there was sort of some moments that are very tech based, which a lot of tech fans out there are going to absolutely adore."
More From 'Help! My House Is Haunted'
You can read more and the team's investigations on our 'Help! My House Is Haunted' hub, where you'll find detailed reviews of each episode, trivia quizzes and news on future episodes.
Ian, who says he's been hearing voices that no one else could from a very young age, is no stranger to the world of paranormal
reality shows, including as a lead investigator in Really's original series 'Ghost Chasers' alongside Kay Nambiar.
In Ian's first appearance in the new series of 'Help! My House Is Haunted', the team head to the historic coastal town of Galston-on-Sea in Norfolk. The case starts off with a negative undertone, but guided by Ian - who is an ordained exorcist specialising in the dark arts - the team are able to turn things around. It's an emotional moment, not just for the homeowners, Claire and her fiancé Daniel, but also for the team.
Ian said, "Claire in the very first episode was very daunting, and I think I was kind of thrown in the deep end with that one, I wasn't expecting it."
Filming these intense and emotional cases in quick succession while on the road proved tough for Ian at times, "people just tend to think as a medium that you can just travel along and be absolutely fine and we can film the next day, they don't realise that you need that down time."
However, the restrictions put in place due to the pandemic did give Ian some respite. He told us, "COVID sort of helped with that for me because we weren't allowed to socialise after filming. We'd go straight back to our rooms and I could go and get some rest and recharge my batteries." He added, "it was very intense, it was quite an intense few weeks of filming."
This wasn't the only way that the coronavirus affected the production of the series, but the crew at Back2Back Productions who produce the show worked hard to ensure that the changes didn't impact on the enjoyment of the show. Ian said, "we were getting tested every three days, we had to stay in bubbles, and we had to have our own hired car that was cleansed."
"You don't realise what went on behind the scenes," the medium said, "we had a COVID cleaning company travelling around with us and every house we went into they'd clean the whole property."
Laughing, Ian said, "that put the thought into my head, 'is this going to cleanse a ghost?'" Ian wondered whether the act of cleansing the house could drive away the ghosts, spirits, or supernatural energies they were looking for, just like when you cleanse a property with burning sage. He added, "luckily it didn't happen, but that thought did go through my mind."
The toughest thing to come to terms with when filming during the pandemic was the lack of human contact, especially during emotional cases. Ian explains, "there was a couple of occasions when Barri and Jayne were very emotional and you just wanted to give them a hug. Even though they were in my bubble, we still weren't allowed to do that."
Ian describes missing out on a physical connection with his new teammates as "the saddest thing" about the situation, but we wondered how easy it was for Ian to gel with the 'Help! My House Is Haunted' team as the newcomer. "As a medium I don't mind working as part of a team," he said, "I've done TV for such along time now, so that's great."
However, he added that his work as an exorcist is more of a solo pursuit. He said he made this point clear to the show's producer, Ben Cole, when he was first approached about appearing on the series. Ian recalled, "when I was talking to Ben, Barri and Jayne I said 'please don't think I'm being rude to you, if there's a possession or something where I'm performing an exorcism, I just have to go for it, I have to do it without any interference or anything like that."
Ian says his new teammates adapted well to this, and this can be seen in the first episode of the new series where without hesitation or self-doubt, Ian takes the lead to jump in and help Clare by doing what he's trained to do.
Advertisement ‐ Content Continues Below.
Of course, the show is still just as much about Barri and Jayne too. All three investigators come together well as a team and each apply their own unique skills and differing approaches to the investigation, Ian says that this is something all paranormal investigators should be respectful of. He said, "I think it's a nightmare of an industry. It's so sad that so much negativity goes on, and I think we're all equals, every single one of us is equal."
Ian believes that it is each of his team members' individual methods that make them so good together and that each of them should be given the space to shine through. He said, "we all shone in kind of individual ways, and I think it's very important that you never tread into other people's little separate niches."
In terms of those individual areas of expertise, as a psychologist and historian, Jayne delves into the histories of the locations they visit to find out what they're dealing with. Barri takes on the role of the tech expert and spends his time trying to validate the paranormal claims relating to the properties with hard evidence.
Ian, as a medium, focuses on the energy of the building and uses his abilities to gain psychic
insights, but he admits that it can sometimes be frustrating when filming to get across what he's experiencing, when Barri and Jayne are often able to show the evidence they've captured in a more tangible way.
He said, "it's very hard when you're seeing something there, and you're feeling it and sensing it. Barri's said to me a couple of times 'why can't I feel it?' And, you just wish you could hand your ability over for those few seconds and say, 'there you are, take that'."
But Ian realises he's not the only member of the team who gets a little frustrated at times. He said, "it works both ways. I see the frustration with them with me sometimes when I can't hear their EVPs."
One of Barri's preferred methods of investigation is to attempt to capture electronic voice phenomenon (EVP), which are believed to be spirit voices captured or heard through an electronic device, such as Barri's trusty audio recorder.
Ian said, "Barri or Jayne will sometimes give me a voice recorder to do some EVP sessions. It's a standing joke now, and Ben laughs his head off, because Barri and Jayne will get excited and say 'oh my god' when I play it back and say 'can you hear that?!?', but I can't hear anything."
He laughs, "if it said 'Ian Lawman', I'd still say 'I can't hear that'," although he does concede "when they clean it up I can hear it, but not always." He adds, "sometimes Barri will play it on a loop for me and then I can hear it, but then I'm thinking 'am I just hearing that because Barri's told me what it says'."
Even if Ian's a little unsure about some of EVPs, that's not the only evidence the team capture throughout the new series, some of this evidence will leave you scratching your head. Ian says, "I think some of the evidence Barri and Jayne have got throughout this series has been phenomenal and blown me away."
He says that even after two decades in the industry, it's still exciting to capture compelling evidence, but that's not all that drives him on an investigation. He explains, "I think it's nice to always get that evidence, there's always still that super, super buzz, but for me, I've kind of changed the way I've worked over the years."
He says the shift from seeking evidence to helping victims of hauntings has "happened organically" over the years, "I help people who have reached out to several other people and not been able to get help. I think it's a gift, you know, that I've been given and it's nice to help people."
It seems the number of people calling for help might be on the rise, with seemingly more and more people reporting what they believe to be demonic entities terrorising their homes, but as someone who specialises in the darker side of the paranormal, Ian says things might not be as negative as they first seem.
Ian says, "people see so many movies or they get mediums in who say, 'it's demonic'. It's not. Nine times out of ten it's not." He explains, "what do we class as dark? Somebody who was quite a strong personality, a medium could class that as a dark energy. It might just mean they were quite assertive."
This misidentification of paranormal entities was something that the team experienced first-hand while shooting the series. Ian said, "we went into some properties and they're saying it's dark and negative, and I'm going in there and saying 'well, actually it's not'. Some have actually been reunited with loved ones, their lost babies, and with relatives and stuff. Initially you go in because it's a dark case and then you come out smiling and it's been quite an emotional one."
But if you do think you have something nasty lurking in your home and you can't get the 'Help! My House Is Haunted
' team in, then what should you do? Ian says leave it to the experts, "just let them deal with it, that's the best solution."
We don't yet have the full details on where the team will be heading in the new series, although we do know the investigators spent some time filming at Trinity Arts Centre in Gainsborough, a haunted house in Rotherham, and they helped the victims of a terrifying haunting in Hartlepool.
'Help! My House Is Haunted' is available to stream exclusively on Discovery+ from Friday, June 25, and Ian says "it's just going to be exciting to see what people think of it. I think they'll see that we have stepped it up a gear this time."
If you can't wait for series three, or just need a reminder, you can watch the whole first and second series of 'Help! My House Is Haunted' on Discovery+ now. All 24 episodes are available to stream, including the team's memorable investigation of 39 De Grey Street with Sandy Lakdar, and Chris' unsettling encounter with paranormal forces at the Corn Exchange in Hertford.
More From 'Help! My House Is Haunted' View All