Jaw-Dropping Activity Awaited Me As I Search For Spooks At 'My Haunted Hotel'

By Steve Higgins
May 14, 2023 1:00 AM ‐ Paranormal
Steve Higgins At My Haunted Hotel

I experienced unexpected results when I spent the night in Chester's most famous paranormal hotspot, the 17th-century Ye Olde Kings Head on Lower Bridge Street. The historic inn is now home to My Haunted Hotel, which gives paranormal investigators the chance to spend the night in Britain's most haunted hotel, while offering them the opportunity to star in their own paranormal adventure.

This is a ghost hunting event with a difference. My Haunted Hotel is designed to give guests the opportunity to explore the location's paranormal activity for themselves. Guests are encouraged to venture out into the hotel's haunted rooms and corridors in search of spooks on their own, with free run of the hotel all night long, and this includes a stay in one of the hotel's six haunted bedrooms.

Their nightlong supernatural stakeout will be captured on multiple cameras, giving guests the chance to appear in an episode of the web series, 'My Haunted Hotel'. Each weekly episode follows a different group of members of the public as they brave a night in one of the hotel's haunted rooms.

My Haunted Hotel has been making headlines since it opened its doors to ghost hunters last year, so I thought it was time I gave this unique haunted attraction a visit.

Ye Olde Kings Head is still a popular pub at street level, a good place to grab a drink and some food before your night of ghost-busting. At 8pm, it was time to check in. The event begins in a fittingly decorated and very atmospheric function room. We were greeted by the hotel's team, Harry Achilleos, Brett Jones and Danny Moss, who gave us a quick briefing before the event got underway. The investigation itself mostly unfolds on the top floor, but also uses parts of the function room on the middle floor, and once time has been called at the bar, the ground floor and pub's cellar are also available to ghost hunters. The night turned out to be one of the most intriguing ghost hunts I've ever done, and I was surprised by the outcome.

The first thing that surprised me about my night at Ye Olde Kings Head was how beneficial it is to have a team watching you and monitoring the building on CCTV. The purpose of the 16 night vision cameras placed around the building is to capture the guests' investigations in order to put the YouTube show together, but it turns out it's really handy to have Brett, Danny, and Harry in the control room watching over you.
My Haunted Hotel

Each group of guests was given a walkie-talkie in order to communicate with the team. I started out with my girlfriend, Kerry, in Room 2. When we started hearing what sounded like footsteps in the corridor, we were able to radio through to the control room and get the team to check the cameras. They were able to confirm that there was another guest out of their room in the corridor.

Having someone watching over proceedings with eyes on every part of the building is something you don't normally get on a ghost hunt. If, for example, we heard a sound coming from the adjoining room, the team could check the footage from that room to see if there were any possible explanations.

I have to admit that I'd been putting off going to the hotel. I knew that the actions of the guests are recorded for the 'My Haunted Hotel' series, and I thought I would be that boring, sceptical person who goes along, has nothing happen, and adds nothing to the show.

For full disclosure, Danny is a friend of mine, but that doesn't mean I wouldn't give the hotel an honest review. However, I dreaded the thought of going there, having a quiet and peaceful night, and ending up writing a review that did nothing to promote the hotel, which I think is a genuinely unique and clever project. As it turns out, I had nothing to worry about. My night at Ye Olde Kings Head was a very active one.

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My Haunted Hotel

At around 10pm, Kerry and I went into Room 5, a small double room, complete with a rocking horse and creepy dolls. The vigil started off quietly until Kerry called out, "are you outside the room?" A response came from inside the room. A very clear knock came from the far corner. In this particular corner was a net veil hanging off a shelf. The knock seemed to be coming from behind the veil.

Kerry asked, "could you do something like that again?" And seconds later, an identical knock occurred. After some more knocks, I tried asking for a response a few times, but whatever it was seemed to be responding to Kerry's voice and ignoring me. I suggested that Kerry try to get it to knock twice. She called out, "can you tap twice for us, make that sound twice?" And almost immediately, the same knock was repeated, this time twice.

At this point, I wanted to know what was under the veil, so I pushed the net aside to find nothing at all. Just an empty space. There was no obvious cause of the sound. Peeking at the source of the noise seemed to stop it, at least for a short while. It fell silent in the room as our subsequent requests were ignored.

Then Kerry called out, "are you still with us?" We heard two very clear knocks again. This time they came from the bedroom's door. It was quite a jaw-dropping sequence of events. The knocks were very clear, very loud, and seemed to be responsive.

Once again, the fact that the hotel is covered by CCTV that's being watched by the team was really helpful here. I was able to radio through to the control room and tell Danny, Brett, and Harry what had happened. They checked the recording and found that the sounds had been caught on camera. What was interesting is that the footage captured outside the room confirmed that no one was outside knocking on the door. The knock is also louder on this camera's audio, which would possibly suggest that the knock did come from the door, or at the least, outside of the room we were in.

Later we moved into Room 6, perhaps one of the venue's most famous rooms. In the dim, flickering light, you can make out a four-poster bed and an eerie rocking chair that's been placed in the middle of a large pentagram on the floor. Room 6 proved to be quite quiet for us, but directly below us was the kitchen. During our vigil, we heard a huge crash come from the empty kitchen below. We later learned that the crash had been a selection of sauces suddenly falling from a shelf in the kitchen. The kitchen is also covered by a night vision camera, so of course, the unexplained incident was captured on camera.
My Haunted Hotel

Towards the end of our time at Ye Olde Kings Head, we ventured into Room 8. This small, square room is home to the inn's most famous item. An allegedly haunted doll known as Grace. The innocent-looking doll, which sits in a glass case in the middle of Room 8, is believed to be haunted as the result of an attachment of a 17th-century witch from Nantclwyd Y Dre in Denbighshire, North Wales. Over the last few years, Grace has been blamed for several paranormal occurrences including unexplained knocks and bangs.

We once again encountered some unexplained knocking sounds in this room, but the sounds weren't quite as pronounced or responsive as the taps in Room 5 had been. But then, something very strange happened. I called out, "can you bang for us or make a noise please?" And then straight away we heard what I can only describe as the sound of someone retching. It was almost like a demonic convulsion.

We couldn't place where the sound had come from and immediately radioed through to the control room to get them to check the footage. They'd caught the strange dry-heaving sound on the camera in Room 8, but what was more interesting is that a camera just outside the door to the room also caught the sound. However, in the recording on the corridor camera, the sound was more muffled and quiet, as if it was coming from inside the room with us.

Some of our experiences at Ye Olde Kings Head made it into the weekly episode of 'My Haunted Hotel'. You can watch the moment we heard responsive knocking in Room 5 in the video below.

My Haunted Hotel was a great experience. The event ran smoothly, the team were great, and the results spoke for themselves. Ye Olde Kings Head has become a custom-built ghost hunters' paradise, rigged with cameras and trigger objects. Each of the guest bedrooms has a different theme. I think it's fair to say that they have hammed it up a bit with these rooms, but honestly, I don't think it detracts from what the hotel offers. Personally, I love a paranormal-themed location, I think it sets the mood. At the end of the day, I'd rather the old guest rooms get converted in this way than become something like sterile office space.

If you're brave enough, you can book a stay in the haunted hotel now. The exhibit including Grace in Room 8 is accessible to any guests conducting overnight ghost hunts. You can find out more at myhauntedhotel.com.
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