'Spooked Scotland': Comlongon Castle - Episode 8 Review
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'Spooked Scotland' continues on the Really channel and this week Gail Porter and her team head to Dumfriesshire where they'd been given unique access to a now-abandoned castle and its adjoining hotel. Together with psychic medium Chris Fleming, they attempt to communicate with the ghosts of the tortured women who are said to haunt the castle.
Just off the most haunted road in Scotland lies Comlongon Castle's ancient tower and abandoned mansion house hotel, which stands in an area steeped in history and drenched in blood. Chris says this has made the area "a hive for paranormal activity."
With a history of torture, kidnap, betrayal, lots of heartbreak, and the tail of two Scottish sisters who were adopted by a cruel Scottish knight, there's plenty to pique the team's interest. Chris explained, "that type of dark emotional energy is going to leave one heavy imprint here, so I'm kind of wondering what type of spirits are still here because of that."
Gail added, "we're here to investigate claims this place holds the dark secrets of two tragic women, ill-fated in love, tortured souls who met grisly ends."
Gail tells us that Comlongon is one of the Scottish Boarders' remaining medieval strongholds. She says, "it's rife with reported sightings of a spectral woman flailing from the battlements and a dark shadow figure who stalks the abandoned mansion house's corridors."
There's no Evelyn Hollow in this episode, but technical specialist Ryan O'Neill is still on hand to help the team. He begins by joining Chris for a psychic sweep of the abandoned mansion house hotel, where there have been dozens of reports of apparitions and unexplained phenomena.
Almost immediately, Chris picked up on a female spirit. He said, "that's funny, I heard a woman screaming." After this he felt as if he was being pulled to the drawing room where he felt a presence and a pressure change. He said, "it's almost like a crushing feeling."
Ryan pulled out his trusty Panasonic RR DR-60 recorder in an attempt to capture spirit voices in an audio recording. They capture what they believe to be a scream at the exact spot where one of the female ghosts who haunts the castle is said to have fallen to her death from the stairs.
As Chris and Ryan climb these stairs, Chris catches a glimpse of a dark-haired woman at the top looking over the landing. Later Chris is drawn to the Carruthers Suite, where he picks up on a different female energy and the memories of a woman looking out of a window. He says she's longingly waiting for her lover to return.
After a chat with some eye witnesses and a brief investigation of Dumfries' oldest pub, The Globe Inn, which is also said to be haunted, Ryan set up his paranormal equipment around the location, including a REM-Pod, a device that radiates its own electrostatic field. Ryan explains how if anything enters this field, the device will alert them by emitting a sound and flashing lights.
The team start their vigil in the medieval tower where there's an old well, where one of the castle's spooks is said to have ended her life after hearing her lover had been assassinated. The team are looking for clues whether it's her dark shadow that has been seen around the well.
To find out more, they lower an audio recorder into the pit in the hopes of catching EVPs, or Electronic Voice Phenomenon, which are believed to be spirit voices captured on a digital audio recording device. Chris says they're using a DR-60 voice recorder, but they're not, it's actually Chris' audio recorder they're using.
Next they went to the castle's dungeon, which is also said to be one of the castle's paranormal hotspots. The actual dungeon is accessible via a trapdoor. Ryan is the first to climb down a ladder to brave the small dungeon alone and is soon joined by a terrified Gail, who said "this is a really bad idea, what am I thinking of?" as she descends into the darkness
They soon spot bugs on the walls and tiny flies all around them, "hundreds and hundreds of them," Ryan says. Moments later a rock was seemingly thrown at them. Gail doesn't last long in the dungeon after this, and Ryan flees when he thinks an EVP he recorded warns him to "run".
Later in the investigation they head back in to the drawing room of the mansion house hotel. Chris set up a spirit box, a ghost hunting device which rapidly scans through radio frequencies. It's believed that spirits can manipulate the white noise in these frequency ranges to form words and sentences.
Ryan was using an SLS camera. Chris says "this traces changes in electromagnetic fields and maps the shapes of the fluctuations." This isn't the case, an SLS camera uses a Structured Light Sensor to map its field of view in three dimensions. Structured light is simply a grid of invisible infrared dots, the camera's sensors can track and map each of these dots to see shapes and depth, even in a dark environment. It looks for human-shaped figures and highlights them on its screen in the form of a stick figure. One such figure did immediately appear on the screen, Chris says "that mean's there's a spirit here."
In an emotional end to the investigation, Chris psychically channeled the spirits of the mansion house, passing the experience on to Gail who says "I suddenly feel overwhelmed with emotion." Chris says this was because Gail was "strongly sensing a spirit."
After Gail said, "I'm not sure what I just experienced, but it was like nothing I've ever felt before. I just felt so sad." Adding, "I just wanted to cry."
She summed up the investigation by saying, "we've had an incredible night, I feel like I've made the strongest connection I've ever had with a spirit."
'Spooked Scotland' continues next Friday at 9pm on Really and is available to stream on demand on Discovery+. Really is available on Sky 142, Virgin 128, BT 17, Freeview 17, Freesat 160.
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