Most Haunted At The Royal Court Theatre - Series 16, Episode 1 Review
After a four year absence, Yvette Fielding and the Most Haunted team return for a brand new series, airing on terrestrial digital channel, Really. In episode one the team investigate a tiny little theatre in Bacup with an awful lot of paranormal activity, from negative entities to a plethora of ghost sightings.
Before we get stuck into the investigation, Yvette introduces us to the team.
For this new series, a rejigged team includes the familiar faces of camera men Stuart Torevell and Chris Burton, sound guy Matt Chance, Yvette's husband Karl Beattie, who's the show's executive producer, and joining the show full time demonologist Fred Batt.
There are also some new team members, a new camera man Darren Hutchinson, and Mel Crump the makeup lady.
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Is The Royal Court Theatre Haunted?
The Royal Court Theatre was originally constructed as an iron foundry, sadly in 1886 the building was ravaged by fire. Seven years later, the theatre as it now stands was opened, originally known as The Empire. Over the years its also been used as a bingo hall and a church.
With so much history and so many uses over the years, it's no wonder this little building has a whole cast of ghosts waiting in the wings.
According to the theatre's managing director, Simon C. Parker, there's been a high level of supernatural activity over the last three years, including seeing full apparitions in parts of the building, objects being thrown and bells being rung.
Before the investigation even got started, the team started hearing knocking coming from the basement, so decided that this was a good place to start. Yvette took newbie Mel down into the dark basement for her first vigil.
As the girls investigate a small door leading to a creepy passageway, a strange child-like humming sound is caught on the camera. Yvette points out in a voice over that the sounded wasn't heard at the time and they first heard it during the edit.
Just as Yvette starting calling out to the spirit, her camera died. Yvette said the camera's battery was "drained of power with no logical explanation."
The Stalls & Circle
Yvette re-grouped with the rest of the team and they went to investigate the theatre itself. Stuart, Darren, Matt and Fred were in the stalls, while Yvette, Karl, Mel and Chris went up to the circle. Yvette called out, "come out of the shadows and talk to us, we're not frightened of you. We want to talk to you, move things, move objects, we want to know that you are here."
Stuart soon found that some trigger objects he's left in the theatre had moved. Footage from earlier showed that he's placed two rolls of electrical tape on a low wall, one of the rolls of tape was now at the other side of the theatre on the floor as if it had been thrown.
All of a sudden there was a loud bang near Yvette's half of the team, as they started to investigate there was another similar bang this time coming from below them in the stalls near Stuart and his half of the team. Fred found a block of wooden on the floor, which could have explained one of the noises at least.
Moments later Darren had a roll of tape thrown directly at him, hitting him with force. As the team left the auditorium, they all reported smelling perfume which they couldn't explain.
Now in a roof area at the front of the building, Yvette heard several knocks and bangs which seemed to respond to her questions. At one point Yvette asked, "did somebody die here in this part of the theatre?" There were two loud knocks to indicate 'yes' in response.
Yvette deduced that the death was the result of an accident which happened in the 1800s, killing just one person. The team were unable to obtain a name or any other details before the spirit stopped responding and they headed back downstairs. As they did, Karl said he heard what sounded like someone walking down the stairs behind them.
The team were about to make their way to the bar area, but on the way sound guy Matt had a scare when a door slammed in front of him.
Ouija Board Session
Yvette had assembled Karl, Fred, Stuart and Mel at a table in the bar area in order to perform a séance using a ouija board in an attempt to contact the spirits of the theatre. They were joined by Paul and Helen who have joined the team before on a Most Haunted investigation.
The team all lightly placed their fingers on a glass, which almost straightaway started moving across the board. Immediately, Yvette suspected that the spirits were messing with them and the glass started to make a figure eight. Fred said, "it's the infinity symbol, no beginning, no end. It's continuous."
The glass then moved to the part of the board marked with the word 'goodbye', Yvette concluded that the spirits don't want to talk to them.
The glass started moving again and indicated that there were seven spirits present, it then spelt out the name "Jake." Karl reminded us that a spirit called Jake has followed the team on several investigations in the past, as well as some live shows.
Yvette repeatedly reported an icy feeling on her hand and several members of the team said they could feel the table move. Karl then jumped up and swore saying something hit his leg, looking around they saw another roll of tape rolling across the floor and found it had been a bunch of keys that hit Karl.
The team took a quick break to allow Karl to take the keys back down the basement, which is apparently where they had come from. He took Darren with him and upon arrival they found that two rolls of tape that they'd left as a trigger objects had moved, seemingly on their own. As they were leaving, a roll of tape seemed to have moved again. Darren said, "I'm pretty scared now, I've got to admit. This is genuinely unexplainable."
Yvette and Mel went back down to the basement, this time with Karl and Chris. As soon as they got down into the darkness, Mel jumped towards Yvette for protection after they heard the sound of something being thrown, only to discover it was once again the roll of tape which had been bothering Karl and Darren earlier.
Chris, who was manning the camera, said that he had seen it fly from the corner of the room. Walking through into another basement room, Yvette shone her torch at some old kit lying around and said, "start the tape recorder or something."
Then behind them from the previous room they heard another sound, going back into this room they found that once again the roll of tape had moved. They moved on again and all heard the sound of a bunch of key jingling. Mel then said, "I can't believe I used to watch this and now I'm in it," Yvette laughed as they heard the keys again.
They then all reported being able to smell the scent of women's perfume again. Chris described it as being like his grandma's perfume. Yvette called out, "is there a lady here? I can smell your perfume, it's very beautiful." She started getting gentle knocks in response.
Suddenly the girls scream and everyone jumped as a they heard the sound of a lightbulb smashing on the floor. Yvette said, "that was thrown with force, that was a bang."
Strangely, they then heard what sounded like the call tone of a walkie-talkie, but they couldn't find where the sound had come from and oddly it only happened once.
The episode ended with a very boring man called Dr. John Callow who gave his thought on the activity in the show and gave his skeptical take on it. Although actually he wasn't very skeptical at all and told viewers they should make their own mind up as to whether the activity was really paranormal or nothing more than tricks of the mind.
For reviews of all of the new episodes, plus highlights and evidence from the shows, and to find out when Most Haunted is on next, visit the Most Haunted episode guide.
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