As the summer months are approaching thousands of people from all over the world will flock into our area to visit Sherwood Forestt.
But is the Forest all as it seems? could there be a hidden secret that lies deep in depth of the Forest?
Last year I was honoured to be asked to run the first official Ghost Hunt alongside the Sherwood Forest rangers as part of our Haunted Events UK program.
I was a little nervous because I am not a fan of outdoor events of this nature due to the cross contamination with animals, wildlife and natural forest noises which could easily be confused for ghostly sounds and activity.
However my concerns were soon eased as the evening proved to be a huge success and even produced some shocks and mysteries.
We split the group of 60+ people, all wanting to experience Sherwood Forest by night, into four groups. We concentrated on three different locations (The Court Yard, the Bowl & the Visitors centre) and conducted three different experiments (Table Tipping, Glass Moving and working with equipment and a medium).
The groups did a round robin around the experiments so they all experienced the different types of vigils and all three proved very active and opened up a lot of questions. However the best was yet to come.
At 1am we decided to all walk down to the Major Oak for a mass vigil. The forest was one of the darkest places I had ever known, it was interesting seeing the guests take the 15 minute walk in the middle of the night after just conducting four hours of vigils.
The emotions of scared, intrigued, hysterical and confused were all in attendance as the guests chatted and tried to figure out what had just happened, real or not, could the activity be explained?
As we reached the Major oak we made one big circle and I explained what the experiment “A Human Pendulum” was all about and that we were about to have a go with 60+ people, the biggest I had ever tried.
Two very brave volunteers stood in the middle of the circle as I started the experiment. No blind folds were needed as it was very hard to make out the others on the other side of the circle, the rangers stood on an outer circle to make sure we were all safe and no one wandered off. Minutes into the vigil one of the brave ladies in the middle of the circle started walking to the edge of the circle. “Are you ok” I asked, No reply, I tried to get her attention “What are you feeling?” again No Reply, I ran over too her and could see her eyes were like glass, looking straight through me! She was taken out of the experiment and looked after by our trained staff to bring her round and make sure she was safe.
As I returned the second lady began showing the same symptoms and at the same time people in the circle began to fell unwell and a few complained of a tightening of the chest and a pushing sensation to the chest and shoulder area.
We were in the middle of Sherwood Forest, 15 minutes walk from the visitors centre and only torch light to guide us, I decided to call it a day early and get the group back to the briefing room to discuss what we had just witnessed.
Could the first lady’s reaction have caused mass panic and a chain reaction which looked like strange activity? Could it have been that as it was 1am the guest’s body clock started kicking in and people started feeling unwell and uncomfortable because of that? OR was it something else, something were could not see or explain? Was there something paranormal that caused these reactions?
On speaking to the rangers a few days later they confirmed to me that over the years people have often reported feeling unwell while at the Major Oak site, often reporting a strange feeling and as if someone was watching them.
Paranormal or not we are returning exactly one year to the day of our first visit. Saturday 13th July 2013 and you too can come and be part of it as we try and uncover the secrets of the Forest and unravel exactly what did happen a year ago.
Tickets are price at £39.95 for the event on Saturday 13th July 2013, 8pm-2am, and are available via www.hauntedeventsuk.com.
For you chance to win a pair of tickets, simply answer the following:
What was the date ofthe last event to take place at Sherwood Forest?
Send your entries to Stephen Thirkill, 121 Newgate Lane, Mansfield by no later than 5pm on 18th June.