Psychic Babble and the Paranormal

by Francis O’Neill (Oct 2013)

Note. This article, Psychic Babble and the Paranormal, picks up on an evening with Derek Acorah and some personal experience on the RMS Queen Mary. [ Psychic Babble and the Paranormal ]

Why Derek, well, apart from having attended one or two of his psychic evenings, he also played a major part in a Most Haunted TV show that took place on the old Queen Mary – and the video link is below.

An evening with Derek Acorah

Derek Acorah Psychic Babble and the Paranormal
Derek Acorah courtesy

Recently my partner and I attended an evening with Derek Acorah (UK psychic medium) in Evesham (Worcestershire, UK).

We’ve been to a number of such psychic events before, including seeing Derek before.

Although I’m not that keen on the razzamataz, the lighting and sound effects, and the ‘Introducing…’ in a deep movie tone voice, that goes with some of these shows – Derek’s being no exception – mostly the nitty gritty of the communications is interesting. [ Psychic Babble and the Paranormal ]

If Derek ever gives up his mediumship well frankly he could make a good stand-up comedian. This show was hilarious.

Great evidence of survival

Don’t get me wrong, he gave some great evidence of survival, meeting and greeting those calling in from the Other Side.

This being done via his guide, Sam, with Derek acting as the go-between, getting the messages across to members of the audience – notably with his running around as he invariably does to be up close to the person/s receiving the communication or cajoling people to respond, in a very gentle way I hasten to add. Psychic Babble and the Paranormal

Wit and inuendo

The reason I say Derek could do a good stand-up comedian is because of the wit and inuendo that he brings into his show – and very funny in places.

Such as the interaction he had with a lady in one of the front seats, who quietly gave as good as she got. Here was a real straight-laced middle-aged character who was clearly unphased by all her spirit friends dropping in to say ‘hello’ – and there were quite a few.

She took some convincing of the advice from them. Some of it being that she should visit a local spiritualist church and that it would be of benefit to her if she did. She certainly knew her own mind and some great banter followed. [ Psychic Babble and the Paranormal ]

Good advice – don’t play with fire

Of course there were one or two more serious matters that he dealt with. Such as the girl who was thought to have committed suicide but wanted to let her family know she didn’t intentionally take her own life.

And there was also the girl, on this side, who was being warned off ever playing with an ouijie board again. The dangers were all too plain from what she experienced last time – meaning that she attracted some nasty being. It was pointed out that without the help she received from those looking out for her, on the Other Side, she would be in a much worse situation now. [ Psychic Babble and the Paranormal ]

If you ever get a chance to attend a performance by Derek Acorah, give it a go. You will be entertained and you may get more than you bargained for too. You can use the link off his photo (top) to find tour dates.

RMS Queen Mary – A most haunted in USA

Queen Mary in Psychic Babble and the ParanormalDuring the show Derek Acorah mentioned that he was glad to be smiling again as, when appearing on the Most Haunted TV programmes he was not allowed to smile – not the done thing.

Talking of Most Haunted reminds me that I would love to have had a natter with him regarding his visiting the Queen Mary with the Most Haunted team back in 2005.

A most haunted queen

As you probably know the Queen Mary is rated amongst the top 10 most haunted properties in America – according to Time Magazine (2008).

My partner, Annie, and I went to stay on the ship back in 2000 – now a hotel moored at Long Beach. We didn’t know about its reputation for hauntings back then. We put it on our California itinerary of places to stay for the very personal reason that my father worked on the ship as an AB during the war years, when she was a troop carrier, and I wanted to honour his memory.

HMS Curacoa

Indeed my dad was onboard when the Queen Mary cut through her escort ship, the cruiser HMS Curacoa, off the Irish coast back in October 1942.[ Psychic Babble and the Paranormal ]

The Mary was following her designated zigzag path to avoid German U-boats. At the time she was on her way up to Greenock in Scotland from Liverpool. She was known as the ‘Grey Ghost’ back then due to being camouflaged in grey, and it wouldn’t surprise me to find out that the Curacoa didn’t even see her coming.

What made matters worse was that the Queen Mary wasn’t allowed to stop to pick up survivors and so, as far as I know, all perished.

The screams of the 300 who died in that event are said to be amongst the paranormal activity on the ship these days.

But with all the hopes, dreams, memories, anxieties, loss and fears of her passengers – troops, prisoners of war, people who died aboard her, or starting a new life abroad – is it any surprise she became a vessel for more than the cargo she transported across the ocean.

In such moments we leave our imprint on the atmosphere as sure as we leave our footprints across a sandy shore or muddy field.

Entering the Twilight Zone

It was only when we arrived onboard during the evening that we discovered there was a ghost walk on the list of events for the next day, and we soon discovered it was a regular occurrence too.

Psychic Babble and the Paranormal | RMS Queen Mary B Deck
RMS Queen Mary B Deck

I didn’t need to know that however to convince me that things were happening that didn’t quite add up. Once we had settled into our cabin, I was really interested to take a stroll and explore the ship by myself – to get a feel of this old liner and importantly link with my father’s old workplace.

Haunted lift/elevator

It was clear that part of the ship had been updated to hotel status while other parts presumably had either been purposely left as they were or still undergoing restoration up to hotel standard.

Instead of walking towards the main hotel foyer as most people would for access to other parts of the ship, I decided to go in the opposite direction further down the B Deck corridor into what looked like a less used part of the ship.

I happened on an old lift that I thought must be used for service staff – I reckon it would only carry about three to four adults at a squeeze. I got inside, checked the options and decided to go to the top floor to get out at the top of the ship.

The lift creaked as it got underway. It then unexpectedly stopped two floors up. The doors opened. There was no one waiting. I thought well they must have taken the stairs instead.

The doors closed and next, surprise to me, we (myself and lift) went down a floor and stopped again, but without the doors opening this time. Pressing the buttons made no difference. The lift sat there. I tried to manually open the doors and they wouldn’t budge. I could almost hear Corporal Jones from ‘Dad’s Army’ saying in my ear, ‘Don’t panic! Don’t panic!’

I pressed the up button again and instead we went down, then stopped – probably a floor below where I had started from. Again the doors didn’t open while we sat there.

Next we were moving on our way up again. This time the lift stopped possibly three floors above where I started from. The doors opened and I went to get off but immediately outside the lift there were two or three workmen working in pitch black with spotlights, and busy on something, using welding equipment.

They looked at me askance – like I’d be really stupid to get off at this floor. I stayed in the lift, the doors closed and this time the lift started going up before I had time to select a button. We went up another floor – or was it two, I was losing track as to where I was. The doors opened and I found myself at the top of the ship, coming out by one of the funnels – ‘Oh for fresh air!’

I can tell you I felt a great sense of relief to get out of that lift – talk about mind of its own. For all the movement up and down I was the only (let’s say physical) passenger onboard that lift.

I certainly felt like I had moved into the twilight zone for a while – but then there was an excitement about it too, I’d come to no harm. It was a beautiful evening and great being up there on top.

What a wind-up! Cabin door episode

Eventually – using the stairs this time – I worked my way back to our cabin.

Another bizarre episode unfolded at that point as the card key to open the cabin door – which worked fine previously – refused to work. Annie was inside, but she was in the bathroom and didn’t hear my knocks. After several attempts at using the card, with no success, I decided, and also voiced the matter, that I’d give it one more go before fetching someone to sort the door out for me. On this attempt it opened, no problem.

The two events together were odd. I was left feeling like my patience had been tested. It was like someone was trying to wind me up – and I admit I was biting a bit, but hey I do have an Irish temperament. Regards the door, for the rest of our stay we never had another problem with it.

Drawing to a close

Well I have waffled on a bit so I’ll draw this psychic babble and the paranormal to a close.

I can honestly say the Queen Mary is a very atmospheric, spooky yet loveable and romantic place – and judging by Derek Acorah and the Most Haunted team’s stay there, it didn’t disappoint them either.

Particularly, as I now know, from their video/s that cabin B340 is supposedly haunted by a young girl who was murdered there – and this down the corridor from where we stayed. It was probably close to the lift I used – Ooh it’s getting chilly just writing this. By the way this story is going into a forthcoming book that I’m near-finished writing, and it has been a joy to put together.

PS. Someone else having a similar lift/elevator experience

I’ve just found this link that interestingly describes a similar experience with a lift/elevator. The lift I used was ‘aft’ but I can’t be certain it was the same one – sounds like it might be. If it is it would appear it has now (time of writing) been sealed up.

PPS. Here’s a link to the first part of the Most Haunted visit to the Queen Mary on YouTube:

Associated links:

UK Ghost and Poltergeist stories
In danger of sleepwalking through life
Lucky escapes or the work of Guardian Angels?

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