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Dylan Jones

The Investigation of Bisham Abbey
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I must emphasize that this Investigation was only for an 8 hour Field Study, and not for the correct and proper ASSAP Investigation which would take a great deal of time over a period of months or years to conduct.  However, it was a unique and privileged opportunity to participate in a study at this location.  The Field Study took place on the night of Friday 7th October 2005.

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On Friday 7th October 2005, I attended at Bisham Abbey, Berkshire, in company with ASSAP Chairman Mike WHITE and fellow Accredited Investigators from the Dorset area.  Also present was a two-person film crew from Meridian Television.  This was an opportunity to conduct an overnight Field Study at a location that is not generally open to the public.

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Mike White and Dylan Jones set up ORBiT

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Upon arrival, a tour of the building was undertaken and a briefing was conducted.  I assisted in setting up all equipment placed at specified locations to monitor various environmental factors including temperature, humidity, infrasound and electromagnetic fields.  CCTV was placed on the Red Staircase (as part of the new ASSAP long-term experiment “ORBiT”) and on a “Trigger Object” located in the Great Hall.

It was ascertained that two Night Porters would remain in the premises during the night, along with another male person who resided in accommodation within the building. 

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At 11:55pm on the same date, I took my position on the Red Staircase in company with Carrie SEARLEY and Stuart LANGDOWN, and commenced my Field Study.  No artificial lighting was on at this time.  Natural light was provided from the moonlight that was visible through the windows. 

 

At 12:10am on Saturday 8th October 2005, whilst in my position on the Red Staircase, I heard a knocking from the area beyond the top of the stairs.  I was unable to locate a source of this sound.

 

At 12:30am on the same date, I concluded in my Field Study and broke for refreshments.

 

At 1:00am on the same date, I resumed my Field Study on the Red Staircase in company with Carrie SEARLEY.

 

At 1:05am on the same date, I heard a series of loud bangs that seemed to originate from within the building, but I was unable to locate a source for the noises at that time.

 

At 1:15am on the same date, I saw the door located at the top of the Red Staircase open a distance of approximately 1 foot and the close immediately.  I was about 25 feet away from the door at the time of this incident.  I saw no person visible through between the gap of the door and frame.  The lighting at the time remained as before with no artificial lights on, with only natural light from outside via the windows.  I immediately ran up the stairs in company with Carrie SEARLEY and searched the corridors and rooms located in this area of the building.  I was unable to find any person at that time, and resumed my position on the staircase once more.

 

At 1:40am on the same date, the Field Study was concluded and I broke for refreshments.

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At 2:00am on the same date, as a result of information received via a witness, I attended at the Great Hall in company with all Accredited Investigators.  It was noted that the Infrasound device was detecting an anomalous reading.  I examined the area in company with Mike WHITE, but was unable to locate a cause for the reading at that time.

 

At 2:40am on the same date, the Field Study in the Great Hall was concluded.

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At 2:45am on the same date, I attended at the King Henry VIII Room in company with all Accredited Investigators and acted as observer for a Ouija Experiment conducted by the other Accredited Investigators.  I saw that the experiment was undertaken in a proper manner and that controls were maintained.  Only two letters were “provided” by using the planchette provided with the board, those being “R” and “E”.  The experiment was then repeated using a glass, during which the letter “S” was provided.

 

At 3:05am on the same date, the experiment was concluded.

At 3:10am on the same date, I attended at the Elizabethan Room, and the above experiment was repeated.  It was decided that Mike WHITE and I would leave the room for this experiment and left the film crew alone with the Accredited Investigators.

 

At 3:25am on the same date, I again attended at the Elizabethan Room in company with Mike WHITE.  The Accredited Investigators vacated the room, and only the film crew remained.  I undertook the Ouija board experiment in company with Mike WHITE, but nothing happened.

 

At 3:35am on the same date, we concluded the experiment.

 

At 4:00am on the same date, a debrief was conducted. 

 

At 4:30am on the same date, the equipment was shut down and the Investigative Field Study concluded.

Conclusion

 

It is difficult to draw any conclusions from a one-off overnight Field Study and I am not an advocate of such a procedure on a regular occurrence.  I believe that a regular and sustained long-term investigation is necessary to provide a more sound assessment.  Unfortunately, this is rarely possible, leaving investigators a small timeframe of opportunity to carry out investigative field studies. 

 

The premises has a long history of reported paranormal phenomena, and much of it has been reported during the night hours, especially between 1am – 3am.  It was therefore imperative that we were at those locations at the given times.

 

At 1:05am, I heard a series of noises.  Upon later investigation, I found that a member of the film crew was responsible for the noises by moving a camera tripod.  At 1:15am, I saw the door at the top of the Red Staircase open.  Upon later investigation, it was ascertained that one of the Night Porters was inadvertently responsible for this effect. 

Both of these examples reinforce the practise of accurate note keeping at the time of the Investigation.  It is also imperative to follow-up the movements of all other people at the location.  Any inexplicable noises on that night were most likely of mechanical or personal cause.

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I must state that I am open-minded in my approach to investigations.  I will listen to and evaluate the data before reaching conclusions.  However, the Ouija Experiment was an interesting stage of the Field Study for me, as over the last 10 years I have become increasingly sceptical of its validity.  Perhaps it is through personal belief systems that lead me to doubt the veracity of what information is ascertained through their use.  That aside, I am very interested in the psychology surrounding their function and peoples’ fascination for them.  It may well be something to do with the “Sheep/Goat Effect”.  Certainly there was nothing “paranormal” happening on this occasion.  Some might offer various “psychic” or “spiritual” reasons for this.  I could offer a grounded explanation, suggesting that nothing paranormal was happening, because there is no such thing.  However, that would be churlish at such an early juncture.

The CCTV Tapes are still being analysed and additions to this report are forthcoming.

 

Bisham Abbey is definitely a location that requires much attention, and I can only thank the staff for giving us the opportunity of staying in and investigating such a wondrous building.

All material on this site is copyright to Dylan Jones, unless otherwise stated.