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Whilst working as a nighttime security guard, Lee claims to have experienced more than his fair share of paranormal happenings. In his testimony he describes how he witnessed several apparitions, heard disembodied voices, experienced technological anomalies, and even, quite possibly, captured a ghostly figure on CCTV.
Editor’s note: The following account has been edited to correct grammatical errors and increase clarity of information.
“I am no stranger to paranormal experiences.”
Whilst studying for a Master’s degree at Northumbria University, I did some work as a security guard in order to pay for the fees. Being a security guard in the UK requires you to obtain the necessary Security Industry Authority, or SIA, qualifications, which then enables you to work for security companies, many of which require that you work day or night. It was at night time that I experienced and heard others experience paranormal events.
I once worked for a housing association that provided housing for kids between the ages of 16 and 25 who had nowhere else to go. This involved working during the night to make sure they were all safe and sound.
My patrol typically involved me walking from the office along the corridors containing the flats belonging to the kids. One night, as I approached the main office, I saw an apparition.
The apparition appeared to me as the face of a baby – its body was just a blur. It appeared to be around 5 foot 8 inches in height, though the odd thing about it was that it appeared to me as if it were a 2D cut-out. If you can imagine someone holding a cut-out of someone’s face, this is exactly as it appeared to me. It only showed itself for a split second before the whole thing vanished towards the lounge area of the building where the kids would hang out in their spare time. The lounge was along the same corridor on the ground floor that connected to the main office.
Soon after this, I saw another ghostly apparition. This time, it looked like a mist walk straight through the main entrance. We had a CCTV system in the main office with cameras that fed from the children’s corridors, and it was through this camera system that I saw it. I went over to the CCTV DVR and rewound the footage just to make sure I wasn’t seeing things, but sure enough, there was what appeared to be a ghostly form on the monitor.
As guards don’t have access to the actual video files on the security DVR systems, I recorded the footage using my mobile phone. I still have a copy of it.
Watch Lee’s strange footage:
Surprised by what I had seen, I, from the start, tried to think rationally to explain what it was. Perhaps it was the headlights of a nearby car? However, upon viewing the footage, I could see that if it were the headlights of a vehicle then it would have emitted light on the far wall. It didn’t.
The next morning I told the staff who work with the kids to find jobs and so on during the daytime what I thought I had seen, and showed them the footage. Some were doubtful, others were more open-minded. One of the staff members told me a story about how the very building we were in was built upon an old mining pit where accidents would have taken place on a regular basis. Another temporary staff member seemed incredibly scared by it. She never returned to work and was transferred to another branch, and I believe my experience and the video were the reasons why.
I, however, could not get away from it so easily. This was not the last paranormal experience I would have.
On one occasion in the same building, when I was conducting a routine patrol, I heard a very clear noise in my right ear whilst walking down the stairs. It was a male, as it was deep, and sounded like someone exhaling very loudly in my ear. There was no one there. I just ignored it and nothing else happened.
Another strange instance involved the site’s intercom system. Next to the office was a spare room where emergency clients would be kept whilst their housing applications were being processed, but on this particular night there was no client in that room. I was sitting at the desk when I heard the intercom phone in the aforementioned emergency room ring. The issue was that there was only one phone, in the head office, which had access to all the other phones in the building. Being in the office, I knew full well that no-one else was in the office calling the room next door – it was right in front of me, after all. It rang and stopped. Around two minutes later it started to ring again. I went towards the wall that separates the two rooms and shouted out, “Will you please stop that?”. It stopped, and it never happened again.
With all that I had experienced at the site, it was not surprising when I learned that others had also had strange things happen to them there.
Across the road from us there was a business centre for entrepreneurs, and one night their alarm systems were sounding off. Because I wasn’t contracted to them I thought nothing of it, however the next day one of the clients I was looking after in the building I was in came down to the office to see me in the evening. He appeared confused about something.
I asked the client what he wanted and he replied by saying that a strange thing had occurred the previous day. Bearing in mind that I had never told any of the clients about my paranormal experiences, he told me that after returning back during the day he found his bathroom door locked from the inside. I asked him whether it was jammed or could have been caused by banging it, but he was an intelligent lad and was adamant that the lock used couldn’t have locked by itself from the outside. It must have been locked from the inside.
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Suspecting he was telling lies, I asked him, “Well, how did you get back inside then?”. He said that he’d used his penknife to get back into it, which took him about an hour or so.
I was intrigued by it, but he then added that it was strange because it was later that night that all the alarms were sounding from the building opposite. To my knowledge this had never happened before, or since. I even asked him whether he had known of the buildings across from us to have their alarms sounding, to which he replied no. Of course, I cannot say whether or not there was a connection, but it was certainly a strange coincidence.
During my shifts, part of my job would be to make numerous check calls to other branches throughout the night. Check calls are pre-arranged calls made to other workers so as to ensure that they are safe and sound. These would happen every two hours and if the call on the other end wasn’t answered then I’d have to contact the police who would send a unit to investigate.
Anyway, during one of these calls I talked to one of the regulars who was called Derek. He was based in South Shields. During the check calls we would often make chit-chat about how we were getting on and how things were, and so eventually I built up a picture of Derek. Derek was in his late 60s and was close to retirement. In fact, he was due to retire in just a few months’ time. During one particular conversation, having experienced recent paranormal events myself, I asked him if he had experienced any.
He told me there were far too many to mention, though one in particular stuck in his mind.
Derek explained that he had worked in security for most of his life and that when he was in his 20s he worked for a company with state-of-the-art technologies working for the UK government. This was a warehouse that stored classified items, like weaponry and barrels.
One night he glanced down on the CCTV and saw the figure of a man leaning against one of these barrels. He couldn’t believe his eyes, and looked harder towards the monitor to make sure he wasn’t seeing things, however, sure enough, there was a man dressed in, what he claims, was 1920s-style clothing, just leaning against a barrel.
As I said, the company had state-of-the-art technologies for the time, and was working to secure a warehouse which contained classified items. This meant that security levels were very high. The floors were pressure-sensitive, meaning that should anyone have stepped on the floor of the warehouse, the alarms would be raised. This unknown person leaning against one of the barrels didn’t sound the alarm, however.
Derek projected to me how confused he was at the time. He then went on to tell me that he decided to call the police to the premises. When the police arrived, Derek explained the situation to them, even rewinding the CCTV footage in front of the police. They, like Derek, could see a man leaning on a barrel – “as clear as any other person alive”. Both the police officers and Derek were flabbergasted. He then told me that they conducted a thorough search inside and out of the warehouse. They found nobody there and no sign of forced entry.
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When I asked him whether he was absolutely sure he had seen a person there, he could not have been any clearer. By the way he explained it, he was utterly convinced – as were the two police officers who arrived later that night. A man had appeared in the warehouse without having activated the alarms.
Years later, I can say that I, too, am no stranger to paranormal experiences.
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