Life in one of Britain's most haunted houses
Written byTIM FLETCHER
Stephen Griffiths is the founder of Swadlincote Paranormal Investigations, set up in 2002 to examine unexplained phenomena in the area's homes and pubs.
Mr Griffiths, 40, recently landed a job as a co-presenter on Living TV show Living With The Dead, and last month attended a particularly spooky house in Blackpool coincidentally owned by a former Swadlincote resident, Sue Dennis.
The result screened last night made for spine-chilling viewing for anyone watching, according to Mr Griffiths.
"Me and the other presenters had quite a flippant attitude when we went into the house but then all kinds of things started happening," he said.
"The lights started flickering and we thought 'okay, it could be the dimmer switch shorting out', then a doll on the landing started moving by itself.
"A Ricky Martin CD suddenly flew off the CD rack. We thought it could be a sign maybe the spirit was someone called Ricky.
"We heard a voice booming out on the landing, saying 'I am with you'. We couldn't take it any more we had to evacuate the house."
Mrs Dennis, formerly of Belmont Street, Swadlincote, said she knew there was something strange about the house from the moment she moved in 22 years ago.
"The first night I was there, I sat on my own on the floor in the back room and I knew I wasn't alone. I could feel a presence," she said.
Mrs Dennis claims to share the 109-year-old property with a spectral cast of characters, including a small girl named Tilly, whom she speaks to.
"The first time I saw her was a few years ago when my youngest sons were very small," she said. "I woke up in the night and heard crying. When I went onto the landing to look, I saw a child with brown hair reflected in the mirror."
The mother-of-five said that, if anything, the paranormal activity had increased since the visit of Mr Griffiths and his co-presenters, 'psychic mediums' Ian Lawman and Johnnie Fiori.
"The house was quite calm for the first week," she said. "My 'residents' were still there but they were very angry as they did not want the TV crew there.
"Then, things started happening again. I have had a wine glass come flying off the wine rack in the kitchen and my radio keeps turning itself on, even when it is unplugged."
Last night's first episode of the new series of Living With The Dead is repeated on Sunday at 9pm on Living 2.