Torture at the Tower of London

Its one of the most famous landmarks in British history, the Tower of London is a place full of rich diverse history. Some of it good and some of it, not quite so much. Let’s take a look at the towers darker past.

Anyone who has visited will know that the building was used as a prison. One of its most famous residents being Guy Fawkes, one of the men found guilty for the gunpowder plot.

Fawkes was tortured at the tower possibly by use of the rack, manacles or possibly even both. These methods probably explain the huge change in his hand writing when he finally wrote a confession.

Historical records show 48 names of people who were tortured within the tower. Seems relatively low but torture only took place at the tower for a short period between the 15th and 16th century.

But prisoners, there were plenty, the first dating back to 1101 The Bishop of Durham. Having said that, he was also the first to escape using rope that was smuggled in within wine.

There have been some very famous inmates over the years including Princess Elizabeth in 1554. She was imprisoned after the execution of her mother, Anne Boleyn. She was later released and became Queen.

Sir Walter Raleigh was also locked up for a staggering 13 years, although he was given some benefits. During the times of the Tudors there were several executions including Boleyn, Thomas More and Thomas Cromwell who were close advisors or King Henry VIII.

With such a rich bloody past, its no shock that the tower also claims residents of a ghostly nature including Henry VIII, Cromwell and Boleyn.

Torture…Britain's devious past!

It may be in the past, but it certainly had a big impact! The torture methods used back in British history give us an insight into our bloody past.

This Saturday see’s the return of our Witchcraft, Torture and Execution Tour in Southampton, a look back at some of the famous and chilling accounts from around the city and around Britain.

But why was torture used? Simply put, it was either a form of punishment or a way of getting information out of people.

The problem was that in a lot of situations, those tortured were most likely to be innocent!

The Iron maiden was one of the methods used. A metal chamber with holes in. The victim would be locked inside with metal poles used to prod. That was until the executor was satisfied that the confession was legitimate. The poles would be prodded into the victims flesh.

One of the most commonly used forms of torture was known as flogging. The method included an executor whipping the victim with leather until they either owned up or passed out. In some circumstances, the victim flogged themselves to eliminate any sins!

But some torture methods were classed as less violent than others. Take the ‘Thumb screw’ for example. The name gives away exactly what this included, drilling a screw into the victims thumb and turning! ouch!

Sound bad enough? Enter the cage! Just big enough to squash someone inside to leave them there without food or water. Sometimes this was done publicly, but the results were the same, confess or die!

Some methods even included live animals….more precisely, rats! Imagine having rats placed on your stomach, a pot over the top with heat applied! The theory, the rats to panic and dig through the persons stomach to escape…need we say any more?

Now to the next one. Fan of Game of thrones? Like idea of sitting on the iron throne?…Great right? Not if you were sat on the iron chair! You would be strapped down, but as the straps were tightened, needles would go further and further into the skin!

But we have saved the best til last……if such thing existed? The Judas cradle. Possibly one of the most bloody forms of torture. So what exactly was this?

You probably wished you never asked, but hey here is what happened. This torture technique involved a sharp spike going into the anus or vagina. Pressure would be added to basically rip the victim apart. Pressure was usually added using weights.

Find out more about Britain’s bloody past on our Witchcraft, Torture and Execution Tour.

Netley Chapel Ghost Hunt- The results

Standing tall in the grounds of Royal Victoria Country Park stands Netley Chapel, once part of one of the largest military hospitals in Europe, Netley Hospital.

The construction of the hospital was at the suggestion of Queen Victoria and she became a regular visitor to the hospital. However, the hospital was critised by many including Florence Nightingale

The hospital was large and grand and consisted of 138 wards It was used in the Crimean war and and Second Boer War. However, it was often remarked that the ventilation at the hospital was poor and so were the conditions!

During the first world war a large hut was erected on the ground to facilitate for more wounded soldiers. It was manned by volunteers from the Red cross and treated around 50,000 patients.

There were similar uses during the second world war including French Soldiers who were treated from Dunkirk.

The hospitals use declined following that and was used as a training ground by the military before being demolished.

On Saturday night we hosted a a ghost hunt in the chapel building which is now a museum. With stories of Nurses who committed suicide, soldiers who passed away surely this place must be a hub for paranormal activity.

Back in 2011, we had a whole host of activity, but this time around, things were a little more quiet. There were a few reports of people being touched, odd results with dowsing road and movement from glass divination but despite an amazing evening, it wasnt to be for activity

Southampton Ghost Tours and The Dolphin Mercure Southampton to raise money for charity

Mark February 8th on your calendars because Southampton Ghost Tours is joining forces with The Mercure Dolphin in Southampton to raise money for charity.

We will be running a special ghost tour where the proceeds will go to Breast Cancer Haven, a charity which offers vital emotional, physical and practical support to anyone affected by breast cancer.

Starting inside the Dolphin those raise money will be braving the ghosts of Southampton and delivering a few screams too!

As well as the ghost tour, the event will include nibbles and a drink. This is your chance to help raise money for such as important cause.

You can book tickets on the following link:

https://www.facebook.com/events/2486713328317959/

Possession….can it really happen?

It’s a topic that sparks many debates in the paranormal and this week we are set to open the debate at our Supernatural Debate Evening… but before we do, let’s fill you in on the controversial subject of possession.

It really depends on your beliefs as to what possession actually means. In the paranormal world we often refer to it as demonic or spirit possession but in a nutshell its when another entity takes over the human body.

There have been some notable accounts over the years with one of the most famous being the Enfield poltergeist where the voice of a spirit was alleged to use one of the girls to talk.

In the paranormal, some mediums claim to have the ability to bring through the spirits of the dead to use their body and whilst there has been some fantastic accounts we have to remember that we still dont understand why this happens.

It is really a ghost or is it some form of energy or perhaps its some element of the mind that we do not yet understand, Either way, we all have our own beliefs.

The Catholic Church is just one of many faiths who have their own belief in possession which they believe it caused by either an Angel but in most cases a Demon.

After rigorous assessments if no answer is found, they will use a ‘qualified’ Priest to try and rid the person of the Demon but this process mainly involves the use of religious items such as Bibles or a Crucifix.

So, what you do you believe, find out this Tuesday at the Debate Evening in Portsmouth!

The Supernatural News returns

Remember the Supernatural News? Well, its returning but with a new exciting twist.

Back in 2016 we launched an interactive online magazine and new site which included articles for many experts in the paranormal field. It was a huge success.

This year we are bringing it back, but as a Podcast! The podcast will be available on platforms including Spotify, Amazon music, Apple podcasts, Google play and many more!

In addition to our regular podcasts with guests we will record a special version from our Debate events!

Stay tuned!