01 Oct 2020 By By Hayley Cowburn
It's spooky season, which means scary movies, ghosts, costumes and trick-or-treat bans are on everyone's mind. Let's make it a work activity by thinking about what might be lurking in the unexplored shadows and crevices of your warehouse, by looking for these signs of ghostly activity...
Feeling like you’ve been touched, poked or grabbed when no-one else is there. You might doubt yourself if no one else has experienced it, but it might not happen to everyone... Perhaps it happened a member of staff who was there before you? Or maybe they’ve heard some tales from the past. Some spirits are known to have a “favourite” person or someone they feel more comfortable coming forward to.
After a scary movie at Halloween, you might be primed to imagine things that are not there… But what about a regular night when you’re just finishing a shift or closing up for the evening? The random sense that you’re being watched might be rooted in refined senses and an instinct you’ve never tuned into before. Sometimes spirits just like to watch, but if enough people get the same sensation, you may be onto something.
Are the temperature changes in small parts of the warehouse wilder than the British weather? Even a space as small as 1-metre square can become mysteriously very cold if a spirit is present. You may even be able to detect the height of your ghost by feeling out how high the cold air reaches by holding out your hand flat and slowly moving it up and down. But first of all, check for drafts, open doors and windows, normal cold breezes can travel in currents around large buildings.
Smells of a characterful dweller or worker of the past may linger from many years ago, or the memory of what this place used to be used for hundreds of years ago. Often experienced as floral smells when no fragrance has been sprayed, cigar smoke in a non-smoking building, or even an unexplainable smell of decay. However, you are in a warehouse so consider what might be being temporarily stored in that area too!
Lights switching on and off are a common complaint by the residents and workers of old creepy buildings. The commonality of this phenomenon is because flickering lights are usually explained by some kind of faulty wiring, a defective power supply or power fluctuations. If all of these things have been ruled out, consider when the flashing happens: is it always around the same time? In front of the same person? Or does it respond to questions?
Objects can be misplaced all the time, but if the warehouse is haunted you might notice objects moving repeatedly with no human intervention. A pattern of movements could even be a previous worker in spirit because of the routine work they used to do. Slamming doors and moving furniture may be caught on overnight cameras in these atmospheres, but are more likely to happen in-person to get your attention.
Many warehouses in the UK are original workhouses from as far back as the Victorian era and the industrial revolution. The workers’ jobs were very different from today and typical shifts were 12 hours long, away from crowded houses at home where entire families lived in one room. Some cotton mills even had boarding houses and where workers would live, meaning they spent the majority of their lives on the mill property.
The walls of these centuries-old buildings have seen thousands of people live through times of cruel working conditions, war, historic pioneering, the beginnings of mass production, love, loss and countless stories… So it comes as no surprise that spirits are more likely to be attached to these buildings than your local Costa down the street.
There are ghost hunting companies all over the UK that will come with psychics and mediums to investigate your building. Some will even make a team activity out of it – divvying out hunting gadgets to all of your staff for an unconventional team-bonding session in the middle of the night. Using electromagnetic field meters, infrared cameras, seances, ouija boards and dowsing rods you might uncover lurking spirits and find out a bit about them.
Definitely a fun post-pandemic Halloween activity!
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