Exploring the unknown in Scotland is Glasgow Paranormal Investigations, one of the country’s oldest ghost hunting clubs. Founded in 2008, GPI investigates places like castles and military bases; as well as businesses and homes.
In fact, it was haunted house that led to the club’s formation.
Investigator Billy Binnie said: He said: “One night I was at home watching TV, with my back to the door, when my wife went upstairs for a shower. I heard her come back downstairs, open and then shut the door and go back upstairs. I didn’t think anything of it until she came back to watch TV.
“I asked her what she had forgotten and she was confused; she said that she hadn’t been down the stairs until right then. But I had felt and heard the door open and close. So if it wasn’t her then what was it?”
Intrigued by their experience, both Billy and Kim Binnie attended a ghost-hunting group, where they met paranormal investigators Lisa Maxwell and James Hume.
Binnie recalled: “After going to a few of these meetings we decided we could do much better ourselves; so we broke off and formed our own group, which became Glasgow Paranormal Investigations.”
Now the four work with ‘relief investigators’ to track paranormal activity.
Binnie said: “We can help people understand what is going on their houses; we can track the paranormal activity and attempt to communicate with spirits through our technology.”
The group does not however perform exorcisms.
Binnie explained: “For that you would need a priest or a really good medium.”
He added: “If people have genuine poltergeist activity then they should seek help, not attempt to tackle it themselves. Care should be taken when dealing with spirits.”
Despite this warning, Binnie perceives ghostly activity as a positive thing.
He said: “Belief in the paranormal has given me more hope in life after death. It makes me think that when people die it is not just the end; that they continue on in another plane of existence.”
While firm in his belief, Binnie wants to find more evidence of ghosts.
He said: “Paranormal activity centres around personal experience, which can be hard to translate into solid evidence.
“For example when GPI went to Renfrew Baths, we heard a faint cry about four or five times in a row. Of the eight of us in the room, six of us heard it. No one in the room made the noise, but I am at a loss to say what did. I would say it was a spirit, but I can’t prove it beyond doubt because I didn’t have a camera on everyone.”
Video cameras are just some of the technology GPI use to track ghosts.
Binnie said: “We now use spirit boxes to scan radio frequencies and look for manipulation. This allows us to ask questions and hear answers in real time.”
As well as spirit boxes the club uses electromagnetic frequency (EMF) detectors, video and thermal imaging cameras.
Binnie said: “Thermal imaging cameras detect change in heat, so you can see hand and feet prints left by spirits. The cameras used to be thousands of pounds to buy, but now you can get ones that you plug into iPads and capture the thermal images through its screen.”
Evidence of the clubs’ findings can be seen on its website, but Binnie said this is no substitute for a live investigation.
He added: “Sometimes when you are just about to pack up the tracking technology goes crazy or you hear an unusual noise. Sometimes when you are chatting as a group the spirit can feed of your energy; or seek to get the energy directed back to them and let you know they are around.”
While exciting, Binnie said GPI work was hard.
He explained: “The club is not for everyone. There can be hours and hours of video footage and audio files to go back and examine after an investigation takes place.”
However, enthusiasts are always welcome to try the club.
Binnie concluded: “The best way to join GPI is to come along on our investigations and get to know us. We have very high standards/expectations from members. So at the moment it is a case of working alongside us as a relief investigator until everyone is happy.”
To join GPI gatherings enthusiasts can find the details on the group’s Facebook page.