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Visual anomalies, moving sparkles of light and the return of a previously discounted phenomenon … just a few of the things we encountered and caught on camera as we investigated the Talbot Hotel in Northamptonshire.


Shortly after completing our second investigation of Tutbury Castle we contacted the Talbot Hotel as we thought it would be an ideal opportunity to link the history of Mary Queen of Scots at both locations. Both locations have reports of apparitions, potentially Mary Queen of Scots who is thought to still walk the staircase at the Talbot, which was reclaimed from Fotheringhay Castle, where she was executed. Real Or Otherside Paranormal Research set off on the 19th August 2011 to investigate these reports and to see what evidence we could capture!


While on location we had access to the haunted staircase and the Mary Queen of Scots room, which is located at the top of the reportedly haunted staircase. Whilst this gave us some investigation flexibility, we were a little disappointed to discover upon arrival that we wouldn't have access to all the areas we thought we would when we originally made the booking, due to a function taking place the following day. This was likely a miscommunication however the person we had spoken to had since left the Talbot so we were unable to substantiate where the misunderstanding lay.

Not to be discouraged we decided that as we only had two areas to investigate and that one of those, the stairs, was public and potentially open to contamination we would shorten the investigation and concentrate our efforts on the Mary Queen of Scots room.

In total we captured 3½ hours of video and 9 hours of audio (running multiple voice recorders). After the initial review process we'd recorded a total of 23 potential 'hits’ which, after secondary analysis/enhancement, were reduced to 11 ’hits’ which we believe to be of interest and are presenting here. We have classified each piece of evidence, or ‘hit,’ against our R.O.O. SCALE to determine how paranormal we think it is. More details on how we analyse, review and present evidence can be found in the How Do We section of our blog.


As is now the norm for our evidence reviews we provide you with a single video that contains all of the evidence we feel is worthy of being included. On this occasion though, because all the evidence was visual, but slightly different in nature, we've split the video into two distinct sections to allow you to compare/contrast each:


    Kicking off the video we have a collection of
     orbs and light anomalies that we know to be dust, flies, insects and other naturally occurring airborne elements. We feel it is worth including these examples as it goes some way to providing context between what we believe to be evidence and the many other occurrences we believe have a rational explanation. This section contains only a small sample of the anomalies we caught and subsequently dismissed.


    We now have literally hundreds of hours experience reviewing night vision video footage, making it quite easy to identify natural anomalies.  In this section we show anomalies which do not appear to be dust, flies, insects, daddy long-legs, reflections, car headlights, etc.  You'll see a number of static 'self illuminating' sparkles of light, and others which move across frame whilst pulsating.  We've captured static 'sparkles' on previous investigations, however we started to notice that they always appeared when our camcorder was being panned, or when the anomaly could potentially be explained by a reflection from the camcorder's infra-red lamp.  As such, we have more recently ignored these as a camera fault. So what is intriguing about this footage, and what has led us to question our dissmisal of these from our evidence reviews, is that here the camera is 'locked-off' and the room is empty. As such this can't be a 'panning' fault with the camera and nothing is moving to reflect the infra-red lamp back into camera.


The evidence you see/hear in the video is as it happened on location. The only modification, or enhancement, we have made are volume increases on some of the audio and some scene edits/cuts to provide context or a compressed version of events.

… is it Real Or Otherside?


TALBOT HOTEL: FINAL EVIDENCE VIDEO [Real Or Otherside Paranormal Research]


As with any investigation there is evidence we can present and moments that have to be put down as a personal experience. Here are some of our personal thoughts on our time at the Talbot Hotel:



During our investigation of the Talbot Hotel, I can honestly say I didn't have any personal experiences.  The location felt welcoming and at no point did I experience anything which I felt to be out of the ordinary.

As such, I'm going to use my 'Personal Experience' space to talk about those darn sparkles!  I give Orbs around a 0% credability rating. Come on, seriously, it's dust people… or insects… or atmospherics… what it isn't, is dead people trying to show themselves!

In the last seven months I must have reviewed around 100 hours of night vision footage.  So much so that it's actually relatively easy now to just see something float around screen and recognise it as a fly, or a bit of dust reflecting the IR. The characteristics are evident … a blurred shape, which is lighter than the background (but not light enough to be a source of light itself), that floats (fly's!) around the screen, getting bigger as it moves towards camera (or the camera pulls focus) and then tends to disappear from sight mysteriously! (goes to the side of the frame – i.e. out of IR range).  Rather unsurprisingly, we caught such anomalies at the Talbot!

However, what I wasn't expecting was (what we've lovingly named) 'sparkles'.  These are pin pricks of light, which flash on and off at a fixed location on screen, and seem to generate their own light (i.e. not be a reflection from the IR).  The reason I wasn't expecting these?… well, we've had sparkles before at one or two locations (and even presented them in evidence) – but after re-analysing these, we found that they always occured whilst we were panning the camera, and that sometimes these 'sparkels' panned WITH the camera… in other words, they were very likely to be a camera fault (digital artifacting) as if the 'sparkle' were static it would not follow the camera pan.

This begs the question then that if the camera at the Talbot was locked-off (fixed/not moving) why were we still seeing sparkles?  Was it still a camera fault?… perhaps so.  However we then captured some new types of sparkles, ones which sweep across frame intermittently flashing as they go??  Now this is either a 'very intelligent' camera fault, or something else.

In addition to not generating it's own light source, Dust would be 'lit' during the full sweep across frame – it would not flash on/off.  The same goes for a fly, whilst sometimes we see fly's seemingly appear and then disappear as they cross frame (as it's wings catch the IR), they do not appear on screen as pin pricks of light, instead they give a more muted IR reflection effect which seems to pulse as their angle of flight changes.

The only explaination I currently have for these moving 'sparkles' is a highly reflective airbourne source material crossing frame (perhaps fibre glass in the air?).

Paranormal? unlikely… Unusual? definitely!


On the surface the Talbot Hotel appeared to be another quiet investigation as we had very little activity or personal experiences but, as we previously found at Brean Down Fort, you never really know until you review the evidence!!!

I started investigating the paranormal to find answers but, as you quickly come to realize when you are in this field, you generally end up with even more questions. Once again this has proved to be the case as, after ruling out the possibility of the sparkles we had captured at other locations as a camera fault, we have come to the Talbot Hotel and captured many instances, and types, of sparkles and light anomalies.

What is interesting is that all of the evidence was captured in the first 40 minutes of setting up the equipment. I think Rick would agree when I say that, after a couple of quiet investigations, we were maybe a little more disheartened than usual on this investigation? Were our negative thoughts enough to make whatever is potentially present in the Mary Queen of Scots room try to show itself? Was it trying to let us know at the time that it was there all along? Or was it leaving traces so we would know we weren’t alone when we went back and reviewed the evidence!?!?

Having seen so many “orbs” or “light anomalies” that can be explained away as dust, a fly or an insect I admit to being excited by some of the sparkles/anomalies we captured and I think they hold up as pretty convincing evidence?

Unfortunately though I am still a skeptic and that will always make me reason that maybe when we were in the room we kicked up a lot of dust or there are some random particles floating in the air which the camcorder infrared is bouncing off of!?!? Or perhaps sometimes I take my skeptical views a little too far and I should just take the evidence for what it is? Which I believe to be both interesting and thought provoking? For all we know we may have caught the first signs of a ghost manifestation – now that would be something!?!?!?

If you have any questions, or comments, on the above analysis or the methodology used please feel free to post below or contact Real Or Otherside Paranormal Research via email by clicking here.