A (Ghost)Hunting We Will Go Part Two



Last night was an…interesting experience.

We met our friends at 10pm and headed for Pontypridd Common. This is an interesting place in many ways. High above the crossroads of two major rivers and five valleys it can’t help but be imposing and powerful – whether that be in any kind of magical, mystical or imaginative sense.


Our first stopping place was The Rocking Stone.


The central stone is a naturally occurring phenomenon of glaciation. In the ice age. the movement of a glacier (responsible for carving out the valleys) deposited the bottom stone, then dropped the top one too. When the glacier melted the two stones remained, perfectly balanced and rocking. There are rocking stones all over the world, anywhere glaciers have been. I can imagine the glacier slowly retreating, stretching out its arms and saying in a deep, booming voice, “Ta Da.”

A local celebrity, Dr William Price (1800 – 1893) began to use the stone as a meeting place for a fledgling druidic order, following the writings of the inimitable Iolo Morganwg who established a neo-druidic movement which first met on  Primrose Hill in London, where he had erected twelve stones called the Great Circle in 1792, and which is enshrined in the National Eisteddfod.

In 1928 it was held in my home town and there is, incredibly, news footage of the inauguration ceremony Welsh National Eisteddford Treorchy 1828


Anyhow, I digress. Sometime around 1818 Dt William Price erected a stone circle around the stone, as well as a processional avenue from the circle, down through a shallow valley, through a stream and up onto the other side where it coiled like a snake, with two stone eyes


We thought we might start at the stone. I would have liked to follow the snake to its head but it was very dark and all the light we had was a torch and couple of phones. Neither Efan nor I are sure footed and I did not want to end the evening at the local casualty so I though scrambling through streams and up mounds could wait for another day – in daylight.

I was hoping we might get some EVP readings at the circle, or even contact Dr Price himself, as his ghost is rumoured to wander the common. I would love to have spoken to the brilliant man and I am sure that if he had been there our EVP, pendulum and spirit radio would have been more than enough for him to make himself known. Hell, he wouldn’t have needed any of it.

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Unfortunately Dr Price was not at home so we struggled to find someone else who was prepared to talk to us. We did manage to briefly speak to an elderly gentleman who appears to have died at the cottage hospital but who was perfectly happy with his lot and didn’t want any help from us.

I started to get a bit uneasy at that point and was quite eager to leave. As we passed back between the stones I got a strong sense of energy and after dowsing a bit I’m fairly certain the circle is active, that is that it’s being used for ritual, probably by a local coven or druidic group. I apologised for the intrusion and we moved on.

From the stones, the path passes between trees until it opens into a clear area, probably the size of two or three football pitches. I have discovered later that there is a kerb cairn here, and the remains of a much older stone circle. I wish I’d know earlier, although I don’t see how we could have explored last night without breaking my neck.


As we walked toward the open area, I started to feel uneasy. Teri, my friend, had mentioned she’d had disturbing visions here so I was in a state of expectation. Even so, I was surprised by the violence of the feelings/visions I had here. It was also striking how similar were the things Teri, Efan and I reported.

From the strong smell of blood and burning, the sense of peace violated and the images of slaughter we can only assume that one group of people (men women and children who were at peace and feeling themselves to be safe) were attacked and massacred by another group without warning or mercy.

I have not been able to find any records of such assaults/massacres in this location, but all that means is that it wasn’t important enough to be recorded, at a time when there was probably a lot of upheaval and unrest.

We tried to pick up something interesting but although there were some little things coming through the spirit radio, there wasn’t really much else. The names Steven and Christopher and various voices, some urgent, even fearful seemed intent on making us aware of a witch. Whether that was a warning for us or an indication they were afraid of us. I don’t know. It’s a bit tricky, in any event, because the word ‘witch’ is a fairly modern one, and has been given many different meanings’interpretations through the years.

I have to say that, despite the unsettling visions, echoes of screams and cries, the clash of steel and the smell of burning, I did not at any time feel we were at risk or that we were being forcibly required to leave.

We came to a place, no far off from the war memorial/obelisk, when Efan drew our attention to a rather strange, ivy-covered fallen tree-trunk. Empirically it was nothing but that – a tree trunk covered with ivy, but I couldn’t deny there was something about it…

We tried poking around a bit. The EVP meter was silent, but the pendulum showed the presence of some energy. There were bits and pieces coming through the spirit radio, but then we got some of the clearest warnings I have ever had in this manner telling us in no uncertain terms to back off. This culminated in the extremely clear and vehement command DO NOT.

I still didn’t feel threatened in any way, or that anything was particularly pissed off with us and I would be the first to resist any arbitrary warning, however, I did get the feeling we were treading on someone/something’s toes and it would be a mark of respect to apologize and bow out, which is what we did.

On the way back, Teri picked up someone called John on the spirit radio. He spoke with a distinctly Irish accident and he may/may not have committed suicide by throwing himself off the cliff. His name was John and we were in the process of trying to get a surname when Efan came running over after heading off to check if the bench we’d just passed was a memorial and might have a name on it.

Efan was totally spooked and demanded we leave right then, which we did. Apparently he’d seen a face in the bushes – white skin, dead eyes, long hair, almost a cliche – as he said.

After that we kind of lost heart and headed back to Teri’s. Whilst we can’t honestly claim any real success in the ghost hunting, we had an amazing evening and I am definitely eager to delve a bit more into the ghostly inhabitants of the valleys.







The Transgender Umbrella

I just read an article that got me thinking, but not in a good way.
The article stated that cisgender people (including cross-dressers and drag queens) should not become involved in discussions relating to transgender issues. They argue that cisgenders are unable to understand trans issues, and by joining in the discussions they ‘claim ownership’ over them. Further, not only can cisgenders never truly understand transgender issues, but by seeking to become involved they drown out the voice of the ‘true trans’.
Whilst I can understand this argument, to an extent, I find it symptomatic of the labelling system as a whole. If you keep pushing people out from under your umbrealla and telling them ‘you don’t really understand’, ‘you don’t have a right to speak’ ‘you can’t be part of our community because you’re not [xx] enough’ we’re moving into the area of exclusivity. This breeds resentment and is always counter productive.
How do you define who’s trans enough to be trans? Who gets to decide? Can you identify as trans without going all the way to surgery? Can you identify as trans if you don’t live as your trans gender but feel as if you should. Do you have to dress as a woman to be a woman?
This kind of talk makes me very uneasy. I don’t like exclusivity, end of. If I’m told I’m not allowed to go somewhere, be something, say something, do something, my natural reaction is to say, first  why and second what right do you have to dictate to me? If I don’t get a satisfactory answer my next impulse is to say ‘fuck you’.
There’s a huge danger in boundaries. If they are hard ones, lines in the sand, there are always going to be people who straddle them and either will not be welcomed on either side, or will not feel they are welcomed on either side. The truly vulnerable people are not those standing in the middle of the umbrella surrounded by their peers, but the ones being edged out into the rain. That’s what worries me most.
There are just as many people struggling to find labels as there are fighting for those they own. The quagmires of gender and sexuality are not always easy to traverse, and to those struggling in the mire, labels are the only things they have to cling to. If you start snatching them away how are they ever going to be able to find their place?
And while we’re at it – this whole – you don’t have a right to take part in discussions unless you have first-hand knowledge and experience – arguement is a dangerous and insulting one. First. How far would you take it? Should men have any part in discussions that relate to women (and vice versa)? Should straight people have any part in discussions regarding gay issues (how would that have worked with the recent legal decisions)? Should humans have any part in discussions regarding animal rights? Yes, that’s ridiculous, but it’s the far edge of the same argument.
Anyway, who decides? Who within any ‘community’ sits in judgement over who should or shouldn’t be a member and who should or shouldn’t be ‘allowed’ to take part in discussions and have a view on issues.
I absolutely admire strong trans people standing up and fighting for their rights. But I would suggest those are not the people we should be worried about. Yes, they have it hard, but they have the strength to fight. The people we should really be worried about are the ones who can’t fight. The ones who don’t even know what to fight for. We need to worry about the people who, struggling to find their own identity and place in the world are being sent the message they don’t fit anywhere.
Surely it should be down to the individual to choose their labels, and shouldn’t communities be quicker to embrace than to reject?
Be careful what you say. Telling someone they have no right to do or say something is treading a dangerous path, and could lead to unintentional suffering. By all means define your boundaries, but don’t make them blanket ones. Don’t make them hard lines. And don’t alienate your friends by disenfranchising them.

A (ghost)Hunting We Will Go



Tomorrow, Efan and I are going ghosthunting with friends. We’ve kind of dabbled before but we’ve got some kit and we’re dangerous. Watch this space for tomorrows exciting installment of …. The Bumbling Witch’s Adventures in Ghosthunting.

See you on the other side

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Just a few Thoughts

I now have more blogs than I can remember. The ones I post regularly to are high pressure always thinking about what I write, who I report, the need to keep everything up to date I thought it might be nice to have a blog just for me.

On this blog I’m going to note interesting thing that occur to me, books I’ve read and enjoyed, snippets of information I find, photographs I like etc. Don’t know how it will pan out but it will be nice to have a low pressure place to just be me.