Recently I spotted on Sky Cinema that a film version of Blithe Spirit had been released, now this got my interest instantly because of the content of it , then as if by magic a couple of days later whilst reading the paper I saw the house that featured in the films of the play was up for sale and before I thought about buying it i was quickly brought back down to earth - Denham Mount is a cool £6.5 million !!

These two happenings started wanting me to take a closer look at the history of the play and that's when my interest really took off !!

Years ago I used to work in the theatre and often shows would come into the theatre I worked at and there was often rumours of ghosts doing things on certain shows and I remembered hearing a very interesting story from the stage manager about this very play Blithe Spirit. I was lucky enough to find the person again and I asked them to write about what happened when they staged Blithe Spirit !!!!

'I was employed in the mid 1980s, as the Deputy Stage Manager, for a two year long UK tour, of Noel Coward’s play, “Blithe Spirit”. Included in the cast and playing the ghost of the first wife, Elvira, was Rula Lenska.

One day, in the early days of rehearsals, Rula was going to a wig-fitting appointment in Covent Garden. She hired the next available black cab from the taxi rank immediately outside Waterloo Station.

During this journey, Rula passed pleasantries with the driver, who has always claimed that he didn’t recognise Rula at the time. I should also mention the cast list for the play had not yet been released.

The taxi driver felt as if his vehicle had been struck by a lightning bolt, and then claimed that he could see a woman sitting beside Rula in his rear view mirror. This woman told him that Rula "needed to make the wife more jealous, because she was really annoyed that her husband had remarried!" She also said that Elvira was a very sexual creature, and she should wear a rich, heady perfume when playing her - one she should only wear on stage. The strong, heady smell would introduce Elvira before you saw her and then remain for a few seconds after she left, adding to the illusion of being visited by a ghost.

The driver said this woman had told him her name was Kay Hammond; that she was the first actress to play Elvira; and that she knew, from Noel Coward directly, how he wanted Elvira portrayed.Finally, she asked that there should be a white rose in Rula’s dressing room, (and the dressing room of every actress who plays Elvira) in memory of Kay Hammond...

When Rula returned to rehearsal and told us the story, I made sure there was always a white rose present. There was always a single rose in Rula’s dressing room (and later Louise Jameson’s when she took over the role), in memory of Kay Hammond.

I later discovered that the taxi driver was the Jewish Medium Gerry Sherrick, who had been deeply involved in the infamous Enfield Haunting. It was purely by chance that Rula got into his cab. He and his wife, Lauretta, later came to see the show, and met everyone involved. He managed to contact Kay Hammond, while backstage at the Churchill Theatre in Bromley. She said she was happy with how the show was being played and that it was close to Noel Coward’s vision of the piece.

Gerry Sherrick never took payment for any of his mediumship work. He was a devoutly religious man, who view his ability as a Gift from God.

A couple of days after Rula had this chance meeting with Gerry, it was still obvious that she was greatly unnerved by this unexpected event. She and I went to lunch and, on a spur of the moment, went into Bromley’s branch of WHSmith’s. At the time, the shop was on the High Street, opposite the theatre. As we walked through, chatting as we went, we approached a table that had books of all sizes and subjects. We were the only people anywhere near the table, about 6-8ft away, when a large book standing upright on the table rocked from right to left, before hitting the floor with a loud bang!

The book landed open and, on inspection, it was a book about film. It had landed open on a page featuring David Lean’s 1945 film, “Blithe Spirit”, with a photograph of Rex Harrison and……Kay Hammond!

Thank you to Beverly Oxford for taken the time to write about this for us .

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Updated: Jan 29

There are many copies of K2 available today we have put together a list of how to spot a fake K2 meter - in many cases they are never advertised at a much cheaper price than a real one this is done to make the potential purchaser think its a real one.

How to identify a real K2 meter

1) The real K2 device includes a DURACELL 9V Alkaline battery

2) The real K2 device features a solid plastic piece to position the LED lights

3) The real K2 device has “K-II USA” on the bottom of the circuit board

4) The real K2 device has a date and a REV # stamped on the left edge of the top of the circuit board

5) The real K2 device features a colored UV reactive label

6) The real K2 device features a textured surface, in black or gray

7) The real K2 device features a 3” long battery connecting cable

8) The real K2 uses plastic cutting screws to secure the top and bottom case together

9) The real K2 device is Made in the USA (the fake has that illegally stamped on the bottom but they are made in China)

10) The real K2 device is never shipped from China

11) The real K2 device is built in the USA with top level components only

You can buy a genuine K2 meter from Ghost Hunter Tours

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Robert James Lees (born 12 August 1849 in Hinckley, Leicestershire – died 11 January 1931 in Leicester) was a British spiritualist, medium, preacher, writer and healer of the late Victorian era and early twentieth century known today for claims that he knew the identity of Jack the Ripper, responsible for the Whitechapel murders of 1888.

At the time of the Jack the Ripper murders in 1888, Lees was living in the London area. His diary entries for 1888 reveal that on 2 October, during a month when no Ripper murders took place, Lees went to both the City of London Police and Scotland Yard offering his assistance in catching Jack the Ripper. However, he was turned away as a madman on both occasions, though Scotland Yard offered to write to him.

One story, frequently quoted in books and films on the subject, is that Lees, using his psychic power, led the police to Jack the Ripper.

This story first appeared in print on 28 April 1895, in The Chicago Herald. Another version of the same story was also published in The People on 19 May 1895.

The Chicago Herald article claimed that, over a number of years, Lees had been troubled by psychic visions of Jack the Ripper killing his victims. Each of these visions came true. Lees became disturbed by the visions and sought medical advice, going abroad as a result, where he no longer had the visions. Back in London, he and his wife Sarah were travelling on an omnibus

when a man got on at Notting Hill. Lees turned and told his wife that the man was Jack the Ripper. Even though his wife laughed at him, when the man got off the bus at Marble Arch, Lees followed him. Finding a police constable on the way, Lees told him of his suspicions, but the constable also laughed at him. After more murders, Lees was able to convince the police of the truth of his visions and led them to a fashionable house in London, which was home to a noted physician who had treated members of the Royal Family.On being found in incriminating circumstances, the doctor was put in a lunatic asylum under the name of Thomas Mason 124, and a mock funeral held. According to the Chicago Herald, the tale had been related by a Dr. Howard of London, who, when drunk, had told the story to a man who then told the newspaper.

Ripperologists disregard the story as a hoax. Obvious errors in the Chicago Herald story include the claim there had been 17 murders that took place over a number of years, but the actual number of Ripper victims was just five, with the actual murders occurring in just a few months in the Autumn of 1888.Melvin Harris in his book Jack the Ripper, The Bloody Truth provides convincing evidence that the story was a hoax. He believes that the hoaxers were the Whitechapel Club, Chicago.

The offices of the club at that time were behind those of the Chicago Herald.According to Harris, the police had "denied that Lees was involved with the Ripper hunt. In fact, Robert Lees's own diary entries contradict this part of the tale. They show that he didn't approach the police until October 2, 1888 three days after the murders on the twenty-ninth."

In 1976, the Lees/Ripper story came into prominence again with the publication of Stephen Knight's b ook Jack the Ripper: The Final Solution. Ian Sharp had rediscovered the Chicago Herald article while researching Jack the Ripper for a BBC documentary that had been screened

before the publication of Knight's book. The publication of The Final Solution saw the first time that the Chicago Herald article officially had been quoted in a major publication since The People had quoted it in 1895

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