CHILLING ENCOUNTERS IN THE CITY OF THE DEAD
Twilight creeps its weary way through the narrow alleyway and hidden courtyards that snake their way through the historic heart of the City of London.
Its gnarled fingers unlock ancient secrets of dark deed that lie entombed behind the time-encrusted walls of the old churches and tumbledown graveyards.
Its rasping whisper echoes into the shadowy recesses of forgotten nooks and corners where long departed residents hear its call, and London's ghostly populace awakes from its slumber to walk the deserted streets as spirits.
And now, in the company of paranormal writer and renowned ghost hunter, Richard Jones - the author of over 20 books on British ghosts and legends - you have the opportunity to explore the City of the Dead and to, possibly, come face to face with London's spectral population.
A RENOWNED PARANORMAL AUTHOR
Richard's tours are widely regarded as being the best ghost walks on offer in London.
Dressed in his trademark outfit - that of an esteemed Victorian undertaker - he knows the places to take you to where ghosts are known to lurk.
Indeed, having devoted 33 years to introducing residents and visitors alike to the darker and more sinister side of London's history, he can offer you more experience in the field than any other London guide.
In fact, many of the guides who conduct tours of haunted London use Richard's books - such as Walking Haunted London and Haunted Britain and Ireland - as the source for their material, which is all well and good and, in many ways, rather flattering.
But for you, the participant, wouldn't you rather be taken around by the source, the author of the books, as opposed to someone whose just read the stories in the books?
The point is that, as a dedicated researcher and devoted collector of ghost stories, Richard is out there on the streets adding the most up to the minute hauntings to his vast, and impressive, range of creepy ghostly tales.
SEE THE PLACES WHERE GHOSTS LURK
But these are not just the traditional ghost stories that you will hear on other London walks.
These are up to date hauntings that occurred, not on some unspecified date at some stage in London's distant past, but rather they are hauntings that happened last week, or last month and, in some cases, just the other day.
And, let's be perfectly honest about this, wouldn't you rather enjoy a ghost walk with a guide who knows the places to take you to where ghosts are still seen, as opposed to locations where they might have been seen a hundred or more years ago?
GHOSTS ON FILM
It is quite common for people to catch inexplicable images on photos that they take on the ghost walk.
A spectral girl who looks down from a time-smeared window pane is one of the regulars. The hooded figure that appears by a section of the old Roman wall is another.
Then there are the ubiquitous orbs that frequently appear on photographs taken in the course of the London ghost walk.
Whether these mysterious figures offer actual proof of paranormal activity is open to debate. But, when they do honour us with an appearance, their presence certainly makes for a great talking point amongst tour partcipants!
STORYTELLING AT ITS MARROW CHILLING BEST
It goes without saying that the most important part of a haunted tour is the ability of the guide to tell ghost stories in a way that can keep you gripped and on edge for the entire duration of the walk and, in this respect, Richard Jones is in a league of his own.
He has spent 33 years honing his performance to ensure that his tours achieve just the right mix of historical fact, creepy happenings and spine-tingling tales.
However, he doesn't just recite the facts and stories, as so many guides do, but rather, he acts them out in front of you against the backcloths of the locations where the events of each story occurred.
As the Orange County Register put it in a review of his tour "...It's hard not to shiver, but it certainly adds an eerie, realistic air to the adventure..."
JOIN THE DOYEN OF THE DARKNESS
So, if you really want to see and experience the streets of haunted London on a ghost tour that is as spooky as it is fascinating, then be sure to join the only London ghost walks that are led by the undisputed doyen of the darkness and prepare to enter a twilight world of mists and miasmas where, to quote the Mandatory Travelogue, "even the strongest and stoutest laugh nervously..."