The First Modern Pioneer of Energy-Based Physical Mediumship – Rita Goold’
Back in the 1980’s, some very unusual Physical Phenomena was being reported by those lucky people who experienced séances with Leicester-Based Physical Medium Rita Goold. Results included regular ‘Materialisation’ of Spirit Personalities and evidential messages from those Spirit ‘friends’ who visited Rita’s séances. Interestingly, although there was no doubt whatsoever of the ‘solid’ presence of these Spirit Visitors, there was no evidence whatsoever of the substance known as ‘ectoplasm’ which virtually all Spiritualists at that time claimed was ‘absolutely vital’ for the purposes of allowing Spirits to ‘Materialise’.
In fact, the lack of ‘ectoplasm’ during Rita’s séances caused many Sceptics and Die-Hard Spiritualists alike to cry ‘FRAUD’ where these unusual séances were concerned. The consequences of this were extremely shameful, coming – as they did – mainly from the Spiritual Community themselves!!!
It is a fact that Rita Goold was on the receiving end of frightening anonymous telephone threats warning her of dire consequences if she went ahead with the séances and scientific experiments. Vicious lies were also being spread to discredit and blacken her character. Rita was deeply hurt because she had dedicated her gift to bringing enlightenment to humanity. She had flatly refused to take one penny for the incredible inconvenience that she was subjected to. In fact she and her circle hosts, Barry and Pat Jeffery, were out of pocket every time a demonstration took place, and all the visitors were fed.
In 1983, I had already been researching and participating in Physical Mediumship and its phenomena for around 10 years, and had experienced many of its forms. I had belonged to active circles, and Sandra and I were running our own circle in Harold Wood. In my work, I travelled around the UK, and was fortunate enough to meet Rita Goold herself whilst I was in Leicester, where I had once lived. We had a very interesting conversation but – unfortunately – I never had the opportunity to sit with her in her circle.
It was really only after ‘The Scole Experiment’ in the 1990’s that I fully realised the similarities between Rita’s séances and our own Scole sittings. There was no doubt in my own mind that the phenomena which took place under Rita Goold’s mediumship MUST have been energy-based, just as ours was at Scole!!
Recently, I have discovered more worthwhile testimonies to the nature and value of Rita’s mediumship, and I would like to share some of those with our readers. A good friend of ours – Medium Christine Morgan (who sat with us at Scole on the day that Princess Diana’s death was announced) – spoke of Rita Goold’s mediumship in 2011, when she recounted what her father – UK medium Eddie Grenyer – had told her of his own personal experiences of ‘Materialisation’ in séances with Rita.
Eddie Grenyer met Alan Crossley whilst they were both working as mediums in the 1980’s, and they became good friends. At this time, Alan was investigating physical mediumship himself, as he had done for many years before. Sandra and I came to know Alan Crossley well ourselves as a friend who was very knowledgeable in the field of Physical Mediumship and its Phenomena. In fact, Alan became the second President of the Noah’s Ark Society, which I personally founded in 1990.
One of the frequent ‘solid’ Spirit visitors in Rita’s séances was the famous materialisation medium Helen Duncan. Alan knew her for many years and had often arranged and/or hosted her séances himself whilst she was still alive. After her death, Alan was the author of the book: ‘The Story of Helen Duncan – Materialisation Medium’. Following Helen’s death (as Alan told us many years later) Helen Duncan ‘telephoned’ him on a number of occasions (ringing his normal home telephone!!) from the Spirit World.
During one of the Rita Goold séances, Helen Duncan asked the circle to ‘find Alan Crossley, and invite him to sit with the circle’. Alan was duly found and invited to Rita’s. he sat with them and became a regular sitter. On one occasion, he sat with the circle 7 times on 7 consecutive nights, staying with Rita during the week. Years later he told us that he had been totally convinced of Rita’s genuine psychic abilities when – whilst conversing casually with her – he watched a child’s soft toy IN FULL LIGHT – ‘walking up the wall to the ceiling’!!
Alan Crossley’s visits to the Rita Goold Circle eventually led to Eddie Grenyer also being invited along on 8 or 9 occasions. Mr Grenyer spoke of the wonderful phenomena and evidence provided by the communicators at these sittings, and of the many discussions about them he had with Alan Crossley right up to the time of Alan’s passing to Spirit himself in the late 1990’s.
Helen Duncan was one of the main controls of the circle, together with Laura Lorraine (Rita’s own grandmother). Rita’s séances (like those at Scole) were all held in the dark and NO ectoplasm was used. Helen Duncan herself said that the reason for Spirit’s ‘no ectoplasm’ policy was the fact that ectoplasm could be dangerous. Helen herself had died after being harmed by inappropriate police action during a raid at one of Helen’s séances in Nottingham.
Instead, Rita’s Spirit team explained that they were using an ‘energy’ as old as time itself. They said that Rita Goold was rare in having an abundance of this energy, so that it was possible for it to be used for the ‘materialisation’ of actual Spirit People during séances.
Spirit actually produced some of the ‘spirit lighted’ conditions themselves on occasions for sitters to see the ‘materialised’ visitors (reminiscent of the spirit lights we had at Scole for the same purpose). When this happened, the silhouette and solid form of the Spirit person could be seen. Sometimes, however, without the spirit lights, evidence could only be given through the Independent Direct Voice of the visiting spirit themselves.
Eddie Grenyer was present on one occasion when Raymond Lodge visited the circle and conversed with the sitters. There were spirit lights produced, and sitters could see the clear outline of Raymond’s boots and army uniform. He did not completely solid, but there was no question as to the fact that he was – indeed – materialised and completely solid as he stood in the room.
Laura Lorraine was a very significant Spirit Character at the séances. She had actually died giving birth to Rita’s mother, aged just 22. Before that, she had been a young singer in the Music Halls. This was confirmed by the beautiful quality of her singing in the séances.
In fact, Eddie Grenyer stated that on two occasions he had been pulled from his chair by the solid form of Laura Lorraine, who then proceeded to waltz around the room with him!! Once Laura had also asked him to run his hand down her body to prove that she was quite solid and, furthermore, was a female with feminine curves!! Whenever Laura was there, sitters were treated to the strong smell of her favourite old-fashioned perfume too.
Helen Duncan materialised and conversed many many times with Alan Crossley, and Eddie Grenyer was a witness to this – as well as having direct conversations with Helen himself in his capacity as a medium.
There were quite a lot of apports during the séances, with Spirit saying they were experimenting. A friend of Eddie’s was given by Spirit the apport of a small furry toy mouse. He was told to give this to children to hold whilst he was giving them healing – which he did – and several of the young patients reported that the mouse gave off heat and energy when this happened.
For Alan Crossley specifically, the sittings he had with Rita Goold represented a totally new style of physical phenomena, which he found extremely comfortable and evidential. Alan himself described this feeling:
“Gone are the cabinets, black draperies and semi-religious trappings,” he explained. “The sittings are notable for their informality. From my point of view, the new methods and techniques used by the spirit operators mark the greatest turning point in psychic history. Void of all mystique, there is none of the spooky atmosphere so common in former years.”
The absence of ectoplasm in evolving materialisations during Rita Goold’s seances was seen by Alan Crossley as a new development in mediumship. He stated at the time:
“There are many features concerning the new phenomena which clearly distinguish them from all previous methods,” he said. “This shift away from old techniques can only help rather then hinder progress towards a better understanding of the whole subject. The question many will ask is: ‘How do they do it?’ That is, of course, too complex a question at this stage and one that has not so far been revealed.”
Ten years later – in the 1990’s – another Spirit Team (working with us at Scole) went on to replicate much of the phenomena that had been witnessed during the sittings in Rita Goold’s Circle (whilst working ostensibly in the same way), and expanded on the work they had done there. Luckily, during the five years of ‘The Scole Experiment’ our Spirit Team were able to explain the mechanics of the energy-based phenomena in depth to us, so we could pass that information on to others.
But what all of us should remember is that it happened through Rita Goold’s mediumship FIRST. Rita is truly the First Modern Pioneer of Energy-Based Physical Phenomena!!