Michaela Strachan Interview

Michaela Strachan presents the fantastically spooky series Great British Ghosts for Yesterday, and we got the chance to ask some pressing questions about the series.

Michaela Strachan

What was it that interested you in doing the series?

I was asked out of the blue to do the series. It's definitely something very different for me and away from my normal genre of wildlife presenting, but it really appealed. I have an open mind when it comes to the paranormal but am fascinated by it. I also love the history of all these old places, it makes you realise what a rich and varied past Britain has had. Sometimes it's personal histories that are so interesting, finding out the past of a some old mansions can be a bit like reading an old Hello! magazine! Mind you, often a bit more gruesome, there may be glamour, wealth and romance but there is often murder, sickness and deceit.

Michaela talks to a paranormal expert.

Michaela talks to a paranormal expert.

Have you always been a fan of the paranormal?

I was never really a great fan of the paranormal but I am now! I had no idea, before I did the series, how popular the paranormal world was and how many paranormal groups there are. Going to a haunted house on a Saturday night and doing a paranormal investigation definitely beats going to the pub, if you ask me. Whether you believe in it or not, it's so much more fun! You may feel knackered the next day, but at least there's no chance of a hangover.

What was your favourite location you visited during the series?

Michaela outside Berkeley Castle.

Michaela outside Berkeley Castle.

Now that's a tricky one, I loved Berkeley Castle. It was absolutely stunning and full of gruesome history. The most famous story was of King Edward II who was supposedly murdered there by his wife. He apparently died a grizzly death by having a red hot poker shoved up his bum (it wasn't his wife that physically did the deed!) And they say divorces these days are vicious! I loved Clearwell Caves in the Forest Of Dean. I really enjoyed exploring the caves and the stories of ex miners. Salmesbury Hall near Preston was fab with it's ghost of the White Lady who has been seen so many times that she even has a police record! And there are more... the Blackpool Pleasure Beach ghost train, The Cage in St. Osyth and Derby Gaol, they were all favourites.

What was your scariest moment whilst filming the series?

Watching the film 'The Woman In Black' in a small community cinema in Wooton Under Edge after filming one evening! Seriously, there weren't any particularly scary moments whilst filming but that's because we don't go looking for ghosts. The programme is about the history of haunted places and the ghosts stories. Mostly we film in daylight so not too many spooky moments. Having said that, I did often sleep in the most haunted room when staying in the haunted hotels. After 3 weeks of sleeping in so many spooky bedrooms, I actually looked forward to the next Travel Lodge!

Are there any other spooky places you’d like to visit with Great British Ghosts that you haven’t been to yet?

I'd love to do one series in Scotland. There are so many fabulous old castles and isolated mansions in Scotland and such a rich history there are bound to be tons of great ghosts stories!