A psychic medium took a week to recover after ‘capturing the image of a phantom soldier on horseback from the War of the Roses in a selfie.’
Neil Cook and two of his ghost hunting pals visited the site of the Battle of Towton in North Yorkshire after nightfall on the anniversary of the ‘largest and bloodiest battle on English soil’.
The 48-year-old psychic believes one of the 28,000 poor souls who lost their lives there stalked the trio around the eerie field as they repeatedly heard the stomping of horses’ hooves.
However, Neil didn’t realise they had caught anything on camera until he was looking back over a selfie the gang took and spotted a dark shape lurking behind them.
While fellow paranormal enthusiasts claim it looks like two soldiers watching them from a distance, psychic Neil believes it is the soldier on horseback heard tracking them all night.
The experience was so traumatic for Neil that it took him a week to get over it, as the eerie place and things they saw there left a mark on him.
Neil, from Saltburn-by-the-Sea, North Yorks, said: "All night long we had had the feeling that we were being followed. We kept hearing a thud like the sound of a hoof stamping in the ground.
"It was as if someone on horseback was following us all around. That’s what it sounded like.
"Looking at the picture, a lot of people have said it looks like two soldiers but I do believe in pareidolia where we make faces out of things.
"I believe it is a gentleman on horseback. The dark mass is the shoulders and head of the horse that is slightly turned and the figure stood with the horse or sat on it.
"That’s how I look at it. But we never like to say ‘this is what we see’, we just ask people what they see.
"Both Shane [Corbett] and I saw a shape moving across the field at some speed and we both said it looked like a flag waving in the wind with some kind of large dark shadow with it.
"It looked like someone galloping across the field holding a mast with a flag on it. And Shane agreed, we both saw it.
"It could well have been a flock of birds or puff of smoke or something in the distance but it was so close and strong to be that really.
"There was no explanation so we put it down to paranormal."
The psychic medium had been with fellow investigators Shane Corbett and Andrew Alexander deliberately chose March 29 for the visit as it was the battle’s anniversary.
They met up at the spot that was believed to be where the bloodiest part of the battle took place but didn’t expect to capture anything on camera.
It was only when Neil lightened the image when he returned home that he discovered the shape behind them.
Neil said: "It was dark when we took the picture and the little light we had only lit up our faces so the backdrop behind us was very dark.
"It was only when we came home that I was looking at the picture and noticed the dark shape in the top corner.
"So I lightened the picture and I could see the shape of two figures there, but then as it became more clear I realised it looked like a person sat on horseback.
"I could say that it is the person on horseback who followed us around all night long and these are the hooves we could hear.
"It could be one of the nobleman riding around the battlefield killing the injured people."
The team did a livestream from the location and used various gadgets to see if they could confirm any of the feelings that Neil picked up as a psychic.
The Palm Sunday battle had seen around 50,000 soldiers from the houses of York and Lancaster clash in a snowstorm – with more than half losing their lives in a single day.
The grisly story is exactly why the trio chose the spot.
Neil said: "We generally believe that the more trauma that happens at a place, the more likely for us to connect to the residual energy.
"And since it was the birthday of the Battle, the 29th March, the three of us decided to head down there.
"I didn’t do any reading about where we were going because as a psychic medium I don’t like to know anything about where I am going as it can influence my thought.
"I like to go in ‘blind’ to these locations as otherwise if a name pops into my head I don’t know if it’s a spirit telling me or from what I have read.
"It was a very eerie place. Even a non-sensitive person would feel a sensation of dread and trauma there.
"Andrew and Shane both said they felt upset there. You have to remember that 28,000 people died there in one day – it’s the bloodiest battle of all time.
"As a psychic medium I had connections to the place beforehand and I had the impression of a gentleman who had drowned there. He was dressed like a soldier.
"Near the battlefield is a stream where I believe there was once a bridge when the battle happened.
"History records that when they retreated they ran across the bridge but it collapsed and many drowned. It became known as the ‘bridge of bodies’ because so many died there.
"I think this is where the gentleman who connected with me died. He actually drowned while retreating from the battle.
"It was a slaughter ground in which the Yorkshiremen butchered the Lancashiremen trying to retreat. They were butchered.
"Anyone injured by the long bows would have been hacked up, having their limbs chopped off and so on to finish them off.
"All this trauma and all this energy [was there]. It was one of the most sensitive things I have ever done.
"I was physically affected by it because I had observed all of this energy and trauma and it took me some days or maybe a week to get back to normal."
The Battle of Towton in 1461 was an overwhelming victory for the Yorkists and saw Edward of York seize the throne, displacing Henry VI.
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