Justice Department

For Calamityville Horror’s season finale, we needed a great location – Nottingham’s Galleries of Justice. We were joined by the fabulous writer L K Jay, who plans to use the location in her sequel to The Ghost Hunter’s Club. We’d made prisoner biscuits for the 3 hour trip up there. It was all going so well. Should’ve known then something bad was about to happen. We reached the exit for the A453 only see ‘CLOSED’ on the sign. No previous warning. Ryan’s GPS recalculated slowly, in the meantime, we’d hit a fork coming off the roundabout and ended up heading towards home. Ten minutes later, we turned around and headed back a different route, now using our Atlas. Then we reached Nottingham. Does anyone remember how much we bitched about North Wales’ terrible sign posting? North Wales, we sorry. Nottingham’s was even worse. The Galleries were not signposted. Anywhere. We drove through the city centre a few times, at one time reaching a crossroads. We idled in the middle of it while we checked for sign posts and with the windows tightly shut, shouted at the crowds of people all walking on the roads around us. Then we noticed the crossroads had no road markings. In fact, we were the only car driving through this part of the city centre.

Yes. We were driving through a pedestrianised shopping zone.

No wonder people were staring. Didn’t help being in the only hot orange Mini Cooper convertible in the city. Hugely embarrassed and praying we didn’t get fined, we fled the scene. Pedestrians screamed as they dived for safety, old men shook their fists at us, children cried when we snatched their ice creams as we shot past. Well, we were heading for an old jail, we figured bad behaviour was a must. We eventually found the Galleries, met L K Jay in the pub opposite and headed inside. Turned out we’d just missed the tour so had to wait half an hour for the next one, which was at half one. At half one we arrived at the meeting point. The tour had started without us. The receptionist said “go through that brown door then through the brown door on your left.” There were 3 brown doors to our left and 3 to our right. Worried one door was going to unleash hungry tigers, we quickly checked them and found a court room behind door number one, where the tour guests were seated in the public gallery. The tour was fantastic! L K Jay got called as a prosecution witness then the three of us sentenced Robin Hood to be decapitated. Turned out, us and L K Jay were the only ones who voted for the death penalty. And we voted very enthusiastically. The guy playing Robin Hood was actually a tour guest. Hope he didn’t take our death sentence personally. We just wanted someone to get decapitated. We weren’t picky who it was. The Sheriff of Nottingham was a bit of a looker, though he was quite young. Wouldn’t have minded him slapping us in chains 😉

We were taken down to the cells and handed over to a female prisoner for a bit before being allowed to wander. Our miserable looking group left rather swiftly. We found a small grate in the Sheriff’s Dungeon and as Ryan was trying to shove Cat down through it, we discovered it was loose. So naturally we removed it and we believe,  got exclusive views of the Oubilette below us. We did an EVP session there and in the dark cell but the K2 wasn’t responsive. Ryan noticed a brick was loose beneath the bed in the dark cell so carefully removed it. We positioned the camera ready, hoping to find an undiscovered skeleton and saw…more bricks. We got over excited when we saw the gallows in the exercise yard and in true Calamityville style, pretended to hang ourselves in the photo. We know how to have fun. Then we found a rack full of shackles so put them on. After that we went onto a ‘ship’ that took us to Australia and we emerged in the very warm corridor of Australia before being freed to wander the rest of the jail. Cat and Ryan started feeling very sick in the upper cells, like their throats were tightening. It passed after we were back outside. It was probably over excitement.

The Galleries of Justice were absolutely brilliant. We would love to go back and are desperate to spend the night there, if they let us. We then visited the City of Caves. Which turned out to be on the top floor of the Broadmarsh shopping centre, beside Wimpy. We’re not kidding. You go through a shop, down some steps and into the caves. They’re 400 years old and man made. Unfortunately we weren’t allowed to film down there and there were a lot of people on our tour. But the Galleries of Justice we definitely recommend. We didn’t manage to force Ryan into the pits, we know everyone was looking forwards to that. Next time though…