NESM Event 05-08-2023

National Emergency Services Museum

The NESM (National Emergency Services Museum) is laid out over 3 stories, containing a large number of artefacts and vehicles, stretching back over 300 years. Much of the building’s original features remain, most notable the fire watch tower, poles and engine shed.

On an initial walk around 2 figures were picked up in the dance hall, a heavy feeling felt in the hall and Josie felt a figure walk past on the cobbles whilst we were in the coffee room.

Top Rooms – Accommodation Rooms


The top rooms were originally accommodation for the on-duty firefighters. They were on shift for 7 days at a time, living in the fire station. There were bedrooms, kitchens and a communal dance hall, which could be used by the families of the firefighters who commonly visited on the weekends.

Though several people had sensed a number of spirits, they were hesitant about coming forward to speak to us. It took some convincing but eventually they were prepared to talk to us.

We had a lady in a white dress, with wet dark hair as if she had died by drowning. We were unable to get much more out of her.

Several other names came through including Prince (either a dog or a horse – possibly a fire horse or an animal belonging to one of the firefighters) and Albert Pettigrew.

Scooby got the name Joshua Eldridge. He came across in force, demanding attention and respect, but, as we were engaged with other spirits, we were unable to devote our full attention to him. Due to this, he left.

He was replaced by the spirit of a little girl, Sarah. She died not far from the station during WWII, having been hit by falling masonry during an air strike. She had been a poor girl and when we spoke to her, she was still clutching her little grey rabbit toy, worn and damaged by years of love. She had owned just one pair of shoes which her parents had told her to look after. We got the feeling that she may not be aware that she had passed, as she was looking for her lost shoe.

We asked her to go near to some of the “toys” (motion balls, K2s etc.) and we did get some reaction from the devices when we asked her to interact with them.

Sarah had limited power, and thinking that a board may be too difficult for her, we did a session using dowsing rods. There was some movement and she was able to move them as we requested. However, the right-hand rod felt as if its movement was being stopped by another force, only able to move left. Whether this was because of Sarah’s lack of power, or because another spirit was stopping her was unclear, however, it progressed to a point where the rods were stopped all together, and we had to end to session.

We received “I am a child” and “can you move location” on spirit talker, so, thanking Sarah and the other spirits, we moved down the hallway, where we had heard a noise earlier in the night.


Moving down the hallway we ran a pendulum. Here we encountered a spirit that several of the guests had dealt with before. A prisoner who had sexually assaulted and killed several women in, and out of, the building. He had operated alongside a corrupt member of the police, between them they had chosen the women and covered any tracks. It was evident that this spirit was violent, aggressive and potentially dangerous. He showed no remorse for his crimes, sneering and laughing at us when we tried to tell him how evil he is. I wanted the name of his accomplice, but any push to get more information led to him becoming more violent to the extent where we had to end the session.



Dance Hall


After a short break we moved to the next level down which served as the dance hall and possible bar area. This is a relatively large room allowing us to do a larger pendulum. We got a Peter through again. He was intoxicated, specifically favoring whiskey. Again, this spirit was known by several of the guests. He was quite friendly, and enjoyed joining in festivities with the firefighters when they had their events. Unfortunately, we lost contact with Peter, as a new spirit forced his way into the circle.

The new spirit was a bit unclear about his position, first he was a custody-sergeant, then he was an inspector. All we able to confirm is that he did not treat prisoners right, commonly beating them in an attempt to maintain order. However, at least one prisoner died due to their treatment. He claimed that it was not him personally that had beaten the prisoner but one of his subordinates, however, he refused to discipline them, or even look into the incident. He claimed to have been a member of the South Yorkshire Police. He died of bowel cancer, which had spread very rapidly. He seemed to be somewhat regretful of his actions, but it felt like he was still coming to terms with what had happened.

The final spirits of this session came and went very quickly. First, we had female spirit, who had been a matron and had looked after the on-duty firefighters and their families. It was unclear how she died, or really when she had lived. She did make us aware of at least two other female spirits in the room.

We got a glimpse of another spirit, possibly Joshua, but were unable to communicate with this spirit properly. 




For our final session, we moved into the cells. Here we split into two groups. The group I was with entered the large cell, which is made of two cells knocked through into one, and had served as a regional military/ARP headquarters. Entering, I put on a top hat, mainly because it was there to put on. As we began, spirit talker came out with “nice hat”.


Quite soon after “light” came up, just as Rob walked past with a torch. We managed to get two spirits, one in the middle of the circle and one on the edge. The spirit in the middle was of a police officer and the one on the edge has some connection to the church. Both had worked together alongside a wider group of business men and MPs running a sex-trafficking ring, resulting in the systematic abuse of prisoners. They had also assaulted potential prisoners, offering them freedom, reduced sentences and favours in return for sexual favours. This had grown to an extent where, as a group, they effectively owned a proportion of the town’s people.

As this was going on we got some interaction from a spirit named Mary, who told us she had been communicating through spirit-talker. She had been one of the people that had been “owned” but, out of desperation and with no-where else to go, she had killed the police officer. Unbeknown to her, this ha


d led to the downfall of their “operation”. Fearing that an investigation would uncover the truth, or that Mary would talk, the second spirit had committed suicide.

Neither spirit was very keen to pass-over. They both felt that they held some power in this realm, able to negatively effect and scare people, they both believed that they would lose this power if they passed. As we dove deeper into their story, however, the impact they had on the guests became worse. We never wish anyone to be negatively affected, so was forced to end the session.


Whilst I was with this group, the other group was revisited by Joshua Eldridge, the spirit from earlier. This time we were able to engage him in conversation. We learned that he had been a police officer and a good man. He was aware of the mistreatment of prisoners had had made every effort to stop the abuse and hold those accountable. His reluctance to talk to us earlier was because he was unsure of our intentions. He was concerned that we were here to abuse the prisoners, only when we had gained his trust, was he prepared to come forward and tell his story. Unfortunately, it seems his efforts had been in vain, when surrounded by so much evil. Even after death he felt his mission was not over.




Pettigrew Family

There are some mentions to a Pettigrew family residing in Sheffield and the surrounding areas, although no records after 1960. Mentions of a Doctor William Douglas Bruce Pettigrew, qualifying as a doctor in 1939 and possibly another who was a POW in Japan. He may have come from a long line of Pettigrew’s, many of whom appear to have been doctors.

The dates of these individuals tie in with the dates that the museum had operated as a police station, it therefore may be possible that the spirit we dealt with was a member or close relative of the family.


Eldridge Family

Eldridge is a name that appears several times in Sheffield records. There are records for a Samuel Eldridge and Kitty Eldridge both of whom were alive at the turn of the century. Again, the fact that there is some evidence of members of the family being around at the time is a good indication that our spirit may be genuine. Naturally, records vary in accuracy and completion due to a number of factors. We were informed by the curators at the museum that, unfortunately, when the police moved from the station, they disposed of nearly all their records. This makes it very difficult to find any information about the prisoners held here and any events that may have taken place. Was this an oversight, or a deliberate attempt to cover up the past?


The Blitz

The Blitz had a significant impact on Sheffield. An Important engineering hub, it supplied a significant amount of British arms and munitions throughout both world wars. Two significant dates were the nights of the 12th September 1940 and 15th December 1940.

On the 12th alone, 330 aircraft are believed to have attacked the city, dropping 355 tonnes of high explosive and over 16,000 incendiary canisters.

106 out of 154 schools in Sheffield were damaged, 8 totally destroyed. In 1939, a large number of children were evacuated, however, the attacks never came. Over time, several children returned to the city, was Sarah one of these children? It is known that in the 12th December, 70 people were taking shelter in the cellars of a 7-story building when it received a direct hit collapsing the building into the cellars. 60 are believed to have died, and of those, only 14 were ever formally identified. Even to this day, the list of the dead is not complete. Entire families had been killed, and with no-one to look for them, they may never have been recorded.

Even today, a quick internet search can find several forums with people searching for information about lost relatives.

In all 700 people were killed, 134 were buried in mass graves at City Road Cemetery. 82,000 out of 150,000 houses were destroyed with multiple important buildings damaged or destroyed.




I did, however, come across a Sheffield prisoner record, 1880-1912. In here we do find some interesting information.

There are several records of people by the name of Mary. There are several in for crimes such as Malicious Wounding including Mary Oates arrested 1890, and Mary Kelly arrested 1883. Are any of these the names of the spirit we encountered who had killed the police officer. Had she been imprisoned on a lesser charge to

What is incredible is the amount of people spending short times in prison for what are very minor infractions. With the number of arrests in the short amount of time, there would have been a considerable pool of people for the corrupt individuals to abuse.



Thank you for reading this, and hopefully you can join us on an event soon.

If you would like to see some of the pictures from our event please click the button below.