IT’s not every day working the local news you’ll be sat at your desk and someone sends in a message asking you to join their paranormal investigation team.

But one fateful day last week, I was the local hack lucky enough to receive such a message.

I spent my Saturday night at a pub, as many do, but instead of staring glassy eyed at the spirits behind the bar, I was searching for them everywhere besides.

My guide through the Lord Nelson Hotel on Milford Haven’s Hamilton Terrace was one of Pembrokeshire’s premium psychics, Lee Grant.

Lee Grant of Paranormal Post-Mortem.

He and his team from Paranormal Post-Mortem have longed to spend the night treading the floors of the hotel, to discover whether restless ghosts haunt its halls.

“The building has been here since the 1800s. I was walking past one day and thought I would love to do a paranormal investigation in this building,” he said.

That fateful Saturday night, we were joined by two other teams: Fearless Afterlife led by Trisha Walters and Carl Morgan from Aberdare, and Paranormal Phenomena Wales led by Dawn Cummings, who had travelled from Llantwit Major.

Trish Walters and Carl Morgan of the Fearless Afterlife investigation team.

Never having dabbled in ghostly goings on before, I found out first-hand about the burgeoning community of psychics, mediums, and exorcists across the UK.

When I first met Lee in one of the hotel’s downstairs function rooms, he shook me by the hand enthusiastically.

“Ah, busy week in work was it? Feeling a lot of stress?” he asked.

As we waited for fellow investigators from the two other teams to arrive, he also asked me out of the blue: “why did you get into all that debt?”

These, I realised were questions based on Lee’s self-confessed sense of premonition.

Was he reading my mind? Was he right? Did these questions apply to me?

It had been a busy working week I reasoned, and I suppose the burden of my student loan does still hang over my head.

While waiting for Trish, Dawn and their teams to arrive, I joined a fellow newsman from the local radio on the pavement, admiring the Cleddau at sunset as he finished off a fag.

“Just be mindful of the power of suggestion when you go in there,” he told me, having spent a great deal of his life delving into the paranormal.

Were Lee’s earlier questions a psychic at work? Or the power of suggestion?

When the other teams had arrived, hotel manager Liz Radcliffe led us up the main staircase of the hotel’s grand surroundings.

At the end of a first floor corridor we passed through a door marked DO NOT ENTER into the darkened surroundings of a neglected back area of the hotel.

The darkened first floor corridor.

Walking through into the dim-light corridor, I felt a sense of dread descend on me, instantly reminded of horror classic the Shining.

The five rooms beyond this corridor, Liz explained, had been out of use for three years, and were due to be renovated in the near future.

The peeling paint and askew impressionist prints lining the walls were barely visible as twilight ebbed out of the unlit rooms.

The investigators set up a range of ghost detecting devices with sciencey-sounding names like the EVP and Parascope in room 114 at the far-end of the hallway.

The search among the bare-stripped beds, the long abandoned complimentary biscuit packets and fallen shower heads soon had some results.

The ghost hunting devices in action.

One of the devices bright lights began to flicker on and off erratically.

“Is someone here?” Dawn asked the dead-quiet room, “Can you make the lights on the device move?”

The lights continued to flicker, and a cold breeze snaked through the baking hot room, making the hairs on my arms stand up.

Whether or not any of this was a response to Dawn’s questions I couldn’t say.

Moving back out into the corridor, the group stood in silence as Dawn was sure she could hear footsteps approaching from main hotel… but no-one appeared.

Lee was sure that something was behind the door of room 111, and seemed troubled, disturbed even, by the spiritual happenings he said he could sense.

A troubled Lee stands outside Room 111.

Unfortunately, we couldn’t make it through 111's door.

Liz’s key did not open all the rooms.

In the doorway of Room 112 I asked her what she thought about the investigation.

“I have heard lots of different stories from guests as well as staff about things they have heard," she said.

“Dawn picked up on it – a lot of the staff don’t like coming down here, they have said they’ve heard footsteps along the corridor too.”

Spooky! Liz however, remained unphased.

One of Dawn’s team then took a turn for the worse, feeling as if she was being strangled and having to sit down on the hallway floor.

I must admit it was stuffy in that corridor, so I couldn’t vouch for whether she was in the grasp of the supernatural, or a bout of exasperation from the heat.

Our investigation later moved to the hotel basement, formerly Emma’s, one of Milford’s nightclubs.

The cellars of the Lord Nelson, formerly Emma's nightclub.

The brightly-lit vaults weren’t a patch on the darkened corridors, but seeing the nightclub décor, 15 years out of use, behind stacks of boxes and packed-up Christmas trees was a sneak peek into the behind-the-scenes of hotel life.

In an intriguing moment, Lee and his fellow ghost hunters were convinced there was more to the cellars than could be seen, with Dawn pointing out a wall she thought held back secrets.

“That wall,” said Liz, “doesn’t match the rest of the building’s footprint.”

There have been rumours of two tunnels under the building, Liz explained, one leading to the harbour for smugglers, and another to St Katharine’s Church.

Perhaps the hidden tunnels were behind this mysteriously out-of-place wall?

After the tour of the cellars, the gathered ghost hunters were getting tired – none more than me.

Hotel manager Liz leads the investigators into the cellars.

I stuck it out in the bar after-hours for one last investigation, but by 1am, I knew I needed to sleep.

Back out on Hamilton Terrace, Lee shook my hand and said goodbye.

As I left, I remembered asking Dawn earlier that evening if she thought the living should fear the dead.

“Not all all,” she said at the drop of a hat.

Instead of sending these people running for the hills, what I found was the search for the supernatural was bringing them closer together.

Whether or not you subscribe to their beliefs, a community has been born across the UK out of a quest to explore what the afterlife might mean.

Paranormal Post-Mortem conduct investigations across Pembrokeshire, follow their adventures on Facebook.

Fearless Afterlife Encounters and Paranormal Phenomena Wales can also be found on Facebook.