On November 19th, 1995, Wem Town Hall burned down to the ground. Tony O'Rahilly was one of the on-lookers who took photos of the scene. One photo showeded what looks like a small, partially transparent girl standing in the doorway.

Taken with a 200mm lens from across the road, it was only after the image was developed that O'Rahilly saw the little girl. O'Rahilly claims that there are no special effects on this picture.

Wem Town Hall Ghost Photo

Upon discovery of the ghost in the photo, O'Rahilly immediately sent it to the Association for the Scientific Study of Anomalous Phenomena. They sent the photo and the negative to Dr. Vernon Harrison, a former president of the Royal Photographic Society. Dr. Harrison analysed both the photo and negative and reported that he was satisfied that the picture had not been altered and no speacial effects were used. "The negative is a straight forward piece of black-&-white work and shows no sign of having been tampered with," said Harrison.

However, Dr. Harrison, still considers himself something of a sceptic and suggested that the image of the girl may just be a convenient trick of the light - with smoke, flame and shadow creating an optical illusion at the moment the photographer took his picture.

Legend has it that in 1677 a fire destroyed much of the town and a young girl was said to have set fire to an old thatched roof with a candle. Her ghost has haunted the area for centuries, having been seen by different witnesses. Examination of the negative proved the ghost picture to be authentic and not tampered with. No girl was reported missing after the fire, either.

Since that date, it has always been maintained that the Town Hall is haunted by the ghost of Jane Churm. But despite the international publicity and visits from teams of 'ghostbusters' the image of a woman's face on the pictures has never been properly explained.

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