Surrey Mirror Thursday 28 July 2005;
Reporter Stephanie Turner, feeling a little spooked, went to find out from a woman who first heard her own grandma aged eight – and returned with surprising results.
To say I was skeptical about the world of clairvoyancy is an understatement. But I’ve always been game for a challenge and decided to see for myself if there really was life on the ‘other side’.
When Redhill clairvoyant Val Hood – who is soon hoping to sign a TV deal for a psychic series on Living TV – agreed to spend 30 minutes with me to see if she could tell me anything about my future or even speak to my dead relatives, a chill went down my spine;
I asked myself if I should be getting involved with something like this, but Val assured me it wouldn’t be a frightening experience.
Val’s first ‘sighting’ was of her grandma when she was eight and she heard her many times.
“When I was 12 I woke up in the night and say my sister being tucked in by my grandma. At 16, she walked in behind me as I went into the bathroom and it terrified me. I shouted, “I know you are here, I don’t understand, I’m frightened, please go away’”.
It wasn’t until Val went through marriage difficulties at the age of 35 when she visited a spiritualist church for the first time.
She now takes part in regular public demonstrations and gives private meetings in her South Mead Home.
I felt extremely excited, but slightly nervous, wondering what Val would tell me on my visit. I intentionally avoided giving away any details about my personal life whatsoever, I wanted to be certain she knew nothing about me at all.
As we began our recorded chat she told me that a grandmother was there. I couldn’t help but take a quick glance across the room to see if there was a ghostly figure hovering above the fireplace.
Obviously, the room was empty, but as Val began to talk, I was convinced my dad’s mum was making contact.
Correctly telling me that my gran had died at a relatively young age and describing her personality almost spot on, I was eager to hear more.
Val outlined my own personality extremely well and gave the names of Charles, Robert and William; all being people related to my dad’s father. This was spooky, but I still wasn’t 100 per cent convinced. I decided the big test would be whether or not Val would pick up on my cousin Iain Beirne who had died in a motorbike accident three years ago.
And then all of a sudden Val stopped talking about my gran and asked if I knew anyone who had been killed in a motorbike accident.
My heart dropped and the tears began to fall. How could she know that? Was it just coincidence?
Describing him as a lovely looking young man with sparkling eyes and a distinctive laugh may seem vague, but that was precisely the Iain we knew.
Val told me that Iain was always there to support me and he was proud of everything I had achieve. Again, I was in two minds as to whether or not to take it with a pinch of salt, but it was truly uncanny.
The mother of three said; “People always ask me why the voices don’t introduce themselves to me and tell me exactly who they are, but they don’t work that way.
“I hear the voices as clear as a bell. I hear members of my own family. It doesn’t scare me like it did when I was younger.”
“People have busy minds and don’t realize that people are contacting them all of the time. Even if you don’t believe, they are still trying to communicate with you.”
Asking if my dad was particularly stressed at the moment also left me gobsmacked as he has been incredibly worried about my granddad who is currently in hospital after surviving his third stroke.
Labelling me as a ‘binge cleaner’ was also correct and I was astonished when Val asked if anyone had stubbed their toe recently, because the previous night, my boyfriend had to leave football practice early after injuring his big tow quite badly.
I wanted to sit with Val all afternoon and as she ‘let them both go’, I didn’t feel ready to end our session and just wanted to keep hearing more.
But after mopping away the tears and taking a few deep breaths I was on my way, cassette tape in hand.
There will obviously never be any proof that the ‘voices’ clairvoyants are hearing are actually dead relatives trying to make contact, but many people gain immense comfort to know that there is life after death.
Val added: “It used to scare me when I was younger and I was worried that people would think I am mad, but I just came to terms with it.
“I’ve been very, very lucky. I trust my little people upstairs will be with me. I can tell them to go away and they are very respectful of the fact that I have an earthly life.
“People go to demonstrations because they want to know loved ones are OK. I t makes me feel fantastic when I know I have touched their soul.”