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The Afternoon Show
The Afternoon ShowRTÉ One, Weekdays, 4.00pm

Derek Acorah

Friday, 5 March 2010

People may be surprised to know you were a professional footballer - how long did you play for?

I got picked up by Liverpool Football club as a 13 year old school boy and then at 15 I signed for them as an apprentice professional. Liverpool eventually let me go as I could only get as far as the reserves. I then went on to Wrexham and then I went to Glentoran in Northern Ireland and I ended my football career in Australia as a coach. It was two weeks before my 27th birthday.

Football broke my heart but I knew I had the gifts as far as developing mediumship. After many years after my gran who was a medium told me as a child that she could see me playing football but eventually working as a medium for the rest of my life. It has happened the way that she had described it. She told me I would have an injury and that I'd be disappointed and she wrote down everything in a little black book and I still have that book.

Tell me about your first experience with the spiritual world?

I had my first sighting when I was six. I saw a man in my bedroom doorway in my Grans house where we lived and this man turned out to be my grandfather. He was a seafarer and he was working in the engine room and he had sustained a terrible injury to the lower part of his body and he was rushed to the sick bay and apparently the Captain was rerouting the ship but ceptacemia set in and he died on board the ship.

He told me he was Richard and he gave me a message for my gran and my mom. He came over to me and ruffled my hair. He told me he was going to watch over me. It was amazing. He visited me 4 or 5 times over my lifetime. My mom passed away two years ago and she has visited me ten times. I can't keep her away.

How did your TV career come about?

I got a TV career out of the blue. I never sought it. I was giving readings in Liverpool and one day a young lady who had a recording took the tape recording away and the lady came back to me and said she was a producer of a daytime show and she would like me to appear on the show - that was for Lifetime. I went to the show and I sat on the couch and she asked me to say what I saw. She said on air that someone had told that man everything about my life but they hadn't and they told her that. Then I was given a regular part on that show. I had 5 very happy years at Granada.

People will know you most from Most Haunted - where was the scariest place you visited?

Pendle Hill where we encountered the Pendle Witches. That was a very alarming one. I was very cautious about the staff as I knew what these spirits were like. They are harming to a degree. Everyone of the crew were all walloped or hit and we all went down like skittles. We broke the shoot and we had to go about it a different way. We did another protection and it seemed to have worked.

Another time we went to a wine bar but when you walked through it and went up to the roof space then you were in a different world - it was a church. We encountered a spirit man called Godfrey Parks who had been a murderer. He murdered a lady and hung a man. He was a bad soul. Unfortunately I channeled this man against my wishes. We managed to get him out and it left me exhausted.

Is he still there?

I went back on two occasions and on the second occasion he left.

Where was the most haunted place that you visited in Ireland?

Leap Castle had a lot of harsh energies. It was alarming as there was a young family living there. Went we went in we didn't know any of the history of the place. I saw a woman dressed in a long purple gown - I could see from the dress that she was from a different period of time. The family who lived there could see what was being said. This woman was so startling as she was a shape shifter. She changed herself into a beast with a snout and she was covered with hair. I found out later that the woman had practiced dark arts in her day and she was able to change her shape.

The owner of the castle screamed out 'stop the camera's, Derek's brought it back after 8 years'. We stopped the cameras and we had a chat with them and they said all about the experiences that they had when they moved in. They described how she used to change her shape.

I explained to them that I would sort this problem out. So I came back again I cleansed the place and now she is gone.

Are you able to just be Derek or do you always see ghosts?

Many years ago my grandmother showed me the opening and closing - it was a discipline I learned many years ago. I only open up to the spiritual realm when I am ready to. When I am ordinary Derek - the husband, the father, and the grandfather - I am just an ordinary man.

Do any of your children or grandchildren have the gift?

My grandson Daniel who is 17 he has the gift and he has done exactly what I did and said 'No I don't want to be doing that'. Daniel wants to be the world's best architect.

Do spirits always have a message?

The spirits always have a message - when we have guests in the audience the spirits just want to say 'I am happy, please be happy for me and you will join me one day'. Then they disappear and they go back to their lovely spiritual life.

Tell me about the Michael Jackson séance?

I wasn't given long enough for it. I was only given 36 minutes. When you conduct a séance any medium will tell you, you have got to give the spirit person time. I wasn't given long enough and Michael was cut short.

A lot of people heard what Michael told me. Michael's grandfather spoke to me - he had been a very religious man and he said my grandson was not a paedophile. He was different, he was strange, he was still like a child himself and he enjoyed the company of children himself. I believed him because you can't tell lies when you are from the spirit world.

I said to the TV crew that we could not guarantee that Michael would come through and you can't turn on a switch. If Michael didn't want to come he wouldn't come. We were so fortunate to get him. We got such a mix of reactions from different quarters.

What do you say to the people you doubt you and your abilities?

It is something they have to live with themselves and whatever they want to say about mediumship - our loved ones want to make contact with us to let us know they are not in this eternal sleep that religion tells you that it is - they are very busy people. They love nothing better to tell their loved ones that they are not just a picture on the wall or a memory - I am alive, I am alive and you will be when you join me one day and you will have your own proof. Those skeptics will never get the truth till they pass over.

What will you be doing in the Helix - on Friday?

I am going to go to the people in the audience and talk to their loved ones. After doing a show like that I am exhausted.

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