I HAVE a confession. I’m a bit of a scaredy cat.

Which is probably why when a group of paranormal investigators started asking ‘is anybody there’ in the pitch black cellar near to where they carted dying soldiers to the hospital, I started feeling just a little uneasy.

VIP Paranormal Investigations spent the night at Health Hydro one Saturday night, a rabbit warren of Victorian rooms by day, and a terrifying maze at night.

The 10-strong team, led by Kathy Penticost for this investigation, rigged up equipment in The Mall – the old entrance to the baths – the Turkish baths, the cellar, and the main swimming pool area in the hopes of seeing, hearing, and feeling spirits from another plane.

“We don’t like to know before we do the investigation a lot about the history of a place,” said Kathy, explaining the team carries out an investigation around once a month.

“I mean if we capture something and it later turns out to be linked to the history, all the better, but we want to go in with an open mind.

“We never fabricate anything either. Sometimes we get nothing at all and other times we get a lot of activity.

“And we don’t automatically assume it’s paranormal activity, we actually do a lot to try and debunk it, to see if there could be any other explanation. Like, if we hear a loud noise, we check to see if it was made by one of us somewhere else in the building.”

The baths in Milton Road first opened in 1892 as a health pool for the workers living in the Railway Village opposite.

And in the First World War it became an overflow for the hospital based in the Central Community Centre – and a final resting place for those who didn’t make it.

Soldiers offloaded from the nearby railway station were brought through tunnels beneath the road to the baths, where they were either sent to the wards or directly to the morgue.

Which is probably why, as the last swimmers left Health Hydro for the night, the creaky old building seemed to take a step back in time to the war years.

Among the team’s equipment on Saturday night – which included electro-magnetic field detectors designed to spot fluctuations in energy, and digital recorders which aim to capture voices unheard by the human ear, was medium Kaz Smith.

Even before the investigation started, she said she was aware of the presence of multiple spirits in the building.

“The cellar seemed very active, there was definitely a playful spirit down there, he definitely wanted to have some fun with us,” she said.

“His name is William and he was a doctor here during the war. He was definitely very mischievous, a bit of a sexual predator.

“He really wanted John out of the room, he was poking him to get out of the room, so he could have the women to himself.”

During the night, the team also made contact with some of the soldiers treated at the baths – including George, who died in the hospital after being shot in the chest in France.

Kathy said: “Myself and two other members saw a shadow figure in the main pool in the bottom corner.

“And when we conducted the seance we heard the remod go off from the mall.

“Then we heard footsteps in the main reception.”

There was also a very religious doctor, who, unlike George, did not want to speak to Kaz at all, and instead brooded, watching in the corner of the Mall.

And perhaps that explains why the camera in that room malfunctioned, as though someone had paused the recording and started draining the battery.

Kathy said: “All in all this building has several spirits from good and bad and adult and child.

“This is a place we will be re-visiting.”