'I'm being watched': Paranormal investigator notes presence in 'haunted' Burnaby mansion
On a fall afternoon in October, paranormal investigator Amanda Quill was wandering the halls of Overlynn Mansion alone, when she heard someone whisper her name.
The soft voice alarmed her enough that she felt the need to leave the opulent Burnaby home to catch her breath.
Built in 1909, the Tudor Revival’s splendid interior is often used by film and television production companies.
Overlynn also has a reputation for being ghostly.
“This is a haunted house. This is a classic haunted mansion,” said Greg Mansfield, author of Ghosts of Vancouver.
Visitors and employees have reported hearing a man coughing and seeing a little girl in a white dress appear and then suddenly vanish.
The sight of the child frightened a cleaner so much she told her boss “that she could never come into this house again she was so scared.”
In the 1930s, the home was sold to the Sisters of Charity of Halifax, who ran a boarding school for girls. Tiny sinks and a bathtub are still in the attic.
“It’s just such a contrast to the rest of the house,” said Vancouver true crime author and host of the Cold Case Canada podcast Eve Lazarus. “You come up to this attic and it’s got this horrific floor and it’s boarded up, and you can see where the children must have slept.”
In January 2020, video equipment used by a Vancouver-based paranormal investigation team captured what looked like an arm swinging from behind a wall near Overlynn’s grand staircase.
“Holy crap!” exclaimed members of Coldspotters Paranormal, who examined the visuals carefully and swore no one was near the area.
After a short walk, Quill, who swears she heard someone whisper her name, returned to the home for an interview with CTV News, but she was still uneasy. Standing on the staircase, she looked frequently over her shoulder to the top floor.
“I have this overwhelming sensation that I’m being watched,” said Quill.
The home is owned by Action Line Housing Society who run the Seton Villa Retirement Centre. Their team is always looking for new uses for Overlynn, in order to maintain the heritage building.
Some people might laugh at the idea that’s it’s haunted, but few can deny that it is beautiful.