Residual hauntings are one of the most common forms of haunting and are essentially a playback of a past event which may have been traumatic, a life-altering or possibly even routine that took place at the location. The events create an impression, a disturbance or an imprint on the atmosphere of the location which later takes the form of a residual haunting.
With an intelligent or interactive haunting, a spirit entity will be aware of the real world and will be capable of interacting with it in some way, while with a residual haunting, this will not happen and the event is very much like a video or a recording, playing over and over again. There is no entity present with this type of haunting and therefore, there can be no interaction or communication.
Residual hauntings are no more than an expression or a manifestation of stored energy in some way and theories suggest that they can be triggered in a number of ways, including for example by objects or on a particular date or at a particular time. Some theories also suggest that they may in fact be triggered as a result of increased energy levels at the location.
Residual hauntings may include sounds, visual aspects and even smells. Very often, they may be apparent as no more than an unexplained noise that repeats over and over gain.
There have been many cases of residual hauntings reported near the sites of battles and in old prisons. Examples of residual hauntings include the ghost of Anne Boleyn in the Tower of London and the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall.