Apple TV+ is looking into the story of the most famous poltergeist haunting in history in its brand new four-part series The Enfield Poltergeist.


From the makers of STILL: A Michael J Fox Movie, the docuseries will tell the riveting story combining more than 250 hours of rare audio archive, meticulous recreation of the setting of the haunting and original interviews with the people impacted by the case.

In 1977, the terrifying haunting of an everyday family in Enfield, London, dominated the headlines across the UK and had a tremendous impact on an entire generation of children.

The chilling story has inspired fictionalised depictions of the case, including the film The Conjuring 2 and the three-part drama series, The Enfield Haunting starring Timothy Spall, Eleanor Worthington Cox and Juliet Stevenson.

As well as this, there's been two stage plays on the case, and it's been mentioned in books.

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But, what actually happened?

As the documentary comes to Apple TV+, read on for the true story behind the Enfield Poltergeist.

The Enfield Poltergeist true story: What happened to Janet and Margaret Hodgson?

The Enfield Poltergeist was a claim of supernatural activity at 284 Green Street in London's Enfield between 1977 and 1999.

At the centre of the ghostly disturbance were sisters Janet and Margaret Hodgson, who were aged 11 and 13 at the time.

In August 1977, single parent Peggy Hodgson called the police to her rented home at 284 Green Street in Enfield, London, claiming she had seen furniture moving and two of her four children – Janet Margaret – had heard knocking sounds on the wall.

A police officer reported witnessing a chair "wobble and slide", but "could not determine the cause of the movement".

Further claims included loud noises, thrown toys, overturned chairs, children levitating, and disembodied voices.

More than 30 people, including the Hodgsons's neighbours, paranormal investigators and journalists, said they saw heavy furniture moving by itself, the sisters seeming to levitate several feet off the ground, and objects being thrown across the room. Many also heard and recorded knocking sounds and voices.

There are many recordings from within the house, including one of Janet, who has a naturally high-pitched voice, suddenly and inexplicably starting to speak with a gruff voice.

The story was regularly covered in national newspapers until reports came to an end in 1979, following an 18-month period.

Was the Enfield Poltergeist real?

Some members of the Society for Psychical Research (SPR), such as inventor Maurice Grosse and writer Guy Lyon Playfair, believed the haunting to be genuine, while others such as Anita Gregory and John Beloff were "unconvinced" after finding evidence that the girls may had faked incidents for the benefit of journalists.

However, proliferation of recordings and independent witness accounts have meant that nobody has been able to entirely debunk the girls’ stories.

Where are Janet and Margaret Hodgson now?

Olivia Booth-Ford as Janet Hodgson in The Enfield Poltergeist
Olivia Booth-Ford as Janet Hodgson in The Enfield Poltergeist. Apple TV+

Janet and Margaret have since returned to the Enfield home they grew up in.

The house in Enfield is now owned by another family, but the sisters returned in 2016 as part of the making of The Conjuring 2.

In a clip from the visit, Janet said: “It is very strange being back, it brings back a lot of memories. I can recall the chest of drawers starting shuffling and it moved towards the door. One particular day I was seen levitating.”

Most recently, the sisters worked closely with Apple TV+ on the new four part documentary.

Speaking exclusively to, the show's director, co-executive producer Jerry Rothwell, revealed how "important" it was to involve the families.

Rothwell explained: "It's really important. I think there are sort of two centres to this story. One is our way into the series, which is through Maurice Grosse and through the outsider coming into the house, and the other is what's happening for that family.

"These were like a set of really traumatic events that happened, particularly to Janet and Margaret at the centre of the story as teenagers. And those events will certainly have shaped aspects of their lives ever since, particularly because of the media interest in it.

"So I felt that we were going to take media interest and sort re-explore the story. What we didn't want to do is to kind of add to that load of kind of sensationalist misrepresentation that's happened in the past, so it felt important to work really closely with them, and towards the end of the series, they come into the series as adults, and we learn about the legacy and their sense of those events now."

The Enfield Poltergeist is streaming now on Apple TV+. Start your seven-day Apple TV+ free trial.

To see what else is on with our TV Guide. Also visit our dedicated Documentaries hub for more news.


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