A councillor was working late in the town hall at Vegas del Genil, on February 3rd when the air suddenly turned cold.
“It was unusually cold in the office so I put on my coat and then got up to go to bathroom,” the member of the council, who wants to remain anonymous, explained to local newspaper Ideal.
“That’s when I heard a strange rustling sound in the hallway, like someone was dragging files across the floor.”
Fearful that he had disturbed burglars and not wanting to turn on the light he took out his phone to call – initially with the intention of calling police but he then decided to take a photo of the hallway to see if someone was there.
At first glance the hallway appeared empty so he returned to his office where he examined the photograph again.
Peering closer he saw what appeared to be a ghostly apparition of a child. The image put the councillor “into a state of panic” and he locked himself in the office before sending the photograph to a Whatsapp group composed of the governing council.
A fellow councillor immediately went to the town hall to collect the shaken colleague and take him home.
Leandro Martín, the mayor of the town with a population of 10,400, initially dismissed the whole thing as a joke but the next day other council staff started to complain about the “inexplicable cold in that particular corridor” and a mechanic was even called in to check the heating was working correctly. It was.
The mayor told El Mundo that the whole thing has got out of hand. “I am a sceptic. It’s not true that it is inexplicably cold. It is a collective psychosis.”
One of the councillors invited a local Reiki practitioner to carry out a “cleansing session” in the corridor and she reported “feeling a presence”.
The "ghost story" and accompanying photo was soon circulated across the town sparking a host of rumours, inlcuding a fake news report that a little girl had died there years ago when the building was a school.
The mayor said he has been inundated by requests from the residents to call in ghost hunters or a priest to conduct an exorcism.
But he insists that “earthly matters” remain his priority. “How can I justify hiring a medium when I have residents without electricity?”