Tony Stockwell is a medium, healer and teacher. Spontaneous and totally up-front, he hides nothing and reveals everything. He uses his gift to help people in their quest for consolation and on Wednesday, September 25, he will be returning to the Dugdale Centre in Enfield, bringing messages of comfort to those who need to hear and understand that a friend, loved one or someone they cared about can still be with them.
How did you get your big break?
I was approached to do a new series called Street Psychic for Living TV, around 15 years ago. Things just escalated from there, I also filmed Psychic Detective and Street Psychic in San Francisco. This was great as it gave me exposure to a wider audience in the USA.
When was the first time you knew that you had a gift?
Well, I was aware of spirit from a very young age, as long as I can remember really, but never had a name for it or even knew I was that different from everyone else. However, when I was 16 years old and went to my first spiritualist church it all became clear and I realised what I was seeing and that not everyone was the same.
What or who inspired you to go into your line of work?
It really just happened! When I first became involved as a teenager I knew very little about it or what I was getting into. In the years since the people who have inspired me are (the late) Gordon Higginson, medium Mavis Pittilla and actress and author Shirley MacLaine.
What do you love most about being a medium?
The diversity of the work and the diversity of the characters you meet, in this world and the next.
What makes you want to perform to people and families who have lost loved ones?
It was never a case of me wanting to perform, and it was certainly never my need to work in theatres or on television, as I am quite shy. I wanted to communicate with spirit and the rest just took its own path.
From the moment I started to develop my gift, it was as natural to me as breathing. When you are able to pass on a message to a person or family that has lost a loved one there really is no going back, as the feeling of what has happened is immense.
Do you find some occasions are easier than others?
Yes, some demonstrations are exceptional and some are a struggle. Sometimes you know why (my own state of mind, tiredness, the venue and audience) but often there isn’t a reason or thread. It just happens and you have accept it. All I do for each demonstration is prepare best I can and strive hard to make the communication clear, but sometimes despite all of this it cannot be my best.
What do you feel recipients and the rest of the audience get from one of your demonstrations of mediumship?
Hopefully, closure, healing, upliftment and, for some, a new belief that life goes on and for others a validation of their long held belief.
What would you say to anyone who is wondering whether to come to see the show?
If people haven’t seen a medium work before, come along with an open mind, you may be surprised. The phenomenon of mediumship is a powerful thing and has the ability to change lives, so why not give it the benefit of doubt?
Any advice for someone intending to attend an evening of mediumship for the first time?
Be relaxed and have no great expectation. Also, do not make your mind up about mediumship after one demonstration.
What is the best thing about having this ‘gift’?
My life is dedicated to something I absolutely love and absolutely believe in. It’s so gratifying when you see the change the work of a medium can have on some people. It’s a privilege to help them come to terms with their loss.
What do you say to people who are sceptical?
I don’t really say anything, they are as entitled to their opinions and beliefs as am I and those that do believe. It wouldn’t do for us all to be the same now, would it? There is a difference between those that are sceptical and those that are open-minded but sitting on the fence, as the latter will enquire and will often come along to a show.
Some will go away convinced and some will not, that’s just how it is. For the hardened sceptic no proof will ever be enough and they will always find a way to explain away what they have witnessed. That’s fine with me as that’s their path in life and this is mine.
What’s the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
Well, I can remember my old Nan saying to me once never to forget to moisturise you neck and elbows as they are always the first to go, and she was right about that.
In regards to my mediumistic work I can remember my old tutor, Joan, saying to me that you can only ever do your best and then you have to let it go.
Dugdale Centre, 39 London Road, Enfield, EN2 6DS, Wednesday, September 25, 7.30pm. Details: 020 8807 6680 dugdalecentre.co.uk