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As a paranormal investigator Packer leads a team of researchers at the recently opened Haunted Antiques Paranormal Research Centre in the Leicestershire town of Hinckley.

Packer began collecting antiques a year ago, particularly from sources including Sims Vintage Antiques Centre in Wootton Wawen, Warwickshire, and wanted to relocate his collection to larger premises.

Talking to ATG about the 50 pieces in the museum, which he believes have a spiritual presence, he said: “I find myself drawn to items as if I’m being guided by my spirit guides.

“These are objects which we believe have a lot of emotion and spiritual energy around them. I research these to see if they are haunted or hold attachments.”

Packer added: “There have been many paranormal occurrences around the objects and in the building, from footsteps and voices being heard – there’s a set of stairs in the corridor where we picked up a lot of energy. ’’

War relics

According to Packer, the most spirit-strong pieces in the museum are a Victorian doctor’s bag and two items from the Second World War: a child’s gas mask and a wheelchair which came from a rehabilitation hospital.

Visitors are encouraged to record their feelings in a day book and the museum is taking bookings from paranormal groups interested in overnight investigations. The museum in Regent Street has been very busy since it opened last month – and is likely to become even more so after Packer appeared on ITV’s This Morning a few weeks ago.

He describes the centre as “a brand-new concept in the already huge paranormal field”.

It could also be said to offer a strange new concept in the field of antiques.

Contact neil_packer2@hotmail.com about the museum or visit facebook.com/hauntedresearch