It has long been said the ghost of Mary Sutton can be seen at her former Sturt Street store, hovering near the door or sitting upstairs with a nice cup of tea.
Suttons House of Music, built in 1891 by the famed inventor Henry Sutton and turned into a music shop on advice from his mother Mary, is said to be haunted – but by friendly types of spirits.
For example, children, who subsequently dematerialise, are sometimes seen running up and down the stairs.
So it seems natural – or perhaps supernatural – that Suttons should be the only venue in the state taking part in this Sunday’s International Ghost Hunting Day.
Deb Robinson from Twisted History will lead a paranormal investigation at the iconic venue, helping contribute to the US-based event’s attempt to create a Guinness World Record of biggest ghost hunt ever.
Ghost hunts will occur simultaneously across the world, with each event live-streaming online back to the Scarefest festival in Kentucky.
Mrs Robinson said each site would have a medium to create “a bridge of consciousness across the world to the other side”.
“All the evidence is being uploaded into a world wide database,” she said.
Mrs Robinson will use a parabolic microphone to pick up extra noise such as footsteps or whispers in the distance, an Ovilus, a machine that ghosts can allegedly use to turn into human words, a KII, which measures electro-magnetic frequencies, an electric parascope, which measures static energy, and a number of other impressive instruments.
Suttons owner Dani Fry said her customers had often reported strange goings-on. She said Mary had designed the venue and had the foresight to start a music business.
Her son had built her Ballarat’s first hydraulic lift after she had a stroke – an area of the venue she is said to still haunt.
Anyone is welcome to join in the ghost hunt this Sunday from 1pm. Entry is $10, with all proceeds being donated to Ballarat Wildlife Park to help upgrade the wombat enclosure.