LEGEND has it Harrisville's Royal Hotel is haunted, but a paranormal activity expert wants more proof than ghost stories before becoming a believer.
The rural pub is in the top 10 haunted sites in Australia, with most stories and sightings dating back to a devastating fire in the early 1900s.
The hotel has become internationally renowned for its reputed links with the spirit world, patrons claiming to have had glimpses of an existence beyond the grave.
The pub's history has intrigued Paranormal Paratek Queensland president Darren Davies, who will become the first to investigate the pub this weekend.
He hopes to find signs of paranormal activity within the pub's walls.
He is bringing his high-tech audio and visual equipment to detect any signs of ghosts, recording 100 hours of footage and audio clips.
"There are a lot of things that can explain paranormal activity. It can be dust or moisture in the air or other things. We are very analytical," he said.
"No one can prove beyond doubt. If they try to they are pushing boundaries of physics."
Mr Davies, 40, said he'd had his own paranormal experiences, the first when he was 14.
He said the Royal Hotel's links with paranormal activity were born of false accounts of seven deaths when the pub burnt to the ground in 1916.
Mr Davies said no lives were lost, scotching claims linking ghost sightings to the blaze.
But that doesn't mean the pub is free of paranormal presences.
While Royal Hotel manager Monika Patrick has had no brush with deceased patrons since buying the pub eight months ago, some customers have.
One had such a strong encounter she brought her family back a month later.
"She saw a short, slightly tubby looking man. He was older and had broad shoulders. She couldn't say what he was wearing," she said.
Mrs Patrick said it was not the first time they had been approached by paranormal investigators, but the others had not followed it up.
She is looking forward to the findings, which may take four weeks to deliver results.
"I'm open-minded to it, but I can't say I have seen any," she said.
- The Royal Hotel burnt down in 1916, becoming the source of the ghost stories.
- The hotel was built in 1875.
- Paranormal Paratek Queensland has $10,000 worth of equipment.
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