This week we travel back to New Zealand to meet Mark Wallbank, founder and lead investigator of Haunted Auckland. Mark has been keenly researching the paranormal since the 1980's sometimes with other people, and at times by himself.
I asked Mark how he became interested in the paranormal ?
“Ive always been interested in everything outside of the 'norm'. Normal to me, was boring. As soon as I could read, my research began. UFOs, Cryptozoology, Ghosts and all of life’s mysteries. My world suddenly became a lot bigger and I found I had many, MANY questions that needed answering.”
Have you had anything paranormal occur in your life? (if so, what has happened)
“A few things like a dark shadow approaching me, going through me and then disappearing behind me, many years ago....many experiences with super icey cold spots. Nothing I would consider life changing or amazing though. Just a few neat experiences that made the moment that little bit more interesting to me.”
Why did you become an investigator/ researcher?
“Because my questions weren’t being answered . My school teachers had no answers, my parents had no answers, so I had to go and seek out some answers for myself. I used to lead a small paranormal group back in the 80s. We were unofficially called "Auckland Ghost Hunting Group" (Yeah yeah, I know. A name like that these days would raise the anger of many paranormal groups. Ghost 'hunting' seems to be a well loathed phrase in this day and age!) We were young and naive but very enthusiastic! We roamed around cemeteries and old derelict buildings and houses taking photos and recording audio. It was fun. We hung around for a couple of years until fizzling and heading out into different directions. I went solo for about 20 years, which was actually quite satisfying and character building. Then in 2010, I got the urge to be a part of a group situation again and so started piecing together a team of researchers.”
How has becoming an investigator changed your life?
“It hasn’t really changed me as a person, as I've always been passionate about the Paranormal. I guess, as I've grown, I've learnt a lot more and the more I've matured the more serious, investigative and systematic I've become in my research
I'm also a bit more focussed and hopefully a little less naive these days. My passion and enthusiasm is one thing that has never faded with age though. In fact, its growing with every new thing I discover.”
Mark and his team have done some fascinating investigations, and work closely with other teams in the area, including Core Paranormal NZ, who's founder, George, I profiled in an earlier edition.
One of the great things about the Haunted Auckland website is the detailed investigation reports of each place the team visits, these are a valuable reference tool for any other paranormal investigation team entering the same premises at a later date, or a learning tool for people just entering the field wondering how to go about writing detailed reports on cases.
Check out the Haunted Auckland website and facebook pages at the following links
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