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'The Hawthorn Cross & other Antiques Ghost Stories', a book of spooky tales by silver dealer Michael Baggott.

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It includes passages such as The Skeleton Clock and The Hinoki Box.

“I had a recent bereavement which coincided with Christmas and unexpectedly writing proved an escape from the day-to-day melancholia of it all,” says Baggott.

He cites a long-standing interest in the works of MR James, the medievalist and scholar known for his tales mixing modern settings and antiquarian interest.

“I hadn’t written any fiction before, but these short stories just seemed to keep popping into my head and it was just a case of writing them down as they ‘happened’,” Baggott adds. “I think that antiques and ghost stories do go naturally hand in hand.”

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Michael Baggott, who has published a book of spooky tales for the trade.

When he shared the stories on social media, he was encouraged by friends to publish.

“After a bit of thought it seemed one way for me to personally mark my mum’s passing, so I ordered a short run to be printed and dedicated them to her memory,” Baggott says. “I am more than a little dumbfounded to find that half of them already sold in the first day.”

Copies are available on eBay with a price of £20. At the time of writing, it was also scheduled to be available on Amazon and Waterstones by this week.