Antique vampire-slaying kit complete with crucifixes and holy water up for auction

An antique vampire slaying kit containing crucifixes, a pistol, a dagger, two stakes, silver bullets and an axe is set to fetch £1,000 at auction.

The wooden box, which also includes a prayer book, rosary beads and bottles of holy water, was owned by a retired driving instructor.

The tools and holy objects were snapped up at an international antiques fair in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire.

The 68-year-old owner, from Sutton-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, said: “I bought my vampire-slaying kit about 18 months ago at an international antiques fair in Peterborough.

“It just caught my eye. I like quirky items. It’s a fun piece and a great talking point.

“I’ve done my research and items like this are created by putting together a selection of objects relating to the vampire myth.

“I hadn’t heard of one having an axe before. I suppose it’s something to fall back on if the silver bullet doesn’t work.

“I think this kit could kill zombies as well as vampires.

“I’m well aware it was created just for fun. I’ve had my enjoyment out of it now. I have
shown it to all my friends.

“It’s someone else’s turn to enjoy this quirky collectible.”

The anti-vampire kit is going under the hammer at Hansons Auctioneers and is expected to fetch between £800 and £1,000 on September 26.

Auctioneer Charles Hanson said: “This vampire-slaying kit is pure theatre.

“Examples, some older than others, emerge from time to time and always spark major interest.

“The one which achieved £16,900 was owned by a former peer of the realm, Lord William Malcolm Hailey, who lived from 1872 to 1969.

“It made headlines all over the world and, by sheer coincidence, it too was found in Nottinghamshire.

“These items are sought after for their novelty value and because the vampire myth is still so popular today.

“The fascination with all things dark and mysterious means vampires makes
appearances in contemporary TV shows, films and literature.

“However, references to them go back more than 200 years.

“The creatures, which are said to need human blood to survive, are enshrined in European folklore and embedded in superstition.

“The publication of John Polidori’s The Vampyre in 1819 had a major impact and that was followed by Bram Stoker’s 1897 classic Dracula.

“If the need arose to kill a vampire particular methods and tools were advised.

“Items of religious significance, such as crucifixes and Bibles, were said to repel the monsters, hence their presence in these kits.

“Some are believed to be late-Victorian novelties but this example is more recent.

“It may have been created during the era of the classic Hammer Film gothic horror movies which were made from the mid-1950s to 1970s.

“The mix of items confirm its composed nature as some objects are from different centuries.

“The scissors are early 20th century but the flintlock pistol is mainly 19th century, as is the prayer book.

“Also, the potion bottles have been artificially aged.

“Other items include silver-painted lead balls, three crucifixes, rosary beads, a syringe, opera glasses and brass candlesticks.

“It’s a quirky, weird and wonderfully curiosity that will appeal to many bidders.”