I’m Harry Potty!

My wizard col­lec­tion is filled with over 3,000 items... so far!

Chat - - Come on in! - By Tracey Ni­col-lewis, 43, from Cardiff

My house may look or­di­nary, but it’s ac­tu­ally full of magic.

You see, I’m some­thing of a Harry Pot­ter su­per-fan.

In fact, you’ll prob­a­bly find more broom­sticks and wands in my house than in the whole of Hog­warts! It all started years ear­lier, when my late hus­band Si­mon bought me the first few books about the boy wizard. Trag­i­cally, Si­mon passed away in 2005 at just 39, from an un­di­ag­nosed hole in his heart. My grief was dev­as­tat­ing. But Harry was al­ways there to make me feel bet­ter. When­ever I was low, I could just pick up a book and be trans­ported – or ap­pa­rated as Harry might say – into au­thor JK Rowl­ing’s won­der­ful world of witches and wizards.

I of­ten read the books to our son Brenden, who loved them, too.

So much so that, when we moved house, he asked if his room could be the cup­board un­der the stairs like Harry had!

Brenden grew out of his Harry Pot­ter toys as he got older but, in­stead of find­ing new homes for them, I held on to them, got some more... I’d caught the col­lect­ing bug. Be­fore you could say Volde­mort, I’d amassed ev­ery­thing from wands, robes, posters, bags, books and games. Even cups and crock­ery. Turn­ing to ebay in my quest for mag­i­cal mem­o­ra­bilia, I bagged some rare items, such as a bust of Hog­warts care­taker Ar­gus Filch and a script used by Dum­ble­dore ac­tor Michael Gam­bon.

My favourite item is an ex­tremely rare golden egg that con­tains a small pewter dragon.

De­spite my ob­ses­sion, I never ac­tu­ally re­alised just how big my

col­lec­tion was – un­til I met Martin, 41, in June 2015...

Af­ter Si­mon died, I fo­cused on rais­ing Brenden, never even con­sid­ered meet­ing any­one else. But I knew Martin through friends and, af­ter chat­ting and texting for a while, we be­came an item.

I hadn’t ac­tu­ally warned him about my love for all things Pot­ter, so he was in for a shock…

‘Blimey!’ Martin said, walk­ing into my liv­ing room, gaw­ping at my col­lec­tion. ‘Is it a lot?’ I asked, laugh­ing. With his help, I logged my trea­sures – around 3,000 items.

Most of it is set up in my liv­ing room, but I have 10 more boxes worth of mag­i­cal mer­chan­dise in the loft.

Martin even painted the liv­ing room red and yel­low – the Gryffindor house colours – for me, and put up ex­tra shelves so I could dis­play more items.

De­spite not be­ing quite as potty about Pot­ter as I am, Martin ac­com­pa­nied me to A Cel­e­bra­tion of Harry Pot­ter at Uni­ver­sal Stu­dios, Florida.

Held ev­ery year, th­ese events al­low fans to meet and cel­e­brate JK Rowl­ing’s mag­i­cal world.

The ac­tors from the films turn up, too! Last year, I met Ron Weasley ac­tor Ru­pert Grint – who was im­pressed I’d come all the way from Wales. And, this year, I got chat­ting to su­per-friendly Ja­son Isaacs, who plays Lu­cius Mal­foy.

The char­ac­ter’s a bad­die but Ja­son is so lovely, and even gave me a hug!

It’s my mis­sion to get au­to­graphs from as many of the ac­tors from the eight films as I can. So far I have 28 – in­clud­ing Mag­gie Smith, War­wick Davis and Evanna Lynch, who plays kooky Luna Love­g­ood.

I’m still hold­ing out for Daniel Rad­cliffe and Emma Wat­son!

I’d also re­ally love to meet JK Rowl­ing her­self, to thank her for cre­at­ing the won­der­ful char­ac­ters and sto­ries that have be­come so pre­cious to me in the last decade.

Brenden isn’t quite as into Pot­ter as he was as a child, but he en­joys com­ing with me to fan events and stu­dio tours.

It’s lovely to share some­thing spe­cial to­gether.

Harry Pot­ter and his ad­ven­tures led us through a very dif­fi­cult time and, for that, I’ll al­ways be grate­ful.

Harry may have saved the world from Lord Volde­mort, but he also saved me and my fam­ily.

As if by magic...

Harry led us through a very dif­fi­cult time…

Lu­mos! Just loved meet­ing Luna Love­g­ood, (Evanna Lynch)

Lovely Tom Fel­ton plays bad boy Draco Mal­foy

Mo­tor­ing with Mr Weasley (Mark Wil­liams)

Here’s to Madam Hooch, aka Zoe Wana­maker

Sir­ius about JK’S magic!

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