Rare Pokémon cards are estimated to raise £30,000 at Derbyshire auction

It’s V for victory – and Victory Industries – as a cavalcade of toy vehicles made by this highly-regarded manufacturer have rolled into our toy auction, writes auctioneer Charles Hanson.

Monday, 5th July 2021, 2:59 pm

My toy team members David Wilson-Turner and Steve Fulford at the Etwall Auction Centre couldn’t be busier. They’re cataloguing everything from a lifetime collection of 100 Victory Industries vehicles to a Victorian carousel horse and Pokémon cards worth tens of thousands of pounds.

That sums up how diverse this collectors’ market is - and why it will thrive forever. Just like the music memorabilia market, it changes with each generation and is fuelled by nostalgia.

And that initial nostalgia-packed purchase is often the first of many. Consequently, we occasionally see large single-owner toy collections or inherited collections, as is the case with the Victory Industries feast of toys.

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David Wilson-Turner with Pokemon Fossil Set First Edition which is estimated to raise £11,000 at auction.
David Wilson-Turner with Pokemon Fossil Set First Edition which is estimated to raise £11,000 at auction.

Battery-operated and slot cars as well as remote-control vehicles feature in a collection so large that it’s being split between our July 22 and September 30 toy auctions. Star items include two Victors Vigor tractors.

The seller of this huge collection - valued at £5,000-£7,000 - is a descendant of a founding member of the Victory Industries Ltd company.

Victory Industries Ltd was started by William Warren and Gerald Burgoyne in Guildford in 1949. They were one of the few early British plastic toy companies whose models won respect for their accuracy.

When it came to toys, Victory forged a middle ground between expensive, one-off promotional models produced by companies such as Bassett-Lowke and small, mass-produced diecast models manufactured by the likes of Dinky.

Old cars are among a large collection of toy vehicles, made by Victory Industries, which will be up for auction.

Victory made models of the MG TF, the Leyland Comet truck, Hillman Minx, Standard Ten, Triumph TR2 and MG MGA, Hillman Minx and Fast 7 mobile cranes. In 1957 they produced a slot-car system similar to Scalextric and in 1958 they entered a distribution arrangement with Trix, which made 00-

gauge model railways and metal construction sets. Sadly, Victory Industries closed in 1969 but their toys live on in our saleroom.

Another item in our July 22 toy auction which illustrates the UK’s rich toy and leisure heritage is a carousel horse, possibly Victorian. Named Jock, it features original paintwork and horse-hair tail with a later twist-and-pull pole, estimate £1,500-£2,000.

Fast forward 100 years and a find in our July sale could potentially net its owner more than £30,000. The seller came across rare sealed Pokémon card sets bought for £30 each 20 years ago. The collection, which has an overall top estimate of £36,000, was discovered in a box under the stairs during a house move.

Carousel horse is estimated to raise more than £1,500 in the auction

The owner had forgotten about the items, which included a Pokémon Fossil first edition Booster Box released in 2000 containing 36 unopened packs, estimate £11,000-£12,000. He also uncovered a 2001 Pokémon Neo Discovery Unlimited Booster Box filled with 36 unopened packs, estimate £10,000-£12,000. Both boxes, imported from America, are extremely rare, particularly in their original sealed state.

Pokémon has been on a high in the collectables market for at least five years and prices have been steadily increasing. Wealthy 20- or 30-somethings like to collect these cards and hammer prices have been jaw-dropping.

Entries for the toy auction on July 22 are invited until July 9. For a free valuation email: [email protected]

Auctioneer Charles Hanson says the market for old toys is thriving.