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Antiques dealer finds 200,000 lead soldiers worth £80,000 to £100,000 in house clearance in Sawbridgeworth



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An antiques dealer had a shock when he turned up at a house clearance in Sawbridgeworth to find a collection of 200,000 lead soldiers worth an estimated £80,000 to £100,000.

Nick Crooks, from Antiques and Chic in London Road, told the Indie he found boxes of the soldiers all over the house, in cupboards, wardrobes, in the loft and the garage.

A relative of the man who lived in the house contacted him after his death asking Nick if he was interested in the soldiers.

Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293217)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293217)

"The lady was going to throw it all in the skip, but after watching an episode of Salvage Hunters on TV in which we were featured she contacted me," said Nick.

When he arrived at the house he was stunned to discover the vast collection of soldiers and other military items stored all over the property. There were items from every conflict and force from Napoleonic figures and cannons to members of the Royal Marines.

He was told the man was a hoarder, collecting the military pieces from childhood.

Antiqies and Chic owner Nick Crooks with some of the soldiers (55153715)
Antiqies and Chic owner Nick Crooks with some of the soldiers (55153715)

Among the collection are limited edition sets of soldiers made by William Britains. These included sets of the Duke of York's Own Lancers, Welsh Guards, Gordon Highlanders and a model of Queen Elizabeth II on horseback to mark her Golden Jubilee.

The slogan on the Britains box sets boasts of "detail, quality and authenticity since 1893". Besides the military collections there were also Dinky toy models of cars and airplanes.

"There were four toy shops full," said Nick. "You're never going to see a collection like this."

He has put the items for sale on his website and will be splitting the proceeds with the family.

Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293207)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293207)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293209)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293209)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293211)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293211)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293215)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293215)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293213)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293213)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293198)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293198)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293205)
Some of the collection of soldiers and other miltary items found by Nick Crookes (55293205)
Some of the lead soldiers found during a shoue clearance in Sawbridgeworth (55153713)
Some of the lead soldiers found during a shoue clearance in Sawbridgeworth (55153713)
Some of the lead soldiers found during a shoue clearance in Sawbridgeworth (55153711)
Some of the lead soldiers found during a shoue clearance in Sawbridgeworth (55153711)
Some of the lead soldiers found during a shoue clearance in Sawbridgeworth (55153705)
Some of the lead soldiers found during a shoue clearance in Sawbridgeworth (55153705)
Some of the lead soldiers found during a shoue clearance in Sawbridgeworth (55153709)
Some of the lead soldiers found during a shoue clearance in Sawbridgeworth (55153709)


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