Express & Star

Owner of rare toy robot delighted to discover it could fetch £10,000 at auction

Lee Garrett, of Edinburgh, said the Japanese toy had been set to go to a charity store before she was told what it was potentially worth.

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Radicon robot

A toy robot that lay in a loft for decades and was destined for a charity shop could fetch up to £10,000 at auction after being identified as a sought-after Japanese rarity.

Lee Garrett, of Edinburgh, said she and her brother “couldn’t believe our ears” when they were told the toy’s valuation.

She was cleaning her mother’s house when she found the Radicon robot that she and her siblings played with as children more than 50 years ago and planned to give to charity.

Ms Garrett said: “When we were clearing my mum’s house prior to her move to Edinburgh, we piled up a load of toys and other bits and pieces to give to the charity shop.

The robot is a rare item made in the 1950s (McTear’s Auction/PA)

“The robot had been in the loft for decades and it was only when my brother said he had seen a similar toy online that we decided to take it out of the charity box and look into it a bit more.

“We were hoping the robot may be worth a few pounds but when we heard what it was, and the valuation, we couldn’t believe our ears.

“We asked mum what she wanted to do with it and she said that it should be sold and the proceeds split between her five children.

“I would like to think that the lucky new owner may get as much fun playing with the robot as we did when we were kids, although I have a feeling it may be kept well out of reach of sticky fingers.”

The robot was produced in 1957 by Japanese toymaker Masudaya.

A member of the “Gang of Five” robots that were only available by special purchase in the late 1950s, it was first in the set to be produced, giving it heightened status.

Lee Garrett and her family were shocked at how much the robot is worth (Handout/PA)

The robot is now set to headline McTear’s Antiques & Interiors auction in Glasgow on April 7 and is expected to fetch up to £10,000.

McTear’s specialist, James Spiridion, added: “Simply put, the Masudaya Radicon is the grandfather of tin plate robots and space toys generally. Very few of these fascinating toys have ever come to auction and to find one complete with box and controller is a rare find indeed.

“First edition toys, particularly ground-breaking pieces like this, are becoming more and more collectable and I am sure there will be a lot of interest from collectors at home and overseas when it goes under the hammer.

“The robot retains both its striking controller – complete with two of the original coloured antennae – and, most importantly, the box, with its fabulous artwork evoking the sense of awe and wonder that sci-fi brought in the 1950s.”

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