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At £4000, the genuine Beatles for sale

15 June 2004Written by ATG Reporter

THE large sums of money rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia collectors are prepared to part with for a complete set of Beatles autographs inevitably means the market is peppered with fakes. The watertight provenance of an early Beatles extended play record, Twist and Shout, Parlophone, 1963, signed to the sleeve by the Fab Four, was key to its success at Biddle & Webb’s (15% buyer’s premium) 511-lot sale of toys and juvenilia in Birmingham on May 21.

The record, shown right, had belonged to the vendor's aunt who stayed at the same Jersey hotel as the Beatles on their 1963 tour to the island.

Interestingly, the two songs written by the Beatles on the four-song disc are credited to McCartney-Lennon rather than the other way round, a matter of precedence which has much exercised Paul's mind more recently.

Estimated to fetch £1000-1200 after being brought into a valuation day, the record was contested by collectors before going at £4000 to a specialist dealer.

Another area in which collectors will part with good money, and which has also attracted the fakers, is railwayana. Biddle & Webb specialist Adrian Mackwell pointed out that even in the '60s and '70s copies were being made of cast metal plaques from steam engines. However, collectors who viewed plaque No.6319, with brass numbers on a black background and marked engine class 2.6.0, were confident of its originality.

Consigned from the estate of a railwayana enthusiast who had paid around £800-1000 for it in the last decade, its cautious £200-300 estimate tempted several collectors who bid on the telephone and left bids on the book. It sold to one of them at £1400.

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