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With models in the collection dating from 1937 to the early 1970s, the top lot of the Kinchen special sale was a rare blue Dinky Toys 935 Leyland Octopus Flat Truck with Chains which sold for £2300 at the June 13-14 auction.

“It was a well-received sale,” said Motley, “but with a few problems regarding condition. It seems John did not care greatly about the value as he had a tendency to 'enhance' his models, sometimes with a personalised numberplate! He wanted as complete a collection as possible and condition was not important. Having said that he had some mint and rare examples.”

Dinky gift sets remain popular today and the boxed example in the Kinchen collection, Gift Set No 121 Goodwood Sports Cars, was knocked down for £1800.

Other highlights include two rare South African issues, a Dinky 139 Ford Consul Cortina which took £800 and a cream Dinky 194 Bentley Coupe that reached £1100.

A boxed Dinky 408 Big Bedford Lorry, in pink with cream back and hubs sold for a good £1800, while a boxed Dinky 135 Triumph 2000 Saloon in blue with white roof and red interior, suitcase, handbag and spare wheel sold for £950.

Motley continued: “There were many other lots that fetched over £1000 and among some of the other surprises were the Nicky toys - an Indian brand of Dinky which are very basic in comparison. Some letters from Meccano sent to John at his home in Portsmouth made £300 and empty trade boxes ended up pleasingly making hundreds of pounds.”

Toy expert Bob Leggett of Special Auction Services commented: "The golden era of Dinky Toys was probably the 1950s to the 1960s and there are a lot of people who are in their 60s who are still collecting now they have disposable income. They're the baby-boom generation. We were sad to hear of John’s death as he was a well-known character in the toy world.”

Two-thirds of the Kinchen collection found buyers in the room, with £42,000 going to online bidders on thesaleroom.com

Buyer’s premium 18% + VAT