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The sale at C&T on December 11 included an unexpected bid of £1700 for three unopened Airfix models including this D-Day set,

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The key was the presence of a D-Day set 1700 in original bubble pack (above) – one of the 1/72 scale Attack Force series models made by Airfix in 1969. They are among the rarest known to the collecting hobby.

Accompanying this item was kit A17V, the Lee/Grant Tank in original bag from 1967 (commonly available at £10-15), and set 1706, the Roman Fort, in original box from 1969 (typically priced at around £50). The winning bid came via thesaleroom.com.

Airfix first began producing plastic scale model kits for the mass market in 1952 although the earliest example dates from three years earlier.

In 1949 the company was commissioned to create a promotional model of a TE20 tractor for distribution to Ferguson sales representatives. To increase sales and lower production costs the model was sold in kit form at Woolworths. It, too, can sell for three-figure sums.

The sale took place on December 11 and the buyer’s premium was 20%.