Donald Duck plaque, £3000 at Bushey Auctions.

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He went on to become one of Disney’s most recognisable and popular cartoon characters.

Merchandise was available from very early on. A large composition wall plaque of rectangular form, 2ft 11in x 23½in (90 x 60cm), offered at Bushey Auctions (20% buyer’s premium) of Hertfordshire on February 23 was surely one of the first examples produced.

Not only did it portray Donald with a longer neck and beak – how the character was depicted at first – but it had a notable provenance.

Richard Kluk from the auction room said: “The lot was consigned from a private home in north-west London. It was purchased in the 1930s by the vendor’s grandparents to hang in the nursery. It was then passed onto the vendor when her mother passed away last year.”

Disney collectors certainly spotted it and “from the time the catalogues were live on the online platforms we replied to 34 condition requests”.

After a bidding battle between the internet and two phones it sold online for £3000 – 10 times the top estimate – to a US collector of Walt Disney memorabilia.