Rare Star Wars toy could ‘easily’ smash guide price, say auctioneers

A rare Star Wars toy which was stored in a loft for nearly 40 years could “easily” smash its guide price of £350, auctioneers have said.

Hansons Auctioneers in Derbyshire believe the final price of the Tie Bomber from The Empire Strikes Back could “skyrocket into orbit”.

The die-cast metal toy, untouched and in its original box, goes on sale at the Etwall-based auction house on June 20 with a guide price of £250-£350.

The toy from The Empire Strikes Back (Hansons Auctioneers/PA)

Experts believe the “Authentic Imperial Spacecraft” could perform like 60 vintage Palitoy Star War toys which more than trebled their original estimate of £2,000-£3,000 last year to sell for £9,240.

The 77-year-old owner of the Tie Bomber, from Coalville, Leicestershire, who did not wish to be named, said: “My son used to like Star Wars and I often bought toys home for him.

“For some reason, this one was never opened and I found it in the loft. If I bought it in 1983 it’s been there for 36 years.”

Steve Fulford, a toy expert at Hansons, said: “I’m really excited about this. The Tie Bomber is the rarest of the die-cast Stars Wars toys and few have survived in their sealed boxes.

Steve Fulford (Hansons Auctioneers/PA)

“The toy was only released in America and in relatively small numbers. Around 75,000 were made. The spacecraft appeared for a few seconds in The Empire Strikes Back and it’s thought its minor role in the film led to poor sales and the cancellation of the product in 1981.

“It’s amazing to find one but it should be no surprise it’s turned up in Coalville. It was once home to the Palitoy factory which produced Star Wars toys and the owner of the item used to work there.

“With the huge demand for Star Wars toys Hansons has witnessed in the last 12 months, the price could skyrocket into orbit.”

- Press Association

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