Rare Jawa Star Wars figure sold for £10,200
It features a vinyl cape which was swapped for cloth on later models shortly after production began.
A collector has paid more than £10,000 for a rare Star Wars figure at auction.
The Jawa figure crucially came with a vinyl cape, not a cloth one, and has never been taken out of its packaging by the seller who bought it on a market stall for pocket money prices in about 1980.
It went to an international buyer who paid £10,200 for the figure, well over the £5-6,000 estimate by Teesside-based Vectis auction house.
In a statement, the vendor said he bought the toy from a market in Bacup, Lancashire, and the stallholder advised him back then that it was rare.
“It took him weeks to find it and I remember him telling me how hard it was to locate and how rare it was and for that reason I never opened it,” he said.
“It has never been opened, out of my possession or altered in any way and I hope it goes to a collector who values just how rare a piece it is.”
Manufacturers only made a relatively small number of Jawa figures with a vinyl cape before switching to a cloth one which looked more like the characters in the films.
Collectors will pay up to £1,000 for a vinyl cape Jawa in good condition even without its original packaging.
Valuer Kathy Taylor said: “Every time we have a Star Wars sale we have a worldwide following who come to see what we have.”
Such is the demand for original Star Wars memorabilia that a collector paid £1,440 for documents relating to a sales rep’s employment at Palitoy, which made the popular figures.
Vectis had put an estimate of just £20-30 on the lot, which included the employee’s 1981 work diary, letter of employment, contract and a pay slip.