Lost-in-post items go un­der the ham­mer

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - AUCTIONS - AL­LI­SON BRAY

HALF a dozen bot­tles of cham­pagne, an­other half dozen of Cana­dian whisky, a Rolex watch, Gucci hand­bags and a model train set are just some of the items that got lost in the post and which are to go un­der the ham­mer to­day.

They are among hun­dreds of mostly gift items that are posted each month but can’t be de­liv­ered by An Post (Ire­land’s post of­fice) be­cause of a wrong ad­dress, lack of re­turn ad­dress or a changed ad­dress.

The items are held for up to six months while a team in Kil­bar­rack, north Dublin, do ev­ery­thing they can to re­turn the items to the sen­der or track down the ad­dressee, ac­cord­ing to a post of­fice spokes­woman.

“Ev­ery­thing hu­manly pos­si­ble has been done,” she said.

When all else fails, the items are sent to Her­man and Wilkin­son Auc­tion House in Rath­mines, south Dublin, where they are auc­tioned. The house runs sales of the lost prop­erty twice a year.

The com­pany’s head porter, Ben Simp­son, said some un­usual items had gone un­der the ham­mer since it be­gan auc­tion­ing off the lost items more than 20 years ago.

“You never know what you’ll get,” he said re­cently.

“The most un­usual thing we got was an en­tire mo­tor­bike that was dis­sem­bled.”

Other in­ter­est­ing items in­cluded a Samu­rai sword, bi­cy­cles, tents, a con­sign­ment of 120 boxes of con­doms and sex toys.

Some of the quirky items that are go­ing on the block in­clude four large tom-tom drums, a wet­suit, a signed print of The Ti­tanic, an elec­tric floor­washer and a set of fish hooks.

Some high-end items are also up for grabs, in­clud­ing a Rolex watch – the au­then­tic­ity of which has yet to be de­ter­mined – a pair of women’s boots from depart­ment store Har­vey Ni­chols that still bears the price tag, a Chanel watch, two Gucci hand­bags, a Burberry hand­bag, a set of Ping golf clubs and sil­ver jew­ellery.

The auc­tion, which takes place at 6.30pm, tends to draw a lot of mar­ket traders as well as bar­gain hun­ters.

All pro­ceeds from the auc­tion go back to An Post. – Ir­ish In­de­pen­dent

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