Prized toy collection sells for more than $100k

JESSICA TASMAN-JONES
Last updated 05:00 23/03/2012
Toy model cars
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ROLLING COLLECTION: A few of the more than 6000 toy cars the late David Cowie owned.

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A toy car collection has returned more than $100,000 for the family of an elderly man.

Aucklander David Cowie’s 62-year-long hobby ended when he died last year aged 74.

Beginning with his first pay packet as a paperboy, at the age of 12, Cowie collected models such as Dinkys, Corgi's, Winross and Tekno.

The collection of more than 6000 cars was auctioned at Dunbar Sloane over two days last week, earning a total $108,000.

The auction attracted bids from around the world, including Switzerland, the UK and Australia, with items won by a number of successful bidders.

Several items went for more than $1000, including a boxed Mobil Gas tanker for $1200 and a boxed Australian Bedford bus for $1100.

According to family, as a young boy Cowie spent every spare note or coin adding to his collection and most were kept with their original boxes.

When family members cleaned out Cowie's home after his death last September, they found cars in draws, filing cabinets, his wardrobe and even the linen cupboard.

Ahead of the auction his sister Barbara Brooks said Cowie wasn't just interested in toys and travelled to car racing grounds around the world to watch Bathurst, the Brickyard 400 and Le Mans.

She said she often told him he should sell his collection so he could travel to see another passion of his - the Tour de France.

"I used to say to him 'why don't you go and sell that junk in the garage', because I used to say he was a hoarder, and I'd say 'we could go to France'."

"And he used to just laugh."

Cowie did not marry or have children and the money from last week’s auction will be distributed among his extended family.

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- Fairfax Media

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