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Playschool's Humpty under hammer

Humpty is going under the hammer with one of the original dolls made for children's TV show Playschool expected to fetch four figures at auction.

The 53cm-high egg-shaped toy, which is being sold by Bonhams at Oxford next week, is one of three made for the BBC show which ran for more than 20 years from the mid-sixties.

Bonhams say the doll, valued at £1,200, was " an important member of the Playschool cast, taking part in almost every single episode and even receiving his very own fan mail".

The show's presenters, who included Johnny Ball, Brian Cant and Derek Griffiths, shared the screen with a regular supporting cast of soft toys including Big Ted, Little Ted, Jemima and Humpty.

There is a healthy market in TV memorabilia with recent sales including dozens of props auctioned off after a clear-out at Television Centre.

Among the items which were sold were the coat worn by Philip Glenister's character, Gene Hunt, in Ashes To Ashes, a totaliser from a Blue Peter Christmas appeal and a cardboard cut-out of Sir Bruce Forsyth used to promote Strictly Come Dancing.

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