Curious collectables

Transformer collection
Devastator and Superion chew the fat
"It's not uncommon to see Transformers on eBay with an asking price of $3,000"
  • | by Kristian Dando

You really would be quite amazed at some of the items which people have added to their home contents policies on – not to mention their value.

We’ve fired up Covered Mag’s patented steam-powered data combobulator device to dredge up some of the more, er, interesting items folk added to their home insurance over the the past few years.

Pour yourself a mug of steaming hot tea – preferably in an ultra-collectable Italia '90 mug– grab a fondant fancy and browse on…

Bagpipes (£50,000)

Man with bagpipes

Ah, the pipes. Depending on your personal preference – and, let’s be honest, whether you’re from north or south of the border – the bagpipes either produce a stirring, rousing sound without compare, or a terrible, nerve-jangling din.

Whatever your opinion, they don’t come cheap - a set not dissimilar to this set right here was valued at £50,000. Crivens!

Dinosaurs (£30,000)


We presume that these aren’t living dinosaurs – if they were, they’d probably be better off going and having a look at pet insurance instead.

Sting’s Guitar (£15,000) / Signed picture of the Police (£1,000)

The musician Sting

Tantra-endorsing Geordie songsmith Sting certainly has a lot of staying power – in the charts, that is. He’s been knocking out global megahits since The Police formed in 1977 and shows little sign of slowing down.

A Police devotee has added a guitar which has previously been loveably strummed by the ‘Roxanne’ singer to their contents policy. Elsewhere, there was a signed photo of The Police - a must for completists...

(Photo: Ben Houdijk)

Transformers Collection (£4,000)

Transformer collection

A must-have for children of the 80s, prized ‘G1’ Transformers, like those above, are now seriously collectable.

The ‘Holy Grail’ of all Transformers collectors is the fabled Fortress Maximus – a gargantuan robot which dwarfs all others. Fancy a complete one? It’s not uncommon to see examples on eBay with an asking price of $3,000. Good luck with that.

(Photo: Simon Dando)

My Little Pony Collection (£3,000)

My Little Pony

While most young lads of the 80s were into Transformers, it was My Little Pony which got girls – and a few boys – into a raging funk at Toys-R-Us. There’s nothing little about this collection – valued at a whopping three grand.

Signed Banksy Print (£3,000)

A Banksy image

Bristolian street artist Bansky polarises the opinions of culture vultures.

But whatever your view, he’s got quite a following - as the daily roadblock queues at his exhibition in his home city a few years ago testified. This is exactly why a signed print – yes, a PRINT – of his work is valued at £3,000. Not bad for a bit of stencilling…

(Photo: Eadmundo)

Smoking Pipe Collection (£10,000)

Man with moustache and pipe

Smoking is neither big nor clever, and it’s a sure fire way to make your life insurance more expensive. But heck, if you’re going to do it, you may as well do it in style. And what better way to puff your way to an early grave than with a collection of outrageous smoking pipes worth a cool ten grand.

You’d certainly be in good company - past winners of the British Pipe Smoking Council’s coveted Pipe Smoker of the Year award include Eric Morecambe, Cornish ‘funnyman’ Jethro, former Prime Minister Harold Wilson, Jimmy Greaves, Rod Hull and Stephen Fry.

(Photo: Joe W)

‘XXX’ (£1,999)

Sleazy neon XXX sign

This curate’s egg of vintage ‘adult entertainment’ comes in at a whopping £1,999.

So, next time you pass that torn-up collection of magazines in a hedge in the park, consider that it may well be worth a fortune in the future. And just imagine the members of the audience's faces if it got taken in for valuation on Antiques Roadshow – that would be truly priceless.

Pirate Treasure (£40,000)

Pirate with treasure chest

Shiver me timbers! Splice the main brace! And so forth.

This bumper haul of pirate bullion would make you the envy of salty sea dogs and landlubbers alike – and with a plunder-tastic value of £40,000, you’d be wise to insure it from  any fellow seafaring villains.

Thankfully, lots of today’s pirate ship insurers will throw in unlimited booty cover and scurvy protection up to a limited value at no extra cost, but make sure you check the terms and conditions before buying.

Actually, we made that last bit up. D’argh! Etc.

Elvis Presley’s Shoes (£4,000)

Elvis impersonator

As the years pass, the legend of Elvis grows ever stronger – you’ve only got to take in the sights, sounds, and indeed smells of the annual Elvis Festival in the Welsh seaside town of Porthcawl for evidence. And memorabilia which has been breathed on by The King of Rock n’ Roll himself shows no sign of declining in value

An Elvis devotee has added a pair of shoes – blue, suede ones, presumably – once worn by Elvis ‘the Pelvis’ to their contents policy. Uh-huh-huh!