“The market for all things Welsh remains vibrant” said auctioneer Ryan Beach “In my twenty years of professional auctioneering in the capital city, the variety and demand for those things that really speak of the country’s history, culture or sporting achievements has never ceased to amaze me. Wales is a proud and highly creative nation”

1905 - A New Zealand v. Wales rugby programme, played at Cardiff Arms Park on December 16th, 1905. Sold at Anthemion Auctions for £4,000
Sold for £4,000 at Anthemion Auctions

As well as an array of sporting memorabilia from Wales, and further afield, including a Wales V. All Blacks match programme from 1905, estimated to realise between £1,500 and £2,000 at auction, the sale features many other collector’s items including trains and toys, dolls, coins, postcards, stamps and ephemera, many of which are of unique local interest.

At auction, the items that can draw the eye, and the purse of the serious collector are sometimes surprising. Over recent years there has been an upsurge in the demand for niche collectable pieces known as groggs. The creator of these unique, and some would say ugly little characters, is John Hughes, who established the now well known World of Groggs in Treforrest in 1965. The people replicated in these unusual figurines are typically Welsh rugby players, occasionally celebrities, and the first grogg created of a particular character is usually presented to the individual it personifies. The name grogg is derived from the particular clay in which they are moulded, with all pieces being painted by hand. The process can take many weeks from the initial mould being formed to the first grogg being painted and each character is usually limited to between 300 and 500 pieces, after which the initial mould is destroyed. Over the past few years individual pieces have been much sought by collector’s at Anthemion, with some selling for many thousands of pounds.

Anthemion are holding open valuation days every Friday between 10am and 4pm, and are happy to provide information and advice on a wide range of weird and wonderful items. For any queries regarding upcoming sales, please contact Anthemion on 02920 472444 or anthemions@aol.com