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LondonBristolian

Advice on vintage football programmes

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Hi all

Apologies if this is the wrong board to post this on but I could do with a bit of advice.

My Dad died at the beginning of the year and my Mum has asked me to help work out what to do with a collection of vintage football programmes that he had. My Dad used to watch City in the late 50s, 60s and 70s and many of the programmes are City programmes from that time. I suspect a lot might be relatively common but there are also things like a 1958 programme for a Bristol City vs an RAF XI match that I suspect are rarer.

There are also a few programmes for other teams - a few 1960s League Cup Final and FA Cup Final programmes, Ray Mabbutt's testimonial for Bristol Rovers and a few other bits and pieces he obviously collected through the years. Then there are some more recent games my Dad attended for whatever reason - a couple of Sheffield Wednesday games, a Wycome Wanders game and a Plymouth Argyle game from the 90s, plus the 1997 England U-21 international at Ashton Gate. 

The question really is what to do with them. I realise we could sell them on Ebay but I don't think my Mum would want the hassle of doing all of it individually. Is there a dealer in Bristol who would go through the programmes, work out what was there and be trusted to offer a fair price for them or what is the best approach?

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Hi LB,

I used to collect (City) programmes but got rid of them a good few years ago so my knowledge is maybe a bit out of date!

As a general rule, mid 60s seems to be when programmes started to be collected, probably became sturdier, and as a result became more common. Consequently anything prior to that tends to be the ones that are worth more, and dealers are more interested in. 

You're right that there are particular games that are rare, valuable for whatever reason, but like you say you need to either know, or do a lot of research, if you're going to identify them yourself and sell individually. Some you think are valuable aren't because they printed lots (testimonials often) while others have an unusual history. I remember there was one time in 82-3 I think (so when we were skint) and a game got called off late after the programmes had already been printed. The club used the same programme for the subsequent home game, with just a little insert, so you end up with a programme that looks like it's City v Wimbledon that's in fact City v Exeter (can't remember if they were the actual clubs involved!)

There are plenty of dealers around; I'm not sure whether there's one in Bristol - certainly wasn't when I was collecting. I'm not sure that matters though: they will be looking to sell to collectors of the opponents as much as to City collectors. There are a number in London (I assume closer to you, although not sure if that's where the programmes are!) and that would also make it easier to view, collect etc. There's a dealer called Dick Rattray who isn't based in Bristol but I think is a City fan, or at least has a soft spot for us and may know something more about City programmes specifically. 

So, unless you are prepared to do lots of research then I think your approach of selling to a dealer is right. If you had a collection of '30s or '40s programmes they'd come rushing to see, but programmes of your Dad's era are not going to get them quite that excited! So, you'll probably need to make a list, or offer to take them to the dealer, to get them interested. But look for ones that are well established (Brentside, Steve Earl) and get more than one offer.

The other option is to put them on eBay as a single lot. You'll get an idea from the websites of the dealers what the average value per season is (and bear in mind that mid 60s on the difference between the buying and selling price will be significant) so you can make a reasonable stab at a minimum. 

When I sold my collection, I split it into two: pre and post 1965. The pre 1965 I had dealers come and look at and almost price individually. That included loads from the 40s and early 50s which is what they really wanted. The post 1965 I ended up getting the most interest and best price as a single lot on eBay, (bought by a West Ham fan!).

Good luck with it.

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5 minutes ago, italian dave said:

Hi LB,

I used to collect (City) programmes but got rid of them a good few years ago so my knowledge is maybe a bit out of date!

As a general rule, mid 60s seems to be when programmes started to be collected, probably became sturdier, and as a result became more common. Consequently anything prior to that tends to be the ones that are worth more, and dealers are more interested in. 

You're right that there are particular games that are rare, valuable for whatever reason, but like you say you need to either know, or do a lot of research, if you're going to identify them yourself and sell individually. Some you think are valuable aren't because they printed lots (testimonials often) while others have an unusual history. I remember there was one time in 82-3 I think (so when we were skint) and a game got called off late after the programmes had already been printed. The club used the same programme for the subsequent home game, with just a little insert, so you end up with a programme that looks like it's City v Wimbledon that's in fact City v Exeter (can't remember if they were the actual clubs involved!)

There are plenty of dealers around; I'm not sure whether there's one in Bristol - certainly wasn't when I was collecting. I'm not sure that matters though: they will be looking to sell to collectors of the opponents as much as to City collectors. There are a number in London (I assume closer to you, although not sure if that's where the programmes are!) and that would also make it easier to view, collect etc. There's a dealer called Dick Rattray who isn't based in Bristol but I think is a City fan, or at least has a soft spot for us and may know something more about City programmes specifically. 

So, unless you are prepared to do lots of research then I think your approach of selling to a dealer is right. If you had a collection of '30s or '40s programmes they'd come rushing to see, but programmes of your Dad's era are not going to get them quite that excited! So, you'll probably need to make a list, or offer to take them to the dealer, to get them interested. But look for ones that are well established (Brentside, Steve Earl) and get more than one offer.

The other option is to put them on eBay as a single lot. You'll get an idea from the websites of the dealers what the average value per season is (and bear in mind that mid 60s on the difference between the buying and selling price will be significant) so you can make a reasonable stab at a minimum. 

When I sold my collection, I split it into two: pre and post 1965. The pre 1965 I had dealers come and look at and almost price individually. That included loads from the 40s and early 50s which is what they really wanted. The post 1965 I ended up getting the most interest and best price as a single lot on eBay, (bought by a West Ham fan!).

Good luck with it.

This is all extremely helpful. Thanks!

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I sold a whole load of City home programmes from late 50"s onwards a few years back. The only one worth much is the FA Cup one for our record victory v chichester 

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8 hours ago, LondonBristolian said:

Thanks so much - I will do this in the next few days after I catalogue them all...

A friend of mine collects City programmes going back to the 50s. He has advised that selling to a dealer is not the best course of action as you will probably only get say 20 % of the value because dealers want to make a mark up. Ebay could be your best option. There is an auction house called Sporting Gold where you could auction off lots.

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Can  I just say I am not a dealer in football programmes.

I am a dealer in Beta max Videos and DVD's of football match's

and if any one has any Bristol green'un sports paper in their loft they wish to dispose of please let me know.

If any one is after a City away programme/s and I have it you can have it for free

I am only giving advice to the best of my knowledge of what I know about Bristol City programmes.

This advice is basicly anyting from early 1970's to present day are not worth much

unless the match has some significant happening.

 

 

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