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Man's drunken eBay purchase is actually worth £100k

Man's drunken eBay purchase is actually worth £100k

Repeat after us, do not drunk shop

Ever woken up from a hangover and realised you've been shopping while a bit tipsy?

Well, that dreaded 'hangxiety' probably doesn't compare to one UK businessman, who decided to purchase a sculpture on a whim after downing a bottle of wine.

However, the drunken shopper is now set to sell his drunken eBay purchase for a whopping £100,000.

Gareth Palmer, 62, accidentally bid against himself during a boozy evening to land himself a huge 14ft (4.4m) piece of artwork last October.

The company boss had been browsing the internet when he came across the work called 'Twisting by the Pool' by renowned Scots sculptor Malcolm Robertson.

Gareth paid under £20,000 for the artwork, after realising he was bidding against himself.

He began making offers and was shocked when the price rocketed before realising he was using two of his own eBay accounts to bid against himself.

After the drunken error, Gareth ended up paying under £20,000, but had to spend a further £5,000 transporting the art from Scotland to Derby and an extra £800 for a police escort.

Now, he is selling the striking stainless-steel structure and reckons it could sell for £100,000 when it goes under the hammer at Hansons Auctioneers next month.

Gareth, of Derby, said: "It was bought by a Scottish blacksmith in 2001 and he kept it in his yard for many years. He eventually decided to sell and it ended up on eBay.

"I spotted it and must admit I’d drank a bottle-and-a-bit of wine when I started bidding.

The sculpture is set to be sold at auction.

"The price kept going up and I thought I’d been outbid. Then I realised I was bidding against myself. I have two eBay accounts, one on my iPad and one on my iPhone. I eventually outbid myself and won it."

Gareth's drunk shopping wasn't just harmless tat and the businessman described realising his late night buy could be worth something: "I realised it was an important sculpture. My research led me to Malcolm Robertson’s website.

"He’s a multiple-award-winning sculptor with a broad portfolio of work dotted around the UK and abroad. His work is held in private collections and several sculptures are in Florida in the Unites States."

Gareth also still sees his artwork purchase as a worthy investment, especially as he bought it for nearly a quarter of the original price.

He said: "I’m also told that 'Twisting by the Pool' originally cost £70,000 when it was made 26 years ago. I paid under £20,000 and it cost me around £5,500 to get it transported from Scotland to Derbyshire."

Gareth believes it deserves a better home.

The pick up of the item also cost Gareth, after he initially paid for a courier to pick it up but the lorry they used couldn't get to the artwork's location: "There was one failed collection attempt because I was told it was four metres high.

"It turned out to be 4.4m and the lorry couldn’t get it under a low bridge. That cost me £600. It also ended up with a police escort which cost another £800."

Now, Gareth is keen to make a profit from his eBay purchase and for it to go to a better home: "It’s been hidden away for 20 years but it deserves to be seen and on public display, so I’ve decided to sell it."

Valuer Karl Martin has described the valuable sculpture as 'incredibly impressive'.

"It’s going to auction with an estimate of £20,000-£30,000 but I think it’s worth £100,000."

Karl Martin, valuer at Hansons, said: “It’s an incredibly impressive work of art and, as Gareth says, deserves to be on public display.

"It’s currently standing tall outside Hansons’ Derbyshire saleroom in Etwall so, if you’re passing, do take a look.

Twisting by the Pool will be sold by Hansons Auctioneers, based in Etwall, Derbys., on September 27.

Featured Image Credit: SWNS

Topics: UK News, Art