An 'Aladdin's Cave' of antiques worth £50,000 has been found in the home of an elderly hoarder.
The haul, which includes more than 400 items, was buried under hundreds of bags and boxes stacked up in every room of the retired antiques dealer's Victorian townhouse.
It includes eight grandfather clocks worth £1,000, an 18th century coffer and even a classic 1956 Morris Minor worth up to £6,000.
The treasure trove was unearthed when the terraced home in Wolverhampton was cleared so the man and his wife could move into a smaller property after 60 years.
Charles Hanson, owner of Hansons Auctioneers who carried out the clearance, said: "It was unbelievable – a real Aladdin’s Cave of objects gathered over more than 60 years. The house was packed with hundreds of items jumbled together.
"But far from being valueless, many antiques emerged including quality furniture such as a magnificent 18th century coffer, which was completely hidden from view."
He said the coffer is estimated to be worth £150-£250, while they also found a Welsh stick chair worth £600-£800.
Hanson added: "The elderly man who used to live at the house is a retired antiques shop owner and, as we slowly uncovered items, it became clear he has always had a real eye for items of quality.
“We regularly come across keen collectors who amass hundreds of items fuelled by their interests.
"But this can turn us into hoarders over time, especially as the years rolls by. It’s not unusual – almost a British pastime in fact. We all have a tendency to hang on to things we like or think we may need again."
He said the mountain of objects also included: numerous watch parts; a mahogany shipwright’s chest packed with tools; bicylcles; a collection of teddies and a 1956 Morris Minor ‘Split Screen’ found in the garage.
"It was a home crammed to the rafters with hidden gems - a collector’s paradise," he added.
"We’re told the owner moved into the property in 1956 and by 1957 the carpet was barely visible.
"I think it’s very hard to stop collecting if you spend your life in the antiques business.
"A fascination with all things old, historical and quirky is what draws you into the industry in the first place.
"Thanks to this retired antique shop owner’s eye for quality antiques and vintage finds, we can offer a new generation of collectors a multitude of interesting items to bid on."
The 400 items are set to go on sale on 29 January and are expected to fetch more than £50,000.
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