An original Sooty TV puppet is set to fetch more than £1,000 at auction after sitting in a box for 40-years.
Tina Stewart decided to sell the glove puppet after being told of its value by the owner of the Sooty Show, Richard Cadell, following a live show at the Albert Halls in Stirling, Scotland in April.
She was given the TV prop by the original inventor of Sooty, Harry Corbett, who was a good friend of her father, retired biology teacher Paul Mouncey.
Mrs Stewart had said on one visit to Harry's workshop he gave her the puppet after he had 'taken a liking to me'.
The veterinary receptionist from Dunblane, Scotland, has passed the puppet onto Derbyshire-based Hansons Auctioneers as it had "just been sitting in a box for 40-years".
She believes if her Sooty was so special then it it's time for someone else to enjoy him.
Mr Cadell said this was without question an original Sooty puppet and would've been used on television in the mid-1970s by Sooty creator Harry Corbett.
He went on to estimate that the puppet is 'around 45-50-years-old.'
The Sooty puppet is set to go under the hammer on September 19.
"Sooty and I have become pretty good friends over the years. We've sold two original Harry Corbett puppets before with great success - we like to put on a good Sooty show. We hope we can find him a new Sooty fan to take good care of him - or perhaps it's time for him to go home to Blackpool."
UPDATE: The original TV Sooty puppet sold for three times its estimate on September 19.
Michael Flacks bought the puppet for £3,100 as a birthday present for his wife Debbie.
His personal assistant Laura Higgins said "She’s a lifelongSooty fan and Michael asked me to do whatever it takes to buy Sooty."
"Sooty will certainly be enjoying a glamorous jet-set lifestyle now, infact he’s going to be moving to Miami.”
Tina Stewart, the original owner, said: “We’re absolutely amazed and delighted by the result. I’ll be treating the family now.”