Switched-on collectors fight over 'world's oldest working TV' at $27,000 sale

Britain's oldest working television set has sold for £16,800, three times its estimate.

The Marconi type-702 set, which has a 12-inch screen, was bought for £100 in 1936, and is now owned by a US investor following furious bidding at Bonhams in London.

The set was created by Scotsman John Logie Baird and the Italian investor Guglielmo Marconi, using technology employed in secret radar research.

This 1936 box trebled its estimate at Bonhams

Bonhams specialist Laurence Fisher told the Daily Mail: "I've handled 38 pre-war tellys and this is the finest and even comes with the original invoice.

"It is very rare. There are more authentic Stradivarius violins in existence than pre-war televisions."

The original south-London owner was unable to watch the one-hour of programmes available in 1936 as the Crystal Palace transmitter burned down just three days after he bought the set. Service was not resumed until 10 years later, when there was still only an hour of programming on offer.


Join our readers in over 200 countries around the world - sign up for your free weekly Collectibles Newsletter today

Featured products

Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Sale price£399
In stock
Fidel Castro signed certificateFidel Castro Signed Certificate
Fidel Castro signed certificate
Sale price£2,995
In stock
King Henry VIII Autographed DocumentKing Henry VIII Autographed Document
King Henry VIII Autographed Document
Sale price£55,000
In stock