Staff at the hospice's Whangarei and Waipu shops have been keeping a close eye on goods coming through the door for the past couple of months and putting aside suitable pieces for the Sunday's "collectibles" auction.

Retail manager Kathy McMillan said she hoped it would become an annual event to raise the profile, support and funds for the shops that operate under the motto "turning second-hand goods into first class care".

Among the 600 items are a handsome Tempis Fugit grandfather clock in which one mechanism alone is worth $1000, a 54 piece Mizuko dinner set featuring a Japanese scene, an 8-piece Limoges dressing table set and a small wood burner used in a single men's hut in a Kaingaroa Forest camp in the 1930s.

There are also a signed, surfboard by Gisborne board shaper Ralph Blake, paintings by Northland artist K H Wright among many framed and unframed artworks, an old rocker chair that's a dead ringer for one in a current television ad about insurance calamities, an Oriental sword and scabbard, an old army knife in a cloth sheath, and piles of old comics featuring the cartoon worlds of Phantom, Superman and Footrot Flats.


Vintage clothing is not only relegated to the pretty outfits worn by several old, well-loved dolls - a rack of fur coats, fur stoles and pointy-faced fox furs add to the dress-up effect of a sumptuous kimono and other garb.

There is no reserve on any item in the auction, and phone and absentee bids will be accepted.

The lots can be viewed today at the former Anderson's car sales property in Carruth St from 10am until 2pm, and tomorrow from 10am until 4pm.

The showroom opens at 11am on Sunday and the auction starts at 1pm.