Museum snaps up £63,000 sitcom prop at auction

Jones's Van in Thetford. Picture by Andrew Ruff
Jones's Van in Thetford. Picture by Andrew Ruff
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A piece of sitcom history is coming to Thetford after a museum managed to hold its nerve and snap up the prop for £63,100.

Bidders from the Dad’s Army Museum remembered the immortal line - ‘don’t panic!’ - to outbid rivals for Lance Corporal Jones’s butchers van from the classic series at an auction in Surrey on Monday.

The bid was backed by Trevor and Mavis Jenkins and the Pearson family, who launched an appeal when they heard the van was up for sale.

Corinne Fulford, museum manager, said the auction was a nail-biter.

“The auction was the most nerve-racking thing I’ve ever experienced and it may take me a while to recover,” she said.

She also thanked the fund-raisers.

“I don’t think our ability to raise the money we needed was ever in doubt, the timescale however, was just too quick for us and we therefore needed help.

“We cannot thank the Jenkins and Pearsons enough for their kindness and cannot wait to see the iconic Jones’s Van back where she belongs,” she said.

The van will be in place at the Dad’s Army Museum when it re-opens on March 30 next year. It will also be available to hire.

People are also being invited to become a friend of the museum for £5 a year. Call 01842 751975 for more information.