More than half of Britons consider themselves collectors, poll finds

Comic books, candles and coins among most popular items

Alice Hughes
Friday 29 November 2019 16:54

Half of Britain own a collection of some kind, a new poll has found.

Everything from coins, candles and fridge magnets have made the list of collectable pieces, according to 2000 participants who took part in the poll.

As many as 83 percent said they’d collected something during their lifetime, while 57 per cent said they were currently maintaining one in present day.

An average of £1,200 had been spent on each collection over the years, while the average set was worth £1,500.

Nostalgic products including comic books, cassette tapes and train sets also made the list – and one respondent even said they collect snail shells.

The average collection contains 159 items – although a sixth have over 500 pieces – and has been ongoing for 19 years, according to the poll commissioned by The Royal Mint.

“It’s great to see collecting is still a current hobby and something which half of every age group enjoys,” said director of consumer Nicola Howell. “Even 18 to 24-year-olds currently have a collection, which shows that even in the digital world traditional hobbies are still popular.”

She added: “As coin producers, it’s positive to know there is still a lot of public interest in unique coins as well as other items.”

When asked about where collections are kept, a third said they kept theirs in household storage, with many under the bed or attic.

A further sixth of collectors keep their pieces in a spare room, while just a quarter proudly have their collection on display within their home.

The majority of collectable items have been unearthed in niche stores or online, while a sixth have also purchased pieces at market stalls and from online bidding sites.

According to one-third of respondents, their collection is their “legacy” and something they hope to one day leave for others to continue.

Support free-thinking journalism and attend Independent events

Of those who are parents, a quarter said they collected items which they believe will benefit their children in terms of inheritance in the future.

More than two-thirds admitted collecting takes a lot of dedication, while 44 per cent believe they will never stop adding to their trove.

One-sixth of Brits said they would like to start a collection – whether they already have one or not.

“The new coin collecting hub on our website is the perfect place for anyone who might be interested in starting one,” Ms Howell said. “For those who are already keen collectors, we have a ‘swap shop’ on Facebook which is also brilliant for meeting likeminded individuals.”


Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments