MAY I HELP YOU? Dyane Bloore from Old Stuff Antiques plays receptionist with an 1892 Swedish Ericsson phone, one of the first mass-produced phones in the world.
MAY I HELP YOU? Dyane Bloore from Old Stuff Antiques plays receptionist with an 1892 Swedish Ericsson phone, one of the first mass-produced phones in the world. Hamish Broome

This phone costs $2k... and it only makes calls

AN 1892 telephone, one of the first ever made, can be yours in working order for just $2000.

Or perhaps you would like a pink Japanese-made pay phone from the 1960s, once on display in the foyer of the Gold Coast's now long-gone iconic hotel, the Pink Poodle.

That's a steal at $400, and it works too - so long as you put in 20c.

Antique and vintage phones, clocks and radios were just some of the items on display at the Alstonville Rotary Antiques and Collectables Fair on the weekend.

Antique dealers Dyane and Grant Bloore spend their weekdays restoring the items to perfect working order, and among them you can find 19th century clocks, Australian vintage radios, gramophones and an amazing array of telephones.

"We use a radio technician, a clockmaker, and a telephone technican to fix up the insides," Ms Bloore said.

"We actually guarantee they will keep working."

"There were less than 1000 phones in Sydney," he said.

"Only the very wealthy had them. They would have cost about $7000."

Kyogle antique dealer Keith Agget deals in a very different kind of antique - model trains and other toys.

He pulls them apart, finds missing parts on eBay, and puts them back together in their original boxes.

"They're in absolute magic condition and that's what I try to achieve," he said.

The train sets retail for about $500 - and they do sell.

"People come in and say 'oh, I had one of them when I was a kid'.

"It takes them back 60 years."

The fair's co-ordinator, Altonville Rotary's Geoff Alexander, said almost 1500 people were expected to come through the doors over the weekend, raising more than $10,000 for the local community.

"The variety this year is the best ever," he said.

Mr Alexander said Ballina Mayor David Wright had praised the event for the diversity of items on offer.

"Everyone's been really happy," Mr Alexander said.



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