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Brit man who has every hit single since 1952 decides to auction them off

London , Thu, 16 Feb 2012 ANI

London, Feb 16 (ANI): A man from UK, who has collected every number one single since charts started in 1952, is now putting them up for auction.


Music mad Kevin Upchurch from Kent has dedicated his life to scouring car boot sales, charity shops, independent record stores and the Internet in a bid to complete his vast collection.


After 39 years, the 51-year-old's collection ranges from the classic 'How Much Is That Doggy In The Window' by Lita Roza to modern dance anthems like Rihanna's 'We Found Love'.


However, Upchurch is now putting the lot up for auction - with it expected to sell for a five figure sum - to make some room in his small flat.


'My first record was Can the Can by Suzi Quatro. I was still a teenager back then and very much into my music," the Daily Mail quoted him as saying.


"A friend of mine collected football records that sides made when they reached a cup final and I wanted to do something similar, so decided upon every number one.


"Back then I didn't realise how big that would become - I never thought about the number one spot changing weekly," he said.


He stipulates that every number one must be bought on the original label and be a single, not on an album or compilation.


The retired post office clerk also revealed that he has spent thousands tracking down obscure past hits as well as new chart toppers the moment they are announced.


"Anything since 1973 I have bought the very next morning after the number one is announced. A few years ago I started downloading the latest number one and adding it to an iPod.


"I figured my collection needed to move with the times, as it did when we moved from vinyl onto CD.


"There were a lot of records that had been hits before I started collecting, so I had to track them all down.


"Many were easy as they were still widely available, but some of the earlier offerings were tricky.


"I remember the hardest being Lita Roza's cover of How Much Was That Doggy In The Window.


"There were moments when I thought about giving up on it and the collection as no matter how hard I tried I simply couldn't find a version that was in the original format and on the original label.


"Years passed before I randomly saw it on an internet site while looking for a completely different number one.


"I can't describe finally finding it - it meant I was that little bit closer to making it complete.


"On another occasion my sister found another one I'd been having trouble with in a bric-a-brac shop by chance as she walked past. She gave it to me as a surprise on my birthday.


"It's fair to say that was the best birthday present I have ever got," he said.


The staggering collection - thought to be the biggest of its kind in the world - will be sold at Omega Auctions in Stockport, Manchester, on February 25.


"It is an extensive collection and a fantastic archive of British popular music, which we were thrilled to have consigned to our auction," auctioneer Paul Fairweather, from Omega Auctions, said.


"It's a real labour of love collected over more than 30 years and with many rare items it is a great investment, which can only increase in value.


"The items themselves would cost over 10,000 pounds to buy individually and then there's the time to collect them all, trawling record fairs and shops, car boot sales and eBay.


"We've estimated conservatively at 5,000 - 7,000 pounds given the austere times, but this would still be a "steal" if it went for 10,000 pounds," Fairweather added. (ANI)


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