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Last Updated: Friday, 25 November 2005, 08:49 GMT
Titanic cups raise small fortune
Massive water pressure caused the polystyrene cups to shrink

A souvenir from a BBC Northern Ireland journalist's dive to the final resting place of the Titanic has raised 590 for Children in Need.

Environment correspondent Mike McKimm trailed three polystyrene cups in a net outside the submersible which took him down 12,850 feet to the wreckage in the North Atlantic.

The huge water pressure caused the cups to shrink, transforming them into a highly sought after piece of Titanic memorabilia.

One of the cups has fetched 590 on the internet auction site eBay.

It was bought by the enigmatically named Mrfwonderful2000, who managed to see off 20 other challengers for the cup during the 10-day auction.

Gift shop

His real name is Sean Toner, and he owns the gift shop Curio on the Dublin Road near Belfast city centre.

"I am always looking for new ideas and products for our customers so I tried a model of Titanic in the window and the level of interest was astounding," he said.

"Since then I've bought many books, videos and memorabilia and became personally fascinated by the whole Titanic thing.

"It's my intention to source and collect many Titanic-related items and we have our own little Titanic Quarter in the shop."

Mr Toner said some of the Titanic items are on sale while others are on display for customers, especially tourists "to view and appreciate the legend so connected with Belfast".

He said that although the cup had no historical significance, "it was for charity and our customers will have something extra to enjoy viewing when I display them in the shop!"

Another cup was auctioned off by George Jones on his BBC Radio Ulster show for 385.

A third Titanic cup is still being offered on eBay but anyone interested had better move quickly and prepare to dig deep into their pockets as the auction ends in the early hours of Saturday.

Bidding on this auction has reached more than 500, so the three cups seem likely to raise at least 1,500 for the BBC's annual charity campaign.

Tiny Titanic souvenirs up for grabs
18 Nov 05 |  Northern Ireland
Ocean reclaiming Titanic liner
18 Oct 05 |  Northern Ireland
A Titanic dive to remember
17 Oct 05 |  Northern Ireland


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