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Thursday, 13 July, 2000, 17:03 GMT 18:03 UK
Scot buys Thatcher's handbag
Baroness Thatcher
Baroness Thatcher: In need of a new handbag
A Scottish businessman has bought one of Baroness Thatcher's handbags with a successful 100,000 bid in an online auction.

Ian Rushbrook won the bidding war for the Salvatore Ferragamo bag, which was auctioned to raise money for Breast Cancer Care on the women's interests website handbag.com.

He said he was delighted to have helped a good cause and to have paid tribute to an outstanding leader at the same time.


My handbags did good service in Cabinet and I am pleased they are still having the right effect

Baroness Thatcher
"For over 20 years I have admired Lady Thatcher's willpower, drive and ability," he said.

"What she did for Britain was desperately needed and seemingly impossible but she has never had anywhere near the level of credit that she deserves."

The black handbag received a total of 63 bids during the auction.

Mr Rushbrook first bid 63,100 but that was bettered by an American night-club owner who offered 101,000.

Signed note

But the mystery bidder, known as Michael, later withdrew his offer.

Mr Rushbrook then upped his bid to snatch the bag which contained a signed note from Baroness Thatcher.

In a statement, Baroness Thatcher said she was delighted her bag had raised so much money for such a good cause.

"My handbags did good service in Cabinet and I am pleased they are still having the right effect," she said.

Handbag bids
Baroness Thatcher: 100,000
Jerry Hall: 720
Cherie Booth: 490
Mo Mowlam: 302
Lorraine Kelly: 205
Annabel Croft: 320
Emma Forbes: 66
Other handbags auctioned off in the sale included one from Jerry Hall which sold for 720.

Cherie Blair's tiger striped handbag fetched 490 and Mo Mowlam's went for 302 following 24 bids.

Other personalities who handed over their bags included GMTV's Lorraine Kelly, actress Amanda Redman and tennis player Annabel Croft.

Isabel Campbell, fund-raising and marketing director at Breast Cancer Care, said she was delighted with the auction's total.

"We really never imagined it would be so much," she said.

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