Scottish charity faces race against time to save historic John Logie Baird treasures

John Logie Baird's sales catalogue

A Scottish charity has turned to crowdfunding in an attempt to secure two rare items relating to the 'Father of Television', John Logie Baird.

Helensburgh Heroes is hoping to bring what is believed to be the only complete copy of the world's first TV sales catalogue and a 1936 glass cathode ray tube back to the small Scottish town where the television pioneer was born.

The items have been offered to the charity on an exclusive basis and it is now seeking to raise an agreed fee of £2,250 within the next 60 days through the UK reward-based crowdfunding platform Bloom VC (Venture Catalyst).

Phil Worms, director of Helensburgh Heroes, said: “This really is a once in a lifetime opportunity to acquire these two historically important items for Helensburgh, John Logie Baird’s birthplace. We have a small window of opportunity to secure them for the town and crowdfunding offers an immediacy that no other funding channel can and will hopefully help us reach people who share our aims.

“There is a real synergy about using the internet of today to try to preserve two items associated with last century’s technological revolution, the dawn of television. We hope we can attract enough pledges of support, from as little as £5, to help us keep these amazing items in Scotland.”

The original TV sales catalogue produced by Baird in 1928 is complete with its original order form. It illustrates the Baird models A, B and C with descriptions and prices, plus a picture of the internal works of the model B.

Only one other extant copy is known to exist and is owned by the MZTV Museum of Television in Toronto, but that copy is missing its order form. The item offered to the charity is potentially the only copy of its type worldwide.

The 1936 T5 CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) that Helensburgh Heroes is also trying to secure is believed to be one of only ten known to exist worldwide.

Amanda Boyle from Bloom VC added: "We hope everyone in Scotland - and those who've moved away but still hold Scotland in their hearts - will back this project to keep such important, historic artefacts where they belong."

Helensburgh Heroes is working on a project to convert a Victorian warehouse into a digital media academy - dubbed The Heroes Centre - where the two Logie Baird items will be stored if the charity raises enough cash.

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