Soaraway success of secret auction

Within hours of Sophie's Secret Postcard Auction opening on eBay last week, bids were flying in and by the weekend, more than £5,000 had been pledged to The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity.

Friday, 15th June 2018, 12:44 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th June 2018, 4:50 pm

Artist Sir Quentin Blake, who has submitted two enchanting illustrations, sent a personal message of support: “I’m delighted to hear how well Sophie’s Secret Auction is progressing. It’s particularly nice to help with something so enjoyable to do.”

Offers between £1 and £600 have now been made on each of the 573 postcards but as the auction doesn’t end until tomorrow (Saturday, June 16), there is still plenty of time to secure a unique work of art and help raise valuable funds for one of the country’s leading cancer hospitals.

Although Sophie Maria Taylor’s last days were spent at the Conquest Hospital surrounded by her family, she was treated by oncology specialists at the Royal Marsden throughout her illness. Sophie never saw herself as being ill, even towards the end of her life. She always had a smile on her face and wanted to help others.

Sophie's Secret Postcard Auction. SUS-180613-132823001

When author and book illustrator Thomas Taylor, famous for his iconic portrayal of the Hogwarts hero on the cover of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, heard that St Richard’s Catholic College wanted to commemorate Sophie’s life with a secret postcard auction, his reaction was immediate: “How could I not be involved? Everyone at the school, including my sons Ben and Max, who was in Sophie’s class, was touched by her life in some way and coming together around art is a wonderful idea.

“It was a pleasure to paint a postcard of Harry Potter as it’s something I rarely do.”

Unsurprisingly Thomas Taylor’s postcard has attracted some very high bids but there are still hundreds of extraordinary, unique and affordable art works on eBay, which might become collectors’ items in the future.

On this article alone you’ll see a drawing by the Radio 2 DJ Fearne Cotton, an illustration by Zoe Jackson, and two drawings by Sophie’s grandmother and her brother Jan, as well as other enchanting works.

Sophie's Secret Postcard Auction. SUS-180613-141203001

All secrets will revealed on Saturday, once the auction ends, and details will be published in next week’s Observer.

Meanwhile you can browse through all the works on and follow the simple link to the eBay site. So please, for Sophie and the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity, keep bidding!

Sophie's Secret Postcard Auction. SUS-180613-132834001
Sophie's Secret Postcard Auction. SUS-180613-132801001
Sophie's Secret Postcard Auction. SUS-180613-132812001
Sophie's Secret Postcard Auction. SUS-180613-132739001
Sophie's Secret Postcard Auction. SUS-180613-132750001
Ben, Thomas and Max Taylor SUS-180613-132728001