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30 June 2016
Cordy’s auction house has confirmed today that it will not be proceeding with the sale of a singlet, described as the one worn by Peter Snell in the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.
Te Papa has been unable to satisfy itself as to the authenticity of the singlet, and it has been agreed by the parties not to proceed with the sale.
Te Papa Chief Executive Rick Ellis said the museum was very disappointed.
“We are very disappointed and we know the public will be too,” Mr Ellis said.
“We believe the item was offered for sale in good faith, but our inquiries have shown that the singlet is not the one worn by Peter Snell at the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games,” said Mr Ellis.
“Cordy’s is a reputable auction house and I know they are as saddened as we are at this outcome,” Mr Ellis said.
The singlet will be returned to the vendor and no payment will be made by Te Papa.
Mr Ellis said that Te Papa would ask an independent expert to review the process that led to the auction bid, to understand what could have been done differently.
“We have a thorough process for acquisitions, and we need to review what occurred in this instance.”
Kate Camp, Te Papa communications manager, 029 601 0180.