A “VERY RARE” 1960s guitar used by The Beatles has sold for £190,000 at auction.
The prototype fretless guitar featured in an episode of the Antiques Roadshow earlier this year, which was filmed at Battle Abbey.
On the show it was valued between £300,000 and £400,000 and estimated to be one of the most valuable items to ever feature in the programme.
Made in the 1960s by Bartell of California in Riverside, California, the guitar was described as “unique” as the company did not produce many prototypes – but one of the other fretless models was given to Jimi Hendrix.
The guitar was played by John Lennon and George Harrison and experts believe it may have been used in the band’s recording of the White Album, released in 1968.
George Harrison gave the guitar to session musician Ray Russell in 1984. At the time Mr Russell was recording music for a film made by George Harrison’s production company, Handmade Films.
Speaking on the Battle episode of the Antiques Roadshow, Mr Russell said: “I played a few notes and he said ‘Yeah you’re definitely getting more out of it than I am. Why don’t you have it?’“It’s a a strange old thing to play.”
Mr Russell added that he had continued to regularly play the guitar, and “did not realise it was worth that much money”.