A collector and avid Bond fan shares his story
He is on first name terms with dozens of Bond girls, has enjoyed a drink with Q and even his phone numbers end in 007, reports Express & Star
. But Robin Harbour isnât a secret agent â he is an accounts clerk from Willenhall who drives a blue Citroen Saxo. âSadly I donât have a Aston Martin â the closest I have got is owning a model one since I was 13 years old,â says Robin, aged 56.
He was just 10 years old when he began flicking through his fatherâs books Casino Royale and From Russia with Love. âJames Bond was a good spy thriller and the stories just clicked with me â rather than playing cowboys and Indians I played secret agents,â he adds.
Robin grew up in Erdington and as a youngster, visited the library there to see if he could get his hands on more novels.
âBecause they were in the adult section I wasnât allowed to read them â but when they found out how keen I was they made an exception.
âThe only book I wasnât allowed to read as a child was The Spy Who Loved Me as it was a bit risque.â
Now Robinâs two-bedroom flat in St Anneâs Court, Rose Hill, is filled with Bond memorabilia from trading cards, posters, videos and DVDs to cufflinks, models, and even 007 Coke cans.
âThe first model car I bought was the Aston Martin DB5 when I was 13 and I had to save up my pocket money for it â it cost me nine shillings and 11 pence,â says Robin.
âAfter that I bought every Corgi model of a James Bond car that they made, such as the Toyota from You Only Live Twice, the Moonbuggy from Diamonds are Forever and the Lotus from The Spy Who Loved Me.
âI now have more than 1,000 James Bond books and even Sean Conneryâs death mask.
âI have a model of a Colt 45, which is a replica of the Golden Gun and my Walther PPK is actually a deactivated Walther P99.â
His favourite Bond is Sean Connery and his hobby has given him the chance to meet some of his idols.
âWe go to the Memorabilia show at the NEC and have dinner with the stars the night before,â he reveals.
âAmong the famous ones I have met are Richard Kiel, who played Jaws, Honor Blackman who played Pussy Galore in Goldfinger and Lois Maxwell who was the first Miss Moneypenny.
âI once met Desmond Llewelyn, who played the first Q, and he invited me back to his house â I have never been anxious about meeting any of the stars.
âI havenât met Sean but I have had dinner with George Lazenby.â
He explained that a friend of his Gareth Owen was involved in writing Roger Mooreâs first book, and has helped put together the starâs latest literary offering.
âGareth started an autograph show called Bond Stars and organises an open day every year at Pinewood Studios.
âI also saw part of the night shoot of The World is Not Enough during the Caviar factory scene with Robbie Coltrane.â
Robin is such a fan of the secret agent that he has even organised for his home phone number and mobile number to end in the numbers 007.
âIt was easy to get my 007 home phone number as I told the phone company what a big fan I was and they found me a number,â says Robin.
âEvery now and again on ebay there are numbers that come up ending in 007 that you can buy.
âMy parents Renald and Audrey put up with my obsession while I was growing up, as long as it didnât make a mess.
âI was one of seven children, with five brothers and a sister, none of them were into James Bond as much as me.
âMy two favourite films are From Russia With Love and On Her Majestyâs Secret Service as they are both close to the book.
âOf course the best Bond girl has to be Ursula Andress who set the standard for the rest to follow.
âI have been lucky enough to drive an Aston Martin Vantage â but only a few feet to park it for the owner.â
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