A COLLECTION of valuable books by one of the greatest comic writers in English history was saved from the dump by eagle-eyed staff at a recycling centre.

The books by PG Wodehouse are still in their original covers and the collection is thought to be worth several hundred pounds.

One of the titles, which were found at Five Lanes Recycling Centre near Caldicot, is worth around £200 alone.

The book, The Indomitable Jeeves published in 1923 was the first in a series of novels about the character.

Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse (1881-1975) rose to fame in the 1920s with books about characters such as Bertie Wooster and his long-suffering servant Jeeves.

The books were taken to the recycling centre, which is run by Suez on behalf of Monmouthshire County Council, last year.

They were rescued by staff who thought they may be valuable and the council contacted a book collector in Tintern to find out more.

The collector explained that it was an extraordinary find and that it was rare to have books with their original wrappings.

The books will now go on sale at the shop at the recycling centre which sells items that are of saleable quality which have been rescued from the skips.

Profits from the shops go towards tree planting in Monmouthshire.

Chris Williams, team leader at the Five Lanes centre said: “These books were a great find. It’s good to know they have been saved, and someone will hopefully treasure them.

“Every week you have something new that comes in and you never know what you are going to get.

“As well as the antiques and collectables, we also have loads of everyday useful items that our customers love.”

Cllr Catrin Maby (Lab, Drybridge) the council’s cabinet member for climate change and environment, said: “Our reuse shops have been open for a while now and we continue to be surprised by the unique and rare items that pop up.

“It’s wonderful to know these special books have been saved from the tip and that someone will be able to enjoy them for many years to come.”

Roger Sealey, operations manager for Suez said: “This is another fantastic example of the reuse of items that are destined for disposal.

“Thanks to our engaged staff and their keen curiosity we were able to rescue this extraordinary collection of classic books.

“We are constantly monitoring the waste containers and approaching site users to salvage any items but we’d urge anyone to chat to one of our colleagues on site if you are unsure of whether something can be reused.

“Even if you think it isn’t worth anything, there is a chance that it can be enjoyed by someone else and help reduce our impact on the environment.”

It’s not the first time something valuable has been retrieved from the recycling centres.

A vintage and rare cloth Mickey Mouse toy was saved from the rubbish tip in early 2022 thanks to eagle-eyed staff.

The toy was originally made at one of the UK’s oldest teddy bear manufacturers in Pontypool and was eventually donated to the town’s museum.