The Beano Book (No 1) from 1940 features characters Pansy Potter and Big Eggo on the cover and is being offered at Keys Fine Art Auctioneers in Aylsham.
Dennis the Menace made his first appearance in 1951 and his pet dog Gnasher was introduced in 1968.
This copy has some light damp staining but is generally in very good condition for an annual made around the outbreak of the Second World War. It is estimated at £1200-1500 and was produced just a year after the weekly comic was taken over by Dundee-based DC Thomson in 1938.
According to The Comic Book Price Guide, a copy of this version of the annual made £4500 at Comic Book Auctions in March 2007 and another made £4265 in 2010 at the same saleroom.
Copies of the Magic-Beano Book are also popular with collectors. Although produced later than the No 1 annuals, from 1942-49, they are regarded as rarer. The name reflects the input of the short-lived Magic Comic. It was printed for just 80 issues and ceased publication in 1941 due to paper rationing during the Second World War.
Following the end of the war, Magic Comic was not reinstated and the Magic-Beano Book annual eventually reverted to the original title of The Beano Book in 1950.
But many of the characters from the Magic Comic were adopted by the Beano. A copy of the Magic-Beano Book annual from 1943 was auctioned at Comic Book Auctions in May 2017, and smashed its £2000-2500 estimate to be hammered down at £5600.
Copies of the first Beano comic - Beano No1 – are even more sought after. In 2015 a Beano No1 sold for a record £15,175 at Comic Book Auctions.