HULK, Daredevil, X-Men, the upcoming League of Extraordinary Gentle-men, Spiderman - Hollywood has certainly discovered how to make money from comics.

But whether you're a comic reader or just have a stack in the attic, there's cash to be made by playing the four-colour market.

Rod Wilson, manager of comic specialist Forbidden Planet in Cardiff, said: "The market has been buoyed a little bit by the movie successes, and a lot of Marvel comics have gone up in value.

"Investing can be a bit hit-and-miss. You've got to read around the subject. "I'm sure there are comics around today that will be worth a lot of money in a few years time.

"Issue 36 of Amazing Spider-Man, with a black cover, commemorated September 11, and that's worth about £30 or £40 now. "It's also all about the quality of the comic. A mint copy would be exactly as it was when first bought.

"Anything like tears, anything that's been cut out, a faded cover, water damage, anything like that will reduce the value."

Steve Rogers organises comic and sci-fi fairs around the UK, including New-port and Cardiff.

He said: "Our Newport fairs regularly get 500 people and in London we get 2,000 or more. "We have dealers from all around the country and they bring comics and merchandise that you can't get anywhere else.

"The magazine Comics International tells you who the movers and shakers in the market are, what to look out for, and what's a good price." Terry Guy, (pictured) owner of Newport comic shop Negative Zone, said: "I've got a few collectors items here - the original Atom comic, for one - but a lot more people these days realise that what they've got could be valuable.

"If you've got comics in the loft, the first thing you need to do is get them out - they need to be in bags with boards and in good condition to be worth anything."

Tom Whiteley