David Gest is auctioning a collection of rare Michael Jackson memorabilia.

The 56-year-old star, who was good friends with the late pop icon, has decided to part ways with a series of items he has collected over the years and will donate proceeds of the sale to charities Liverpool Unites and the Variety Club.

David said: "I am delighted to donate this rare Michael Jackson memorabilia from my personal collection to two very worthwhile charities that I strongly support - I wanted to do something special for children that are in need.

"Liverpool has become a second home to me and that is why I have chosen Liverpool Unites alongside the national Variety Club charity, and my best friend Michael Jackson would have agreed."

Among the items David is selling is an original vinyl 'Thriller' album which has never been played.

A never-before-seen photograph of the 'King of Pop' - who died of acute Propofol intoxication on June 25 - is also being sold-off.

The picture in framed with a veil, and is signed "Michael Jackson 1998".

Another picture of the Jackson family, including all their autographs, is also being made available.

David added: "If I can even put a smile on one child's face, then I am a better man today than I was yesterday. I hope you will all join in and bid for these one-of-a-kind items that will help raise the much needed funds these charities so richly deserve."

The auction of 18 items began last Friday (09.10.09) and runs until Monday October 19.

Liverpool Unites aims to improve the lives of underprivileged children and young people in the UK city, while the Variety Club - which has been running for 60 years - helps sick, disabled and disadvantaged children and young people.

To place a bid, visit www.liverpoolunites.co.uk/michaeljackson.