Long gone are the days when provincial salerooms would serve a purely local clientele. At specialist auctions, like Greenslade Taylor Hunt’s recent collectors sale, the buyer base is now global thanks to the availability of on-line catalogues.
“The internet has brought the world to our door-step,” comments Peter Rixon, Head of the firm’s Collectors Department,”but we still pride ourselves on having the expertise and passion to make a difference.”
Nowhere was this approach better demonstrated than in two photograph albums from Nyasaland (modern day Malawi), dating to circa 1905, discovered on a routine house call. These included a comprehensive series of images showing the building of the Lower Shire and Shire Highland Railway which drew interest from as far afield as the U.S.A. and south-east Asia before being bought, after an international bidding battle, for £6,750.
Internet bidding also helped push a set of six Mexican gold coins to £2,400, and saw a George I silver crown from 1720 fetch £900. Another £1,110 was paid for a 1565 ryal from the reign of Mary I, Queen of Scots.
Among a strong entry of postcards a family album with an early view of Norton Fitzwarren station was contested to £420, while an autograph book which William Hartnell had signed as television’s original Dr Who, made £500.
Greenslade’s specialise in diecast models and other toys and the latest instalment from a collection or ‘hug’ (to use the appropriate collective noun) of limited edition teddy bears sold for over £2,100. A well-made 3/12 inch gauge live steam model of a railway tank locomotive was purchased for just over £900.
A rare first pressing of the Beatles first LP, ‘Please Please Me’, with a black and gold label, was secured by a room bidder for £480 against stiff on-line competition. There were similarly healthy results for a 1960s plastic Esso tiger petrol pump globe (£350), and a slightly world-weary Louis Vuitton leather suitcase (£650).
Entries are already arriving for the next Collector’s Sale on 16th September so, if you have items that you would like to include, contact the auctioneers on 01823 332525, at email@example.com or in person at The Octagon Salerooms, East Read, Taunton, for a free, no-obligation valuation.