Flying high at big December auction

A VERITABLE cornucopia of delights, that is the best way to describe the lots on offer in the final auction of 2019, writes Sarah Leedham.

The 635 lots in the Fine Arts & Specialist Sale on Wednesday, December 11, covered many different spheres of collectables, antiques and interior design.

Once again, all lots were sold by father and son team of Richard and Tom Winterton at an average 150 lots per hour.

As is traditional at this establishment the first section of the sale comprised of jewellery and watches and as it was a perfect time to buy gifts for loved ones there were many beautiful pieces to choose from.

Worthy of note was that Georgian and early Victorian jewellery sold well above expectations but top price of £1,800 was achieved by lot 13 an emerald and diamond cocktail ring (pictured below), closely followed by lot 36 a late 20th century ruby and diamond ring at £1,700 and lot 35 a modern aquamarine and diamond ring £1,050.

The wristwatches that topped the section were lot 47 a modern 18ct white gold Pasha de Cartier example at £1,800 and lot 52 a gent’s Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date wristwatch at £1,300 (both pictured here) with many others selling above estimate.


The next section to be offered featured forty lots of coins, ranging from 1980s gold sovereigns to Roman coins and everything in between.

Lot 77 a gold Charles I double crown sold at £620 and four lots of Commonwealth coins made a collective £930.

Over 60 lots of silver provided a number of excellent results and bidding was brisk, items of note were lot 124 a matched set of George III to Victorian Fiddle & Thread pattern flatware at £950, lot 116 a pair of George III cast silver candlesticks dating to 1781 £950 and lot 160 a George III silver tankard £800.

Amongst the military interest items in the auction was lot 177 an album of photographs relating to the Sino-Japanese hostilities in 1937 Shanghai, selling at £1,500, the macabre images of war damage proved a chilling reminder of how fortunate we are today (pictured left).


Military medals and family groups of medals were among the more desirable pieces within the section, but another interesting piece of history was lot 193 a WWI Princess Mary 1914 Christmas tin with near complete contents made £220 (pictured).

Ceramics and glass ranging in date from the Roman era to 2007 provided customers with much to select from and seventeen lots of Royal Worcester porcelain decorated by the likes of Harry Stinton, Ernest Barker and William Powell totalled £4,190.

Clocks of all shapes and sizes were much in demand with lot 263 a late 19th century repeating carriage clock with damage making £1,450 (pictured left) and lot 282 a Victorian mahogany cased thirty hour wall clock named Webster, Cornhill, London £660.


Later in the auction a longcase clock (pictured) by a Tamworth maker, James Oatley, who ended up being deported to Australia where he later carried on his profession sold at £1,050 – to an online bidder from Australia!

The most diverse part of the sale was the works of art section, it included some bronze figures dating from the early to mid-20th century, the most sought after amongst them was lot 276 titled “Aeroplane” by Georges Omerth, despite extensive damage throughout it flew past its estimate to £2,000. A single owner collection of 18th, 19th and 20th Century portrait miniatures made a collective £3,400.


Over 50 lots of paintings were offered. The modern paintings saw a plethora of great results with lots 331 and 332 being original pastels by Doug Hyde selling for £3,000 and £4,000 respectively; lot 373 an abstract limited edition print by Patrick Heron titled “Winchester Red 1” made £4,600 and lot 375 an abstract study of a blue head by Karel Appel realised £5,000.


Lot 392 a restored 1949 Morris Eight “E” series saloon car in green and black proved a popular lot and a bidder in the room was determined to have it at £3,700.


The sporting guns and taxidermy section of the auction was topped by lot 396 a mid 20th cased cast of a chub fish which was caught at Ross-on-Wye in 1948, it had been preserved by J.Cooper & Sons of Hounslow, with a frenzy of bidding on the internet and on the telephone it was finally won by a bidder in the room at £1,200.    

Over 60 lots of antique and modern furniture featured a collection of the ever-popular Robert Thompson “Mouseman” oak furniture, a popular investment on the second-hand market the 7ft table and eight chairs took £4,200 with seven other Mouseman pieces totalling £3,340. The other standout lot was lot 492 a late 19th century Chinese carved hardwood table, despite a thick layer of dust and remnants of Chinese newspaper stuck on the underside, five telephone bidders didn’t even get chance to compete as a two-way internet battle saw a final hammer price of £4,400.


The part of the sale that included books, cigarette cards, postcards and autographs saw some wonderful results, lot 521 a book dating to 1890 titled “Wild Life on a Tidal Water” by PH Emerson, in an edition of 500 copies sold at £750, a collection of cigarette cards made £2,630, lot 565 a collection of postcards made £520 and lot 575 a large quantity of official NASA signed and unsigned photographs and related items made £660.


The end of the sale saw a strong entry of wine, whisky, port and cigars. Private and trade buyers snapped up the lots for gifts for Christmas and New Year celebrations and investment purposes.

The next Fine Arts & Specialist sale is March 24-25 and entries are currently being accepted, the closing date being February 12.

For further details contact the office on 01543 251081 or email

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