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Model steam train sparks bidding war at Somerset auction

A MODEL steam train – even with some replacement parts – set off a flurry of bids at a Somerset auction.

Among items offered up at auctioneer Greenslade Taylor Hunt’s recent collectors and selected antiques sale was a three-inch gauge Stevens model dockyard live stream spirit-fed 4-2-2 locomotive, Conqueror.

The model sparked furious interest from would-be buyers, having come to the sale at the Somerset Salerooms, in the Sedgemoor Auction Centre at Junction 24, via a house clearance.

Eventually, the hammer fell at £1,700 – the day’s top price.

Elsewhere, an interesting insight into life in London in the 19th Century was also sold.

Charles Booth’s Life and Labour of the People in London, 1902, is regarded as a landmark piece of socio-economic history looking at the living and working conditions of Londoners at the time.

The original notebooks on which the books are based are held by the London School of Economics.

Included in the lot consigned to GTH were a selection of 20 maps and limited edition illustrations, which had been signed by the illustrator TR Way. Together, they fetched £1,400.

Meanwhile, missing ears and restored legs were no bar to success for a Pearlware pottery model of a horse, circa 1800-1820.

The dappled grey example, with a mustard bridle, sold for £600.

More ceramic charm was provided by a pair of Burmantofts faience partie-colour Persian vases, designed by Joseph Walmsley.

Featuring stylized floral and foliate decoration in shades of turquoise, blue, grey and yellow, the striking vessels sold for £500 at the GTH auction.

Examples of Walmsley’s work are held by the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Other lots included an unsigned sketch book from the late 18th/early 19th Century, which made £350, while a set of five Corgi classic diecast model commercial vehicles sold for £110.

The auctioneers are preparing for a similar collectors and selected antiques sale on Wednesday, June 26, from 11.30am. Please contact the salerooms on 01278 410250.

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