Enjoy unlimited access: just £1 for 12 weeks

Subscribe now

This second dispersal was similar in content to the first, sold by the Knightsbridge auctioneers last December. It had more or less the same number of lots: 141 compared to 131 for part one, and a similar chronological range of houses. This parity was reflected in the final statistics, with this latest sale netting a shade more than last December’s at £216,500, bringing the total for the entire collection to just over £400,000.

And, as with part one, early 18th century houses topped the bill. Heading this list was the unfurnished example pictured top right. Known as The Mahogany House, it came with its original stand and dated from c.1730-40, which is described by Vivien Greene as the period of transition from the cabinet on stand to the house on stand. The estimate had been set at £5000-8000 but there was considerable interest in this piece and, come the sale, the bidding soared to £24,000, making this the most expensive house of the entire collection.

It was closely followed at £22,000 by the opening lot, an even earlier house known as Portobello which dated from c.1700-1710 and had been billed as the potential best-seller of the auction. This opened to reveal an interior of four rooms with a central stairway furnished with late 18th and early 19th century furniture.

Again as with part one, there was keen competition for doll's house furniture and effects, with a number of entries leaving their estimates far behind. Topping the list at a multiple estimate £3800 was a collection of mainly English wooden furniture, mostly dressers, plate racks and other kitchen equipment, estimated at just £200-400, but this collection of doll's house food, illustrated below right was another high flyer. Of English manufacture, ranging in date from c.1880 to 1950 and comprising a veritable banquet including meat, fruit, fish, pies and a wedding cake, it outstripped expectations of £300-500 to sell for £2200.