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While there, the 6ft 2in (1.84m) high George III mahogany and line inlaid serpentine-front sideboard had somehow been overlooked by thieves who had broken in on several occasions.

At Tenterden it brought a resounding £9800 winning bid.

Other furniture prices included £2000 on a George II style-carved mahogany open arm elbow chair, the arms terminating in eagles’ heads, and £1500 on an Art Nouveau square framed settee with period but slightly worn upholstery.

Several interested bidders wanted to pick up a small Louis Vuitton suitcase, stamped Captain Brodribb RAMC, and one took it at £1650.

Mervyn Carey, Tenterden, February 21
Buyer’s premium: 7.5 per cent