Furniture and pictures can usually be relied upon to bag the biggest prices in provincial auctions but while this was so at Bristol Auction Rooms April sale there were also interesting works in some of the other sections.
Buyers were found for around 73 per cent of the 1139 entries. Foremost was a English ormolu-mounted and kingwood bureau plat, c.1850, with a leather inset shaped oval panel top with foliate marquetry spandrels. Consigned from a Wiltshire deceased estate, the 5ft (1.5m) wide entry had suffered floral marquetry and veneer losses to two areas of the surface. Nevertheless, the good proportions of this fresh-to-the-market entry saw the Irish trade outbid telephone competition at £7000.
A German tinplate Mickey and Minnie Mouse organ grinder with clockwork mechanism, probably by Distler, c.1931, was the most sought after collectable. Although it lacked its tail, it was in good overall condition and had few scratches.
Underbid by the trade, it brought £3200 from a collector while a 19th century French automaton of a bisque-headed pierrot figure playing a stringed instrument fetched £390 and a large wooden rocking horse by Haddon Rocking Horses Ltd made £420.
Although Blue John works of art do not often appear at auction, the auction house were still surprised by the punchy bids placed by a Dorset dealer to secure two late 18th century urns.
Consigned from the same deceased estate as the kingwood bureau plat, one had a matched finial and chips to the base while the other lacked a finial. Standing at 101/2in (26.5cm) high and 121/2in (31.5cm), they sold at £2300 and £2600 respectively.
Bristol Auction Rooms, Bristol, April 9
Buyer’s premium: 12.77 per cent