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A Watson bracket clock, right, 13in (33cm) high including the handle, was the star lot of the sale conducted by Walker Barnett & Hill (15% buyer’s premium) of Cosford, Shropshire on October 28. In case and decoration it shared the characteristic elements of the late 17th century style, but of considerable interest was the unusual 14-day movement that had a quarter pull repeat mechanism and the outer ring of the dial showing 120 rather than the usual 60 minutes.

Estimated at £15,000-20,000, it sold for £23,000 to a local collector who outbid London dealers and collectors from the Cotswolds and the north of England.

An equally significant name in French 19th/early 20th cabinetmaking is Paul Sormani who, alongside François Linke, ranks among the foremost proponents of ancien régime revivalism. Leading Walker Barnett & Hill’s September sale was a Louis X-style kingwood and ormolu mounted bureau plat by the self-described creator of ‘meubles de luxe’. It sold at £9500 to one of the many private buyers who patronise these rooms. However, perhaps the outstanding result at this sale was the £4600 paid for the Royal Doulton figure Sunshine Girl HN1348, pictured right. Always among the most coveted of all of Leslie Harradine’s bathing beauties, this figure was produced between 1929-1938 and may have been inspired by a musical of the same name with a storyline revolving around a love affair between a worker and a factory girl at Port Sunlight Soap. There are two
colourways, this version painted with a yellow and black striped and polka dot swimsuit.