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The Godwin table that sold for £40,000 to a London specialist at Halls’ sale in Shrewsbury after it had been retrieved from a skip.

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Another of these Anglo-Japanese tables - sometimes referred to as Smallhythe tables after the example in the Ellen Terry Museum at Smallhythe Place, Kent - is pictured on the front cover of Susan Soros'The Secular Furniture of E.W. Godwin.

During conversation with the owners, it emerged that this table had been thrown on a skip only to be later retrieved. A leg had been broken and repaired. Offered for sale on May 21, it was contested by three telephones before a London specialist secured it at £40,000 (plus 17.5% buyer's premium).

The price was comfortably within a very realistic £30,000-50,000 estimate. Given its condition few had expected it to match the £80,000 generated by another example with the same distinctive brass fittings estimated at just £150-200 at Simon Chorley of Southam, near Cheltenham in November 2006.