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Dibnah rose to fame in 1979 when BBC Look North West interviewed him while he repaired the Bolton town hall clock and he became the subject of a TV series and documentaries.

The 440-lot auction was held on site at the Fred Dibnah Heritage Centre in Bolton by Adam Partridge and Ashley Waller Auctioneers on March 17. The highest estimated lot of the day was a beam engine by Manlove Alliott & Co which sold for £4000, against a £3000-5000 estimate.

Famed for his work as a steeplejack, climbing roofs, church spires, chimneys and clock towers, unsurprisingly, it was objects that best portrayed the man and his life that were the best performers over estimate.

Red-painted wooden steeplejack ladders bearing the name 'Fred Dibnah and Sons Steeplejacks Bolton' performed well. A version with black ribbons attached, believed to have been used to carry Dibnah's coffin at his funeral, made £1000 against an estimate of £100-150 and another sold at £950 against a £50-80 estimate.

A 21-rung red ladder which had a six-rung ladder attached sold at £550 against £50-80 estimate.

A wooden sign inscribed 'F Dibnah & Sons Bolton' sold at £1700, against a £50-80 estimate.

The sale largely contained tools and machinery, including a Victorian pneumatic hammer by B & S Massey which sold at £3600, against a £400-600 estimate.

After Dibnah’s death in 2004 his workshop, yard and house were turned into the Fred Dibnah Heritage Centre that opened in 2010.

But following the decision by heritage centre owner Leon Powsney to retire, he decided to sell the contents of the centre.