However, the sale also illustrated the growing demand for pieces by the 'critters' – the master’s one-time apprentices and followers who assumed their own trademarks.
Stan ‘Woodpeckerman’ Dodds was the carver of a 16in (41cm) wide oak mantel clock supported by carved elephants. It bore Dodds’ carved rabbit signature (one he used before switching to the woodpecker in the 1960s when fellow craftsman Peter Heap registered the rabbit as his own).
Dodds was probably the carver of the pair of record-setting pair of Mouseman elephant bookends sold at Lawrences of Crewkerne in July 2019 (ATG No 2401) for £10,000.
Tennants’ pair of pachyderms supporting a clock case complete with a working German battery-powered timekeeper sold at £5000.
As with other top-sellers at the Leyburn sale on October 17, the buyer was a private UK enthusiast.
The best of the Woodpeckerman carvings of animals and birds was a 10in (25cm) tall sitting owl which doubled expectations selling at £4500.
Topping the day was a 6ft 6in x 3ft (1.98m x 91cm) Mouseman refectory table from the sought-after period, c.1930. Carved to one leg with one mouse running up and another running down, the table tripled mid-expectations at £7800.