Saturday, 9 July 2011

40p glasses make £19,000 at auction.

From the Daily Mail:

When a bargain hunter spotted these unusual glasses at a boot sale for 40p each, she bought them on a ‘hunch’. It certainly turned out to be a good one.

For the trio were rare 18th-century examples of work by revered glassmaker William Beilby – and they have just sold at auction for £18,880.

After the boot sale in Portsmouth, the woman, who has not been named, took the glasses to a sale room in Chichester, West Sussex, for an expert opinion.

The anonymous woman apologised to staff if she was about to waste their time, but when they saw what she had brought they soon realised they had a precious load before them.

Dealers and collectors clamoured for the find and after a furious bidding session at Stride and Son auction house saw them go under the hammer for £16,000 pounds.

The winning bidder, who deals in glass, paid a total of £18,880 after all the extra fees were added on.

Mark Hewitt, from auctioneers Stride and Son, said: 'The lady was at a car boot sale and just bought them on a hunch.

'She didn't haggle or anything, she just paid what the person was asking - which was 40p each.

'Then she brought the glasses to us and was a bit embarrassed and said she didn't want to waste our time.

'When I saw them I made sure I put them in a locked cabinet. The lady said that last time she had had a "touch" she had made £800.

'Before the sale she was trying to gauge how excited I was but I didn't give anything away and I think she was a bit shocked when I opened the bidding at £500.

'Then within just a few minutes the bidding got up to 16,000 pounds.

'After we put it on the website it was clear that collectors and dealers thought they were "right".

'They are rare Beilby glass - which is a famous name - and were made at the workshop in Newcastle.

'The person who bought them said afterwards that because they come up so rarely he had to have all three.

'They are museum quality pieces and it just shows that you can pick things up at car boot sales and make money.'

The items were made in about 1765 and fewer than 100 of these armorial glasses are recorded.

His workshop in Newcastle-upon-Tyne produced these three examples with the arms of John Thomas, a churchman from Cumberland.

At the time the glasses were made he was a vicar of St Bride's in London's Fleet Street.

It is thought that the set originally consisted of a set of five - and two others have sold at auction in recent years.

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