The right track!
A huge percentage of the toys sold fell under the division of railways, which simply goes to illustrate just how popular this genre still is today. Bachmann, Wrenn, Dapol, Hornby, Peco, Graham Farish and Rivarossi were just some of the names appearing in the catalogue and helped push the sale total to nearly £100,000.
Stars of the auction were undoubtedly the ASTER Gauge 1 models: these comprised a live stream spirit fired Stirling single loco and tender (GNR No. 1), which appeared to have had very little use. It was complete with a wooden carrying case, although the model lacked paperwork. Also included were four yards of Peco Gauge 1 track. Against an estimate of £800-1200, this impressive lot chuffed away to achieve £2,000.
The other ASTER Gauge 1 of note was the spirit fired S.N.C.F. “Chapelon”, this a 4-6-2 locomotive and bogie tender, which was finished in that classic understated French Nord brown. Again, the model seemed to have had very little use. Described as excellent, it came with a wooden carry case, together with five yards of Peco Gauge 1 track. Interestingly, this model was expected to achieve more (£1,200-1,800) but bidding settled at £1,900. An ASTER Gauge 1 spirit fired 4-4-0 Loco and tender, the “Winchester”, also sold well, achieving £600. This example was finished in Southern green with No. 901 markings. It wasn’t mint, since it exhibited some marks to the paintwork, and was missing three handrails on the tender. The lot also included display track and a John Prescott Engineering dual gauge 32mm and 45mm rolling road for up to three coupled wheel sets.
Garden railway buffs weren’t overlooked either.The best-selling lot of the day had to be the Roundhouse Engineering live steam gas fired 0-6-0 tank engine, with dual gauge 32mm and 45mm, but set at 32mm. Finished in unlined mustard brown, with an unnamed, fitted radio control, it included a whistle and transmitter. In excellent to near mint state, the lot’s bidding was fierce, surpassing the upper guideline of £800 to finally achieve a creditable £1,900.
Apart from railways, Dinky devotees were well catered for, too. A number of military items were offered with a No.615 US Jeep & 105mm Howitzer, No.617 Volkswagen KDF & 50mm PAK Gun, No.609 US 105mm Howitzer & Crew and No.656 88mm Gun. All were excellent to mint in bubble packs and were knocked down for £170. A No.665 Honest John Missile Launcher, with No.677 the Task Force Set and No.342 Austin Mini Moke, were in equally good condition and sold for £100. Finally, on the Matchbox front, something of a bargain was the 1-75 Series carry case that included 46 Matchbox Superfast, one Dinky (No.183 Mini Minor) and one Husky vehicle. All contents were good to excellent and the carry case was described as good. A modest guideline of £80-120 was eclipsed, the lot selling for £240.