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About Brian Goodison-Blanks
Brian Goodison-Blanks is the Head of the Maritime and Sporting Department at Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood. He is based at Honiton in Devon.
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Disclaimer
The material published in this web log is for general purposes only. It does not constitute nor is it intended to represent professional advice. You should always seek specific professional advice in relation to particular issues. The information in this web log is provided "as is" with no warranties and confers no rights. The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions.

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Review Entries for Day Friday, 07 April 2017

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away….well it was 1977 and it was London, but I like many young boys at the time was captivated by Stars Wars, a film that was, and still is, one of the most memorable ever. Such an influential film on a young nerd leaves it mark, so it was no surprise that during a recent valuation event in North Devon an absolute gem of a collectable was revealed.

 an original 1977 issue luke sky walker 12 inch action figure

An original 1977 issue Luke Sky Walker 12 inch action figure 

There in his original box in pristine condition and with the more unusual grappling hook accessory was an original 1977 issue Luke Sky Walker 12 inch action figure. The inner nerd re-surfaced and I spent the rest of the day telling everyone how fantastic this item is. Since there have been later films and re-issues of various figures, the holy grail for collectors’ are the original issue figures. These are harder to come by in their packaging, especially after forty years so this figure should really get the bidding war going. Included in the Two Day Sporting & Collectors Auction at Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood, Exeter, 17th & 18th May (sadly not May 4th!).

 

an original 1977 issue luke sky walker 12 inch action figure

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Friday, 07 April 2017 12:02:02 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Collectable Toys | Collectors | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Wednesday, 05 April 2017

Recently consigned for inclusion in the Sporting & Collectors Auction is this Edwardian 9ct gold and enamel Scottish International football medal for Alexander Bennett.  Pre-war football memorabilia has always had a strong following for devoted collectors and this piece should prove to be no exception.

edwardian 9ct gold and enamel scottish international football medal for alexander bennett 

Edwardian 9ct gold and enamel Scottish International football medal for Alexander Bennett 

Alexander 'Alex' Bennett began playing for his local club Rutherglen Glencairn in 1901 and was selected for the Scottish International Junior side in 1902, scoring three goals in junior internationals, In 1903 he signed for Celtic Rangers and was a regular first team player in the squad that won the Scottish League title for four years consecutively from 1905-1908. In 1908 he left Celtic and signed for Glasgow Rangers (ten days after scoring the winning goal against them) and became the first player ever to play for both Celtic and Rangers. The signing did not pass without an enquiry from Celtic into the transfer, but the appeal was eventually turned down by the Scottish FA in June 1908. During the First World War he played for Dumbarton and finished his foot balling career with Albion Rovers in over the 1920/21 season. He went on to manage Third Larnak and Clydebank as well a writing a regular column for the Daily Mail. Over his playing career he made eleven appearances for the Scottish International team scoring two goals and represented the Scottish League on ten occasions. 

alex bennett 9ct gold and enamel medal scotland v england 1908

Alex Bennett 9ct gold and enamel medal Scotland V England 1908

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Wednesday, 05 April 2017 09:25:08 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Collectors | Medals & Militaria | Sporting | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Wednesday, 18 January 2017

If you missed attending the auction of The Anthony & Yvonne Pardoe Collection of Diving Helmets and Equipment  at Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood (SS02)  some catalogues from the sale are still available for £10 each.

the antony & yvonne pardoe collection of diving helmets & equipment

The Antony & Yvonne Pardoe Collection of Diving Helmets & Equipment

 

Fully illustrated with over 150 diving helmets, diving pumps, boots knives and diving accessories it is a useful reference for anyone with a passion for collecting historic diving equipment.

Entries for the next Specialist Maritime Auction of the 14th June 2017 are currently invited.  For further information please contact Brian Goodison-Blanks bgb@bhandl.co.uk

 

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Wednesday, 18 January 2017 16:26:22 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Collectors | Maritime | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Tuesday, 09 June 2015

A historic piece of Royal Navy history has been consigned to Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood’s forthcoming Maritime Auction of 1st July 2015 in the form of a Royal Navy Life preserver from HMS Hood (MA15/290)

 

a war department issue life preserver for hms hood

A War Department issue life preserver for HMS Hood 

 
Inscribed in black text to the front with the ship’s name, the reverse has War Department markings, that though faded are a good indication of the origins of this piece.  It was acquired by the vendor’s father while on holiday in Scotland in the 1930s who bought it at auction and it has remained within the family ever since. It is most likely possible that it was taken from the ship during her major refit May 1929-March 1931 and sold as a souvenir by an enterprising sailor. As well as the pride of the Royal Navy the Hood also attracted a great deal of public support and following during her showing the flag exercises in the 1920s, her sinking having a dramatic affect worldwide.
Souvenirs from the Hood were taken by visitors to the ship in the 1920s and 1930s, like the brass Dolphin fitting (MA13/124A) and the rowing blade trophy (SC19/644).  These pieces are very few and far between as many remain within private collections.
For further information please contact Brian Goodison-Blanks goodisonblanksb@bhandl.co.uk
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Tuesday, 09 June 2015 14:07:18 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Collectors | Maritime | Medals & Militaria | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Thursday, 09 April 2015

A recent consignment to Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood’s forthcoming auction of Maritime and Nautical Antiques on 1st July 2015, this scale model of the RMS Queen Mary made for Hamley's of London, still brings out the child in all collectors. It is fitting that the one of the world’s greatest Ocean Liners of the early 20th century should have had a scale model version being sold in Hamley's, perhaps the world’s greatest toy shop. The detailing of the model is in keeping with the RMS Queen Mary herself, with elegant decking and detail to attention in her funnels and masts. 

 

a scale model of rms queen mary made for hamleys of london

A scale model of RMS Queen Mary made for Hamley's of London 

Pond yachts and model boats were a popular pastime with many children and adults in the late 19th and early 20th century, many parks still have a small boating pond even to this day. Collectors will certainly be enthralled by the original condition of this model made for Hamley's, even despite showing signs of perhaps a few unsuccessful voyages, with a pre-sale estimate of £300-£400.

Further entries are currently invited for the sale. For further information, please contact Brian Goodison-Blanks bgb@bhandl.co.uk.
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Thursday, 09 April 2015 16:41:25 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Collectable Toys | Collectors | Maritime | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood's next Sporting & Collectors Auction on 25th/26th February 2015 has a good selection of antique firearms, arms and armour for all collectors. Included within the sale is a large single owner collection that has produced a few surprises along the way. Perhaps one of the most interesting is a rare Kolibri 2.7mm semi-automatic pistol, produced by Franz Pfanni, an Austrian watch maker.

 

a rare kolibri semi automatic pistol. 

A rare Kolibri semi automatic pistol.

Introduced in 1914, it was the world's smallest commercially available semi-automatic pistol, firing a centre fire 0.2g bullet. Only around 1,000 were ever produced as the pistol and round proved ineffective and it soon became obsolete.

American collectors still seek good examples and this piece numbered '15' will still be an attractive item despite suffering some rusting, with an estimate of £200-£300.

Also within the collection is another favourite for all antique firearms collectors, a .41calbre Remington Derringer over and under pistol. Even more enticing is the original leather holster that has the gun retailer's stamp. Estimated at £300-£600, it should certainly gain great interest with collectors on both sides of the Atlantic, eager to acquire one for their antique firearm collection.

 

a remington double barrel over and under derringer.

A Remington double barrel over and under Derringer.

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Wednesday, 21 January 2015 14:57:33 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Antique Guns & Firearms | Collectors | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Tuesday, 23 December 2014

After nearly 30 years, an extremely rare variation of a 1950s Matchbox model will be returning to auction at Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood in our Sporting and Collectors Sale of 25th February 2015. The opportunity to acquire such a unique piece will be a great attraction to any collector.

Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood are honoured to have been instructed to undertake the sale of the collection of the Late Mr Phillip Tarbox. He was a passionate collector and member of The Matchbox International Collectors Association. His collection includes a rare variation of a Lesney ‘Model Of Yesteryear’ Y8, 1926 Cowley Bullnose Morris with a tow hitch.

 

 

An extremely rare Lesney First Series Model of Yesteryear Y8 Cowley Bullnose with tow hitch.

The story behind how Mr Tarbox acquired this rare variation of a well-known model is one that many collectors around the world dream of but only few ever have the opportunity.  As a regular collector and buyer at auction, a simple catalogue description of ‘ten boxed Models of Yesteryear and two unboxed models’ in a sale in Exeter in April 1986 piqued his interest and he purchased the lot for a modest price.

On closer examination, the Bullnose model revealed that it had a tow hook on the rear of the chassis and so further investigation began.  In the days long before email and social media, Mr Tarbox wrote to Matchbox and sent photographs of the model to confirm that it was correct.

 

 

Underside of Chassis.

Engineers from Matchbox thoroughly examined the piece and confirmed that it was correct and that it was not a manufacturing fault of excess casting or flash.  This was also confirmed by the MICA members and magazine editor at the Farnham swapmeet in September 1986, and published in the MICA magazine. (Vol 2 No4 1986).

 

Rear View of Chassis

It is not known how many of these variations exist and they rarely come up at auction. Mr Tarbox’s model in its original box and a copy of the MICA magazine with his photographs are included in the sale.  This provenance will no doubt help it achieve the upper end of its pre-sale estimate of £600-£800.

Why not discuss this on Twitter using the hash tag #MatchboxModel? Don't forget to tweet us @BHandL

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Tuesday, 23 December 2014 19:22:32 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Collectable Toys | Collectors | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Thursday, 29 August 2013

One of the great joys of being an auctioneer is in part re-living your childhood, a fact that is certainly true when cataloguing the Specialist Sporting & Collectors Sale of 18th September 2013 at Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood's Dowell Street saleroom, Honiton.

a collection of action man figures in orginal boxes 

A collection of Action Man figures in orginal boxes

With original boxed toys that you remember driving your parents mad with demands for, it is extremely satisfying to finally get hold of them albeit then to only wonder what all the fuss was about! Perhaps its will always be a ‘boys and their toys’ thing or the fact we never grow up, but even seeing original boxed Action Man figures or Scalextric cars can be intoxicatingly nostalgic.  
 
It is this feeling that has driven the market from strength to strength with each new generation eager to reclaim a piece of their childhood memories. 
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Thursday, 29 August 2013 17:05:11 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Collectable Toys | Collectors | Honiton | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Monday, 01 July 2013

If I ever sarcastically said to my old boss "Well you learn something new every day", he would instantly reply "It’s a fool who doesn’t" and this is something I am often reminded of as a valuer.

Even something as simple as a nutcracker can reveal a whole new world as I have found since cataloguing a single owner collection of antique nutcrackers for the forthcoming Sporting & Collectors sale of 18th September 2013.

 

 a 19th century black forest carved bears head nutcracker

A 19th century Black Forest carved bears head nutcracker

Perhaps like many people I had only seen the typical lever type crackers once a year around Christmas, but the collection has opened my eyes to the wonderful world of nuts and antique nut crackers. There are a wide variety of materials and methods for cracking nuts and each of these vary again for different types of nut.

 

a 20th century 'tough nut'  table top percussion nutcracker

A 20th Century 'Tough Nut'  table top percussion nutcracker

From small brass 18th century crackers to 19th century carved wooden crackers from Germany and Italy, the collection has a good range for all enthusiasts. The appeal of nutcrackers is universal from the treen examples of  the Pinto collection in Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery to the Leavenworth Nutcracker Museum in America.

Some examples of the type of crackers included within the Sporting and Collectors Sale of 18th september 2013 can also be seen at www.nutcrackers.org.uk.

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Monday, 01 July 2013 14:16:44 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Collectors | Honiton | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Sunday, 30 June 2013

Among an interesting collection of Antique Firearms and Antique Arms & Armour consigned for Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood’s forthcoming Sporting & Collectors sale of 18th September 2013 is a fine example of an early 18th Century North European sporting crossbow.

 

an early 18th century north european inlaid sporting crossbow

An early 18th century North European inlaid sporting crossbow

Retaining the original string and waxed brindle of chord, the shape and inlaid decoration is typical of sporting bows used during the 18th century in shooting and hunting competitions.

First invented in Ancient China, the crossbow became more popular in Europe due to ability of novice bowmen to quickly become accurate and on target, relative to the long bow which required years of use and experience.

In excellent condition, collectors of Antique Arms & Armour will no doubt be interested in acquiring this item with a pre-sale estimate of £1,500-£2,000.

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Sunday, 30 June 2013 14:23:46 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Antique Guns & Firearms | Collectors | Honiton | Medals & Militaria | Trackback

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