The Curate’s Egg

Like the proverbial curate’s egg, parts of this auction were excellent, despite a disappointing number of lots that failed to find new homes. Collections and selections that provided depth of interest for collectors and potential for dealers attracted particularly enthusiastic bidding whilst some ‘old favourites’ were disappointing on the day.

Notable individual results included the 1840 Mulready 1d. letter sheet overprinted “SPECIMEN” from the unlisted stereo A16 [lot 383] that sold for £1,440 despite its  imperfections. Covers bearing Oxford college stamps continue in strong demand. Two examples from Merton College to Magdalen bearing the 1876-77 (½d.) blue perf. 12½ x imperf. uncancelled [lot 155] soared to £1,798 although one stamp had been sadly torn.

The 1883-84 ‘lilac and green’ unissued 5d. with line under “d” and overprinted “SPECIMEN” [lot 711] achieved £5,952 whilst a rare used vertical strip of five of the 1887-92 ‘Jubilee’ £1 green [lot 731] rose strongly to £2,604.

There was good interest in rarer King Edward VII shades, a fine mint corner example, of the De La Rue 10d. slate purple and deep (glossy) carmine [lot 808] reaching £2,852. Two examples of the ever reliable 1935 Silver Jubilee 2½d. Prussian blue [lots 1010 and 1011] sold for £4,712 and £4,340 respectively despite some very light gum toning.

King George VI included a most interesting interpanneau block of six of the German propaganda forgery 3d. showing a combination of inflammatory overprints [lot 1037]. This challenging item reached £2,333.

Queen Elizabeth II errors remain rather flat but £7,444 was paid for the stunning 1969 Christmas 5d. cylinder block of six [lot 1155] with multiple colour and phosphor omissions due to a paper fold, the missing portions being printed on the gummed side. The similar strip of three [lot 1156] sold for £4,800.

The sale concluded with a section of Channel Islands that featured an interesting series of collections formed by the late Dr Bob Forrester.  These attracted strong bidding with just one lot – of literature – failing to find a buyer.

Full listings of the prices realised may be found here.

Results quoted include buyer’s premium and the final sale total for this auction was £457,697. For all further information please contact Tom Margalski or Bethany Pascoe at the London office.

News item published on: 16 April, 2023