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It certainly had a surprise in the form of a George III wine cooler which closed the day at £31,500 but the turnover of lots was more to do with the way Ian Walker maintains local Somerset contacts and ensures his six-monthly sales have only privately entered pieces with some claim to quality.

His success has been sufficient for Mr Walker to be planning six sales next year rather than two, but he will be fortunate indeed if he turns up many more items like November’s sale-topping mahogany wine cooler in the Adam style.

Illustrated here, the 23in long, 171/4in wide and 2ft high (59 x 44 x 60cm) cooler with anthemion and bell decoration to the trough, brass carrying handles and a moulded frieze above reeded legs on brass castors breathed quality.

It was absolutely right and wholly period, and Mr Walker researched the possibility of it being by John Linnell, but in the absence of a stamp or signature he gave the cooler an unpublished estimate of around £6000-8000. The vendor was pleased enough with this and was, naturally, delighted when a London dealer had to go to £31,500 to secure it. How much was added to the price by the current demand for all wine-related items is uncertain, but it was certainly a major factor.

This was not the case, however, in the interest triggered by a classical wine or beer flagon – a 42 per cent silver alloy rhyton catalogued simply as antique.

With one side cast as a sheep’s, the other as a goat’s head with the neck decorated with the scene of a child suckling a goat, the 73/4in rhyton’s handle was broken at the neck and eroded but went to a specialist dealer a little above estimate at £3200.

Top ceramic lot was an 88-piece 19th century Spode pottery dinner service decorated with flowers in underglaze blue, iron red and gilding which sold at £900.

Among a dozen four-figure furniture lots was an early George II mahogany kneehole desk with a frieze drawer enclosing slide and fitments which brought £3100; a 16th century oak linenfold enclosed armchair with planked folding top and box seat with sliding cover which made £3000, and an early George III mahogany tallboy, 5ft 8in (1.73m) high with three short and three long drawers above a brushing slide and six long oak-lined drawers which took £2300.

Tamlyn & Son, Bridgwater, November 6
Number of lots offered: 292
Number of lots sold: 264
Sale total: £96,000
Buyer’s premium: 15 per cent