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“Our turnover has increased £100,000 gross over the last two years,” enthused Mr Wright. “The market is just so strong.”

Another reason for the success of these world leaders in specialist railwayana, is their lack of buyer’s premium. The bestseller on December 7 was a nameplate and crest for the 615 Squadron. Measuring 4ft 6in (1.37m) long, the nameplate, which was made from re-cast gun-metal, and the County of Surrey Squadron enamelled crest had been carried by the Southern Railway Battle of Britain Class 4-6-2 34082 which was built in Brighton in 1948 and withdrawn in April 1966 to be cut up by Cashmores of Newport. It sold to a British collector, as did all the lots in the sale, at £45,800.

Mr Wright thought the best money would have been taken by a King Edward III nameplate carried by the GWR ‘6000 King’ class loco built at Swindon in June 1930 and sold for scrap in 1963.

There is huge nostalgia for Britain’s railways and this nameplate was a prime example in ex-loco condition bar some light polishing to the letters and beading. It sold at £40,000.