1. Tank blueprint
On February 25-26, Laidlaw of Carlisle is to auction the only known blueprint of a First World War British Mark I tank, the world’s first tracked armoured fighting vehicle.
The highly detailed large scale technical plan was used in its design and construction. It bears the ink stamps of the designers and manufacturers of the tank, William Foster & Co Limited, Engineers, Lincoln, and is dated May 18, 1916, just a few months prior to the first use of the tank on the morning of September 15 during the Battle of Flers-Courcelette, part of the Somme Offensive.
It is accompanied by a patent specification for the tank titled Improvements in and relating to transport vehicles propelled by an endless moving chain track. Also dated 1916, it runs to some 20 pages of typewritten text with pencil annotations and corrections.
The blueprint (shown above with auctioneer Paul Laidlaw) and patent specification carry estimates of £10,000-20,000 and £5000-10,000 respectively.
2. Benton End still life
Nine pictures by two members of the Benton End group, Lucy Harwood and Allan Walton, will go under the hammer at the Cheffins Art & Design Sale on February 24.
The pictures have been held in a private collection in London and the sale will coincide with the opening of an exhibition at the Firstsite gallery in Colchester, Life with Art: Benton End and the East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing, which explores the lives and works of the alumni of Benton End.
The Benton End group, known as The East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing, was founded by Cedric Morris and his partner, Arthur Lett-Haines, in 1937. Initially located in Dedham, Essex, the school was moved to a 16th century farmhouse near Hadleigh in Suffolk called Benton End in 1938.
Harwood was one of the first artists to join the group in 1937, aged 43, and was one of the school’s longest-serving students. Shown here is Still Life with Paper Whites by Harwood (pictured above), which comes from the Cedric Morris estate and has an estimate of £300-500.
3. Exotic bird picture
Newly formed Sloane Street Auctions holds its first sale in Chelsea on February 24. Fine art dealer Daniel Hunt launched his business at 69 Lower Sloane Street (see ATG No 2527).
This oil on canvas of exotic birds in a landscape by Jakob Bogdani (1658-1724) comes in an 18th century carved frame. The ’Property of a gentleman’, it has a guide of £8000-12,000.
4. Regency mahogany armchair
Duke’s Interiors Auction on February 24 includes property from The Estate of the late Joanna Sebag-Montefiore of Crown House, Cerne Abbas.
Pictured here is a Regency mahogany library wing armchair, early 19th century, the swept back upholstered in a green leather, on front tapering and fluted legs, terminating on brass castors.
Measuring 3ft 7in high x 2ft 11in deep x 2ft 7in wide (1.08m x 88cm x 80cm), it is estimated at £500-1000 in the Dorchester sale.
5. Godwin chairs
Tennants’ 20th Century Design sale in Leyburn on February 26 includes this set of four Anglo-Japanese ebonised beech side chairs designed by Edward William Godwin (1833-86) and retailed by William Wyatt. They will be sold individually, each with an estimate of £1000-1500.
The chairs have two different patterns to the lattice backs, the design of which was included in Susan Soros’ monograph on the designer.
6. Dandy comic
The first Dandy comic was published by DC Thomson in December 1937 and it revolutionised childrens’ reading from text stories to fully illustrated comic strips, including Korky the Cat, Desperate Dan, Keyhole Kate and Freddy the Fearless Fly.
Only 25 issues are known to have survived and the Dandy comic No 1, shown here, is estimated at £3000-3500 in a Comic Book Auctions timed online sale closing on February 27.