NOW you see them, now you don't. Sporting pictures, famous for being unwanted and cheap, made a good showing at Christie's South Kensington's last sale of British and Victorian pictures in November, but are missing from the next one on Thursday (10.30am). In a burst of enthusiasm, British buyers snapped up a set of eight pictures of polo ponies by George Wright (1860-1942), estimated pounds 6,000- pounds 8,000, for pounds 31,900, and grey hunter in loose box by A S Boult, est pounds 600- pounds 800, for pounds 5,500. Would- be collectors may disdain gun dogs and dead bunnies, the only sporting art in next week's sale, but might be forgiven for thinking sporting art is climbing out of the ditch.

Phillips Bayswater offers a chalk drawing of a woman's head by Stephen Ward, of Profumo scandal fame, consigned by the model (anonymous), est pounds 100- pounds 150, Tuesday (10am). Bonhams has English and continental watercolours and drawings, Thursday (2pm). Phillips has English and European watercolours and prints, plus limited edition reproductions, Tuesday (11am).

Bonhams' sale of 20th-century furniture and design offers big names in one of the most esoteric corners of collecting: contemporary furniture. Here are Fifties originals by Eames (recliners with matching ottomans est pounds 600- pounds 900), Saarinen's Forties fibreglass and tubular steel womb chair, way-out in 1946 ( pounds 350- pounds 450) and Panton's Fifties cone stool ( pounds 300-400). Strangest of all, because it looks so ordinary, is Aalto's circular coffee table with bentwood legs, a late, post-war edition est pounds 250- pounds 350. You need to be a connoisseur. Otherwise you might toss an Aalto coffee table into a skip.

Five ceramics sales: Monday, British and continental at Christie's (10.30am); Tuesday, English and continental, Sotheby's (10.30am); Wednesday, Meissen at Sotheby's (10.30am); Wednesday, European ceramics, glass, enamels at Phillips (12.30pm); Thursday, Christie's South Kensington, British and continental (10.30am).

Islamic and tribal art at Bonhams, Monday (2pm).


Glasgow: Television props - real Victorian furniture, rugs, ceramics, paintings - from the set of BBC's Strathblair series, shown during the past two years. Andrew's bedroom, Janet's flat and Phiemes' kitchen yield their memorabilia. Estimates from pounds 40, plenty within reach at pounds 100: Thursday (11am). Christie's, 164 Bath Street (041 332 8134).

Clare: Big sale of period oak and walnut furniture, including an 18th-century elm dugout armchair, at the town hall, Wednesday (10.30am). Boardman (0440 730414).

Ilkeston: Computerware, office furniture and equipment, Tuesday (10.30am). New Kensington Auction Centre, Hallam Fields Road (0602 442022).

Haslemere: 600 lots of furniture, porcelain including Doulton, silver, jewellery, clocks, glass including Daum and Galle, Thursday (11am). Nicholson (0428 653727).

Doncaster: On-site livestock, farm machinery at Langholme Farm, Haxley, Wednesday (11am). Brown (0427 616118).


Harrogate Antiques, Royal Baths Assembly Rooms, until tomorrow (Louise Walker; 0823 323363).

Welsh Ceramics, Margam Park, Port Talbot, until tomorrow (Wakefield Ceramics Fairs; 0634 723461).

Antiques and Collectors, 450 stands, Devon County Showground, Exeter, next Saturday and Sunday (Devon County Antiques Fairs; 0363 82571).

Countrywide: Antiques Trade Gazette (071-930 4957) and Government Auction News (071-928 9001, hotline 0891 887700).