Auctions: Wine and women

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CHRISTMAS gift-worthy lots at the auctions this week include fine wine, wristwatches, toys, miniatures, small silver and showbiz memorabilia.

Christie's South Kensington's memorabilia sale Thursday (10.30am) includes the private collection of the man who made Hollywood glamour photography collectable, the late John Kobal, founder of the Kobal picture agency. Besides original prints of the stars by photographers such as Clarence Sinclair Bull and George Hurrell, estimated in the low hundreds, there are production sketches, furniture and sculpture.

The toy and doll sale at Bonhams Chelsea, Monday (2pm) has, as well as teddies, die-cast toys and table games (mostly less than pounds 100), an 1888 'Mechanical Foot Race' consisting of two clockwork men racing round a pivot: estimated pounds 3,500- pounds 4,000.

The 6,000 bottles in the biggest single-owner sale of wine at Christie's, Thursday (10.30am), are expected to fetch pounds 350,000. A magnum of Chateau Lafite 1870 is estimated pounds 3,000- pounds 4,000.

On Tuesday, Christie's South Kensington has objects of virtu and miniatures (10.30am) with plenty in the pounds 100- pounds 200 price range; at 2pm there is small silver and plate, mostly estimated in the low hundreds.

Clocks and watches appear at Phillips Tuesday (1.30pm), Bonhams Tuesday (11am) and Sotheby's Thursday (10.30am).


An English literature and history sale at Sotheby's Monday (2.30pm) and Tuesday (2pm) has 40 letters from the Earl of Essex to Elizabeth I ( pounds 400,000- pounds 450,000), Ian Fleming's working notebook ( pounds 25,000- pounds 30,000) and John Osborne's manuscript of Look Back in Anger ( pounds 30,000- pounds 40,000).


Girvan, Ayrshire: Furniture, paintings, tapestries, artworks of Penkill Castle, on the premises, Tuesday (10.30am). A Victorian Aesthetic Movement oak armchair is estimated pounds 1,000- pounds 1,500. Christie's Glasgow (041-332 8134).

Deptford Designer dresses from Valentino, Bruce Oldfield and Emmanuel, a 17th-century oak refectory table with eight matching chairs, toys, office equipment, household effects, tomorrow (11am). Arch Auction Rooms, Unit 4, Deptford Trading Estate, Blackhorse Road (off Evelyn Street), London SE8 (081-694 1656/1682).

Bury St Edmunds Principal contents of a small town house today (10.30am) include fine Georgian walnut and mahogany furniture. Lots from other properties include 19th-century paintings and prints, diamond jewellery, ceramics. Lacy Scott (0284 763531).

Sheffield Catalogue sale at the Irish Social Centre, 151 Brunswick Road, Tuesday (10.30am): vehicles, mountain bikes, fishing tackle, guitars, computers, snooker tables, perfume, jeans. Ellis, Willis and Beckett (0742 767156).

Stratford-upon-Avon Pictures, furniture, jewellery, ceramics, bronzes, clocks, musical instruments, collectables, Wednesday (11am). Bigwood, The Old School, Tiddington (0789 269415).

Leominster Specialist sale of four-wheel-drive vehicles, off- road and pick-ups, people carriers, vans, Land-Rovers. Easters market site, A49. Russell, Baldwin and Bright Markets (0568 611166).

Countrywide sales from Antiques Trade Gazette (071-930 4957) and Government Auction News (071-734 8291/4, hotline 0891 887700).

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