A THREE feet-high Victorian clock is expected to fetch up to £25,000 in a Chester auction this weekend.
The timepiece by famous clockmaker JW Benson is being sold by an anonymous Cheshire resident, who intended to restore the clock, but ended up leaving it in his cellar for several years.
Byrne’s fine arts auctions, Saltney, are expecting world-wide interest in the clock, which is a miniature version of the 30 feet tall Great Clock by the London clockmaker.
The clock won prizes when unveiled at the International Exhibitions of London in 1862 and the full size workings were installed in St James's Cathedral, Toronto, as a gift to the citizens of the city.
The miniature clock may have been made for a fan of the full-size clock, or as a working prototype before the larger timepiece was made.
‘The special thing about this clock is that it is the epitomy of Victorian high art and engineering,’ says Jo Boucher of Byrne’s.
‘It has that ‘look at me’ attitude that you see in so many companies at that time. They wanted to prove that they could make a miniature version of the clock to show how skilled they were.’
Miss Boucher added: ‘We are expecting to have telephone bids as well as bids online. ‘There could be someone sitting in Outer Mongolia or California, listening to the auctioneer through the internet and bidding on this clock.’
The clock will be on view at Bryne's Pullman House saleroom in Saltney today (Friday) from 10am-5pm and on the morning of the sale, which starts tomorrow (Saturday) at 10.30am. For more information ring 01244 681311.