Saturday 21 April 2012

Remembering a Great Auctioneer

Some of you might know that I was at a friend's funeral yesterday, which was held in the loveliest of parish churches in Saffron Walden. We remembered Robert and all the good he did for so many. He raised over a quarter of a million pounds for Macmillan Cancer Support. And it wasn't by trekking the Great Wall of China, or running marathons - it was by turning up on frosty mornings to sell at car-boot sales, by opening his beautiful home for coffee-mornings, and by being the most amazing auctioneer. He auctioned tea with the Duke and Duchess of Bedford - and even encouraged someone to give £75 for 4 sacks of horse-manure! Such were his wonderful talents. And I wonder how much he would achieve if he were selling this sampler which will be for sale on 26th April with Hose, Rhodes and Dixon - Lot 383. Probably far more than its £70-£100 estimate, that's for sure.
The sampler above, lot 1148 for sale on 24 April, would have appealed to Robert, who was also a great fisherman and sailor. Click on the image for more details. The final reading was, fittingly, The Fisherman's Prayer: God grant that I may live to fish until my dying day, And when it comes to my last catch I then most humbly pray, When in the Lord's safe landing net I'm peacefully asleep, That in his mercy I be judged as good enough to keep. And from high up on the reredos, the choir sang my favourite Mozart piece, Soave sia il vento from Cosi Fan Tutte. May the winds that bear you on your way be also kind.

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