Northern art & antiques in demand

Northern art and antiques continue to sell strongly – as proved in Tennants Auctioneers’ Summer Fine Art Sale on 15th July. From 19th century oil paintings to a piece of Bradford sporting history, good lots with a northern connection attracted attention from buyers in the region and from further afield.

Traditional paintings of the North Yorkshire coast got the auction off to a good start, with a series of 19th century works from The Property of a Gentleman all selling well above estimate. Works by Whitby artist George Weatherill (1810 – 1890) sold particularly well with his ‘Sunset Whitby Harbour, Yorkshire’ selling for £3,600 against an estimate of £500-800. An atmospheric view of ‘Scarborough from the East’ by John Wilson Carmichael (1799-1868) consigned by another vendor exceeded expectation too, selling for £7,000 against an estimate of £2,500-4,000.

Twentieth Century pictures from in-demand Northern Artists proved buoyant in the saleroom, with two works by renowned Co. Durham mining artist Norman Cornish (1919-2014) leading the section – ‘Figures before Eddy’s Fish and Chip Shop’ sold for £8,000 (estimate £2,500-3,500) and ‘General Bar Scene Spennymoor’ sold for £16,000 (estimate £12,000-15,000), a new world auction record for the artist. The industrial North West was well represented too, with strong results for paintings by Brian Shields ‘Braaq’ (1951-1997). ‘Come on Gerroff….Yerdaft Sod….’ sold for £9,200 against an estimate of £7,000-9,000, and ‘Dog at mill gates’ sold for £4,200 against an estimate of £800-1,200.

Elsewhere in the sale, Yorkshire oak furniture by Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson and the Yorkshire Critters continued to see impressive results. The North Riding College Collection of Mouseman and Acorn Industries furniture, from the University of Hull’s Scarborough Campus sold strongly, with a plethora of oak 6’, 10’ and 12’ refectory tables and benches all finding homes. However, it was early and unusual pieces of Mouseman that achieved prices high over estimate. Performing particularly strongly were a Mouseman oak table brush holder in the form of an owl which sold for £2,200 against an estimate of £400-600, a pair of Mouseman Oak Candlesticks which sold for £1,700 against an estimate of £300-400, and an unusual scrubbed oak Mouseman table that made £4,100 against an estimate of £1,000-1,500.

Finally, a piece of Bradford’s sporting history caused a stir amongst buyers from the south of the region – a Victorian silver ewer that was presented to Harry Wharfedale Tennant Garnett by the Bradford Football Club on the 24th November 1880 sold for £1,500 against an estimate of £700-1,000. The ewer was presented during the early days of the club’s history when they played Rugby Union, before they converted to rugby league in 1895, and subsequently switched to football in 1907. Harry Garnett (1851-1928) was a rugby player of some standing, having played for and captained both Bradford F.C and Yorkshire Wanderers as well as winning a cap for England in 1877. After retiring from active playing, he became a rugby union official in the early 1890s.

We are currently accepting lots for the Autumn Fine Art Sale on 18th November, please contact us on 01969 623780 or enquiry@tennants-ltd.co.uk for details.



Norman Cornish ‘General Bar Scene, Spennymoor’ – Sold for £16,000
(top left) A Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson Oak Table Brush Holder – Sold for £2,200