IN PICTURES: Enthusiasts take chance to view fairground memorabilia before it goes under the hammer

Auction of unusual fairground and steam engine machinery at Rundle, New Bollingbroke. Director of Cheffins actioneers, Jeremy Curzon. EMN-180106-155045001
Auction of unusual fairground and steam engine machinery at Rundle, New Bollingbroke. Director of Cheffins actioneers, Jeremy Curzon. EMN-180106-155045001

A viewing has taken place today (Friday) of more than 800 pieces of fairground memorabilia owned by a Boston-area family which is set to go on sale this weekend.

East Anglian-based auctioneers, Cheffins, will sell the collection of fairground memorabilia on behalf of the Rundle family at the premises of John H Rundle in the village from 10am tomorrow (Saturday).

The Rundle Collection comprises of more than 800 lots in total including artwork, rounding boards, a ticket office and ride animals.

Also available will be steam engines, oil engines, enamel signs, models, headlamps, spares and bygones.

The collection was started by John Harness Rundle in 1913 with a brand new five ton Wellington steam tractor and has been amassed by three generations of the family over the past 105 years.

Other highlights of the sale are mainly among the fairground items which include memorabilia such as the carved and painted peacock gondola, dating back to c.1900 which is from the Tussauds Collection of Fairground Art and is estimated at £4-£5,000.

In addition there is a 1909 Orton road/rail living van which was known to have been owned by a member of the famous Asplands Fair (£15,000-£20,000) and a 1912 Brown & May portable engine which was bought by Alan Rundle in 1987 and could make £20,000.

Jeremy Curzon, director at Cheffins said: “The biggest draw for this sale will be the fairground items, for which there are some serious collectors within the market.

“The Rundle family are a dynasty when it comes to fairground and steam memorabilia and their reputation as owners of a broad and varied collection of these items will help to attract buyers on the day.

“This sale will be one of the most unusual hosted within this niche market with pieces on offer from 1930s cinema projectors to steam engines and everything in between.

“Since the 19th century, the funfair has been one of the staple events of the typical British childhood and the arrival of horse-drawn carts, steam engines, wagons and rides marked the beginning of the spring months.

“Collectors enjoy these items which are packed with nostalgia and are becoming increasingly difficult to source via auction houses or antiques shops. Many vintage fairground rides are now coveted as works of art with carousel horses making several thousands if they are good quality, whilst living vans have been known to top £50,000, particularly if they are by one of the main 19th century manufacturers such as Orton.”

For more information visit www.cheffins.co.uk or call Cheffins auctioneers on 01353 777767.