Cumbria

Author Hunter Davies sells Potter and Wainwright collection

Hunter Davies Image copyright John Stillwell/AFP/Getty Images
Image caption Author, biographer and columnist Hunter Davies was born in Carlisle and spent much of his time in Loweswater, Cumbria

Cumbrian memorabilia and art including pieces from Beatrix Potter, Alfred Wainwright and artist Sheila Fell have sold at auction for more than £80,000.

Carlisle-born author Hunter Davies no longer had room for his collection after selling his house in Loweswater.

"I've been collecting all this stuff for 30 years - other collectors will have the pleasure I had," he said.

Books, original sketches and portraits by renowned Lake District fell walker Alfred Wainwright sold for £14,500.

A pen and ink drawing entitled The Great Frost of 1895, Kendal reached a hammer price "well above estimate" at £800, James Moore from Mitchells Auction Company in Cockermouth said.

Image caption Davies' collection of Wainwright memorabilia included books, original drawings, sketches and portraits

Beatrix Potter pieces, including first editions of the Tale of Mrs Tiggy Winkle and the Tale of the Flopsy Bunnies, went for £4,000.

A collection of handwritten letters estimated to fetch £2,500-£3,500 did not sell.

Works by Sheila Fell, from Aspatria, were sold for £63,100 with one, Allonby, reaching £21,000.

Davies said selling the house he had lived in for six months of the year for 30 years had been "heartbreaking".

Image copyright Sheila Fell/Mitchells Auction Company
Image caption A section of Allonby by Aspatria-born artist Sheila Fell, who was known for her Cumbrian landscapes, influenced by painters such as Paul Cezanne, despite spending much of her life in London

Following the death of his wife, acclaimed novelist and biographer Margaret Forster, Davies "couldn't really face living there all on my own", he said.

His London house was "chocca" with other collections and he "regretfully" had to sell much of the Cumbria house's contents.

He gave his "best Wordsworth" to the poet's former home in Grasmere, Dove Cottage, and donated some Wainwright memorabilia to his official archives.

Image copyright Hunter Davies
Image caption Hunter Davies and Margaret Forster, seen here on holiday in 1986, spent six months a year in their Loweswater house for 30 years

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