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Poster with links to Staffordshire-filmed movie up for auction on Friday 28th April

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Staffordshire and Hollywood may seem worlds apart, but the county’s rolling countryside provided the backdrop for Pinewood Studio’s 1948 film Blanche Fury, a tragic period drama based on a real-life Victorian murder case.

The poster set to come under the hammer is a handmade example featuring local farmer Bill Salt of Wooton Grange, on whose farm the movie was filmed. Bill, who appeared in the film as a coachman, also visited Pinewood Studios to advise actors in the Staffordshire accent and, on the poster, is named alongside star Valerie Hobson and other cast members.

A number of antiquarian and vintage books referencing Staffordshire and Wolverhampton also feature in the sale. Local historical tomes are well represented, with a copy of William Pitt’s well-known ‘Topographical History of Staffordshire’, published in 1817, expected to achieve £40-£60; and an 1844 example of Sampson Erdeswick’s ‘A Survey of Staffordshire’ set to fetch around £80-£120. There are also some lesser-known books on this theme consigned in the sale – including James P. Jones’ ‘History of Tettenhall’ which was published in 1894 and Major-Gen. George Wrottesley’s ‘History of the Family of Wrottesley’ from 1903 – in a lot together they are expected to achieve around £60-£100

Also within the catalogue are some interesting privately printed books and rare booklets with links to Wolverhampton, including ‘The Bibliography of Wolverhampton – A Record of Local Books, Authors and Booksellers, From the earliest to the present’ by B George Lawley. Published in Bilston, 1890 this is the author’s own copy and includes numerous hand written letters tipped in on the endpapers and title pages, together with a facsimile copy and Gerald Poynton Mander – ‘Early Wolverhampton Books and Printers with a note on some playbills’.    There is also a Mander Brothers Printing Inks catalogue in a lot that looks set to fascinate Wolverhampton history buffs and is expected to achieve around £80-£120

These lots are all part of a strong book section that also covers a large collection of aviation books – mainly biographies of second world war pilots – with some signed by the likes of  Alan Deere,  Laddie Lucas, Dixie Dean and Jimmy James. There is also a very large collection of books on Churchill including four volume set of ‘The Collected Essays of Sir Winston Churchill’. The Centenary Edition, published in 1976 by the Library of Imperial History it is in four volumes with blue leather spines, Limited Edition 93/3000. Each volume has a Limited Edition certificate and, with interest from Churchill collectors set to be high, it is expected to see the hammer fall at around £200-£400.

Interesting individual books in the sale include and early 20th Century example of Poems by Christina Rossetti with illustrations by Florence Harrison, carrying an estimate of £150-£200. John Seller’s Practical Navigation, dated 1699, is a reference book for on-board ship explaining mathematics, use of instruments, charts, maps and tables. Offering a fascinating insight into 17th Century seafaring it is set to achieve £200-£300.

All of these lots will come under the hammer at Cuttlestones’ Wolverhampton sale room during its Friday, 28th April Specialist Collectors’ Sale.
View the sale catalogue at:

Viewing will take place on the Thursday before the auction from 10am – 7pm and on the morning of the sale. For more details on bidding options – including live online bidding, by commission and via the telephone – call 01902 421985. 

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