A Rugby man’s passion for trains has been unearthed by Hansons Auctioneers toy and collectors specialist Kevin Bucknall.
He came across the unusual find after he was instructed to handle items from the estate of a man from Rugby who had recently died.
Mr Bucknall said: “I was directed to a small room in the back of a house where I uncovered what turned out to be a comprehensive and remarkable model engineering workshop.
“Tools, engineering equipment and the fruits of the gentleman’s labour were all evident.”
He said the gentleman’s hobby had been building live steam locomotives.
“I don’t mean the type that will run on a 6ft x 4ft board, but on proper outdoor track, anything up to 7 1/4 inches in gauge,” said Mr Bucknall.
“In the hoard of precision tools, a handwritten note was found left amongst the plans obviously left by the owner for those that followed.”
In the letter, the gentleman said: ‘It was with great trepidation that I started to make a loco after 22 years away from modelling’.
He went on to describe the making of his locomotive, the tools that he needed and the difficulties he faced in a workshop which only measured 5ft by 5ft 6inches.
The contents of the entire workshop will be auctioned off on January 21 in Derbyshire. The workshop will also include lathes, drills and several locos and riding trolleys varying in gauge from 3 1/2 to 7 1/4 inches,
The star lot will be a loco 6ft long with a ride in cab of 7 1/4 inch gauge. Mr Bucknall added: “A new owner will still have to add some finishing touches but it will be so enjoyable.”
The guide price on the loco is £1,000 to £1,500.
Hansons’ forthcoming valuation day in Warwickshire will be in Kenilworth on Thursday, February 13 at St Francis of Assisi church hall in Kenilworth from 10am to 4pm. Mr Bucknall, Hansons’ toy expert, expects a return to the more popular Dinky and Matchbox sized toys while experts in jewellery, silver, ceramics, clocks, paintings and works of art will also be attending. For details contact Hansons’ Warwickshire valuation day co-ordinator Carol Jones on 07802 839915