By Ian Hughes Wednesday 17 October 2012 Updated: 19/10 13:33
HORSE drawn vehicles to humble spades went under the hammer in Stratford.
An auction of hundreds of nineteenth and twentieth century farming tools was held by Shakespeare Birthplace Trust (SBT) to sell off items not needed for its museum collection.
The sale, at The Hill in Warwick Road last week, attracted collectors of agricultural and horticultural equipment. In total more than 600 items associated with farming, gardening, and domestic life were sold.
Most of the artefacts were acquired by the SBT during the 1970s and 80s when it was planned to develop Mary Arden’s Farm as a museum of rural life.
But the working Tudor farm at Wilmcote is now presented much as it would have been when Shakespeare was a boy visiting his mother’s childhood home in the 1570s, so the tools from later centuries are surplus to requirement.
All proceeds from the sale - the exact total has not yet been finalised - will be used to fund the conservation and development SBT's museum collection.
Delia Garratt, head of collections and interpretation at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, said: “We hold the world’s largest collection of artefacts related to Shakespeare’s works, life and times.
“Like many museums we do not have as much space as we would like to display or store artefacts in suitable conditions.
“Dispersing items which are not core to the purpose of the trust will allow us to focus resources on items more closely associated with Shakespeare and his local and global legacy.”
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