The biggest collection of of teapots in Britain recently went up for auction and drew worldwide attention from as far afield as Canada, Japan, and Taiwan, helping it to sell for more than four times its £20,000 estimate.
Ironically, the former owner of the collection, architect Philip Miller, didn’t like and never actually drank tea but that didn’t stop him accumulating a collection of around 2,000 pieces over a 40 year period.
Philip passed away last year and the teapots were auctioned off by his wife Patricia, who was sorry to have to sell his beloved teapots but is moving to a smaller property and simply didn’t have the room for the extensive collection any more.
The collection spanned from the 17th century all the way up until the present day and included work from a number of British and foreign factories including household names such as Clarice Cliff, Royal Worcester and Chantilly.
It all started with a 19th century teapot which Mr Miller purchased in the early 1970s for just £1 and ended with the vast collection holding pride of place in his Georgian home in Berwick, on purpose built floor to ceiling shelving.
With less expensive items being grouped together, the collection was split into 260 lots when it was brought to auction and with every lot selling, the auction brought in a massive £80,000.
The star of the show was a 1765 Westpans soft paste teapot which fetched a staggering £1,215, whereas other notable lots included a 1875 Royal Worcester which went for £538 and a Clarice Cliff circa 1936 which sold for £198.