World record price paid for miniature Mouseman carving at auction of private collection in North Yorkshire

A Yorkshire auction house has recorded the highest-ever price paid for a Mouseman carving produced just a few miles away.

The Mouseman workshop in Kilburn
The Mouseman workshop in Kilburn

An anthropomorphic Mouseman of Kilburn craftsman figurine sold for £13,000 at a design sale at Tennants of Leyburn on March 6 - despite the carving standing just 27cm in height.

The piece was part of a private collection belonging to a woman who began acquiring Robert Thompson's distinctive English oak furniture in the 1970s which went under the hammer. The 30 separate lots sold for a combined total of over £74,000.

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One of the carved mouse figurines which sold at auction

The collector was a frequent visitor to the Mouseman workshops in Kilburn, and her legacy also includes a carving of Mr Toad from Wind in the Willows that went for £10,000, an owl figurine from 1967 that fetched £7,500, and a 1930s power bowl that reached £5,200 in bids. A pair of bookends went for £5,5000 and a cheese-shaped moneybox for £3,000.

Mouseman pieces from other sources and collections were also part of the sale, including another owl carving from a different vendor that was purchased for £8,500.

It was the first time Tennants had auctioned any of the small animal carvings, as Thompson made only a few during his lifetime, and they were only expected to fetch up to £3,000 each.