Contents of Kinsham Court to sell at Bonhams

Bonhams is to offer the contents of Kinsham Court in Herefordshire, once residence of the family of Florence Nightingale, and also of Lord Byron, who is said to have worked on Childe Harold while residing there.

Interior of Kinsham Court

Kinsham Court was bought by the Arkwright family in the 20th century.

In 1857, at the age of 24, John Arkwright, the grandson of Richard Arkwright – who invented the Spinning Jenny (or rather made the crucial adaptation to James Hargreaves’ initial idea). It revolutionised the manufacture of cotton and helped make Richard Arkwright ‘the richest commoner in Europe’.

By 1870, John Arkwright was the largest landowner in Herefordshire. However, the family soon fell upon hard times, and were forced to sell Hampton Court Castle – later taking up residence at the more manageable Kinsham Court, which they had purchased prior to the sale. James Arkwright, the last surviving member of the direct family line, died in 1985.

Charlie Thomas, UK Group Director of Private Collections & Furniture, commented: “It is always a huge honour to be able to offer items which encapsulate such history. This sale offers an unrivalled opportunity to acquire furniture and paintings dating back to the founder of the dynasty himself, including a sensitive group portrait of Richard and Mary Arkwright and family from the studio of Joseph Wright of Derby. Most excitingly is that none of the contents have ever been on the open market before.”

Some of the highlights of the sale include:

Studio of Joseph Wright of Derby (Derby 1734-1797), Group portrait of Richard and Mary Arkwright with a baby, full-length, standing and seated in a landscape. Estimate: £50,000-70,000.

An important pair of George III satinwood, burr elm, and purple heart marquetry commodes. Estimate: £80,000-120,000.

Gaspar Pieter Verbrugghen the Younger (Antwerp 1664-1730), Still life of a swag of roses, peonies, tulips and other flowers with fruit and a squirrel on a stone ledge. Estimate: £12,000-18,000.

A fine Flemish 17th century historical tapestry fragment depicting The Death of Alexander. Estimate: £6,000-8,000.

A fine Flemish 17th century historical tapestry fragment depicting The Death of Alexander

A Meissen blue and white part service, 18th Century. Estimate: £4,000-6,000.

The sale will take place on October 12 at Bonhams New Bond Street, London.