HISTORIC artefacts spanning centuries are set to go under the hammer when a Stratford museum sells off hundreds of exhibits.
A major auction of more than 650 items from the Stratford Armouries Museum will take place at the end of March 2015.
Items for sale include 19th century horse armour, the world’s largest trebuchet arm, and an example of a Leonardo da Vinci crossbow.
Museum boss, James Wigington, said the sale marked a change of direction for the Pathlow-based museum as it switches focus on to the English Civil War, and First and Second World Wars.
Auctioneer Cuttlestones will handle the auction at the museum on Saturday March 28, which is expected to attract International interest.
Mr Wigington said: “While we will be sorry to see these fascinating exhibits go, the sale represents an exciting fresh start for the museum and will allow us to really focus on the periods we are truly passionate about.
“We’ve got some big plans for the future, including a new Churchill exhibition, and aim to make the Stratford Armouries Museum a real destination for those with a keen interest in these conflicts including more school groups on educational visits.”
Ben Gamble, of Cuttlestones, described the diversity of lots as ‘astonishing’.
He said: “There’s everything from tribal and oriental armour through to medieval suits of armour, heavy artillery and even lots with a Shakespeare connection.
“The fact that the items hail from a single, private collection and have been housed in a museum for several years, added to the rarity of many, will mean that global buyers will be out in force, and we fully expect the telephone lines and live internet bidding facility to be incredibly busy.”
The full catalogue will be available to view online at www.cuttlestones.co.uk from the beginning of March.