Rare book handed into No8 The Old Bookshop in Downham Market sells at Edinburgh auction for £4,400
An eagle-eyed bookshop manager knew there was something special about a tattered book donated to her charity shop.
The large book was handed to No8 The Old Bookshop in Downham, and manager Sarah Cox had a hunch that it was a special volume. She therefore decided to apply a little research with the help of her volunteers.
Her suspicions were spot-on, and the rare book was sold at a specialist auction on Wednesday for a whopping £4,400 – which will all go to the West Norfolk Deaf Association, the charity behind No8.
Staff and volunteers from the charity gathered at the Lynn Deaf Centre on Railway Road to watch the live auction in Edinburgh, when the 1847 book on Euclidian Geometry – attributed to an ancient Greek mathematician – went under the hammer of famous auction house Lyon and Turnbull.
“It was so exciting. There were lots of bids for the book and it exceeded the estimated price. We knew it was special,” Sarah said.
The book was among a raft of rare publications, including a rare first edition of JRR Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings, to be sold by the auction house both online and at its Edinburgh site.
The auctioneer said there had been a lot of interest, and the book was sold on a commission bid after a flurry of bidding.
Charity staff and volunteers cheered after the hammer went down as the final amount exceeded their expectations.
“We were cheering every bid, it was amazing to see the amount keep going up,” Sarah added.
The award-winning bookshop in Downham often receives donations from supporters, but this is the first time a truly valuable book has been found – and the money will help the charity continue its work with thousands of people across West Norfolk.
Charity manager Anna Pugh said: “We are always very grateful for the kind donations we receive at the bookshop, and for the hard work of our fabulous team of volunteers.
“I always say that every book donated makes a difference and this one certainly will. The money will help us continue to support people with hearing difficulties in West Norfolk enormously.”
The West Norfolk Deaf Association has been delivering specialist services, support and practical help for deaf children and adults in the area for more than 25 years.
Every year the charity supports more than 5,000 people to live independently, communicate and keep connected. It offers a range of services and support, including British Sign Language lessons.