LOOKING for something a little different or edgy perhaps to decorate your home? Look no further; an up and coming auction of a ‘curious collector’ may well be just what you need.

A painting, ‘Frolics in the harem’, a cow horn day bed, a pair of ‘fully inflated Porcupinefish’ (blowfish) and a ‘Gharial Crocodile head mount’ are all included.

Described as ‘The Curious Collector Sale’ the items were all amassed by one man to furnish a private residence. There are more than 400 items up for sale offering what Tennants Auctioneers describe as an ‘eclectic mix’ including fine art, design led furnishings, taxidermy and curios.

There are also vintage enamel signs and a penny farthing, all put together with an eye for the unusual and a great sense of humour., says Tennants.

The cow horn day bed by contemporary French designer Michel Haillard, has an estimate of between £5,000 and £7,000; while a late 19th century white marble bust by Giovanni Focardi of Viscount Selby, and now adorned by the collector with top hat and moustache expects to be sold for between £700 and £1,000.

You will need to find between £3,000 and £5,000 for the Gharial Crocodile head mount, but just £80 to £100 for the unfortunate porcupine fish.

A spokesperson said: “The Curious Collector Sale offers an extraordinary diversity of antiques, design, curiosities and decorative furnishings, and will surely intrigue those looking for something a little different to adorn their homes. “

The Curious Collector Sale is due to take place on March 27. An illustrated catalogue will be available at www.tennants.co.uk leading up to the sale, and remote bidding is available.

HAVING featured recently in what is believed to be the world’s smallest art gallery, Settle based artist Christine Newson now has her work included in the world largest collection of artists’ sketchbook.

Christine has exhibited on several occasions in the former BT telephone box that houses the Gallery on the Green in Settle, most recently, last year when she showed her Chinese brushworks over several months at the start of the first lockdown.

Now she has had a sketchbook accepted by the New York based Brooklyn Art Library, as part of their 50,000 collection of artists’ sketchbooks from around the world.

The Sketchbook Project is a remarkable venture that has been running for more than 14 years. It consists of a physical collection, open to the public, in their New York City building; as well as a carefully catalogued digital archive accessible to all; and a travelling exhibition that takes art to events across the United States.

Christine’s sketchbook tells of how she became a serious artist through the U3A learning organisation for older people and includes examples of her work and a reference to her show at Gallery on the Green.

Christine said: “My sketchbook is a summary of my journey with art and why I do Chinese style painting etc. It’s also a thank you to lots of people who have helped me. My brother and his family in Australia have enjoyed. I hope others do too.”

You can see Christine’s sketchbook at : www.sketchbookproject.com/library/S8533037. And read about The Sketchbook Project at: brooklynartlibrary.org/thelibrary

AGE UK in Skipton is appealing for volunteers to help older people - anyone over the age of 55 in fact - discover the benefits of the digital world.

The charity’s Yorkshire and Darlington district, which includes the Skipton office, is hoping people will come forward and help with its iPad lending library. The scheme is aimed to help people get online for shopping, community groups, video conferencing and digital technology.

It says digital support will be offered along with basic written instructions about the devices.The iPads will be loaned for a limited period of time and will be ready to use without an internet connection.

Anyone who is interested in helping out should contact Age UK on 01325362832 or 07483 058837

A GREAT lockdown project aimed at getting the whole country making and exhibiting art has landed in Skipton.

Launched by Colchester art gallery, Firstsite, The Great Big Art Exhibition is supported by Arts Council England and the Plus Tate Network of leading museums and galleries across the UK.

Mike Watson has created his own small exhibition in the windows of his home in Hall Croft, top right, over looking the canal towpath, featuring ten birthday bunch animals - the opening theme of the exhibition,

Firstsite says it is a great way for people to explore their creative side at home, and from first timers to professional artists, and is urging people to display their work in their gardens, windows and even balconies.

Sally Shaw MBE, Director of Firstsite, said: “The doors to our collections and galleries might be shut but our imaginations are forever open. Making, showing and experiencing art has created so much joy, connection and solace for many thousands of people. I can’t wait to see a brand-new nationwide art gallery appearing before our eyes in coming days, weeks and months. This is sure to be an incredible expression of people’s creativity.”

50 YEARS ago, on February 12, 1971, the Craven Herald reported on how the Barnoldswick and Earby Ladies Circle challenged their husbands to a darts and dominoes match.

The keenly fought contest was held at The Cross Keys and was won by the men, despite having to play darts with their left hands. Under the slightly suspect headline: ‘Men still on top; - it was the 70s, the Herald reported how always, the ‘ladies placed the men at a disadvantage’, by making them throw their darts with their left hands, provided of course they were right handed.

‘Competition was keen, but despite the machinations of their wives, the men still managed to win narrowly, a state of affairs which will seldom happen at home, or when out shopping for a new hat’, reported the surely male reporter.

A Mrs M Taylforth, chairman of the circle, presented a trophy to the men after which John Burniston, chairman of the Round Table, showed a film of Gala 70.

The Herald reporter continued hilariously: “It was of particular interest to the ladies, since almost all of them saw of the function was the inside of the tea tent. The film was amusing, in content and comment, and Mr Burniston was thanked.”

Elsewhere in the paper, it was reported that police rushed to the Midland Bank in Earby late on a Sunday night following a call that someone was believed to be on the premises. A check was made, but there was no one there.

There was also concern over the approaching Decimal D Day, when the country went decimal on February 16. Telephone boxes, these were of course the days before mobile phones, were not to be converted until the day after D-Day.

People were warned they would not be able to use the old coins, and would have to wait until engineers got around to adapting the boxes to take the new 2p and 10p coins.

Skipton’s Top Ten included My Sweet Lord, by George Harrison at number one; Pushbike Song by The Mixtures at number two; Grandad, by Clive Dunn at number three, and Stoned Love by The Supremes at number four. Your Song, by Elton John, was at number eight.