By Scott Shepherd
A PAIR of silver gilt candelabra worth £120,000 are going under the hammer next week.
The unique items weigh a massive nine stone and match a set used by the Queen for State banquets at Buckingham Palace.
The silverware was originally designed for the Coote family but they now form part of the Chen Collection – a rare selection of quality Russian and English silverware owned by Sinclair and Raye Heather Chen.
Auctioneers Lyon and Turnbull will sell them to the highest bidder at a sale in London next week.
Colin Fraser, the auction-house silver specialist, is delighted to have such a rare piece on display.
He said: “It is very exciting to find such large beautiful pieces in silver gilt like the Coote candelabra.
“I think it is great that the Russian and English ranges appeal to different markets. I’m sure there will be big prices and big successes in both ranges.”
The collection began when Sinclair and Raye Heather spotted a silver box while in Hong Kong.
But they insist they never intended to start collecting at first, and say their treasures grew gradually.
Together, the collection is now worth £6 million, and the Chens plan to visit Edinburgh to see it displayed together.
According to Mr Fraser is it difficult to guess how much the collection will fetch.
He said: “The great thing with auction is you have to wait and see on the day. With the excitement created by the pieces and the whole collection we hope to have a fantastic result.”