AfterWe don’t always find exceptional items when carrying out probate valuation in Milton Keynes, and other new towns in Buckinghamshire. However we often find something interesting enough to sell for the executors at auction. Take my visit to Milton Keynes to do an estate valuation the other day for example.
My Brief for the Milton Keynes Probate
This particular solicitor-executor was a pedantic fellow. I expected a detailed introduction, and this time was no exception. I learned the deceased – a widower for over a decade – had followed a clerical career in a bank, yet claimed high social status on account of his father being a major in the British Army, stationed in Calcutta during the rise of the Independence Movement.
After that, I didn’t quite know what to expect as I parked my car in a nearby car park. The deceased’s house had a small tidy garden but nothing exceptional and that went for the furniture inside too.
After I had finished valuing everything inside, I looked in the garage to see if there was anything there. It was remarkably tidy including the few power tools packed on shelves in the upper half of a wooden cupboard with double doors. But I was astounded when I switched on the light. I was looking at a mid-19th century intricately carved Indian antique cabinet that clearly had value.
How I Surmise the Piece Ended Up in Milton Keynes
After the British conquered India and subdued the tribes, they set about replicating the British system of administration. Thousands of people poured across from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales where they found a better lifestyle than they ever had before, and a never-ending supply of servants at their disposal.
However, they arrived by sailing ship with their possessions in a few wooden trunks in the hold. They used their new-found wealth – they were paid in pounds – to hire bungalows and stock them with furniture. Some of this came from dispossessed royalty, and there were some fine pieces among them.
I can imagine the major moving to new locations quite often as revolts broke out in various places. The old cupboard would have been stout enough to transport in a wagon with the major’s possessions packed inside. It may have been the only furniture in his tent besides the folding military bed.
The cabinet was from the Indian colonial period and I imagine could be worth quite a bit as it is in unusually fine condition.