TWO Chinese souvenirs dating back to the 17th century have fetched £11,000 at auction.
They were bought by a bidder from China and are now on their way back to Beijing.
The souvenirs – known as Chinese censors – are bronze and belonged to someone in the Stratford area; they were auctioned by Hansons.
Television auctioneer Charles Hanson said the censors were used for rituals or religious purposes perhaps even a decorative offering in a temple.
“They come from the Emperor Kangxi reign, 1661 to 1722 about the time of our own King Charles II. They may well have found their way to Britain as a gift or souvenir as many of our forebears travelled to the Far East in the 19th and 20th century and brought items like this back with them. Isn’t it amazing how they turned up in Stratford-upon-Avon at one of our valuation days when we are more used to looking at items that might have been made of oak from years ago?” Charles said.
One of the censors sold for £8,000 and the other for £3,000. Charles Hanson said the phone lines stayed open for some time as two bidders from China battled it out to own the items.