A collection of Massey Ferguson tractor memorabilia described by auctioneers as “most likely to be the largest in existence in the world” is to go under the hammer.
It belonged to the late tractor enthusiast Jim Russell, who amassed the more than 800 items over 50 years and had a purpose-built extension at his home so he could run a tractor engine indoors.
Mr Russell, from Warwickshire, put in a special air filtration system so he could run the machine.
His collection, to be sold by Cambridge-based auctioneers Cheffins, includes models, toys, paraphernalia and a 1936 Ferguson Brown Type-A tractor.
It also includes the final signature written by Harry Ferguson, dated April 6 1954, prior to his resignation as honorary chairman at Massey-Harris-Ferguson Engineering on July 20 1954.
There is also a Ferguson Sherman Plough catalogue, which was used by Harry Ferguson to set out headings for a proposed tractor catalogue, and which has been annotated by him throughout.
Tom Godsmark, associate at Cheffins, said: “This is certainly the largest private collection of Ferguson models, tinplate toys and memorabilia to ever have come to auction and is most likely to be the largest in existence in the world.
“The sheer scale of it is quite breathtaking, as is the condition of these pieces which have been displayed for over half-a-century.
“Jim has to have been one of the most devoted enthusiasts we have come across to date, even making major modifications to his house to fit his collection, with a dedicated room packed with display cabinets and even a specially built extension to the house with provisions to allow the Ferguson tractor to be run inside the house.
“This is set to be a very special sale and we are delighted to be able to offer it to the market.”
The auction will take place at the Cheffins Machinery sale ground at Sutton, near Ely in Cambridgeshire, on November 25.