Historic billiard table takes auction pride of place

Author: Richard Brewster | Posted: 16th May, 2017

Champion professional Australian billiards and snooker player the late Eddie Charlton (1929-2004) played on this king size fiddle back blackwood Duke of Edinburgh billiard table – made by Alcock and Co. for the 1880 Melbourne Exhibition at the Royal Exhibition Building.

For the past 70-odd years, the billiard table has held pride of place in the magnificent mansion at 11 Cloverdale Avenue, Toorak.

However, from noon Sunday May 21, it will join other furniture and effects to be auctioned on site through Christian McCann Auctions as the vendors plan their move to apartment living.

Charlton, who was invited to play on the historic table in his heyday, remains the only player to have been world championship runner-up in both snooker and billiards without winning either title.

He became a professional player in 1963, aged 34, and the following season won his first of 20 Australian Professional Championships.

The most successful Australian snooker player until 2010 World Championship winner Neil Robertson emerged, Charlton rose to public prominence through the popular BBC TV program Pot Black, which he won in 1972, 1973 and 1980.

The auction contains fine antique dining room furniture, including a rare George III extension table, purchased from some of Melbourne’s leading dealers such as McPhees, Glenleigh Antiques and Harlequin Antiques.

Also on display and for auction are magnificent chandeliers, an extensive wine collection and garden pots.

Outstanding is the 19th century French furniture that includes bureau plats, credenzas, commodes, vitrines, a rare giltwood salon suite and ormolu mounted boule items.

The 18th century English furniture that features an oak refectory table is worth buyer attention – while auction goers will also be impressed at the 19th century European and English porcelain (Royal Worcester, Dresden, Sevres, Meissen, Royal Vienna) on show.

Paintings by leading Australian artists such as Albert Tucker, Charles Blackman, Pro Hart and Hugh Sawrey are another attraction – joining 19th century English oils and antique prints in the works on offer.

Auction goers also can check out Chinese porcelain, jade, amber, cloisonné and ancient ivory figures. 

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