Northern Ireland news

Art collection of late bookmaker Barney Eastwood expected to fetch up to £10m at Christie's auction next month

Barney Eastwood who died last year

AN art collection that belonged to the late boxing promoter Barney Eastwood is expected to fetch up to nearly £10m at a London auction next month.

The multi-millionaire businessman, boxing promoter and bookmaker died last March at the age of 87.

Famous for masterminding the careers of boxing greats like Barry McGuigan he also sold his chain of 54 betting shops to rival Ladbrokes in 2008 for a deal worth £135m.

Over the years he managed to acquire an impressive collection of works by renowned Irish painters including Sir John Lavery and Jack Yeats.

The prestigious Christie's auction house in London said that the sale of The B.J. Eastwood Collection: Important Sporting and Irish Pictures will take place on July 9.

The works range from 19th century sporting pictures through to “an extraordinary group” of works by Yeats and other leading examples of Irish art by Walter Frederick Osborne, Sir William Orpen, Roderic O'Conor, Paul Henry, Sir John Lavery and Gerard Dillon.

Following the great art sales in the 1970s and 1980s, Christie's say that over time Eastwood built “an outstanding collection of the genres' greatest examples.”

One item on sale, ‘A Summer Day' painted in 1914 by Jack Butler Yeats, is expected to fetch somewhere in the region o £500,000-£800,000.

An exhibition of the collection will take place at Christie's between July 3-9, with the auction due to realise a sale in the region of £6,500,000 to £9,500,000.

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