With the support of the Friends, the Museum has been able to purchase nine fantastic 1930s’ LCC Tramways posters. Bought from sales at Christies in London and the Swann auction house in New York, the posters fill a significantly gap in the Museum’s collection. LCC Tramways operated outside the Underground Group until 1933, when the companies merged into London Transport. Consequently, posters promoting their services before that date were not retained by the organisation and are not comprehensively represented in the Museum’s collection. These new acquisitions represent the latest in a long line of retrospective collecting, which has brought our total number of LCC Tramways posters to over 60. The new posters will appear online on the Museum’s poster browser. A selection will also be framed and displayed in the poster store, so that they can be seen on monthly Depot tours.
The Friends kindly sanctioned David Bownes (Head of Collections) and Michael Walton to purchase for the Museum collection a selection of relevant posters that were sold at the Malcolm Guest (Part 3) auction at Morphet’s in Harrogate on 21st and 22nd July.
Malcolm Guest spent much of his working life in British Railways’ Publicity Department at Paddington; he amassed an enormous amount of posters and ephemera, mostly from British Railways (later British Rail) and Tilling Group bus companies. Malcolm Guest died in mid 2009 and his collection was sold in three sales. The third and final sale contained a large volume of items of particular interest to London Transport Museum. A number of BR (and its predecessors’) London Suburban Railways posters (some previously unknown), a huge volume of bus and coach posters, some relating to Victoria Coach Station (of which the Museum has a particularly sparse collection) and some unknown London Transport posters, made a visit unmissable.
Because of the volume of material, the relatively unknown Auction House and muted publicity for the sale, the Friends were able to purchase a large quantity of fascinating and relevant material at particularly reasonable prices. These acquisitions will enhance the Museum’s archive, and contribute substantially to our capability to stage new and interesting exhibitions in the future.
The Museum is extremely grateful for the Friends’ assistance to capitalise on this rather rare opportunity.
An example of a purchase, a fine Euston rebuilding poster produced by BR (London midland Region) is illustrated above.
In a separate, Friends-funded purchase, the Museum has acquired a George Dow LMS (LT&S) card-card line diagram, which is also pictured above.