Walking stick of first Northern Ireland PM James Craig sells for €11,000 at auction

James Craig’s walking aid was auctioned just weeks after Michael Collins’ stick sold for more than £50,000.
Walking stick of first Northern Ireland PM James Craig sells for €11,000 at auction

By Rebecca Black, PA

A walking stick once owned by Northern Ireland’s first prime minister has sold for £10,000 (€11,868) at an auction in Belfast.

It comes in the year that Northern Ireland marks its centenary.

Karl Bennett at Bloomfield Auctions described the aid once used by James Craig as the “star lot” of Tuesday’s sale.

Ex PM walking stick sale
The walking stick belonging to James Craig (Bloomfield Auctions/PA)

The walking stick is made from blackthorn wood with a silver collar to commemorate Craig’s first public visit to Lurgan in 1925.

While it had been expected to sell for between £4,000 and £5,000, significant interest in the item saw bidding in the room, online and by phone reach £10,000.

The successful buyer was an online bidder.

The auction house said the walking stick was bought by a private collector in England a few years ago for approximately £30.

Earlier this month a walking stick which once belonged to Michael Collins sold for more than £50,000.

Mr Craig was a leading unionist figure and opposed to home rule. He became the first prime minister of Northern Ireland in 1921 and served for nearly 20 years until his death in November 1940.

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