British Royal Mail coach beats estimate by 90%

One of the last surviving British Royal Mail coaches has sold for £133,660 ($202,532) at Bonhams, up 90.9% on a valuation of £70,000 ($106,069).

The lot was among the highlights of a sale of classic cars at RAF Hendon on December 10.

Quicksilver coach Bonhams
The Quicksilver Mail coach ran between London and Falmouth

The Royal Mail coaches were introduced during the 1700s and remained in use until the arrival of the railway in the 1830s.

The present lot is number 209, known as The Quicksilver as it was the fastest coach on the road at the time.

The 200-year-old coach has a long and storied history, including an attack by an escaped lion during a run through Wiltshire.  

Bonhams explained: "The Quicksilver ran from London to Falmouth and it became the fastest ever Royal Mail Coach, covering the ground at an average speed of just over 10mph.

"This included stops for fresh horses at staging posts, new Guards and Coachmen and delivering the Royal Mail at the main Post Offices along the route.

"The Royal Mail Coaches established an almost legendary status amongst the public, town clocks were set by the arrival of the Mail Coach.

"Guards would be fined by the Post Office if the Coach was a minute late."

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