‘Mastermind’ auction to raise funds for Balmore Trust

Magnus Magnusson.
Magnus Magnusson.

An auction of intriguing items owned by one of Britain’s best-loved broadcasters and writers is being held to raise money for a charity which was close to his heart.

Magnus Magnusson was the presenter of BBC TV’s ‘Mastermind’ for 25 years, as well as being a respected author and journalist. He passed away in January 2007, aged 77.

A sale of books, some with personal inscriptions, and an auction of items which belonged to the celebrated broadcaster - who lived near Balmore in the parish of Baldernock - will be held on Friday and Saturday, November 14 and 15 at Milngavie Town Hall, with the auction starting at 10am on Saturday morning.

The lots for auction include ‘Mastermind’ rarities such as a cut-class replica of the famous chair, items presented to him on various occasions and other treasures including a hip-flask, toby jug, pipes and more.

All proceeds will go to The Balmore Trust - a pioneering charity which has been helping to champion Fairtrade for more than 30 years from The Balmore Coach House.

Mr Magnusson was a staunch supporter of the Trust and its work to tackle world poverty, and spoke at the charity’s 25th anniversary in 2005.

Daughter Sally Magnusson - a respected broadcaster and author in her own right - was keen for the Trust to raise funds through the sale of items which belonged to her father and she will be there on Saturday morning to introduce the auction.

She said: “My dad had a huge library of books and a number of gifts from organisations close to his heart, not all of which we have been able to keep ourselves. I know he?d have been glad to offer others the chance of

helping The Balmore Coach House in this way.”

Mr Magnusson and his wife Mamie were neighbours of Balmore Trust chairman John Riches and his wife, Nena. Mamie was the Trust’s first patron and spoke at the opening of The Coach House in 1980.

Mr Riches said: “Mamie and Magnus were part of the community and very supportive of our work at the Coach House.

“We are honoured to be given the chance to raise funds for the Trust in such a special way. It also provides an opportunity to highlight the backing which Magnus and Mamie gave to The Coach House and the Trust throughout the years.

“They were firm supporters of our work, but more than that they were wonderful people and great neighbours.”

The auction will take place at Milngavie Town Hall on Saturday, November 15 from 10am-noon. There will be a viewing the night before at the town hall - from 7-9pm on Friday, November 14.