The deputy leader of Fine Gael, Senator James Reilly, is to sell his collection of vintage and classic cars along with the contents of his country home, Loughton House, the 13-bedroom Anglo-Irish mansion on 82 acres outside the village of Moneygall, Co Offaly.
Dr Reilly’s collection includes 10 Jaguars and three Daimlers, although the values are comparatively modest in most cases.
Sheppard’s auctioneers said the cars would go under the hammer in an auction later this month.
The top lot is a 1939 Daimler that was “registered to the British admiralty” and which, according to catalogue notes, “was reputedly used by Winston Churchill”. The ox-blood coloured car has a top estimate of €18,000.
Churchill was first lord of the admiralty in 1939 at the beginning of the second World War before taking over as British prime minster the following year.
Other highlights include a 1960s Jaguar Mark 2 model, apparently adapted for use by a fire service and known as a “fire chief Jaguar”, with a top estimate of €15,000, and a Jaguar mark 10, 3.2 litres, with a top estimate of €3,000.
The auction includes two Jaguars described as being in “scrap” condition. They may appeal to collectors looking for spare parts or willing to undertake a major restoration.
A 1991 Mitsubishi Pajero, with a top estimate of only €300, carries branding for Dr Reilly and the Fine Gael website. It was used during election campaigns.
Dr Reilly was elected as a Fine Gael TD for Dublin North in 2007. He was re-elected in 2011 and appointed minister for health. Later, following a mid-term reshuffle, he was minister for children in the Fine Gael-Labour coalition government.
He lost his Dáil seat in the general election earlier this year but was nominated to the Seanad by Taoiseach Enda Kenny.
House and land
Dr Reilly and his wife Dorothy bought Loughton House in 2001 but also kept a home in Dublin.
Separately from selling the contents of the house through Sheppard’s, they are selling the house and land by private treaty through estate agents Ganly Walters, with an asking price of € 2.75 million.
Sheppard’s said the collection of cars and the other lots will go on public view at Loughton House, close to the Barack Obama Plaza on the M8 Dublin-Limerick motorway, from Saturday, September 24th.
The auction begins on Tuesday, September 27th, and the cars will go under the hammer on Friday, September 30th.