The latest antiques and fine art auction in Cockermouth achieved the highest total of recent years.

The sale, by auctioneers Mitchells, made more than £410,000, with many lots far overshooting their estimates. Almost all the furniture on offer was sold.

“This is our best sale for four years,” said saleroom director and auctioneer Mark Wise.

“Our bottom estimate was £300,000, so topping £410,000 was really welcome given current trends in the market.”

Furniture and pictures performed especially strongly but he added: “There were a few other big surprises too, which all helped.”

The biggest surprise was the top-selling lot, a pair of 19th century German a owl figurines. They had an estimate of £400 to £600 but sold for £11,500.

Another big surprise was a bottle of Macallan-Glenlivet Scotch Whisky dating from the 1940s or 1950s.

Its estimate was £1,000 to £1,500, but was bought for £10,000 by a bidder believed to be a collector of rare whiskies.

Most valuable among the clocks was a fine and rare astronomical longcase clock by Edward Harriman of Workington, from around 1765, with an oak and mahogany case which sold for £9,800. Another 18th century Harriman ball moon clock in a solid red walnut case also did well, selling for £3,000.

Other high-selling items of furniture were a late 19th century Vernis Martin ormolu mounted cabinet valued at £2,000 to £3,000 but selling for £6,400 and a good Victorian walnut credenza with Sèvres style porcelain plaques, estimated at £1,000 to £1,500 but fetching £2,700.

The three-day sale included a specialist section of 200 lots of British and world coins, banknotes and medallions. The most valuable turned out to be a Queen Elizabeth II silver jubilee platinum medallion from 1977, which sold for £3,000, and 10 Edward VII sovereigns in a presentation case, which sold for £2,500.

The most valuable lots in Asian art were a pair of Chinese Qing Dynasty finely embroidered panels dating from the 1700s or 1800s, which sold for £3,600, and a Chinese silver three-piece tea service valued at £600 to £800 – and surprising bidders by selling for £1,800.

Valuable ceramics, alongside the owl figurines, were a Clarice Cliff octagonal plate from 1929, which also surprised bidders by selling for £420 against a conservative estimate of £50 to £80. A pair of William Moorcroft Moonlit Blue Vases around a year older sold for £1,100.

The picture section included artworks by local artist Percy Kelly, the most valuable being a charcoal Above Loweswater which sold for £3,300.

Many others were sold for prices far exceeding their estimates. Three works expected to fetch £600 to £800 sold for far more, including a watercolour called “Evensong” which sold for £2,200..

An oil on canvas of a shorthorn bull by AM Gauci valued at £400 to £600 sold for £1,700 and a pair of oils of Rydal Water, by local Maryport artist William Mitchell, dating from 1895 was expected to fetch only £100 to £150, but fetched £1,120. Other Lake District paintings also earned high prices.

Among the jewellery, a 14-carat gold diamond ring with three-carat diamond sold for £5,700 and a rare Russian emerald and diamond bracelet sold for £3,100.

The most valuable watch, a 2008 Panerai Luminor, made £3,300.