A card is selected and replaced in the pack which is shuffled and then spread out on a table. This battery powered spooky hand moves in an eerie way and discovers the chosen card. Complete with instructions. This was a gift from Cambridge magician and good friend Tony Middleton in 2015.

When a penny is placed in the slot, a young lady appears in the horizontal box on the right of the photograph, at which point the magician slices her through many times with a vicious looking sword. After a while the lady vanishes from the box and appears in the gold cage on the left. The illusion operates on the principle of Pepper’s Ghost. This machine, part of the Davenport Collection, was in extremely poor condition. It was renovated by engineer and magician Tony Middleton of Cambridge, with help from John Davenport and other friends in 2015. It is the belief of the restoration team that the coin-op was a prototype because of various design faults that would have made it unsuitable for commercial use. These faults have now been rectified. Roy Davenport is on the left and Tony Middleton on the right of the photograph.

This is a well known illusion. Staring at the centre of the revolving spiral for 20 or 30 seconds and then looking at the back of one’s hand creates a sensation of creeping flesh. Cambridge magician and engineer Tony Middleton made this in 2016 for display at Davenports magic museum in North Walsham, England.

Although the observer is simply looking at a 2D rotating image, the impression is one of looking down into the crater of a 3D rotating volcano. Cambridge magician and engineer Tony Middleton made this in 2016 for display at Davenports magic museum in North Walsham, England.

In 2015 the bare mechanism of this electrically operated window figure was found in a Davenport store in very bad condition. The figure turned its head from side to side and raised and lowered its arms. In 2016 a Cambridge magician and family friend, Tony Middleton, had the vision to strip it down and re-engineer the figure, to convert it into a Chinese magician performing a magic trick. With the help of John Davenport, the figure now levitates a Chinese lantern up and down in the air, passing a ring over it to show there is nothing but magic holding the lantern suspended. Tony christened the magician Chung Ling Soo from the outset. The figure has been on display in the family’s magic museum in Norfolk, England. One of the photographs here shows Roy Davenport on the left and Tony Middleton on the right.

In 2016 a Cambridge magician and family friend, Tony Middleton, took an existing automaton of Snow White, which was part of the Davenport family collection, and converted it to this gypsy with a plasma ball. The original age of the electrically operated figure is not known, but is probably mid to late 20th century. One photograph shows Tony Middleton with the figure.

The demon moves its arms, eyes and eyebrows while the lights flash on and off. There is no evidence that this figure was ever in a Davenport shop window. It was found in very poor condition by John Davenport in a Davenport store and was renovated by Tony Middleton, who may be seen in one of the images. The motor is 120 volts and the figure may well have been made in Germany.

The figure moves its arms, eyes, eyebrows and mouth. The index finger on the right hand taps the window pane to attract the attention of passers by. According to Wynne Davenport this figure was definitely in a Davenport shop window. She told the story that a policemean came into the shop requesting that the figure was unplugged because so many prople had gathered on the pavement that it was causing an obstruction. Many years later it was found in very poor condition by John Davenport in a Davenport store and was renovated by Tony Middleton, who may be seen in one of the images. The motor is 120 volts and the figure may well have been made in Germany. It is not known how the figure was originally dressed. It is possible that it was designed to smoke a pipe, which would be consistent with the mouth movements.

This is an electrically powered automaton. A card magically rises out of the pack while the demon waves the long pole around to show that there are no wires holding it in space. The card then descends back to the pack and the cycle repeats. The automaton was not in working order until Cambridge magician and engineer Tony Middleton repaired and upgraded it in 2014-2016. The original age of the automaton is probably mid 20th century. We do not know if the automaton was ever on display at Davenports shop.