Guitar enthusiast Brian Bennett from Belfast is to put his personal collection of 19 Fender Stratocasters up for auction later this month to raise funds for Northern Ireland Hospice.
Bennett, 63 has donated the instruments in honour of his late mother Nora who was a volunteer at the hospice – and they’ll go under the hammer at Wilsons Auctions on November 30.
Some of the guitars have been signed by artists including Guns N’ Roses axeman Slash, Def Leppard’s Vivian Campbell and ex Motley Crue frontman Vince Neil.
A 2002 US Custom Shop-made seafoam green Strat boasts the signatures of Bad Company and Free drummer Simon Kirke, fellow Bad Company member Mick Ralphs, Cream’s Jack Bruce and former Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman.
Bennett says: “I was able to amass the collection over a number of years thanks to musicians and music shops in Northern Ireland, and I would get signatures from Rock Camps I attended in London, at the Abbey Road studios, and at the House of Blues in Las Vegas.
“I’ve had the pleasure of jamming with some of the world’s most famous musicians and I am glad I was able to get guitars signed by them. Hopefully this will benefit Northern Ireland Hospice.”
Bennett adds: “It was always my intention to collect as many Fender Stratocasters as possible to one day donate to the hospice in honour of my mother and her support for the organisation.”
CEO of Northern Ireland Hospice Heather Weir adds: “The goodwill shown to Northern Ireland Hospice over the years has reached far and wide and has brought many quirky donations to our attention.
“This guitar collection is unique. Not only will it bring vital funds to support our care services, it will also raise awareness of Northern Ireland Hospice’s work.”
Visit the Wilsons Auctions website for further information, while pictures of the guitars signed by Slash and Vivian Campbell can be seen below.