MORE than 200 paintings by one of the 20th Century's forgotten artists are expected to create excitement when they go under the hammer next week.

York-born William John Botten Jenkins died in 1994, aged 83, after a packed life in which he had worked both as an artist and an artisan.

He studied art at York and Leeds and, after war service with the RAF, worked for a time as an agricultural contractor in Wiltshire.

With his lifelong friend, Richard Lancefield, he started restoring old Rolls-Royce and Bentley cars before switching to boat-building, in particular making canoes and kayaks.

The two later created a nature reserve at Carlton Miniott Park, near Thirsk, North Yorkshire, where Mr Lancefield still lives.

In his youth, Jenkins fell in love with the Robin Hood's Bay area and met artists from the famous Staithes Group.

During the 1930s and 1940s, he was a prolific painter in both oils and watercolours, selling many paintings to the US.

Now, Mr Lancefield has decided to sell his large collection of Jenkins' work and next Tuesday, they go under the hammer at the Whitby saleroom of Duggleby's.

"He was far better than a great many other artists and it seemed odd that I had all these things stashed away where no one could see them or even knew about them," said Mr Lancefield yesterday.

Viewing days for the sale are on Friday, Saturday and Monday.