Time is right for strong auction results as Oxfordshire sales soar in lockdown

Posted on 25/01/2021 in Press Coverage

Lockdown did nothing to deter keen bidders from snapping up desirable items at Hanson Holloway’s Ross first online-only auction of 2021.

The Banbury saleroom sourced hundreds of desirable antiques and collectables for its January auction and English silver, Asian art, the Age of Steam and horological opulence led the way when it came to results.

The top price achieved on the day was secured by lot 72, a Louis XVI type cercle tournant mantel clock after a design by Le Roy of Paris. The timepiece, consigned from an Oxfordshire estate, attracted three telephone bidders and busy internet interest before being sold for £5,800 to a private collector continuing to furnish his Queen Anne Grade One listed home.

Jasper Marsh, a valuer at the Oxfordshire firm, said: “The sale had a 90% sale rate and an average hammer price approaching £200. If anything, lockdown appears to be sparking even more interest in auctions and antiques because people have more time to browse catalogues and bid. And because everything is online, they can enjoy saleroom excitement from the comfort of their armchair.”

Other top items included lot 45, a pair of silver sauce tureens bearing the sought-after maker’s mark of Benjamin Smith. They sparked eager bidding across two internet platforms, eventually selling to a Hansonslive bidder for £2,300.

Mr Marsh said: “Lot 45 was part of an impressive collection of silverware in the sale which did well. The Chinese market also remains strong and this auction proved no exception, though it did throw up a surprise.

“With no commission bids or telephone interest, things were looking a little bleak in midwinter for lot 159, an early 20th century Chinese silk gentleman's coat with dragon, cloud and wave decoration. However, the internet burst into life as soon as the lot was announced and two Chinese bidders contested the garment to £1,450.

“Railwayana, much like the Age of Steam itself, will always be held dear by many enthusiasts, so lot 79 was never going to be left waiting at the platform. Consigned by the son of a gentleman who painstakingly built the locomotive and tender over several years, the LMS in black and red livery found a new owner for £1,000.”

Entries are now invited for HHR’s next sale, a Two-day Spring Fine Art and Antiques Auction on March 5-6. To arrange a free valuation or home visit, call 01295 817777 or email [email protected]. Services are available in lockdown/tiers with Covid regulations strictly adhere to.