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Lots to celebrate as auction house refurbishes and expands

1818 Auctioneers new 280 square metre saleroom, set up for its first sale. Ian Wood photography

THANKS to four years of steady growth, 1818 Auctioneers is opening a second saleroom at their premises at J36 Rural Auction Centre on the Cumbria Lancashire border.

Since 2016, manager Bill Nelson says the team has doubled in size from six to 13 and turnover has increased from £ ½ million to £1.38 million. It means staff are dealing with many more items according to Bill, and the main reason why they need more space and another saleroom.

Bill Nelson, manager at 1818 Auctioneers. Ian Wood photography

“In one year we can be handling over 37,000 lots – with some lots made up of 100s of items – that’s an increase from 12,000 in the last four years,” said Bill.

“There’s a knock on effect too for the packing team who send bought items on to their new owners. After each monthly auction we hold they can be dealing with an average of 110 parcels and, after February’s two-day sale, they were dispatching quite a few items around the world. A 1640s map of Britannia was sent to Belgium, a walnut writing slope went to Spain, Irish linen was posted to Singapore, and jewellery and silver couriered to the US, Australia and Switzerland,” added Bill.

The new 280 square metre saleroom on the first floor will be home to the firm’s monthly two day sales, alternating between a collectors and specialist one. And the first to be held is a collectors’ sale on Monday 9 and Tuesday 10 March. Regular general sales will continue in the existing ground floor saleroom which has also been refurbished.

Highlights of the inaugural sale, include a single-owner collection of gold coins with an overall estimate of £30,000-£50,000k and a collection of 100 Royal Crown Derby paperweights which are expected to make at least £3,000.

Being busy is also keeping us fit says Bill Nelson.

“The saleroom team gets a rest on auction days, meeting and greeting customers. The rest of the time they can find themselves walking, on average, 13 kilometres each day as they set up the auctions and take them down. Our record holder is Alison Nelson who notched up 23,000 steps, or 17.5 kilometres, getting everything ready for the March sale in the new saleroom,” explained Bill.

Bill Nelson expects further growth particularly in areas like musical instruments, vinyl, fountain pens, cameras, mid-century furniture and rural bygones.

“It’s a cast of thousands who make our job such a pleasure, from our customers and the incredible items they bring in, to our talented team and supportive board of directors,” said Bill.

“And here’s to the next ten years of auctioneering at 1818 Auctioneers”.

For details of the March sale visit 1818auctioneers.co.uk. People are also welcome to call in and see the new auction room in action. Anyone wishing to have an item valued is advised to call ahead to make an appointment on 015395 66201.

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