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PUBLISHED: 14:34 03 February 2010 | UPDATED: 15:07 28 November 2012



Diggory Hadoke - Auctions from December

Diggory Hadoke  

Auctions from December are listed below and the business done in them has surprised many. All the auctioneers are bullish, Holt's sending out a pamflet by e-mail on the strength of guns as an investment, Patrick Hawes called me to report on his thoughts on the Bonhams sale - he thought I was being overly negative about the prospects for the trade in these difficult times - I think he probably called it better than I did on this occasion.

The winter sales were generally very healty. Gavin Gardiner backed 'best' guns to continue performing and said the lower end was also robust - "What you can't sell easily is the kind of slightly dodgy stuff that nobody wants" he mused when I met him to pay for some guns for a client. We agreed his reflections were affirming that what we have now is pretty much 'business as usual'. So, despite the woes all around us it seems to be a good time to be a gun auctioneer.

Why? Well the strong dollar helps the Americans buy guns cheap from London sales and the strong Euro helps the Europeans shop with a smile. Why in a 'global downturn', as Mr Brown never tires of calling it, our currency has become the whipping boy, I am too stupid to understand. If you are curious about the sales and results, you can still see them on-line using the links below:

December 3rd Gavin Gardiner. His sale included a lovely 'sleeper' of a Horsley hammer gun and a stunning slide-and-tilt Lancaster 14-bore. He got top money for a mint Purdey pigeon gun too.

December 9th Bonhams. The gun of the sale for my money was a William Evans .500 boxlock double rifle with an interesting history, which smashed its estimate.

December 11th Holts. Nick Holt's mate Eric Clapton sold a lot of top-grade pairs and single guns in this sale and made £130,000 for the best performers. The collection sold very well - better than I expected and shows there is strength at the top end for the right stuff.

December 13th Charlton Hall. The second annual Charlton Hall auction took place in Columbia S.C. I gave alecture before the sale and the room was well attanded. However, the serious buyers are yet to arrive in numbers. This made it agood sale for the casual buyer. A lot of individuals left with some nice guns at bargain prices. Charlton Hall step things up a gear with new premises in April and a third sale planned for December 2009

What's coming next? We are in a bit of a drought now in auction terms: there will be plemty in March to look forward to though. Holts, Bonhams and Cheffins all have a sale in the third month of 2009 and Gavin Gardiner follows up with one in April. If you really can't wait that long, Scottarms have a February 18th auction in Newark lined up.


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