Enjoy unlimited access: just £1 for 12 weeks

Subscribe now

The new company, headed by James Rylands and Rupert van der Werff, plan to repeat Sotheby’s two live auctions a year in Sussex – the first on May 20, the second on October 21. However, in contrast to the massive two-day events of old, these will be much smaller sales of around 200 lots catering to the quality end of the market.

Adopting a model employed by Norfolk gun auctioneers Holts, lesser material (including the modern limestone carvings that remain perennially popular) will be offered in a subsequent sealed bid auction. These will run for seven days, the first beginning at the close of the live sale on May 20 and ending on May 27.

The third string to the SPA bow will be private treaty sales. Major architectural items often prove difficult to sell on the day and such items will be accepted on consignment.

The new numbers and details are as follows:

Summers Place Auctions, The Walled Garden, Stane Street, Billingshurst, West Sussex RH14 9AB. Tel: 01403 331 331. The company’s website www.summersplaceauctions.com is not yet operational.