This c.1900 silver Swiss-made pocket watch costs £185 with on

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Time seems to have stood still for many of us during successive lockdowns but the market for pocket watches has taken a leap forward, judging by recent demand.

More dealers are using retail sites including LoveAntiques. This was launched in January 2014 by IACF as a place for traders to upload and sell their antiques.

Seven years on, it is thriving, particularly considering the Covid-19 challenge. And pocket watches have become one of the most popular items.

Will Thomas, managing director of IACF and LoveAntiques, said: “It’s going well. We have seen a 30% increase in dealers since last year and traffic continues to grow.

“We sell a lot of furniture, silver and jewellery. The growth in searches over the last 12 months has been pocket watches and art. Pocket watch searches are up over 300%.”

Adam Scott of UK Horology in Bristol, who sells through the LA site, has a few suggestions to explain this demand.

“Pocket watches, especially early verge pocket watches, have seen a strong increase in price. You get a lot of antique for your money, they are small, easy to store, keep safe and collect.

“There is a huge increase in watches generally around the world and there is a knock-on from that. The fusee verge pocket watch shows amazing craftsmanship and you would be hard pressed to match it today.”

Scott added: “I’ve seen a big rise in young men having a interest in vintage stylish items including nice clothes and dressing and feeling good. So they are looking for vintage watches to wear and I have seen Omega treble in price in the last three years.”

Website opportunities

Meanwhile, Thomas revealed an update for LoveAntiques.

“We have just finished our website builder and can now also offer dealers websites also. Fresh off the press also – we are about to offer our dealers and new ones that sign up a website free for three months.”