Simon Vickers is retiring from his role as head of the Lyon & Turnbull Rare Books,Maps, Manuscripts & Photographs department.

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After 17 years heading up the Rare Books, Maps, Manuscripts & Photographs department at the auction house based in Edinburgh (but which also holds sales in London) he will pass the baton to his colleague of 10 years Cathy Marsden.

Vickers has worked in the rare books trade most of his life. The grandson of the distinguished American book dealer CA Stonehill, he joined the London bookseller Maggs Bros immediately after university.

He later worked at Sotheby’s and Cheffins, joining L&T in 2005.

During his time, dedicated book sales at L&T have grown to three a year with annual turnover of more than £1m.

Vickers says: “Most memorable of all the consignments was perhaps the two articulated lorries that arrived from Dublin, bringing 10 tons of rare medical and related texts from the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland. Cataloguing them was an epic task. We dispersed them in eight sales over two years.”

Independence day


Cathy Marsden is taking over as head of the Lyon & Turnbull Rare Books, Maps, Manuscripts & Photographs department.

Marsden joined L&T in 2012 as a book specialist and was most recently assistant head of department.

Among her highlights so far is her discovery of a rare copy of the US Declaration of Independence among the contents of a Scottish country house in 2021. After extensive research the document was confirmed to be the copy of the famous 1823 William Stone printing of the Declaration prepared for signer Charles Carroll.

It was later sold in partnership with Freeman’s in Philadelphia for a hammer price of $3.7m (£2.85m) plus premium (as reported in ATG No 2500).