Major investment will see Stroud Auction Rooms open new headquarters

An Aladdin’s cave of treasures looks set to appear near Stroud, as the town’s famous auction rooms prepares to not just re-open, but invest in a new headquarters to house its wares.

With its gavel already coming down on more than £3 million of annual sales, Stroud Auction Rooms is on the verge of a major investment which will see its business double its turnover.

From humble beginnings and a modest £250,000 annually just over a decade ago, Nick Bowkett and his team has established a family business of significant experts with a solid gold reputation.

Its expertise in everything from vintage vehicles, military items, toys, glass, stamps and jewellery to armaments, art, coins, records and ceramics, together with the business’s early decision to embrace on-line, is what is seeing it draw away from the pack.

So much so, its growth pre-pandemic gave it the confidence to make a very major investment in a purpose-built headquarters, just down the road from its current Bath Road home.

‘We recently had confirmation that Stroud Auction Rooms has some of the highest online bidding figures in the country – top five according to the saleroom.com,’ said Mr Bowkett, who said the significant ranking had taken one or two larger competitors from out of county by surprise.

‘We also have planning permission for a new auction house on a two-acre site off Horse Trough roundabout. The aim is to double turnover in the next four to five years.

‘The building has been designed and we would be underway already, if it were not for covid.’

The new premises, off Ebley Road, Stonehouse, will have parking for 60-plus vehicles and 20 bicycles with staff numbers expected to increase from 11 full and part time staff to 14. Stroud Auction Rooms worked with Anderson Architects of Nailsworth on the project.

Online selling has dominated since the pandemic hit – with its rooms closed to public sales – but the firm is now excited about re-opening and one of its early events is already catching the eye.

‘We have a very unusual and rare collection of vintage tractors and signage,’ he said of one of the star-turns up ahead in July, clearly as excited by the thought.

An earlier auction in April 2021, will include an eclectic mix, from a vintage American Fender Telecaster guitar from 1952 to a British Army Waterloo Medal, a Colt Navy .36 single action revolver, a pair of flintlock holster pistols, and vinyl record collections, including a collectable Pink Floyd Demo record of a song called Apples and Oranges.
A video on LinkedIn showing off some of the tractor collection is presented by Alexandra Bowkett.

‘My daughter is our jewellery expert,’ said Mr Bowkett, explaining that Alexandra was also qualified in her chosen specialism – a Diamond Graduate and Fellow of the Gemmological Association – and that it was this kind of expertise among all staff which has grown Stroud Auction Rooms reputation.

‘She had an amethyst broach come in recently which another auctioneer had valued at £1,000. Alex took one look at it and said it was actually a sapphire. It sold for £16,000 in the end,’ he said.

This ability and attention to detail is what allows them to unearth the otherwise unrecognised treasures within the estates they help value, properly identify the items put before them and collections they are trusted with.

By Andrew Merrell


Follow SoGlos on LinkedIn and sign-up to the weekly SoGlos business newsletter for the very latest Gloucestershire business news stories.

© SoGlos
Tuesday 30 March 2021

More news you might like...

The winners of the 2021 SoGlos Gloucestershire Lifestyle Awards were revealed at a spectacular event at Cheltenham Ladies’ College.

SoGlos Gloucestershire Lifestyle Awards 2021 winners revealed

Representing the best of the best Gloucestershire lifestyle businesses, from live entertainment venues and family days out...

Regent Arcade’s latest grand reveal – the addition of sports giant Decathlon to its Cheltenham town centre destination.

Second major sports retailer to open in Regent Arcade

Another huge global sports retailer – a first for the south west – is due to open in Cheltenham’s Regent Arcade, following...

The solar panels will improve battery and alternator life, fuel efficiency and reduce electricity use from the grid.

Gloucestershire’s emergency services are the first to trial solar panels on fire engines

Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service is among the first in the UK to install solar panels on its fire engines, to help tackle...

Naylor Powell’s new office is now open on Noel Lee Way in Cam.

Naylor Powell opens a new office in Cam

Gloucestershire estate agent, Naylor Powell, is growing – opening a new sales and lettings office in Cam.

There’s no need to leave your dog at home this Christmas season, with Winter Glow hosting dog-friendly light trail sessions this December 2021.

Winter Glow is hosting dog-friendly light trail sessions

The highly anticipated Christmas event at Three Counties Showground is inviting dog owners to bring their four-legged friends...

Don’t miss

Unmissable highlights