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Roger Smith Series 2 and Cartier Pebble star at Bonhams fine watch auction

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Rarity proved its value once again at this week’s Bonhams Fine Watches sale, with a Roger W. Smith 18K gold manual wind Series 2 wristwatch beating its top estimate to sell for £516,900.

It is the second time a Roger Smith watch has sold for more than £500,000 this month after a Series 1 made £660,000 in a fundraiser for British watchmaking apprenticeships.

Another headline piece at the Bonhams auction, a 1972 Cartier Pebble sold for £239,700.

Auction prices for less rare watches have softened this year, but scarcity is still valued, and there are brands like Vacheron Constantin and A. Lange & Sohne, which have flown under the radar until recently, that are holding up.

A 2016 tonneau-shaped white gold Vacheron Constantin Overseas watch, ref. 2000V/120G-B122 achieved £75,900, double its pre-sale estimate.

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A rare, Octa Calendrier limited edition F.P. Journe in stainless steel — one of just 38 pieces made — hammered at £120,000.

“We are thrilled to see the results of the sale, not only the appetite for the Roger W. Smith and Cartier Pebble, both of which were sought-after and rare watches to come to auction, but also for sports steel Vacherons such as the Overseas Collection,” says Jonathan Darracott, Bonhams global head of watches.

The sale delivered strong results across the multi-faceted selection of lots. We have seen a strong sell through rate, averaging at 78% sold by lot for the year, confirming our position as market leaders for watch auctions in the UK. We look forward to what 2023 holds,” he adds.

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