Barons is celebrating its 20th anniversary at its Autumn Classic sale at Sandown Park race course on October 27th and, in a twist on tradition, the ‘birthday boy’ is the one giving out the gifts.
The auction house is offering free standard entry for cars consigned to the sale (usual price £120), while, for this sale alone, it is waiving the £15 catalogue charge, allowing bidders to attend for free.
Barons’ Auction Manager Tim Gascoigne said, “After 20 years, the Barons depth of knowledge of the classic car world and enthusiasm for classic and collectors’ cars remains unchanged, as does our desire to deliver an efficient service and good value for money. We are very much looking forward to our anniversary sale on October 27th.”
The early days....
Barons first sale was held on September 28th 1998 and was opened by TV presenter and racing driver Tiff Needell, with a charity lot sold on behalf of the automotive industry’s charity, BEN.
Over the past 20 years Barons has ridden out the highs and lows of the classic car market and the global financial situation, continually adapting to the changing demands as fashions and tastes come and go, but always maintaining its core standards. The company was established to offer the classic car owner and would-be owner a better, more cost-effective service, an ethos Barons adheres to this day. The Barons team were innovators – for example, Barons was the first auction house to offer online entry forms - and set up a secure, ring-fenced, client account from the outset.
A history of strong results
Barons has held 163 sales to date, and it all began on that day in September 1998, when the very first car Barons ever sold was a Rover. The auction house has consistently achieved strong results for British marques over the two decades. For example, in 2010, a ‘lost’ 1958 Aston Martin DB2/4 MkIII drophead rolling restoration sold for over £206,000 – more than twice its top estimate – at Barons at Sandown Park. Originally the property of former Aston Martin owner David Brown, it had spent the previous 30 years hidden beneath a tarpaulin and interest in the car came from around the world.
In 2015 an extremely rare 1954 Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback ‘barn find’ restoration project went under the Barons hammer. The owner had hoped to achieve around £100,000, but, recognising its rarity and potential, Barons set a £250,000-£300,000 guide price and the car attracted frenzied bidding before it was finally secured by its new owner for £726,000, the highest price Barons had ever achieved for a car at that time.
That record was eclipsed just two sales later, when an ultra-rare, unrestored and highly original 1969 Aston Martin DB6 Mk 1 Volante Vantage set what remains the current record for Barons when it sold for £781,000 at Sandown Park.
Jaguars have been another strong feature of Barons’ sales, the company having held an annual Jaguar Heritage auction every year since 2000. Barons was founded by a Jaguar expert and directors Tony Cavell and Peter Gascoigne - who have been with the team since 2005 - also have huge experience of and love for the marque. Consequently it’s not surprising that several Jaguar records have fallen as a result of cars going under the Barons hammer. Barons has also sold Jaguars with fascinating histories, including ‘WAG 7’, the ex-Wilkie Wilkinson 1961 S1 E-type FHC. This was sold on behalf of the estate of the world-famous bodybuilder Charles 'Wag' Bennett. Bennett is perhaps best known for discovering Arnold Schwarzenegger - who would, in later years, refer to him as his ‘British father’.
However, it’s not all British cars that do well at Barons sales. Virtually every make and nationality of car has passed through the Barons saleroom and the company has sold a number of celebrity cars including ones once owned by Britt Ekland, Peter Sellers, Frank Sinatra and Stanley Kubrick. Motorcycles, automobilia and registration numbers have also gone under the hammer at Barons.
Impressive sale venue
Barons’ main venue throughout the past two decades has been Sandown Park race course, though it has also held sales in venues as diverse at Donington Park, Tattersalls at Newmarket and Burghley House and also overseas.
However, Sandown Park remains the location of choice. Why? It’s simple: location, location, location, plus the outstanding facilities. Barons has buyers coming from all over the world, and they can land at Heathrow and be at Sandown Park very quickly, and it’s also very convenient for UK buyers to reach. It’s an impressive venue where the cars are displayed to good effect. In recent years the company has also started holding sales at Kempton Park - not a million miles from Sandown Park and another excellent and easy-to-reach venue.
The anniversary sale
To take advantage of the celebratory free standard car entry and consign a vehicle to the anniversary sale on October 27th or for further information about Barons’ services, please see the website.