01353 930094 auctions@blyths.com

Below is a list of frequently asked questions, please be aware that the answer to some questions varies depending on auction type! If you can’t find what you are looking for please don’t hesitate to contact us.

General Auctions Sellers FAQ

Where are these auctions held?

Our general auctions are held at the Arkenstall Centre, in Haddenham (some ten miles North of Cambridge), which lends itself well for these sales. The venue has onsite parking, is heated, and provides full facilities.

What sort of items do you sell?

These sales typically include items ranging from household effects and small furniture (from local clearances) to antiques, collectibles and jewellery. Any and all items are accepted for these sales.

Is there anything you can't sell?

There are some items which we are unable (legally) to sell – these include soft furnishings (unless pre-1950s) and unsafe electrical items.

Can you sell electrical items?

We can sell electrical items, however trading standards legislation means that we have to test all items offered for sale for safety (unless the item counts as an “antique”) – there is a small charge for this test.

Do you value items prior to sale?

We are happy to give an informal estimate of sale value prior to the auction.

How do I enter items for sale?

Entries for these auctions are accepted on the day prior to sale (Thursday) from 9.30am -12 noon at the Arkenstall Centre (click for directions). For larger quantities we can recommend local collection/clearance services. If you are planning to enter a large quantity of items, please notify us (click here to contact us) in advance so we can ensure availability of space.

Do you offer a house clearance service?

Yes, we offer a full property clearance service. Suitable items are removed for inclusion in auction (either our online or general sales) and ethical disposal arranged for any item considered unsaleable. Please contact us for an initial no-obligation quotation.

Can I put reserves/minimum prices on consigned items?

Reserves are accepted on all of our sales (by agreement with our valuers); these are usually subject to “discretion” of either 10% or one bid unless otherwise agreed. Please note that all reserves must be received/agreed in writing before commencement of the auction, and please note the conditions regarding removal of unsold lots following general sales, particularly that unsold lots should be collected on sale day unless by prior arrangement.

Antiques & Collectibles Auctions – Sellers FAQ

How to consign?

We accept consignments continually for these sales; items may be consigned at our weekly valuation and consignment days every Thursday morning (9.30am -12 noon) at the Arkenstall Centre in Haddenham, Cambs (click for directions) or other times by appointment – we also offer a local collection service throughout Cambridgeshire and Norfolk.

Do you offer a house clearance service?

We offer a full collection service from a single item up to full property clearance, throughout Cambridgeshire and Norfolk. Suitable items are removed for inclusion in auction (either our online or general sales) and ethical disposal arranged for any item considered unsaleable; for property clearance we are always pleased to offer a free, no-obligation visit to the property and bespoke quotation. Please contact us for details.

What sort of items do you sell?

Our online sales are suitable for a wide range of antiques & collectibles, from jewellery to fine wines, ceramics to paintings, from coins to automobilia – the large and diverse customer base of collectors provided by our mailing list and the internet portal sites means that these sales can reach a global audience of potential bidders. See our invitation to consign page for an overview of potential sale items, or contact us for a no-obligation appraisal.

Can you value items prior to sale?

We are always delighted to offer no-obligation pre-sale valuation advice, either at our valuation days (see “How to Consign”, above) or photographs of items may be submitted for valuation via our website or email.

Can I put reserves/minimum prices on consigned items?

Reserves are accepted on all of our sales (by agreement with our valuers); these are usually subject to “discretion” of either 10% or one bid unless otherwise agreed. Where items are unsold, reserves are usually reduced automatically prior to inclusion in the next auction. Please note that all reserves must be received/agreed in writing before commencement of the auction.

What are your charges for selling?

Our current charges and rates may be found here.

When will my items be offered for sale?

All consigned items are allocated to the next suitable auction; you will receive a notification email from us at the commencement of the auction with details of lot descriptions, reserves, and so on.

When will I receive auction results and payment?

Provisional results for our antiques & collectibles auctions will be sent to you by email within 48 hours of the auction ending. A full (final) statement will be sent to you by post, together with payment for sold lots, within fourteen days following the end of the auction (subject to conditions of sale).

What happens if items are unsold?

Unsold items will automatically be entered into the next suitable auction, unless you notify us that you would rather collect them. Reserves will automatically reduce in accordance with our conditions of sale until the items are sold.

Antiques & Collectibles Auctions – Buyers FAQ

Do you produce catalogues for these auctions?

All items are fully described and illustrated online; a printed catalogue is available on request by post for a small fee – please contact us if you would like to subscribe to printed catalogues for these auctions.

How do I request a condition report or more information about a lot?

If you need further information about a lot, or a condition report, simply contact us by email or by the link on the auction catalogue page – please note that all requests for further information should be received by 48 hours prior to the end of the auction to ensure a reply.

How do I bid?

All bidding for these sales takes place online, although we are happy to bid on your behalf up to a maximum commission bid should you prefer. See our website faq (above) for a guide to bidding online.

How can I pay for a purchase?

An invoice will be sent to you by email immediately after the auction ends. This will contain a link to make an instant online payment by card, and bank details should you prefer to pay by direct bank transfer. Please note that unfortunately we are unable to accept card payments by telephone.

Do you offer a postage service for purchased lots?

Unlike many auction houses we still offer an in-house packing and postage service; this is competitively priced and postage may be ordered online at any time after the close of the auction. We can ship most items, but there are a few exceptions due to difficulties in obtaining insurance cover in transit – where an item is not suitable for postage we can recommend couriers.

When can I collect purchased lots in person?

Although the majority of buyers choose to take advantage of our shipping services, local buyers may collect lots from our monthly online antiques & collectibles auctions in person on the Thursday morning following the auction from the Arkenstall Centre at Haddenham, Cambridgeshire, during our valuation and consignment sessions – we do request that buyers notify us in advance prior to collection to enable us to have items ready for collection. Collection by other couriers or at other times is strictly by prior appointment only – please contact us if you require alternative arrangements.