Special Auction Services (SAS)


Nexus Park, Plenty Close, Off Hambridge Road, Newbury, England RG14 5TR
163-558-0595

About Auction House

SAS was established in 1991 as a specialist and traditional firm of auctioneers. Over the years we have been commended for the level of service we have provided to our sellers and buyers. Our two salerooms are strategically located in the South of England, Newbury & West Midlands, Dudley within easy reach of London and the rest of the UK.

Auction Previews & News

2 Results
  • Auction Industry
    Playthings From Yesteryear on Offer at Special Auction Services’ Early Summer Sales Event

    Vintage playthings continue to be of great interest among collectors worldwide. These decades or centuries-old dolls, teddy bears, miniatures, trains, and other toys seem to connect enthusiasts to their youth and simpler, happier times. Special Auction Services of Newbury, UK is presenting its signature Dolls & Teddy Bears auction on June 21 and 22, 2022. Auction Daily spoke with Daniel Agnew, SAS' Doll and Teddy Bear Specialist Consultant, about this sale and what it takes to pull such a large event together. Daniel Agnew. Image courtesy of Daniel Agnew / Special Auction Services. Auction Daily: Your upcoming sale includes over 1,000 lots of antique and vintage playthings. How do you get ready for a sale of this magnitude? How long does it take to prepare for this event, start to finish?  Daniel Agnew: I usually have two auctions a year. I gather merchandise year-round for both. This year, I took on a new helper, so now we are doing two fine sales and two general sales a year. I'm constantly talking to people, reviewing photos, and visiting collections. Items of interest always seem to turn up, sometimes from known clients and sometimes out of the blue. I can be scrambling around for lots, then suddenly I am deluged. Things often come in at the last minute, so a couple of months before the auction it is fairly full on. I personally catalogue every lot and my colleague, Deborah, takes the photos. She has been doing my photos for 20 years. We've been good friends ever since we started working together at Christie's decades ago. We go to press about four weeks before the sale. The team turns the catalogue around in about a week, and it is produced in print and in online form. People love the printed catalogue as it becomes part of the provenance of all the bears and dolls from the sale. Lynda Fairhurst with her teddy bear collection. Image courtesy of Special Auction Services. Auction Daily: This auction features the teddy bear collection of Lynda Fairhurst. Tell us about the collector and this collection. Daniel Agnew:…

  • Auction Industry
    Provenance, Paws, and Personality: Sue Pearson’s Teddy Bear Collection Available in SAS Event

    Sue Pearson and her hug of teddy bears. Image from Special Auction Services. There's plenty of Teddy hugs to go around at Special Auction Services’ Dolls & Teddy Bears sale on June 8th, 2021. This event will be held in the company's London area gallery and features the collection of Sue Pearson, one of Europe's most beloved antique toy dealers for over half a century. We spoke with Daniel Agnew, SAS' Doll and Teddy Bear Specialist Consultant, and the consignor, Sue Pearson, to learn more about this sale and some of the treasures it offers.  Auction Daily: Sue, why did you select SAS to help rehome these items? As a collector, how did you decide what to keep and what to sell, and which of your items on offer will you miss the most?  Sue Pearson: We chose Special Auction Services and Daniel Agnew because he has been a good friend and colleague since his days with Christie’s in London. I have a strong emotional attachment to these bears, and they represent a happy and important part of my life. As such, I felt I should put them in Danny’s capable hands. I have given him all my special bears to sell, as I am semi-retired now and wanted to see them go to good new homes. However, I have kept a small cabinet of miniature bears. I shall particularly miss H.E.S. Pricey, my Farnell bear, who has been a friend and companion for many years. HES Pricey. Image from Special Auction Services. Auction Daily: Daniel, you've been in this industry for many years and have seen some amazing things. Is there any soft plush on offer in this sale that is a first for you... that is, it would be the first time you've handled or sold one of these items? Daniel Agnew: The one item I have never sold before is a Steiff Humpty Dumpty, sold as The Man from Mars, as Humpty Dumpty was created by Alice in Wonderland author Lewis Carroll, so Steiff could not actually sell this with the name. I have sold felt examples…

  • Auction Industry
    SAS’ Daniel Agnew Talks Teddy Bears

    Special Auction Services will present Teddy bears from across the decades in its September 9th sale Daniel Agnew, SAS’ Doll and Teddy Bear Specialist Consultant. Photo courtesy of Special Auction Services. It's a Teddy bear's picnic - literally - at Special Auction Services’ Grandma's Teddy Bear Museum sale on September 9th, 2020. This playful event will be held right outside of London and features nearly 350 fine ursine pieces, ranging from early 20th century antiques through modern artist editions. We spoke with Daniel Agnew, SAS' Doll And Teddy Bear Specialist Consultant, to learn more about this sale and bears as a collectible category. Auction Daily:  Tell us about the consigner in this sale, and why she is selling this collection. Daniel Agnew: The consignor is Hilary Pauley, who owns a private Teddy bear museum. You can view it at www.teddybear-museum.com. We first met around seven years ago when she asked me to value her collection for insurance purposes. At the time, these bears were housed in one room of her home. Fast forward a few years, Hilary stepped up her buying strategy and was adding early, American, Bing, and mechanical bears, among others, to her hug. By then, the collection was housed in a large barn. Due to higher-value pieces, everything needed to be protected behind glass, and she just ran out of room to keep collecting. In 2019, we started talking about holding an auction to manage the collection. I visited a few times, and she selected the bears that she could part with. The bears were photographed in and around her home gardens, then transported to SAS for processing. We did have a hiccup due to COVID-19.  Everything was halted for three weeks. We were finally able to arrange for the sale to be held on September 9th. SAS carefully follows COVID-19 guidelines. Our facilities are more open, we hold socially-distanced viewings, and we've improved our online buying platform.  People can't seem to get enough. I guess during these sad and weird times, there is no better way to cheer yourself up than to buy a Teddy bear!…