Rolex Explorer wristwatch in demand in Yorkshire saleroom

A Rolex Explorer wristwatch has sold for a hammer of £31,000 in a North Yorkshire saleroom.

The stainless steel Rolex was made in 1953. With its reference of 6150 it is one of the rarest and earliest of the Rolex Explorer wristwatch. Indeed, some watch collectors refer to the reference as a ‘pre-Explorer’, since it was only manufactured for one year.

Vintage Rolex Explorer wristwatch

The model was produced and marketed towards adventurers and outdoor explorers, and its timely launch celebrated the conquering of Mount Everest in 1953 by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tensing Norgay.

Competition for the watch in Tennants Auctioneers Summer Fine Art Sale saw bidders in the room, on the telephone and online battling it out. As with the Rolex Explorer wristwatch, collectors sought out good examples of vintage watches, in original condition with a good patina.

Other highlights of the sale included:

  • a 1966 Omega Seamaster 300 ‘Big Triangle’ watch – a rare second generation Seamaster, which had been in the same family since new – sold for £6,500
  • a 1954 Rolex Oyster Perpetual wristwatch – sold for £4,000
  • a modern Classic Fusion Hublot watch, selling for £2,800
  • a gold and diamond Audemars Piguet ladies watch from 1980 – sold for £3,400

Elsewhere in the sale, jewellery also performed well, with top results including:

  • a period diamond three stone ring, selling for £12,000
  • a diamond bangle set with old cut diamonds, selling for £12,000
  • an art deco diamond cluster ring – sold for £5,000
  • an Art Deco Diamond and Emerald Ring, selling for £2,400
  • a Belle Epoque diamond and enamel pendant with interchangeable plaques – sold for £3,200.

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