Leading Sussex auction house Toovey’s prepares to reopen on June 1
One of the country’s leading independent family auction houses, Toovey’s, based in Sussex is preparing to reopen on June 1.
Announcing that the business was emerging from lockdown, Rupert Toovey said: “It is with a sense of anticipation and excitement. the ‘R’ number willing, we will open on Monday, June 1.”
Toovey’s closed temporarily on March 23 to support government policy and the NHS.
Speaking at Toovey’s Washington auction rooms, south of Horsham, Rupert said: “We feel that it has been vital for Toovey’s and so many others to close and to do our bit to help to defeat Covid-19 as a way of protecting and supporting our community here in Sussex.
“I was glad to be able to safely furlough most of my team but I was unprepared for how emotional it would be to lock the doors to the salerooms that week. It has been financially costly, too, but safety has always been our first priority and never more important than in these unprecedented times.
“There has been much to tend to during this period and I have been overwhelmed by the generous and encouraging notes from our clients and friends.
“The government’s most recent online advice to businesses and the NHS pages on COVID-19 have provided a framework which has shaped our thinking and allowed us to prepare risk assessments and a common-sense health and safety response to keep staff and visitors safe when we reopen.
“We’ve created new reception and valuations spaces for the public bringing their treasured possessions to Toovey’s for auction.
“We’ve ordered direction signs, queuing and viewing point mats to ensure social distancing. The numbers of people viewing our sales at any one time will be limited with timed slots available by appointment. Listen to me being excited by health and safety – but it’s at its best when it’s practical and empowering.”
Rupert said he strongly believed that in the post Covid-19 world there would be a real need for the continued rise of liberal capitalism; firms which are informed by servant leadership, a sense of care and responsibility to the teams and communities which they serve and which support them.
“Where firms balance this approach with generous and good stewardship of their resources it is my experience that companies flourish because of these values and not in spite of them.
“Many nations are ahead of us in the fight against this dreadful disease.
“We are receiving enquiries from China and across the world as well as the United Kingdom from collectors and specialist dealers really keen to buy objects at our auctions. In concert with the contemporary blessings of the online world, and especially tooveys.com, I think there is much cause for hope and optimism whether people are buying or selling.”
A message from the Editor, Gary Shipton:
In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news, I am asking you to please purchase a copy of our newspapers.
With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers - and consequently the advertising that we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news and information by buying a copy of our newspapers.
Our journalists are highly trained and our content is independently regulated by IPSO to some of the most rigorous standards in the world. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. So we need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.
Stay safe, and best wishes.