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Chris Aston handing over the gavel to SAS' Thomas Forrester outside the Dudley saleroom.

Aston’s Grade II-listed building will become the SAS Midlands saleroom premises and will continue to hold regular sales. Valuations and consignments will be on an appointment-only basis and former owner Phil Aston will stay on as a consultant.

SAS was established in Berkshire in 1991, with Thomas Forrester and Neil Shuttleworth running the firm since the mid-2000s. Forrester said the new saleroom is “a great building steeped in history and the name and reputation Aston’s have made for themselves is a mantel we are keen to carry”.

Shuttleworth added: “Although perhaps a bit sooner than we would have envisaged for growing our business, Aston’s was too good an opportunity to miss.” Both salerooms have a strong focus on collectables.

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Chris Aston handing over the gavel to SAS' Thomas Forrester.

Aston’s, which was set up around 15 years ago by Phil Aston and his son Chris, will hold its last sale (a collection of sci-fi toys) on October 29.

Phil retired from full-time work in 2016 and Chris is relocating to the French Alps.

Chris said: “It was a friendly rivalry with us and SAS and we get on really well. We are pleased they will take over the saleroom and it is good news for our customers.”

It has been a busy year for SAS. In January it expanded into a new saleroom in Newbury. The auction house had been operating from three premises in the area so the new larger 18,000 sq ft saleroom accommodates its 30 staff (full time and consultants) under one roof. SAS will continue to hold more than 50 auctions annually in Newbury.

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