Buying at Auction

Taking part in an auction at Griffin's couldn’t be simpler, whether bidding online, in person in the saleroom or viewing the lots before a sale.

We aim to make the experience of buying at auction as easy and transparent as possible, no matter what you are bidding on.

Before the Auction

The lots for each auction will be available to view online approximately one week prior to the sale. To view the catalogue visit our Auction Calendar and select the auction you wish to view. Here you have the option to create a watch list, request a condition report or place a commission bid.

Lots can be physically viewed the day before the sale from 10.00am until 4.00pm and the morning of the sale from 8.00am until 10.00am.

If you wish to receive updates on upcoming auctions, please sign up to our mailing list.

Condition Reports

You can request a written or verbal condition report via the online catalogue or by contacting us via telephone or email. This is free of charge and we are always happy to provide additional images or give our expert opinion on an item’s condition, age or authenticity.

Griffin's always take the greatest of care in ensuring any comments on an item are accurate and reliable, however please note that without any provenance these are skilled opinions. As such, we cannot guarantee that all aspects of the condition of an item will be covered and would respectfully advise that you view an item in person to satisfy yourself as to the condition and history of a lot before bidding.

Bidding in Person

Please arrive in plenty of time and register at reception before the auction, where you will be asked to provide your name, address and telephone number.

You will be issued with a unique bidder number which will identify you.  Please then find a place in the saleroom and raise your number to attract the auctioneer’s attention when you wish to bid.

Telephone Bidding

You can request to bid by telephone by contacting the saleroom either by email or telephone. Lines must be booked before the office closes the day before the sale and due to limited lines, this is done on a first come first served basis. A lot must be estimated at £100 or more for telephone bids to be accepted.

We will call you during the auction, typically 2 or 3 lots prior to the lot you are interested in buying.

Leaving a Commission or Absentee Bid

You can leave a commission or absentee bid via the website, over the telephone, by email or in person at the saleroom. Simply state the highest price you wish to pay for the lot, excluding the buyer’s premium.

Griffin's will bid on your behalf for the lowest possible figure (subject to reserve price and competing bids) and continue up to your maximum bid. We will never open the bidding at your maximum bid and have strict rules in place to ensure your bid is not ‘run up’ artificially.

All commission bids must be placed before the sale begins.

Internet Bidding

Live bids can be submitted through our website or via There is an additional surcharge of 3% (plus VAT), or a flat fee of £3 for using this facility.

If you do not already have an account you will need to set one up with and also register to bid on the sale.

Buyer's Commission

All UK auction houses charge a commission in addition to the hammer price.

Griffin's have a buyer’s premium of 20% plus VAT (totalling 24%) on the hammer price. For example, a lot with a hammer price of £100 will incur a buyer’s premium of £20. VAT at 20% of the buyer’s premium will be £4. Therefore the total amount payable would be £124.


If your bid is successful you can pay in person, by debit or credit card, bank transfer or cash (up to £8,000). Payment by debit card may be made over the telephone up to the amount of £500 only.

Payment can be made on the day of the auction and goods collected. We allow up to one week for payment and collection of all purchases unless a prior arrangement has been made with us. Thereafter a daily storage fee of £2 plus VAT per lot will apply to smaller items and £5 plus VAT per lot for furniture and larger items.


Sort code: 82-61-37 Account number: 30179984


International Bank Account Number (IBAN): GB02CLYD82613730179984

Branch Identifier Code: CLYDGB21137

Shipping & Packing

We offer an in-house shipping service at a very reasonable cost. All items are fully insured and trackable. Please contact us for a quote. For larger items, we are happy to recommend a local courier or specialist antique transport service.

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