A Honiton auction house is gearing up to be going…going to new premises in the town.
Chilcott Auctioneers is moving after 11 years from Silver Street to new salerooms on the High Street, relocating to the former Dolphin Hotel building.
The final sale at the Silver Street auction house is expected to be held in late January 2021, ready for an early March opening of the Dolphin Salerooms.
Liz Chilcott, with husband Duncan, said the move was prompted by the redevelopment of the current location, and the expansion of the business.
She said: “We’ve outgrown the saleroom in more ways than one and we see this as the perfect opportunity to take the business to the next level.
“We’d walked past the empty building so many times and it seemed the perfect fit with plenty of space and huge amounts of heritage.”
Liz added: “Chilcotts is very much part of the Honiton community and rather than move away – which we did consider – we wanted to remain firmly part of the town.”
The Grade II listed building has been renamed The Dolphin Salerooms – a nod to when it was home to the Dolphin Hotel.
The salerooms have been named Courtenay Room, Victoria Room and Orange Room, recognising the coaching hotel’s past, when it has been said the young Princess Victoria made a stop for a change of carriage horses.
The former Montgomery’s Hotel – and site once home to Bills Bar – can trace its history back to medieval times when it was the Courtenay family’s manor house prior to living at Powderham Castle.
It has also been reported the building was a military HQ during the Civil War, and a hospital for wounded soldiers.
Liz said: “We’ve been told that a ghost remains from this particular period, haunting the upper rooms although we haven’t seen it – yet.”
She added: “This rich history chimes with our business, as everyone at Chilcotts has a real love of the past. It suits us perfectly.”