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The news comes as little surprise as chief executive Chris Thomson laid out his future plans in an indepth interview with the Antiques Trade Gazette in April, in which he explained how the company would consolidate their regional auction operations in six major salerooms, fed by a string of provincial offices. The strategic review aims to make a leaner, fitter business. Where possible staff will be redeployed.

Rumours amongst Scottish dealers that Phillips would close their Edinburgh salerooms have been dismissed by the firm. Such a move would have confounded expectations as Edinburgh is the second most profitable operation after New Bond Street, the rooms have recently been refurbished and business is being transferred there from Glasgow.

Phase two of the New Bond Street refurbishment programme have just begun and Phillips New York will also benefit from improvements to the salerooms and offices, while further investments are being made at Phillips Bayswater and the UK regional salerooms.