Clive Stewart-Lockhart, the new chairman of SOFAA, conducting a sale at Dreweatt Neate’s Donnington Priory rooms.

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He succeeds Chris Ewbank, who has been chairman for seven years, during which time membership has risen significantly and opened to valuers as well as auctioneers.

Among other initiatives, Mr Ewbank, who is principal of Ewbank's Auctioneers in Surrey, has paid special attention to educational development and has been a keen supporter of the Southampton Institute courses.

Mr Stewart-Lockhart, who has been deputy chairman of the society for some years, has over 30 years' experience in the fine art auction market, including 25 years with Dreweatt Neate in Newbury.

As a director of the Dreweatt Neate group, he now oversees the Newbury operation.

SOFAA was formed in 1975 as a professional representative body and provides guidance to members to promote the highest possible standards of practice in all regards, and reassurance to clients that their best interests will be served at all times.