It was consigned by unconventional means: auctioneer Chris Aston had met a guest at a wedding in Annecy, France, and commented on his wristwatch.
Surprised to learn that his inheritance may be of value, it was later consigned for sale with hopes of £10,000-15,000.
This watch, known as the reference 2998-1, is super rare – produced for just three years between 1959-62. It was the first ‘Speedy’ to come exclusively with the black bezel, a key design feature of the watch that would later be chosen by NASA as suitable for the Apollo landing.
This one appeared to have its original dial and bezel with the hands probably replacements. The vendor plans to get married himself this year and doubtless the proceeds from a £14,000 sale will come in useful.