Zenith chronometer dating from c.1954, £2100 at Whitton & Laing.

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The movement was designed to compete in the Neuchâtel Observatory trials for precision timekeepers with a maximum movement diameter of 30mm.

Designer Ephrem Jobin chose a huge balance wheel that occupies nearly half the width of this movement (which won an unprecedented five consecutive Neuchâtel Observatory chronometry prizes from 1950-54).

These watches may lack the immediate kerb appeal and brand recognition of a Rolex or an Omega, but they are classics of their type and prices are rising. This one, estimated at £50-65 at Whitton & Laing (18% buyer’s premium) in Exeter on October 15, sold for £2100.