Bidding online at T & S

Following the original Lockdown in March we decided to conduct all our auctions as Timed Online only, with no live bidding.  With all the uncertainties over physical presence at auctions, and the prospect of a second wave come the autumn, we decided to stick to this format until we can be sure that it is safe for both our staff and our customers to re-introduce live sales, i.e. until there is a vaccine.

View upcoming auction calendar

Timed Online Auctions

What is a timed online auction, and how do I take part?

Timed Online Auctions are auctions that are conducted only online – there is no ‘live’ auctioneer.

Registering for an auction:

Find the auction you are interested in by going to Upcoming Auctions on the Home page, and clicking on the sale you are interested in.   Then click on the ‘Register to Bid Online’ button and complete the registration process.  When you have been approved you will receive a confirmatory email.

When your auction registration has been approved, you can start placing bids.  Please register not less than 24 hours in advance of the closing time of the auction to ensure you are approved in time.

To register for an auction, please click here.

Bidding period:

Each sale has a start time, when it is published online, and an “ending from” time.  Bids can be placed on each lot over that period (typically just over 2 weeks).  Lot 1 will close at the advertised “ending from” time, with successive lots closing at intervals thereafter (usually 30 seconds).  At the end time the highest bidder wins the lot, provided the reserve price has been met.

Placing a bid:

You can search the catalogue by word, or by lot number.  Each lot will show either ‘current bid’, or ‘opening bid’ if no bids have yet been made on that lot.  When you have found a lot that you would like to bid on you can leave your maximum bid in the appropriate box and click ‘bid’.  If your maximum bid is below the reserve, then a message ‘reserve not met’ will appear on the screen.  If your maximum bid is above the reserve, then the ‘current bid’ will go to the next increment over the reserve.  If further bids are received your bid will be taken in increments to keep you in the lead, up to your maximum.  If that happens then you will receive an email from us to tell you that you are no longer in the lead on this lot, at which point you can decide if you want to go higher.




Alternatively, rather than placing a maximum bid, you can click on the lot to take you to a screen showing just the one lot, which allows you to place individual bids, as per the ‘next minimum bid’ button.



‘Sniping’ and lot closing time extensions

If a bid is made within the last 2 minutes of the lot closing time, the closing time of that lot will be extended for another 2 minutes.  This is done in order to prevent what is known as ‘sniping’, where a bidder deliberately places a bid as close as possible to the end time in an effort to stop other bidders being able to respond before the lot closes.

Please note that the extension of one lot’s closing time does not affect other lots’ closing times.

How to keep track of multiple lots:

With some lots not closing in succession due to extended closing time, it can be difficult to keep an eye on all the lots you are bidding on.  However, by setting your screen view to display multiple lots and in order of lots closing soonest, it allows you to see bidding activity on multiple lots and bid quickly accordingly.

To keep track of lots closing, set your screen view to display lots in order of “End date (Soonest first)”



After the auction has closed

Please note, once the lot has closed, you will not see a message on screen to confirm whether you have won the lot or not, but you will have had a message to say if you were in the lead or not as the lot closed (see above).  You will also receive an email confirming which lots you have won, and shortly afterwards a ‘Payment Request’ email, which has a ‘Pay Now’ button.  By clicking on that button, you can pay for your lots by either Bank Transfer or Debit Card (we do not take payment by credit card so please make sure you input your debit card details for payment).

Where auctions finish late in the afternoon or evening, these emails will be sent out the following day.


To register for an auction, please click here.



  1. Please ensure you register for an auction at least 24 hours in advance. If you have not bid online before you may be asked to provide us with two forms of identification.
  2. At an auction it is up to you, the bidder, to satisfy yourself about the condition of an item. Ask for additional photos and a condition report if you need them. You can also view the objects in person at our salerooms, subject to any Covid-19 regulations. Please check the relevant auction details for viewing times.
  3. Make sure you are aware of any additional charges on top of the hammer price (the winning bid amount), such as buyer’s premium and VAT on the buyer’s premium, and the internet bidding charge and VAT on that charge.

Always read the auction Important Information and Terms & Conditions before bidding.