• Bicester Heritage is celebrating the success of the biggest Brightwells Auctioneers & Valuers event at the Oxfordshire site
  • A massive 105 lots went under the hammer at the former RAF Bomber Training Station, with 70% of them finding new homes
  • A grand total of more than £1.4 million exchanged hands on the day, as cars ranging from pre-war to modern classics went up for grabs
  • Bicester Heritage’s reputation as the very home of the classic car attracted a packed showroom on the day, and bids came in from as far afield as Abu Dhabi and Australia

Bicester Heritage is celebrating the success of a hugely successful Brightwells Auctioneers and Valuers event – the biggest auction to take place at the former RAF Bomber Training Station to date and the third of 2017.

The Oxfordshire site welcomed hundreds of visitors to the events space, Hangar 113, for their chance to bid on the 105 cars which all went under the hammer, with interested parties also getting in on the action from around the world – including in Abu Dhabi and Australia.

A vast range of models meant there was something for everybody at Bicester Heritage – from a 1907 Rover 8 to a 1937 Alvis 4.3 and even a 2001 Mercedes AMG C32 Estate – and 70% of the lot found new homes.

Brightwells oversaw £1.4 million worth of sales on the day, with pre-war cars seeing an especially fruitful return – achieving an impressive 87% sales rate – and British sports cars in the shape of Jaguar E-Types and rare MGs also proving very popular.

As the heartbeat of the historic motoring industry, Bicester Heritage is the perfect site for hosting Brightwells’ auctions and its sterling reputation ensured the right customers came through the gates to sample the action.

Bicester Heritage has hosted three auctions in 2017 since joining forces with Brightwells, all of which have proved hugely successful and accumulated millions of pounds worth of sales, adding another area of interest to this multifaceted automotive destination.

The highest seller of the third and final auction of the year was a 1976 Ferrari 308 GTB Vetroresina, which was one of only 154 fibreglass-bodied cars made in RHD.

It boasted just 51,500 miles on the clock and an excellent service history, so it was little surprise that it was the subject of something of a bidding war – eventually topping out at £134,200.

Elsewhere, one of the finest examples of the Mini Cooper S Mk1 was captured by a collector for £37,400, too, while a beautifully restored and stunning-looking 1961 Jaguar MkII 3.8 Automatic sold for £28,600 – a fraction of its restoration price.

Other rare models going under the hammer included an International High Wheeler – a well-engineered and beautifully restored cross between a horse and cart and early motor car – which sold for £37,400.

Despite its comparatively modern stance, the 2001 Mercedes AMG C32 Estate caught plenty of attention when it took to the stand. The estate holds the UK land speed record for cars of between three and four litres – recorded at Pendine Sands in September this year. It sold above its estimate for £4,500.

Dan Geoghegan, Managing Director of Bicester Heritage, said: “A one-acre WW2 hangar seems the perfect environment for an auction with both the viewing and sales days packed with people. The buzz was very noticeable with excellent results accordingly, Brightwells are clearly going from strength to strength at Bicester.”

Brightwells Consultant, Matthew Parkin, added: “We were delighted with both the entry and the sales result for what is in effect a brand-new venture for Brightwells. Bicester Heritage continues to draw in a new and enthusiastic crowd for us and we are well on the way to establishing our Bicester sales as a regular calendar fixture. Although we remain very good at dealing with sports and classic cars from the 1950s onwards, our experience and perhaps the location at Bicester Heritage has allowed us to build our strengths in the pre-war sector, which is something that we both enjoy and understand very well. As always it is quality that sells best, but we aren’t shy of offering a wide range of vehicles, as long as it is interesting and quirky.”


Bicester Heritage is creating a revolution in historic vehicle ownership. The unique location is the UK’s only hub for historic motoring excellence and is the national centre for a £5.5bn per annum industry that employs over 34,000 skilled people.

Founded in 2013, Bicester Heritage has gone from a standing start to a home for over 30 specialist businesses – and growing. It has a collective turnover of over £20m, making it the largest player in the industry, and it’s set to grow exponentially with a global reach.

The unique ecosystem of businesses based at a beautiful 348-acre former WW2 RAF Bomber Training Station acts as ‘marina-like’ cluster, promoting skills and expertise, employment, qualified customer footfall, shared business incubation and aggregate growth. Collectively, Bicester Heritage is all about driving the future of the past.

The former RAF Bicester site on which Bicester Heritage is now based is of national historic importance. Neglected for the best part of 40 years, it was added to Historic England’s ‘At Risk Register’ in 2008 and designated the most ‘at risk’ of all Defence Estates in the UK.

Since Bicester Heritage’s tenure, over 80% of the buildings have been delicately restored or re-activated for modern business use, with the site now held as a national exemplar of constructive conservation by Historic England. The time-warp base is truly unmatched in evocative character, with even the paint colours being correct to 1930s British Standards. An active airfield and test track complete it’s dynamic operation.

The location of Bicester Heritage of course, is key. Bicester is one of the fastest growing towns in Europe with unrivalled connections via road, rail and air, situated in close proximity to the globally known City of Oxford and within 90 minutes of upwards of 30 million people.

For more information about the site and the team behind it, see

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