About Us

Founded in Cheshire in 1955, Wilson55, previously known as Peter Wilson Fine Art Auctioneers, is one of the UK's leading online auction houses, holding an exciting calendar of auctions each year for both traditional and new collecting fields. We have a well-deserved reputation for delivering unrivalled results in our specialist areas of expertise.

Over recent years our expert knowledge and innovative approach to auctions and marketing has meant we have gone from strength to strength with new buyers and sellers joining us. 

We have invested in the latest technology to offer our clients a sophisticated online experience through our website. Our auctions run on 3 different bidding platforms in the UK and internationally. Our own live bidding platform is available free to buyers through our website making our auctions exciting events for both buyers and sellers alike! 

We take huge pride in the knowledge and experience of our friendly team and in our excellent customer service. Our staff are passionate and dedicated to their areas of expertise. They have many years experience and up to date market knowledge. Above all, they are always ready to help established and new clients. 

Our customised saleroom with over 8,500 square feet and 3 showrooms provide the ideal setting for the marketing of your items through our specialist auctions. 

We are long-established members of the Society of Fine Art Auctioneers and well regarded throughout the industry. Our staff have regularly featured in popular television shows including Bargain Hunt, Antiques Roadtrip, Dickinson's Real Deal and The Great Auction Showdown. 


Our History

Peter Wilson Fine Art Auctioneers Ltd., named after its founder J.D. "Peter" Wilson, has a rich history rooted in Nantwich, Cheshire. Despite being christened Jack, he was widely known as Peter. His career began at Henry Manley, agricultural auctioneers and land agents, where he experienced a significant falling out after the company merged with Joseph Wright to become Wright Manley. This event spurred Peter to establish his own business in 1955, operating out of Welsh Row, Nantwich.

Initially, the business focused heavily on agriculture and estate agency. David Morgan-Wynne joined Peter early on and became a partner. The company expanded significantly under their leadership, especially in the estate agency sector, growing to sixteen offices across South Cheshire and Stoke-on-Trent by 1985.

During this expansion, the business also developed a strong chattels auction division, capitalising on the booming house clearance market of the 1970s and 1980s. Auctions were initially held in Nantwich’s market hall and later in the Civic Hall for fine art sales. In 1977, the partnership acquired Nantwich Church School, which remains the business’s headquarters..

David Morgan-Wynne took charge of the auction room, and in 1982, Robert Stones was appointed sale room manager. The auction business flourished, gaining recognition in the fine art auction sector. However, in 1985, the Halifax Building Society acquired the business during a wave of estate agent acquisitions, rebranding it as Henry Spencer & Sons. This rebranding aimed to create a unified corporate identity but led to significant difficulties, eventually prompting Halifax to divest from the auction rooms.

In 1991, David Morgan-Wynne and Robert Stones reacquired the auction business, reinstating the Peter Wilson name and focusing solely on auctions, having severed ties with estate agency operations. They purchased the freehold of their Market Street premises in 1997, securing the auction room’s future.

Following David Morgan-Wynne's retirement in 2002, Robert Stones continued to steer the business through significant industry changes, notably the rise of eBay and a shift towards minimalism, which impacted the market for lower-end goods. In response, the auction rooms underwent a major refurbishment in 2003, enhancing the presentation and service quality with new facilities and technology.

The business thrived during the COVID-19 pandemic by adapting to new market conditions and increasing its online presence and underwent a significant transformation in 2020. Recognising the importance of its online presence and simplifying its brand for the digital age, the company changed its name to Wilson55, paying homage to the year of its establishment. This strategic move aimed to streamline its identity while maintaining its legacy and enhancing its accessibility in the online marketplace.

In 2023 Robert Stones retired and long-standing employee and paintings specialist, Stephen Sparrow acquired the business. Under Stephen’s leadership, Wilson55 continues to be a respected and prominent name in the auction industry, known for its quality service and enduring legacy.





Some Market Street pupils in what is now one of our viewing areas.




2003 saleroom refurbishment, now our reception area.