Miltons’ dedicated watch team has decades of main agent experience, a history of several thousand Rolex watches and the resources of both a significant comparison collection and an incomparable database.
Haywood Milton, M.A.(Hons), R.J.Dip. is the Managing Director and a specialist in Rolex watches from the 1950s to the present day. He has lectured the UK’s National Association of Goldsmiths and the National Pawnbrokers Association on the subject, written a number of published technical articles on Rolex identification, regularly advises insurers and law enforcement bodies in matters relating to Rolex watches, assists various NAJ / IRV Registered Valuers with Rolex appraisals and writes technical reports on pieces where third parties need specialist opinion. In March 2017 he was invited as industry specialist to address an assembly of UK police force representatives on the subject of high value watches and associated crime. This was so well received that he was invited back to address representatives from the UK’s police forces again in February 2018, at the Metropolitan Police / Flying Squad offices in London. He has now been invited to produce a short course on identifying fake watches for the National Pawnbrokers Association. In late 2018 he published industry guidance on the identification of the latest generation of “SuperFake” Rolex sports watches, warranty cards etc, which has so far been purchased for use in over 350 UK jewellers, pawnbrokers and auction houses. Haywood has spent the last 15 years building the special Miltons selection of historically interesting and extremely rare Rolexes, including nine 5513 and two 5517 military issue Submariners, Comex models 5513, 5514, 1665, 16800 (2) and 16600, three “Double Red” Sea-Dweller 1665s, two “Great White” Sea-Dweller 1665s, two Red Submariner 1680s and two White, two 1016 Explorers, three 5500 Explorers and a 14270 “Blackout” Explorer, three Explorer II 1655s, a gilt dial 5513, three Milgauss 1019s, a 5508 Submariner, two 6536/1 Submariners, a Daytona 6263, a Rolex GMT-Master 6542, three Rolex GMT-Master 1675s, a Rolex GMT-Master 116710 SeaKing, a pointed crown-guard / gilt dial 5513 Submariner with “Double Swiss” marking / underline dial, two meters-first Submariner 5513s and many more. These pieces provide Miltons with an invaluable resource whenever further, similar old Rolex cross our path.
Phil Ellison was formerly the Manager of Rolex and Breitling main agents William Pyke & Son before joining Miltons. Despite having extensive, official training in both brands he has said that his true education in them began when he started here. Phil heads the watch team day-to-day and oversees the methodical examination of each high-end watch which crosses our path.
Paul Aspinall, R.J.Dip. was formerly Assistant Manager to Phil and has enjoyed the same comprehensive watch training given to main agents before joining Miltons a few years ago. He was also an N.A.G. Registered Valuer. Paul has an especially hands-on role and is rarely seen without his legendary high-magnification visor. He has unsurpassed skill at refurbishing watch cases and bracelets, a gentle touch he acquired while tending his precious bonsai trees !
Michael Williams is a passionate fan of watches including some more unusual pieces, with a special interest in the auction market. He also worked for Breitling, Omega and Rolex main agents before joining Miltons. He now spends a couple of days a week with the others in the Miltons watch team and the rest of his time as our resident watch specialist in the prestigious Chester store.
Apart from our 80 or so other colleagues, there is one more, vital component of the watch team. In early 2014, our Director Haywood Milton (representing both Miltons and the National Pawnbrokers Association) met with the British Security Industry Association, the Chairman of the Institute of Registered Valuers and the Managing Director of the UK’s main jewellery insurance broker, T.H.March & Co. Ltd. At that meeting in Worcester was born the Safergems Watch Register, an independent, not-for-profit UK register of stolen watches run by a trade security body working with and receiving data from ALL the UK’s police forces. From late 2014 all Rolexes coming in to Miltons were checked against this register and our involvement with its own development remains intimate: we even drafted the logo, which you now see below in final form! Update: Following on-going, co-operative work with Safergems and the Art Loss Register, we switched to using the latter’s Watch Register in 2018.