In 2018, Keys celebrated its 65th anniversary, making us one of the longest-established firms of Auctioneers in East Anglia

Keys is recognised a a “top-tier” (Antiques Trade Gazette) provincial Auction House, and attracts sellers and buyers from all parts of the UK and further afield.

Over the past 65 years, Keys has developed into one of the UK’s leading provincial Auction Houses, with a reputation which stretches far beyond its East Anglian origins, and now holds a regular programme of around 150 Fine Art, Antique, General, Commercial and Specialist sales covering the whole auction spectrum. Still operating from the same five-acre saleground in Aylsham, Norfolk, as it did in 1953, Keys has a locally-unrivalled team of experts who are able to compete on a national as well as local level.

Although firmly established with an international clientele by the 1980s, the advances in technology in recent years have dramatically increased the reach of Keys sales to a new generation of national and international collectors, and today bidders take part live in our auctions via the internet from all areas of the world.

A little of our History

Founded in Coronation Year, 1953, Keys has grown over the intervening decades

Although a forward-thinking business, and constantly striving to be at the forefront of developments in the auction world, we are proud of our Norfolk roots.

Founded by Geoffrey Key in 1953 on the site that Keys still occupies today in the North Norfolk market town of Aylsham, the business started as a small livestock market selling mainly poultry. By the end of the 1950s, these sales had become some of the largest of their type in the country.

During the mid-1950s, the markets grew to include a weekly general furniture sale – which still takes place every Monday (Tuesdays in Bank Holiday week). Regular selected antique sales were added during the 1960s, closely followed in later years by other fine art sales including pictures, books and collectables.

Today, Keys is a proudly independent family business, and one of the leading regional Auction Houses in the UK, selling thousands of lots every year to an international clientele.