Welcome to the latest edition of our exclusive Collector’s World series. Our next collector is Oliver Pollock, the fourth generation of his family to be involved in the world of watches. Oliver set up Luxury Watch Repairs 18 months ago. He developed the concept when he was trading vintage watches, due to his frustration and inability in being able to source efficient and reliable workshops to facilitate the volume of his repairs and servicing.
Although Oliver admits, he is still at an early stage in his career, his great passion for watches comes from his Grandfather and Father who have been involved in the watch business for many years. He has built up a great collection of his own which we are delighted to share with you.
MWM: Where does your interest in watches originate from?
OP: My Grandfather, started a watch strap business in the 1960’s. His passion for all things horological had a great influence on me as he was an avid collector. My Father also inspired me as he has spent most of his working life in the watch industry. You could almost say that I was born with a watch on my wrist.
MWM: What was the first watch you owned?
OP: An Oris Automatic Players watch – I ‘stole’ it from my Dad! Its a ‘Limited Edition’ watch from the early ninties and its quite rare. It has a special patented movement. There are four individual subdials which act as counters, and there is a minute track around the bezel, so its a perfect sports timer.
MWM: Why do you collect watches?
OP: Passion, craftsmanship and appreciation. Also restoration is extremely important to me personally, due to my business. We are fortunate to have a team of highly trained and certified watchmakers that can restore the most technical watches whilst using all original parts, which is a great skill to have.
MWM: What do you love about collecting watches?
OP: History, rarity and the joy of sourcing the most interesting pieces.
MWM: Is there anything you don’t like about collecting?
OP: Yes, I really hate missing out on a watch that I’ve been tracking down for a while. It is so frustrating, but I just move on to the next.
MWM: What is your favourite watch in your collection?
OP: A 1967 Rolex Submariner with Tritium/Zinc markers on the dial. The actual dial has turned purple over time as opposed to the typical blue. Tritium replaced radium in the 1960’s, so this is a true example of the evolution of Rolex luminosity. I found this in the back of a safe, at a watch shop owned by a good friend.
MWM: Which watch would you love to own?
OP: A 1980 Rolex Explorer II 1655 with a Mark IV Dial, eggshell markers and hands. This piece is a ‘collector’s dream’. At the time of its launch, the watch was intended to be a ‘tool’ watch for cave explorers that after spending days in a cavern, couldn’t tell if it was day or night outside. A problem that was easily solved by the 24-hour orange arrow-shaped hand that along with the 24-hour military time bezel, would help them identify day or night times with ease.
MWM: How do you decide which watch to acquire next?
OP: I’m very lucky in that I get to see amazing watches everyday. I know immediately that I have to source one to add to my collection when they come into the workshop – it is a joy and a privilege to be in this position.
Oliver Pollock, the fourth generation of his family to be involved in the world of watches set up Luxury Watch Repairs 18 months ago.
Based in Hatton Garden – with expansion plans for an office in Manchester and New York later this year – the Luxury Watch Repairs concept was created when Pollock (aged 26) was trading vintage watches, and due to his frustration and inability in being able to source efficient and reliable workshops to facilitate the volume of his repairs and servicing.
The Luxury Watch Repairs mission is refreshing as their USP brings watch servicing into the 21st century. You can even request a time lapse video of your watch being serviced. Oliver oversees the day to day running of the workshop – with a vast experience in the luxury watch industry having previously worked as a Rolex trader for a number of years.