Witness Watchmaking Mastery
A timepiece haven in the centre of Preston delivering excellence for more than 150 years. Claire Stephenson explores Whittles Preston where luxury meets exceptional service
Situated on Preston’s main high street, Whittles is a fourth-generation family-owned business, established in 1862 and now part of the esteemed Beaverbrooks Group. The showroom is an Official Rolex Retailer for the Preston, Fylde, Ribble Valley and Cumbria regions and now proudly offers a new Authorised Rolex Service Centre. Here, clients can bring their precious timepieces for servicing and repairs completed by Whittles’ expert team of Rolex-trained watchmakers.
Witness Servicing Mastery in Action
Inside the Authorised Rolex Service Centre, watch owners can observe from the glass-fronted viewing facility and witness first-hand the craftsmanship of the four Rolex-trained watchmakers at work. It is from this vantage point that clients can gain a deeper appreciation for the expertise and knowledge that goes into preserving a Rolex timepiece.
With an impressive 78 years of experience between them, Whittles is committed to continuous learning and development. The watchmakers regularly participate in specialised courses to remain at the forefront of Rolex servicing.
Barry Douthwaite, Senior Watchmaker has 39 years of dedicated service at Whittles Preston, his mechanical expertise has played a pivotal role in securing Whittles Preston the prestigious ‘Rolex Authorised Service’ plaque. He said: “This accolade guarantees our clients an elevated service experience, synonymous with the horological excellence of Rolex.
“Whittles Preston offers an array of meticulous servicing procedures that adhere to the exacting standards set by Rolex. From full services that include complete overhauls of movements, cases, and bracelets, to adjustments and case refinishing. I am very proud to provide such excellence in after-sales service and witness pieces being handed down through generations.”
Journey Through Precision: The Art of Rolex Watch Servicing
To guarantee continued accuracy and optimal performance, it is recommended that Rolex timepieces are serviced at least every 10 years. The meticulous servicing of a Rolex watch is a fascinating process that involves a series of specialised steps.
The watchmaker initiates the process by separating the bracelet from the case and carefully extracting the movement with its dial and hands intact. The movement, case, and bracelet then follow distinct servicing paths.
The movement is disassembled, and each component is precisely examined for adherence to Rolex standards. Any required replacements are sourced from Rolex’s manufacturer in Switzerland. After a thorough ultrasonic cleaning and drying, the movement is reassembled, along with the reattaching of the dial and hands.
Similarly, the case is disassembled and each part undergoes hand polishing or satin-finishing to restore its original lustre. Seals are replaced, and the crystal, bezel, and middle case are reassembled.
The bracelet receives equal attention, with each link polished or satin-finished before being cleaned. The movement is returned to the case with any accuracy adjustments, before undergoing a 24-hour precision test. Waterproof testing is also performed, and after reattaching the bracelet, the watch undergoes final checks.
The finished timepiece is accompanied by a Rolex two-year international warranty covering parts and labour. This comprehensive process underscores Whittles Preston’s commitment to preserving the distinction of every Rolex timepiece.
Unrivalled Customer Service
It’s fair to say the meticulous care and attention to detail extends way beyond the Service Workshop and is in fact central to the Whittles showroom ethos itself. Whittles’ Assistant Manager, Sarah Broadbent said: “At Whittles Preston, our dedication to our clients takes precedence. We take immense pleasure in curating bespoke experiences tailored to each individual client. Whether it’s commemorating a special birthday, marking an anniversary, or scrupulously servicing a cherished timepiece handed down through generations, our aim is to create a personalised and celebratory journey at Whittles Preston. Our commitment to exceptional customer service shines through in every interaction, making each encounter a truly unique and memorable experience.”
Your Journey Begins at Whittles Preston
Whittles Preston, part of the esteemed Beaverbrooks Group and managed by Rose Wilson, is dedicated to providing you with an exceptional Rolex experience.
For further information about servicing your Rolex, the Rolex collection or our showroom, please visit the Whittles website.
Preston PR1 2AD