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It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that Finnigan’s was probably the closest thing that Manchester had to Hermes.

Double-signed dials of this kind are not common and are extremely desirable, and the Finnigan’s wording will add considerably to the value of this piece as it would have been with a singly signed dial, or even a dial signed with the name of a less evocative retailer.

Internally, the case back is highly decorated with an engine turned pearled pattern and stamped “Universal Geneve”, together with the company’s early shield emblem.

Below this is stated “Enversteel”, Universal’s tradename for the particular alloy of stainless steel that it favoured.

If properly looked after and professionally cleaned every three or four years, there is no reason why a mechanism of this quality will not still be providing excellent service a century from now.

Unlike today’s luxury watches, that are designed and built from the outset with the expectation that they will be required to last perhaps a decade at most, pieces like this one by the great houses from the inter-war years were manufactured on the basis that they were one-off purchases that would remain with their wearers for life.

These numbers are of full depth and it is quite clear that this housing has never been re-polished in the past.