Thank you for your reply Dan.
I have never heard of using an inflatable ball to remove a watch back and I have now ordered one.
It is however very reassuring that someone else has seen this type of back before on a vintage VC.
I took the watch into the new VC boutique in London's Bond Street for their feedback and I must say they were terrific. 10/10
Nicholas, a senior sales advisor checked the VC database, showed the watch to his colleague and their on-site watchmaker and I was offered advice on the best way to proceed, have it sent to Switzerland in January after the xmas rush.
If I can remove the case back when the ball arrives I will post close up quality images (any tips on this procedure).
Overall, I am 'over the moon' with this watch and have to stop myself from just starring at it as though I am in a trance, just need to find the best time now to let my wife in on my dream purchase.