Alice Roberton reports back from a busy collectors extravaganza
Sandown Park Racecourse provides a wonderful backdrop to the family-run Sandown Park Vintage & Antiques Fair, which was featured in the October issue of Homes & Antiques. It was great to take H&A right into the heart of the action and experience first-hand the hustle and bustle of a busy collectors fair. With only minutes to set up before the trade are let in the pace is fast, but I managed to get the stand looking lovely despite the rush!
Mary Mullock, who had a very busy day, had travelled from Church Stretton in Shropshire where she runs a shop called Heather Brae. 'I sell a mix of interiors, antiques, vintage, kitchenalia, plants and local crafts,' said Mary. 'It’s a lifestyle shop all of its very own.’
Two regular visitors who let the rush die down before they enjoyed some leisurely shopping were Louise English and Janne Bate who each bought a lovely leather suitcase to use as attractive storage. 'They’ll be perfect for keeping belts and accessories in,' said Louise.
I was rather taken with this French Victorian king statue, carrying what appears to be Frankincense, on the Fiona F Wright Interiors stand. Fiona specialises in French collectables as well as offering an interior design service and told me that this piece was originally from a monastery near Lille in northern France.
On my rounds I stopped by to admire some of Abdul and Cherry Ahmed’s decorative pieces, especially this delicate Victorian boudoir chair. Based in Brighton, the couple run Alexandria’s Antiques and have a passion for Regency furniture.
Paul Drewett’s stand stood out with its 1920s model trains, 1940s pond yachts and old pub signage. As pond yacht historian Paul ran me through the background of some of his pieces, I was reminded how I love that there’s always something to learn at these fairs.
With around 300 traders at the Tuesday fair and 200 on the Sunday, the Sandown fairs offer something for all tastes and budgets. The next fairs will be held on Sunday 2nd December and Tuesday 15th January.
It’s time to start Christmas shopping! Here are some gorgeous fairs H&A will be attending during November:
Sunday 4th November, 10am-4pm Country House Vintage at Arlington Court, Nr Barnstaple, Devon
Thursday 15th November, 10am-4pm Vintage Christmas Boutique at Woburn Abbey, Woburn Park, Bedfordshire
Sunday 18th November, 10.30am-4.30pm Crikey! Christmas Is Coming, Thistle Hotel, Exeter, Devon
Sunday 25th November, 9.30am-4pm Bath Vintage & Antiques Christmas Market, Green Park Station, Bath
We hope to see you at one (or more) of them!