I qualified in Furniture
Restoration and Craftsmanship obtaining a
2:1 Bachelor of Arts degree with Honours studying for 3 years at Buckinghamshire
University, High Wycombe.
The studying of furniture history, design and construction, ethical
aspects, material science and timber technology/identification along with
intensive hours 'at the bench' developed the foundations for the broad
skills and knowledge required in the profession. Practical skills
being of great importance, cabinet making, traditional upholstery and
polishing, metal work, gilding and specialized skills
connected with the field of conservation and restoration.
The course produced very good
results at that time, even though I can criticise aspects now, it was a
very valuable foundation, and sadly the more academic side of the
subject does not seem to be embraced/understood enough by some trying
to maintain standards elsewhere within the profession.
Accreditation: I am one of few full accredited member of BAFRA. The
British Antique Furniture Restorers Association is the foremost national organisation of
craftsmen engaged in furniture conservation and restoration. BAFRA is one of few professional associations
which accredit their members, full members having undergone assessments to ensure highest
levels of skill, knowledge and business credentials.
Experience: I have worked extensively with other professional and established restorers to gain the
essential experience traditionally sought from apprenticeships. Along
with work on a large range of items, not only furniture, for a variety
of clients; dealers, collectors, institutions and the general public. Principally
such broad but detailed experience develops an understanding of an
appropriate balance between conservation and restoration in whatever
context a valued item finds itself.
Dealing in antique furniture for a number of years has naturally enabled an increased
understanding of the trade and the wider world of antiques beyond just restoration, as
well as enabling educational projects on a variety of periods of furniture.
Further studies: Antique furniture restoration as a profession benefits from a broad knowledge, as well as the practical
skills. Expanding this knowledge is a continuous ongoing process, often requiring research
for specific project in order to achieve the best results. Studies and training is also followed
through attending relevant professional development opportunities. Membership of BAFRA
also requires commitment to a continuing professional development programme.
A substantial library of reference books aids such research, a list of
recommended publications will be added to this website in the near future.
I am also currently studying BSc(Hons) Environmental Science