Allan Blackburn column

Allan Blackburn.
Allan Blackburn.

It was 11 years ago this week that we decided to change the centre’s name slightly from GB Antiques Centre to GB Antiques and Furniture Centre.

The demand for furniture became more and more prominent throughout the business and we realised to keep up with demand we would need more space and more furniture dealers. 11 years on and this trend has never waned.

Furniture is a huge proportion of the antiques business. So much so that my son, Jimmy, now manages the furniture department, on a full time basis.

Jimmy is always on the look-out for antique and collectable furniture as the demand for good quality, old furniture continually increases.

We feel that many buyers are disillusioned by the quality of much new furniture.

The wafer-thin veneers and poor workmanship are not always reflected in the price.

As a result, we have seen a growth in householders looking for the solid woods, craftsmanship and good value of old furniture.

We extended the centre by a further 4,000 square feet and have had reputable traders like “Dovetail Pine” and “Ancient and Modern” selling their fantastic furniture with us for over 20 years now.

The latest furniture dealer to arrive is Falcon Antiques whose mix of old and new furniture is selling really well.

We also have dealers selling painted furniture.

This type of furniture has always been available, in fact it dates back hundreds of years, but it’s only recently that this beautiful way of restoring old furniture has become so popular and fashionable.

These days people are struggling to afford the very good pieces.

There’s still a market for mahogany and oak but buying painted cupboards, dressers, and sideboards is a fantastic way of getting cheaper pieces that still look great.

Also ‘upcycling’ is very popular with visitors.

Having an existing piece of their own furniture redecorated is a great way of giving an old piece a new lease of life.

I love furniture but it’s a good job I do.

We’ve so many fabulous pieces that come in and out of the centre.

Buying second hand is the best way of getting a piece of furniture that will stand the test of time and prove real value for money.