Toby Lorford and Lesley Ferguson - Lorfords.
Toby, Lesley once said that you started off selling “Dull brown furniture”, to which you responded: “...and you were dealing in vintage junk!” What changed when the two of you came together to make Lorfords such a great success?
Fundamentally what came together was a desire to learn from each other. There was a respect and humility that allowed us to question our own experiences.
We had come from opposite ends of the spectrum and to understand each other’s point of view was both challenging and exciting. I firmly believe the success has come from tolerating the friction between competing desires, coupled with the commitment to finding a solution to both demands.
What drew you to the old bus garage in the middle of Tetbury, as the perfect spot for the Lorfords shop?
It wasn’t quite the first Lorfords shop. We were in a tiny three-storey shop further down the street, when the owner of the premises at number 30 - our shop for the last 15 years - came storming through from front to back (it was a great cut-through to a Doctor’s car park!). He was busy cursing leases and tenants – and with this insider knowledge, and a short phone call later, we had secured the best premises to deal antiques from outside of London! You could argue that the old Brandt premises in Petworth were better... but hey-ho... it’s a tough call!