Jules Brisbane - Antiquesintents & Courtyard Antiques

How long have you had a background in antiques? Have you always been in the trade?
I have always had a love of art and antiques – my first job was at Sotheby’s, and then with picture dealers on Westbourne Grove where I spent most of my time being sent to auctions up and down the country. I moved back to the countryside and started dealing on my own in the early 1980s.

When did you first start organising fairs and how did you get started?
In 2009 a dealer friend of mine told me he had been asked by the events manager at Hampton Court Castle near Leominster if he knew anyone who might be interested in organising an antiques fair to be held in a permanent wedding marquee erected in the castle’s courtyard. It was suggested to me, and I quickly, if a little rashly, said yes! Having no previous experience of event organising, it was definitely a leap of faith! I took confidence from my experience of attending fairs as an exhibitor, talking with dealers, and listening to their advice.

Antiquesintents has steadily built up a fantastic reputation. Why do you think it’s become so successful?
Today, Antiquesintents is held at Burton Court, and I think the success of it rests with the great team I work with, and the fantastic and really supportive dealers who exhibit. Everybody helps each other and the fairs are always very social and relaxed. The dealers take a great deal of trouble presenting their stock well and the overall look is hugely appealing. Maintaining a high standard and a wide range of antiques has always been very important to me, and I think dealers and collectors who come to buy, feel confident that this will always be the case. Also I think it is the lovely setting and the splendid café and bar that contributes to attracting visitors and, in a business which is becoming increasingly challenging, this added draw is important.

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Woo Gilchrist