The antique desks and Victorian dining chairs of Preston antique dealer Christian Davies have achieved TV stardom. On March 16th , viewers in Lancashire saw an Arts & Craft furniture piece, priced at £950, become the star attraction of reality TV show House Gift. The episode featured a home in the village of Much Hoole. Antiques experts Tom Keane and Gillian Anderson Price – plus celebrity designer Laurence Llewellyn Bowen – were randomly allocated budgets of £200, £500 or £1,000 to buy a “statement” piece to transform the modern house, which lacked character. However, the owners would only be allowed to keep one item – with no idea of its cost.
With £1,000 in his pocket, auctioneer Tom Keane went to a nearby Lancashire dealer, but the Victorian dining chairs and antique dining tables lacked the Gothic Reform look he was looking for, so he headed for Christian Davies in Preston Antiques Centre instead. Here, he found the perfect piece – a Gothic what-not (antique bookcase with cabinet features), which he got for £800 with a trade discount. Gillian, who had drawn the “short straw”, found a miniature antique chest of drawers. It was beyond her budget, but an Art Deco globe sitting on an antique dining table fitted it exactly.
Laurence, despite getting a £100 bonus, spent his money on a £225 charity shop piano. Back in Much Hoole, the owners wasted no time declaring Tom’s What Not as the piece they wanted to keep.
Christian Davies is one of the largest antique dealers in Preston. The antique desks, Victorian dining chairs and antique chests occupy the entire top floor, with new stock arriving daily.
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