Last Sunday’s episode of the ever popular Antiques Roadshow on BBC was filmed at Castle Coole, a neo-classical 18th century mansion in County Fermanagh in Northern Ireland, and a rare wooden trade chair was brought in by a member of the public.
It can be difficult to accurately date furniture but, on this occasion, it was easy for antique furniture expert Christopher Payne, because 1681 was carved into the chair back. Payne told the lady who brought the chair in that he is always pleased to see antique chairs appearing on the show.
Payne asked if the lady knew the chair’s history and she replied:
“It has been in my husband’s family for a long time. His grandfather had it, then his father, who gave it to him.”
Payne informed the lady that the chair was not Irish, but had come over from Scotland and the date carved in the chair’s back was when King James I encouraged Scottish Presbyterians to come to Ireland by giving them land, mainly in the north.
The chair is unusual as it has a hammer as well as trade symbols from a variety of trades carved into its back.
Due to its age and rarity, Payne valued the chair at £2,000 to £3,000.
While it cannot be guaranteed that antique dealers in Lancashire will have such a rare chair for sale, they will have a fine selection of antique furniture, including a number of attractive and interesting Victorian dining chairs .
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