From HOMES, INTERIORS & GARDENS Buxton Antiques Fair
14 July, 25 August, 6 October, 24 November
Antiques fairs have never been busier.

Everywhere people are looking for a good return on their hard-earned cash and the latest target is "alternative investments". No longer is the stock market, the housing market, your building society or even the high street bank the best place for your money, so fine art and antiques have suddenly found a new audience. This month The Annual Buxton Antiques Fair, from 14th-17th May at the famous Pavilion Gardens, offers plenty of opportunities for the new and seasoned antiques buyer.

Now in its 45th year, this status event, which is one of the most prestigious events of the antiques calendar, has a new organiser, Sue Ede of Cooper Events. "The Buxton Fair has always been one of the highlights of the spring season for the whole of the UK art and antiques market," explains Sue, who has been running antiques fairs for more than 30 years. "I am delighted to be bringing a number of new exhibitors that will add an extra dimension to the wide range of art and antiques for sale".

Many of the country's leading specialist dealers take part. Nicholas Shaw, the silver specialist, heads the important Vetting Committee, ensuring standards remain high, while looking after his own wonderful display of fine English and Scottish silver.

The fair is popular for its fine selection of period furniture. Among the many special pieces, Yoxall Antiques from Solihull have a fine and typical Davenport from the early Victorian period made circa 1840 by the well-known firm of Gillows of Lancaster, always a sought-after name, in Goncalo Alves, a rare but distinctive wood with the colour of mellow rosewood. The Davenport is that typical early 20th century type of raised schoolmaster?s desk that first appeared around the mid-18th century. Pieces like this appeal not only to collectors but anyone with an interest in historic furniture.

For more fine furniture look for specialists Stablegate Antiques, S.& S.Timms, Vaughan Antiques, Kenulf Fine Art, Manor Farm Barn, Sue Killinger and Melody's Antiques.

L.S.Lowry is not only Britain's most well known painter of the 20th century but also one of the most collectable artists of them all. His distinctive pictures of northern industrial life have soared in price since his death in 1976. Neptune Fine Art, a local Derbyshire gallery, return with a selection of original oils, watercolours and drawings ranging from around 10,000 upwards. Among the most distinctive is a typical busy street scene with Lowry figures, signed and dated 1953, that was until recently on public display at The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent. Measuring 14" x 10", it is on sale for 325,000. Neptune also promise a collection of paintings by the popular contemporary artist Mary Fedden.

Also specialising in fine paintings will be Ashleigh House, Paul Mayhew, Steve Marsling, Derek Newman Fine Art, Maurice Dear and Jo Bennett, together showing everything from early 18th century English watercolours to oils by Manchester's current favourite, Geoffrey Key.

The fair has lots more. Paraphernalia specialise in lighting and small furniture, including for a splendid sideboard by Shapland & Petter and important Newlyn copper from the Daryl Bennett exhibition. Roger de Ville promises early pottery figures, Garret & Hurst have French 19th century bronze sculpture, John Newton specialises in Continental porcelain, S.& A.Marsh have English and Scottish silver and Terry Robert in one of several specialist jewellers.

Also returning is one of Britain's leading specialists in antique arms and armour. Garth Vincent mounts a shining display of full-size suits of English and Continental suits of armour, Civil War helmets, pikes, swords and flintlocks, Japanese Samurai daggers and all kinds of essential accessories for warriors across the world. It's a fascinating stand, and all for sale.

Everything Vetted

All exhibits are vetted for quality and authenticity by a committee of experts, called in to oversee this important process. Exhibits are offered in a condition ready for people's homes and private collections. "This ensures that buyers can make their purchases with confidence and is the mark of a good quality fair," explains Sue Ede, who appreciates how anyone who invests in fine quality antiques needs that kind of reassurance.

The fair is open to the public from 11am to 6pm daily, closing at 5pm on Sunday. The Pavilion Gardens have a licensed restaurant and refreshments

The 45th Annual Buxton Antiques Fair, 14-17 May.
Cooper Events Tel: 01278 784912 / www.cooperevents.com

DERBYSHIRE LIFE is please to offer readers Free Entry for Two to The Buxton Antiques Fair. Present this page at the front desk on any open day for admission.

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