ANOTHER major dealership on the London antiques scene is to close with the announcement of the auction of the entire trading stock of Sampson and Horne Antiques at Bonhams on April 28.
The Mayfair-based company, which has been trading in its various
incarnations for 40 years, is closing because of the ill health of
one of its founders, Jonathan Horne, and the decision of the other,
Christopher Banks, to scale down his dealing activities.
The spring sale will feature early ceramics, country furniture,
textiles, metalwork and other examples of British folk art. The
English pottery for which the firm is so renowned will be
particularly strong on saltglaze and delftware, priced at all
levels from rare chargers to everyday tiles.
The all-day sale will be "very much a snapshot" of what the firm
deals in, said Mr Banks, and is estimated to make around £1m.
Alistair Sampson and Jonathan Horne are two of the best-known
names in the field of early English pottery, and were long familiar
faces in the auction rooms and at major fairs. As Jonathan Horne
Antiques and Alistair Sampson Antiques, they created some of the
best collections in the world for their clients, as well as buying
In July 2006, following Alistair Sampson's death, the two firms
merged, Mr Horne leaving his landmark Kensington Church Street shop
where he had traded for 30 years to work with Mr Banks at Mount
Street. Two years later they moved premises to Brooks Mews.
Sampson and Horne follow several other big London names -
Hotspur, Jeremy and Norman Adams - that have shut their doors
Although individual factors come into play in each instance, the
closures take place against a change in the trading environment.
They mark the shift away from shops that hope to catch passing
trade towards premises with a ground-floor showroom on a major
shopping street and a reliance on old school, connoisseurial
By Anne Crane