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These are just some of the questions to be debated on January 29 in a one-day conference that brings together the leading professional bodies, experts and higher education institutions. The conference, which is being sponsored by the Antiques Trade Gazette, has been organised by Drummond Read, the fine art recruitment consultancy, in response to growing concern over the future of professional standards and qualifications in the industry. With all the leading bodies involved, the conference provides a unique opportunity to hear the full range of opinion and debate the questions that go to the heart of the issues raised.

Chaired by fine arts valuer and auctioneer David Royle FRICS MAE, who was national president of the ISVA from 1979-80, and who has chaired the chattels committee of both the ISVA and the RICS, the day will include presentations from all the leading professional associations and a question-and-answer session from the floor.

Detailed profiles of the full line-up of speakers will be published in the new year.

Drummond Read were the organisers of the highly successful one-day conference on the future of antiques on the Internet at the Southampton Institute in February 2000.