I worked at James & Lister Lea Chartered Surveyors & Auctioneers in the 70s and 80s. A fantastic old firm founded in Birmingham in 1846 which eventually merged with Bruton Knowles in January 2001.
I started in 1973 and my mentor and senior partner was Derek Lea who subscribed to the ATG from the very beginning in 1971. We did not have a saleroom but put up a marquee in the grounds such as Berkswell Hall or The Davids.
We had a store in Birmingham and your Volvo story reminded me of one of my Volvos – see the photo. I think it was taken in around 1980 – clearly pre health and safety. I think the lad was called Martin, a trainee chartered surveyor, and we had cleared a house of items that had a value and were about to unload into the store for the next sale.
I do not think we would get away with this overloading now!
This was in my opinion the wonderful era pre mobile phones and social media. The only way of spreading the word was via the ATG and, if a good sale, a small classified in the Telegraph.
We advertised every sale in the ATG and after 50 years I still look forward to the post on a Tuesday to deliver my copy.
At a good sale there was a hoard of Volvo Estates and in those days brown furniture was in demand.
I just thought you would smile at the photo!
Very best wishes from a chartered surveyor and retired auctioneer.