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Welcome to my site
My name is Laurence.
I started dabbling in antiques & collectables about 25 years ago mainly as a collector but decided, because of excess stock, to try my hand at selling.
It was a couple of years before I plucked up the courage to try an Antique Fair and did really well, I suspected that the reason was because I was new and didn't really know what I was doing. After attending these fairs for a couple of years I became aware that traders in general were not that happy because of three main issues.
Cost, Space & Public Attendance
I decided to try to organise my own fair but finding the right venue wasn't easy and eventually found Blakeney up on the North Norfolk Coast.
The first issue was cost so I decided that everyone should be charged the same irrespective of the space and to keep it affordable so in the event of a bad day it wasn't the end of the world.
The next issue was space so I decided that everyone should have a space suitable to what they were selling for example a trader in jewellery doesn't need a large space but an adequate space.
The third issue was a lack of people which can only be remedied by advertising. I tried newspaper advertising but that didn't work and only pushed the overheads up which meant that the cost of the tables would have had to increase. The alternative was roadside advertising and because Blakeney is in a holiday area this seemed to be the most practical way ahead.
That was 19 years ago and Blakeney is still going strong with good public attendance and space virtually sold out every time. It is one of those fairs that has a real old fashioned buzz.
I was approached this year by the management at Cressing Temple Barns to see if I would consider reviving an Antique Fair that had been established for over 20 years. I went to see the site for myself and was totally amazed by the location. It is a stunning site of historical interest with two enormous Knights Templar Barns dating back to the 13th century and various green areas including a tea room & picnic area. Public parking is for in excess of 1800 vehicles. How could I refuse such an opportunity in a catchment area of over a million people living within a half hour drive away.
Every pre-booked trader will receive an adequate selling space with a minimum of two six foot tables in an 'L' shape with everybody paying the same. Advertising will be the key to this event since no roadside advertising will be allowed by Braintree District Council under any circumstances. Cressing Temple Barns ls very well signposted in the area by brown directional tourist road signs. It will be necessary to advertise, over a three week period leading up to the event, in two local newspapers. The "Essex Chronicle" and the "Essex Gazette" with a combined weekly distribution in excess of 40,000. Cressing Temple Barns will also be advertising the event on their website in addition to their Facebook page. There is also a purpose built Facebook page Antique Fair at Cressing Temple Barns with photographs & videos of Cressing. Flyers will also be printed and distributed.
The maximum number of inside traders would be 68 plus gazebos for outside traders with grass frontage. There will be minimal space for casual traders on the limited hard standing areas as well as the covered open barns dotted around the site.
On site valuations will be by REEMAN DANSIE AUCTIONEERS in support of FARLEIGH HOSPICE who will have their own marketing team ready to assist.
All in all this has the makings of a really good two day annual event with something of interest for everybody.
On site caterers www.scoffandsip.com
Thank you for taking the time to read this.