News-Antique.com - Dec 31,2007 - Stately homes, castles, village halls, exhibition centers and agricultural show grounds are just a few venues that will host many British antiques fairs throughout 2008. From small one-day events that should never be overlooked as these places are havens for the local trade to source many items of stock to the more prestigious events that last several days, add to this weekly markets and prospective antiques hunters could build an itinerary that would easily last a week, or more!
For example, those staying in London and prepared to start early in the day for the best bargains, the infamous Portobello Road Market opens at about 5.30am every Saturday, Camden Passage is also open on Saturday’s and Wednesday’s whilst there are about 100 dealers in Spitalfields Market every Thursday from 8.00am. If possible, coincide visits to the capital with a trip to Sunbury Antiques Market located at Kempton Racecourse on the 2nd and last Tuesday of every month from 6.30am - 2.00pm with free admission to over 700 dealers.
In the east Midlands, the massive Newark and Swinderby fairs situated about twelve miles apart commence their programmes in February; each event regularly attracts over 3000 stallholders with quite possibly the widest range of antiques on sale in one place. Both fairs are held every other month and lasts for two days running back to back of each other, in 2008 Swinderby opens on 5th and 6th February, Newark follows on the 7th and 8th.
Detling Antiques Fair regularly attracts up to 500 stallholders and because it is only 30 minutes from the Channel Tunnel the event is attracting more and more stallholders from nearby France and Belgium. Held at weekend’s five fairs are scheduled between March and October in 2008.
For connoisseurs early summertime is a must, starting with Petworth Antiques and Art Fair on 30th May and 1st June. Central London is also particularly busy with the International Art and Antiques Fair at Olympia from 5th to 15th June, and Grosvenor House Art and Antiques Fair from 12th to 18th June. Coinciding with these events in London is the International Ceramics Fair at the Park Lane Hotel, Piccadilly from 12th to 15th June. Some careful planning will allow buyers to move quickly north to catch the Fine Art and Antiques Fair at Harrogate between the 13th and 15th June.
Further examples for 2008 are Bath Decorative and Antiques Fair 6th - 8th March, the Spring, Summer and Winter Antiques For Everyone fairs at the NEC, Birmingham. Whilst finally in the southwest of England a visit to the 'Giant Quality Antiques & Collectors Fairs' at Westpoint Exhibition Centre near Exeter over the weekends of 1st and 2nd March, 28th and 29th June, 25th and 26th October with around 500 stallholders provides the opportunity to explore many other antiques dealers in the area particularly around Honiton and surrounding villages.