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OCTOBER 2012 home


ONE OF BRIDGNORTH’S MOST HISTORIC properties looks set to have a new owner soon. Agents handling the sale of

Bishop Percy’s House in Cartway say a deal should soon be agreed aſt er a closing date was set for best off ers. Berriman Eaton say there has

been a huge level of interest in the property since its launch from both local and national buyers with a variety of exciting ideas on its future. T e house is one of the few

properties to survive the town’s great fi re in April 1646 and was the birthplace of T omas Percy, Bishop of Dromore, author and royal chaplain to King George III. T e house, described by

English Heritage as a ‘show stopper’, has had a variety of uses over the centuries. In the 1920s a brass and iron foundry at the rear, dating from

Bishop Percy’s House in Cartway comes with an adjoining cottage

the 1800s, was used by Bridgnorth Boy Scouts, and in the years prior to World War II it became a soup kitchen. From the 1940s to 2003 it was

home to Bridgnorth Boys Club, who added a gymnasium which is included in the sale.

Most recently it was bought

by a local developer who gained planning permission, now lapsed, to covert it into four apartments with a separate cottage and four contemporary houses at the rear. It was on the market for off ers

around £275,000.

61 marketplace

going, gone...

John Ridgway of Perry and Phillips Auctioneers of Low Town, Bridgnorth, guides Review readers through the wonderful world of antiques.

I have an item of vintage furniture that I hope to sell at auction but a friend has pointed out that it may in fact be two separate pieces that have been joined together. How can I tell if this is the case?

Combining two pieces of furniture to create one item is known in the antiques trade as creating a ‘marriage’ – and there are a number of these items around. T ese furniture marriages have

been made for various reasons, to make up a good item from two damaged ones, to add value to an otherwise inexpensive piece or to simply sell a smaller piece of furniture suitable for a contemporary home. T e good news is that, if the

two pieces date from the same era, the item can be sold as a marriage although it won’t sell for as much as it would have done otherwise. T ere are tell-tale signs to

The property is one of the best- preserved timber framed buildings in Bridgnorth


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look out for, even if the work on the piece was put together by an expert. Look at the back to see if

everything matches, see if the

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colour of the wood is the same throughout, ask yourself if the style of the item is the same both top and bottom. Signs that an item has been cut

down may be evident. Does the entire thing look as if it was made originally as once piece and are there any empty screw holes that can’t be explained? Check that veneer matches

and that the top half is set within a moulding. If it’s not this may indicate that the item started out life in two diff erent places! T e best thing you can do is to

get some expert advice. Antiques dealers and auctioneers can spot a vintage furniture marriage a mile off – and don’t despair if your item turns out to be a marriage. If it looks good and is in nice

condition it can still sell well at auction as long as everyone knows exactly what it really is.

If you have an antiques- related question for John please email it to editorial@review

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