Rare antique chairs from a Suffolk stately home in auction
PUBLISHED: 13:11 29 August 2018 | UPDATED: 16:08 29 August 2018
Cheffins is selling a suite of stainwood chairs and a settee by Wright & Mansfield which has come out of the former Fornham Hall, near Bury St Edmunds.
The house was demolished in 1957 after having been acquired by the War Office in 1939 and used for training by the Royal Engineers during World War II.
The items were bought at the 1950 auction for Fornham Hall furniture in 1950 and come with the original catalogue entry where they were sold for £65.
They now have an auction estimate of £2,000 - £3,000.
Wright & Mansfield were one of the pre-eminent makers of furniture in the George III style and central to the revival in interest of late 18th century English furniture from the 1860s – 1880s. The Victoria & Albert Museum have a very similar chair in the style of this suite in the collection.
Luke Macdonald director at Cheffins said:“Wright & Mansfield only made furniture for 20 years and they were such good quality that they ended up going out of production due to lower profit margins. They still have their original paper labels and are an option for someone discerning who wants to buy the best quality on the market. Unlike brown furniture, satinwood is still popular with buyers for a more contemporary interior because of its pale colour and these would work particularly well in a country house hallway.
“Items from Wright & Mansfield are very rare to the market and those which have come available have made thousands in previous years. “Wright and Mansfield were famous for their reproduction of furniture in 18th century styles. They specialised in items based on the designs of Robert Adam, Thomas Chippendale, Thomas Sheraton and George Hepplewhite.
“The partnership between Alfred Thomas Wright, cabinet maker and upholsterer and Thomas Needham Mansfield was formed in 1860, working firstly at 3 Great Portland Street, and subsequently at 104 New Bond Street, London. The partnership was dissolved in 1886.”
The items will be sold at the Cheffins Fine Art Sale on September 12 and 13 at Cheffins, Clifton House, 1-2 Clifton Road, Cambridge.