2022 was a strange year for everyone not least because of the game of musical chairs performed in the autumn to see who would be prime minister of the United Kingdom. Perhaps least said about that the better although, unfortunately, this coupled with the strikes of the railway unions, some of which were cancelled at the last moment, seemed to have an effect on potential visitors to what are normally very successful fairs inasmuch as a certain level of uncertainty was bred. Understandably many people are worried about their economic future and this, inevitably, has the potential to impact the antiques trade.
One effect has been to reduce the number of major shows which are being organised. We have lost the Chelsea Fair which had been recreated very successfully by the 2-Covet team and at the end of the year it was announced that the Antiques for Everyone Fair at the Birmingham NEC was no longer viable. The latest sad news in this respect is that the Olympia Summer Art and Antiques Fair cannot be run because of the lack of exhibitors.
Having said all this it is possible to give an idea of what Brian Watson Antique Glass will be doing in 2023. It is now possible to confirm that I expect to be exhibiting at five fairs this year. In May I shall be returning to the Decorative Fair in Battersea and the following week I shall be at the Petworth Fair in Sussex. In the autumn I should be again at the Decorative Fair at the beginning of October followed by the Winter Olympia Fair at the beginning of November. The last show for this year will be the Cotswold Antiques Fair at Compton Verney House in Warwickshire at the end of November.
Despite all the problems facing the world at the moment it is important to think positively. There are wonderful pieces of glass available and I will be presenting some of them at the shows at which I shall be appearing. Some will be specifically collectors’ pieces but there will be plenty of attractive glasses from which those who enjoy their wine, or even their water, will be able to drink and reflect on the origins of the pieces they hold in their hands. Somebody once said, « A good glass enriches the poorest wine and makes even a great wine better. » Who am I to disagree with such a statement ?