“I realised early on that my dyslexia meant that I was never destined for a desk job and found my passion during the only lesson that I really enjoyed at school – woodwork”.
So I trained at the London College of Furniture (now part of the London Metropolitan University) for two years and The little Surrenden Workshops for one year learning the finer details of conservation work.
I then started my antique restoration business in 1991 at the age of 21 in the picturesque village of Shere near Guildford in Surrey. In 1998 I married and Sabina my wife came on board dealing with the administration, bookkeeping and the design of my website.
My workshop stayed on the same farm for 13 years until June 2004 when Sabina and I moved our home, workshop and two sons to Normandy in Northern France. I now have a larger secure workshop on our property about 35 metres from our house. It has separate storage areas on the first floor is light and airy downstairs. I have extended the workshop to create even more storage for veneers, wood and all the other items I need to carry out my work and to create a studio for my wife Sabina who has started her own website and graphic design business www.anibasdesign.com
In 2007 we had our daughter, who was born in St Lô and now our family is complete, along with, chickens, geese, turkeys, chickens, two sheep, two cats and our labrador!
I now organise my trips back to England to coincide with several items of furniture being ready for delivery and book appointments to visit old and new customers alike to estimate on restoration work. We all lovie the French lifestyle and I still love restoring antiques.
In early January 2012 I was Thrilled to here that I have been awarded the title ‘Maître Artisan’ (Master craftsman) by the Chmabre de Metiers et de l’artinasat de la Manche.
I also carry out restoration of Classic Car Dashboards and interior trim for clients all in France, England and all over the world and participate in classic car shows here in France, notably at Caen (Retrofestival – July) and Rouen (Salon Auto-Moto-Retro – September).