TWO years ago, Apter- Fredericks, one of the capital’s leading dealers in the finest English furniture (a diminishing band), closed the Fulham Road galleries it had occupied since Alfred Fredericks founded the business in 1946. The firm, still family run, now operates entirely online (www.apter-fredericks.com), except when conditions permit the more traditional business model of participation in the Masterpiece fair in London and New York’s Winter Antiques Show. Apter-Fredericks’s pride was that a client could fully furnish a house from its stock, but the online version no longer needed the three floors in Chelsea, which led to a January sale at Christie’s.
The business has been in the hands of Harry and Guy Apter, grandsons of Alfred and born to the trade, for a good number of years. At the age of 21, their father, Bernard, wed Claire Fredericks and joined her father in A. Fredericks Chelsea. Back then, there were 14 furniture dealers cheek by jowl on the Brown Mile, as that stretch of the Fulham Road was known, and it was very much a matter of ‘pile ’em high and sell to the trade’. Later, the business courted private buyers, but, paradoxically, the success of antiques fairs—Harry was a founder of Masterpiece—made it more difficult for shopkeepers, as some overseas clients would only visit them at a fair.
In the post-war decades, there were numerous country-house contents sales around the country, if not yet on the scale reached in the 1970s, and almost every local estate agent had its own saleroom. However, Harry was seven and a half before he could persuade his father and grandfather to take him on a buying trip. He signed on full time after leaving school and has been with the firm ever since.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
Lost in the maze
THE world’s largest classical labyrinth is currently being constructed from traditional Cornish hedging in the heart of Bodmin Moor, a project that has unexpectedly led to the foundation of the Outdoor University of Cornish Hedging.
It takes a family to raise a village
A hangover from the days of landed gentry, there are still privately owned villages scattered throughout the UK. What is it really like to be at the helm of a community, asks Alec Marsh
My favourite painting Neil Mendoza
The Painter and his Pug
SIXTY years ago almost to the day, on March 15, when the Jaguar E-type first hit the tarmac, Frank Sinatra took one look and said ‘I want that car and I want it now’; shortly after, Enzo Ferrari dubbed it ‘the most beautiful car in the world’.
Myth and magic
Two homes in Devon offer unique insights into the county’s complex history, from witches and hounds to the village where time stood still
Black (and white) beauty
March is the month in which female hares bat away unwanted suitors, but, sadly, the sight of boxing hares is becoming ever more rare. Over the past century, a loss of habitat and predation has resulted in an 80% decrease in brown-hare numbers. Cumbrian sculptor Andrew Kay has created this 5ft-high artwork in steel, priced at £4,700, 15% of which will go to the Hare Preservation Trust. A smaller work, Life Size Hare, costs £840 (www.andrewkaysculpture.co.uk)
In pursuit of a social climber
Of wisteria, noble litter pickers, lockdown funerals and shaggy hounds
Roll me over in the clover
Finding a four-leafed example might be lucky, but, as we toast St Patrick’s Day, Ian Morton investigates why the clover (or shamrock) is so important to the Irish
Bright lights, empty city
For John McEwen, the enforced constraints of the pandemic have engendered a greater appreciation of our capital’s abundant parks and wildlife
A right basket case
From wet woodland to a warm Welsh kitchen: Nick Hammond meets the resourceful craftswoman who has woven a new career from her love for wild places
DIANA DEATH FLICK IS ULTIMATE REVENGE!
Palace terrified Hollywood's royal power couple will bankroll project
Diana's Closest Friends TELL ALL
AS THE ROYAL FAMILY CONTINUES TO REEL IN THE WAKE OF HARRY ND MEGHAN MARKLE’S EXPLOSIVE SIT-DOWN, THOSE CLOSEST TO THE LATE PRINCESS DIANA (INCLUDING HER BUTLER OF 10 YEARS, PAUL BURRELL) SEPARATE FACT FROM FICTION.
MEET DAYS'S PRECIOUS WAY
Chicago native Precious Way is thrilled to be making her soap debut as Chanel on DAYS, a show that has a special connection to her family.
ROYAL LIES REVEALED!
His embrace of ‘public service’ Her bid for sympathy Why they REALLY fled
Harry & Olivia DOUBLE DATING WITH ZACH & FLORENCE!
Squad goals! Olivia Wilde and Harry Styles have found another dynamic duo to spend their downtime with: Florence Pugh and Zach Braff. An industry insider tells Star the foursome hit it off on the set of Don’t Worry, Darling which Olivia, 36, is directing, and in which Florence, 25, and the 27-year-old singer both star.
JACKÉE HARRY ON JOINING DAYS
“They just said I would be fierce and fabulous and I went, ‘Oh, I’m typecast again!’ ” muses Jackée Harry of getting the call to join DAYS as newcomer Paulina Price. “They said she’s fabulous and fun and full of life and a strong, determined woman of power. As soon as they said she would have money, I said yes.”
HARRY GETS THRONE OUT!
Queen removes rouge from line of succession over TV betrayal
MEGHAN PREGNANCY HEALS HARRY'S HEART!
Baby brings marriage back from brink but won’t end royal rift as TV tell-all stuns queen
The Knickerbocker Bar & Grill
The neighborhood fixture has been dark for a year, but there’s hope yet for fans of T-bone steaks and supercolossal booths.
HARRY & MEGHAN'S ROYAL BABY DRAMA
New pregnancy won’t end family feud