Sunday 31 March 2013

We Always Dress Like This

As clocks change in certain districts of Arcadia there follows the traditional inspection by the quartermaster of the kit that has got me through another winter along metalled roads, through dark dawns and days of iron cold on the stall.  Old friends all which shall not yet be cast off as the snow starts to fall and the fire in The Southampton Arms beckons.

Saturday 30 March 2013


Bought at the stall on Thursday from a carrier bag proffered by a gentleman passer-by a 1906 First Edition of 'Salmon Fishing' by W. Earl Hodgson (Adam & Charles Black London) containing a large number of exquisite plates.

Friday 29 March 2013

Good Thursday

The most convivial of days at Spitalfields yesterday with a gallon of tea drunk over the velvet cloth amongst visitors from all corners, a wealth of Vintage Fishing Tackle for the Soul bought and sold and the publication of Part ii of my diary pieces for Toast Travels with photographs by my old mucker the artist Jim Eyre.

Thursday 28 March 2013

Castle & Co. 171-3 York Road, Battersea

Once upon a time in Arcadia, in the year 1939 to be precise, ladies and gentlemen abroad on the streets south of the river and with a spare coupon in their pocket would make haste to the premises of Castle & Co. at 171 to 173 York Road in the district of Battersea.  There, they would be able to buy items of good quality fishing tackle that had been exported to them from Sowerbutts on Commercial Street in the district of London known as E.1.

Should you be a lady or a gentleman abroad on the streets of London with Maundy Money or coupons at your disposal you are invited to visit my stall which appears between 8am and 3pm on Thursdays only at Spitalfields Antiques Market on Commercial Street where I still receive items from Sowerbutts, Castle and other lost tackle shops and display them upon the velvet for the delight of and purchase by passers-by.

Wednesday 27 March 2013

Hardy Archive - The Death and Birth of a Shop

Bought in the snows on Saturday last several deeds boxes containing a large cache of Hardy ephemera dating to the late Victorian and Edwardian periods and relating to the purchase of The Military Equipment Stores and Tortoise Tent Company at No. 61 Pall Mall and other adventures.  I will be carrying this archive with me to the stall tomorrow.

Tuesday 26 March 2013

Kempton Depot

Retrieved earlier from the stores at Kempton Depot, items left behind by a previous expedition, a pair of Fownes 'Furango' Driving Gloves, an empty Oxo Cube Tin and a parcel bound for Stockton-on-Tees that was never delivered.

Monday 25 March 2013

The Contents of a Shop

Bought from a gentleman in a corner of the bar of Ludlow Racecourse the contents of a shop, that being the late Gamages of Holborn and brought back as if by magic in the back of the van.