Restoring a Four-Poster Bed

Taken from the July/August issue of Antique Collecting, the following article illustrates how David Harvey of W. R. Harvey restored a Georgian four-poster bed to its former glory.

Harvey bought the bed from a West Country auction house with the intention of including it in his long-planned summer exhibition, ‘A Midsummer’s Day, Sunrise to Sunset in a Georgian Home’. After some extensive research, it was established that the history of the bed goes right back to Arkwright and Willersley Hall near Matlock, which was built in the 1780s. The carving on the posts is identical in areas to those by Gillows that are illustrated in Susan Stuart’s book and the decoration on the frieze ties in with other of her illustrated examples. It certainly has all the hallmarks of being made by Gillows of Lancaster in the 1780s. To find out how Harvey carried out the restoration, see below.

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