One of the joys of being an antique restoration specialist is that I get frequent opportunities to restore an astonishing variety of items – the latest of which is a London Trolley!
As you can see from the picture, my London Trolley is now fully restored and looking absolutely gorgeous and quite different from the wreck I picked up at a local auction some time ago!
Actually, I had been really looking forward to restoring the London Trolley for some time but, at Snelling Associates, we have been really hectic this year with our normal work. The latter has included a huge amount of antique furniture and objets d’art, which we were asked to restore following a major insurance claim. These are always interesting projects for us as, by their very nature, large insurance claims involve the repair and restoration of a very disparate variety of items – which can make our life very interesting!
In any event, my London Trolley took me back to a period, many years ago, when I lived in London. At the time, London Trolleys were very common and used for just about everything you could imagine – from carting around meat and veg to bags of coal. They were also popular amongst scrap dealers the ‘rag and bone men’ (a term that seems to have disappeared now) who were such a common sight in the streets of many British cities until the 1950s.
Now, of course, a fully restored London Trolley is a rare thing to see and, I dare say, in the years to come they will be considered ‘proper’ antiques as well as a part of our social history. Certainly, they played a part in my early life and many times I can remember getting a lift on one with my friends!