David heads back behind the counter of his antiques shop
THE loss of television, touring and other work has prompted antiques expert David Harper to re-establish his shop in Barnard Castle after an absence of five years.
The popular star of programmes such as Bargain Hunt and the Antiques Road Trip previously ran his antiques business from the shop, on The Bank, before closing up and letting the premises while he concentrated on other projects.
He has now taken back possession and is planning to open as soon as lockdown restrictions are eased.
Mr Harper explained: “Coronavirus came along and like a lot of people, gave me the shock of my life.
“All my work was either put on ice or cancelled. I was booked up well into spring next year with theatre shows, filming, venue openings, talks and charity auctions. There is so much uncertainty around the coronavirus you can’t rely on anything.”
His most recent shop tenant was a photographer, who moved out as a result of the lockdown, leaving Mr Harper with an empty premises and a holiday let above which is unlikely to attract any bookings for the foreseeable future.
He said: “However, I have a positive disposition and see this as a massive opportunity and I am incredibly excited by it.
“I am looking forward to getting back into dealing with people rather than working from home or being on the road. This is now going to be my base.”
He said he expects to concentrate on predominantly 20th century design pieces and will also sell prints of his artwork.
He will operate his antiques brokerage service from the shop, helping clients place their objects at appropriate auctions.
“I will be spending much more time in Barnard Castle. I was running around like crazy, doing thousands of miles a week. In future I am not going to be doing so much travelling.”
In the meantime, Mr Harper is looking forward to the publication of his new book, A Romp With the Georgians.