Posts Tagged ‘furniture’


October 24, 2015

We married and set up home in 1971. Ladderax was a popular style of furniture at the time. It consisted of ‘ladder’ on which you could fit a variety of shelves and cupboards and arrange them as you wanted.

I think we’d have liked some back in those early 1970s but frankly we couldn’t afford it. It was just that bit more than we could justify. However, a liking for the style has persisted and recently we decided to make better space of a wall in our entrance hall by getting a mix of storage and display furniture. But we had a problem in that the presence of doors limited us to a depth of furniture of 14 inches. Anything deeper than that would foul doors. We searched in vain for something that suited us. Well, it was in vain apart from Ladderax itself, now available only (as far as we found) on the second hand market. A four ladder system was going to suit us with some of the shelves/cupboards two feet wide and some three feet.

We found what we were looking for on eBay. Actually, it was a five ladder set up so we have a spare but we have still used all of the cupboards and shelves we bought.

It was, of course, a ‘buyer collect’ item and it was about 140 miles from our home. We hired a van big enough to take all of the cupboards and also the two metre long ladders and set out on quite a lengthy day trip.

We’d have liked to have had more time but can I say that Uppingham in Rutland where we purchased our furniture is a lovely little market town and just down the road, Rockingham is a delightful estate village.

Our Ladderax is now assembled and looks like this.


It’s in amazing condition for something more than 40 years old. You can see in the photo that the end ladder reaches across to the architrave around a door. We just couldn’t have gone wider.

We have a bureau, a glass fronted cabinet, a chest of drawers, a so called drinks cabinet (just a cupboard for us) and another sliding door cupboard.  We have some seven shelves of various lengths and widths

By the way, the edge on curtain which you can see has been in use by us in more than one house since the early 70s, so it all fits together in style and period.

An Infant chair

March 4, 2015

In a post I did about some South London record sleeves I commented on visiting Deptford Market when I was a student. I added that I still had an item I bought there, and this is it.


This is an old school chair from (I guess) an infant school. In my possession it has suffered the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune and has clearly been used as a prop or a step when painting. It’s present use is a climbing frame for 17 month old granddaughter who enjoys climbing on it, getting to a sitting position and then sliding off it again.

Back in my student days, towards the end of the 1960s, it provided a fourth seat for a group of card playing (no gambling) friends. Our student rooms were equipped with a bed, a comfy chair, a desk chair and a coffee table. To save on having to borrow chairs or transport them from other rooms several of us purchased one of these ex school chairs from Deptford Market.

I think, but can’t be certain, that I paid six shillings (30p) for it. Back then all essential food was provided for us and the grant came to just about £12 per month from which we had to but course books and stationery, and any extras we wanted – mostly travel to see girlfriend. But a little chair was obviously needed as well.

This chair is marked with an owner’s name.


It belonged to the L.C.C. which was the London County Council. I wonder if O.H. was the specific location for this chair.

The London County Council had already been transformed into the Greater London Council by the time I bought this chair. One rather hopes the chair wasn’t deemed of no further use because it mentioned the old authority. More recently, the GLC  was disbanded, I always felt in a bit of political jealousy. Now, with the cult of personality, we have to have a London Mayor – a sort of one person council for London.

It’s good to think that 50 years after the demise of the old LCC at least one old chair lingers on.

A Milking Stool

July 21, 2014

I don’t suppose many ordinary householders boast a milking stool amongst their possessions. In the early 1970s my dad returned from a holiday in France and presented me with one. As I can’t remember the year, I can’t be sure if it was at a time when I kept goats. I have a feeling the stool predated that period of my life. This is the stool as is now.


It’s well used – mostly as a mini coffee table. It’s an ideal surface to have beside an easy chair. It’s just perfect for putting a mug on. It has suffered the stains and heat rings of outrageous usage over the years.


I love the simplicity of it – a neat semi-circular top on three legs which are wedged into place, possibly with a tad of glue to help.

I think my dad rather liked the price of it – still just about readable on the underside.


That says 4.70. Back in the early 70s there were about 10 francs to the UK pound. This stool set my dad back the equivalent of about 50p.

And the great thing is that it has seen proper usage when we kept and milked goats. I did actually find it ideal for milking.

And now, with goat keeping long in the past I still find it an elegant little item of furniture. It could, of course, be tarted up. Some gentle sanding to remove the stains and then a coat of varnish to make it shine. But to my mind that would spoil the item. I think it should stay as a cheap and used little piece of furniture.