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When historic hall owner Brian Burnie was approached by Newcastle auctioneers Anderson & Garland to hold their retirement dinner for partner Nick Stawart at his newly-opened Doxford Hall Hotel, he was delighted to have the opportunity to show them the craftsmanship which has gone into a project which he and wife Shirley have spent years bringing to fruition.

Brian said: "I have known Nick and the partners of the firm for nearly 30 years and thought if anyone would appreciate fine craftsmanship and elegant surroundings they certainly would, bearing in mind that they deal every day with other examples, ranging from paintings to furniture."

Anderson & Garland senior partner Andrew McCoull said: "Nick started with the firm as an 18-year-old pupil in 1962 and in his 46 years with us became one of the most respected auctioneers in the northern region.
"His career with us has spanned probably the most important developments in our 168-year history, many of our years at our Market Street saleroom, our subsequent move for 20 years to Marlborough Crescent, and hopefully our final move to our new purpose-built premises at Westerhope on the western outskirts of Newcastle.

"Many of our discoveries as auctioneers have been down to his keen eye for the unusual, not only in his specialist field of porcelain and glassware, but collectors' items, too.
"As one of our team of valuers he visited literally thousands of properties in the north and among his many porcelain discoveries he vividly recalls the £15,000 Clarice Cliff vase which was being used as a doorstop, and in collectors' items the £23,000 treasure trove of memorabilia regarding a famous African expedition found in an old tin trunk under the bed!"

Andrew added: "We wish Nick happiness in his well-earned retirement and hope that our dinner in his honour at the Doxford Hall Hotel will leave him with happy memories of the firm for which he worked so loyally for nearly half a century."

Published in the Northumberland Gazette.


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Image from the NEWS section of the Doxford Hall website