July 2022

Ken started his business in Switzerland in the early 70’s when he was visiting with friends in Berne, the capital city. It was on this visit when he noticed that English antiques seemed to be popular. He also noticed the prices were unusually high, many objects were not original, and some were straight forward fakes. Without much further thought, he rented a sales space/cellar from his friends, and returned to the UK to purchase his first load, and start his business.

He became an instant success in Berne, and within six months he agreed to take on a Swiss business partner. They very quickly left the cellar and opened a store in downtown Berne. Over the years the business, known as Ken’s English Antiques, grew to three stores and became a successful, European brand.

For personal reasons Ken returned to the UK in the early 80’s, and bought an old Brewery in Dorset, which was the idiosyncratic site that put him on the map. While successfully dealing in English antiques, he also discovered the joys of under-explored statuary, as well as original French and Italian furniture, all of which was housed in the old 10,000 sq ft Brewery and it’s gardens. He named his new business — Talisman.