6 ISSUES FOR £6 Subscribe to Surrey Life today click here

Bargain hunting at Sunbury Antiques Market – Adele Parks’ Are We Nearly There Yet? column

PUBLISHED: 11:15 20 June 2017 | UPDATED: 10:04 25 June 2017

Adele's haul from Sunbury Antiques Market

Adele's haul from Sunbury Antiques Market

Adele Parks

As she continues her ventures out and about in Surrey, this month, bestselling author Adele Parks drags her husband to one of Europe’s best antiques markets

The antiques fair at Kempton Park The antiques fair at Kempton Park

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine June 2017


I’m loving the fact that as I have this column, family and friends are basically compelled to take day trips out with me, whether they like it or not.

Mum and I watch Antiques Roadshow and Bargain Hunters in our own homes, at the opposite ends of the country, then discuss on the phone. So last week, when my parents were staying with us, there was much excitement as we planned a trip to Sunbury Antiques Market at Kempton Park. I’m not sure how this place has escaped my notice as Husband and I like to think of ourselves as the sort of couple who ‘do a bit of knowledgeable antiquing’ and we spend a fair amount of time mooching around brocantes in France.

Well, hold the horses. Sunbury Antiques Market leaves those brocantes standing (note racecourse pun, couldn’t resist). Anyway, I’m getting ahead of myself.

Planning the trip was fraught. “They start trading at 6.30am,” I optimistically mentioned to Husband. “No way,” he said firmly. ‘We’ll rock up at about 10am, after the traffic has died down.”

What? It’s not like attending a party. You’re not supposed to be fashionably late! I was deeply infuriated because I knew all the best things would be snatched up at about 6.35am. I’m extremely competitive and intrinsically believe that if a thing is worth doing, it’s worth doing well; that means getting up when it’s still dark to visit an antique fair. My pleas, “We have to take this seriously. It’s work,” fell on deaf ears. “No, it’s shopping,” he replied, stonily.

Throughout the entire journey there, I perched forward in my seat and, in an satirical reversal of roles, repeatedly asked Husband, “Are we nearly there yet?”

On arrival, dad was pleased because the market offered one of his favourite things of all time, free parking and free admission. Mum was equally delighted because she got to say (no less than 22 times), “I had one of those, the exact one! If I’d hung onto it, we’d be rich.” Unlikely, because the things she pointed to averaged out £6 a piece, but it was good sport.

The large, twice-monthly market is recognised as one of Europe’s premier antiques markets and with good reason. There are well over 700 stalls offering a vast range of goods; anything from furniture, gold and silverware to vintage beermats (I bought a bundle, for a little art project). The sun was shining and it felt very continental; I heard stall holders speaking French, Italian and Dutch – cross-channel runs being worth their while. I was giddy with excitement when I spotted one French stall holder wearing a beret. At least, I think he was French, I hope so because I love a man who plays to the crowd.

Speaking of which, Husband indulged me. He encouraged me to buy various random and bizarre pieces, including a 1920s Snakes and Ladders game and a couple of vases shaped as tattooed feet. He sure knows how to keep his woman happy!

• For more about Adele’s latest books, visit adeleparks.com


Are We Nearly There Yet? visits Bocketts Farm near Leatherhead - May 2017


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Surrey visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Surrey staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Surrey account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Surrey Life

Yesterday, 15:06

Whether you're looking for fine dining, pub grub or exotic dishes, eating out in Surrey has something for everyone. Here's our guide to the best local restaurants and pubs

Read more
Yesterday, 14:08

From riverside retreats to secret gardens, we’ve got your summer covered with this selection of Surrey pubs that are perfect to enjoy your favourite tipple and a bite to eat in the sunshine

Read more
Wed, 15:41

The Bike Project Surrey, which refurbishes donated bikes and sells them to the local community, has received funding from the Charles Russell Speechlys Community Fund

Read more
Wed, 14:47

We talked to chief audiologist at The Tinnitus Clinic, Mark Williams, who discussed causes, symptoms and treatments for tinnitus and hearing loss. Here’s what to do if you have ringing in your ears

Read more
Tue, 16:12

Reading, writing… and fire-lighting? More and more children across the UK are being taken out of the classroom to be taught in the great outdoors, writes Amy Noton

Read more
Tue, 10:51

Based in Ockley, Louise Dunckley finds artistic inspiration in her local surroundings. Her illustrations of Surrey’s villages, towns and landmarks capture beautifully the qualities of this fine county. Tinx Newton chatted with her about her work and being chosen to produce prints to commemorate the Surrey Hills AONB’s 60th anniversary

Read more

Famous for its park and royal connections, and recently named one of the best places in the UK to live, there’s plenty to uncover in this riverside town

Read more
Mon, 11:52

Great things to do in Surrey this weekend: art exhibitions, walks, concerts, theatre, places to visit and other events and ideas.

Read more
Friday, May 18, 2018

This month we launch our annual photography competition, sponsored by Portmore Dental. The winners will be featured in our 2019 Beautiful Surrey calendar. Here are some inspirational shots submitted over the last month, alongside details of this year’s prizes and how to enter

Read more
Friday, May 18, 2018

We round up 10 of the most beautiful photos of Surrey shared on Instagram this week…

Read more
Thursday, May 17, 2018

This edition of Surrey Life features all the local ingredients to make this month special

Read more
Thursday, May 17, 2018

As well as viewing all the new and vibrant show content first, there’s plenty to do at the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show Preview Evening on Monday 2 July from 5pm to 10.30pm.

Read more
Thursday, May 17, 2018

We are offering one lucky winner the chance to win a pair of tickets to see Fanfare and Fireworks with the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra at Hampton Court Palace

Read more
Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Whilst watching the high (or ‘low’ depending upon your perspective) lights of yet another Donald Trump press conference, my mind skipped back to when I was around five or six years old and my favourite toy was Action Man.

Read more
Great British Holidays advert link

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Surrey's trusted business finder

Job search in your local area

Property Search