Tracking down the ultimate Faberge Egg


Seven missing Faberge eggs still out there waiting to be found

Where does one find the ultimate egg… of the Fabergé kind? The answer may be to search some 1300 auction sites via Barnebys, the worlds biggest and fastest growing auction search engine.

This might be one way to find one of the seven missing jewel-encrusted Fabergé eggs, each worth a king’s ranson. Instead of having to trawl through hundreds of auction sites Barnebys will provide you with a list of what you are searching for as well as a history of what similar objects or works of art have sold for at auction.

In the case of Fabergé eggs the Barnebys database provides no fewer than 758 Fabergé eggs sold via Christie’s, Sotheby’s, Bonhams and many smaller auctioneers - one made over £10m. These wonderful eggs include some with hidden surprises, some that tell the time and some that play music. Very often they were the gift of choice for Emperors, Kings and especially the Tsars to their loved ones.

In total there are no fewer than 57 jewel-bedecked eggs commissioned by the Russian Tsar, as an annual Easter gift for his wife the Tsarina. The first egg was produced in 1885 on the orders of Alexander III of Russia. Maria Feodorovna the Tsarina was so fond of these eggs that Alexander appointed Peter Carl Fabergé to the Royal Warrant. Every Easter, he and his colleagues presented a new egg, totally unique, with a surprise inside. Nicholas II of Russia took over the tradition and went on to provide the unique Easter gifts both to his wife, Alexandra Feodorovna and widowed Czarina.

Pontus Silfverstolpe, co-founder of Barnebys, says: “We know that one egg went with Maria Feodorovna in 1918 when she left the country. The other eggs were forgotten or removed during the Russian Revolution, some of which were stolen. In the 1930s Joseph Stalin sold fourteen eggs through western auction houses to raise much needed money. Today there are 21 eggs left in Russia in the Kremlin Museum.

During WW2 some of the lost eggs were traded for bread and food. Recently an American scrap dealer bought an egg in a flea market which turned out to be one of the eight missing Fabergé eggs. It is expected to sell for around $200m when it comes to auction in London this April.”

In 2004 there was great excitement when the Russian gas and oil billionaire Viktor Vekselberg bought the world's second largest Fabergé collection of nine eggs. He commented to the BBC after the sale: "The religious, spiritual and emotional content captured by these Fabergé eggs touches upon the soul of the Russian people.”

For those of seeking one of those missing gems so beloved by the Tsars it will take time, patience, a great deal of searching and huge amounts of luck. But there are seven lost Fabrgé eggs left out there, somewhere Keeping an eye on Barnebys website may just help to unearth one of those fabled eggs.

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Turner’s House Trust

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Turner’s House Trust gains Civic Pride Award

The London Borough of Richmond upon Thames has bestowed a Civic Pride Award of £5,000 to enable Turner’s House Trust to have its collection of prints, drawings, watercolours and oils professionally catalogued.

This large and fascinating collection, much of which relates to JMW Turner’s own work and to that of his contemporaries, was left to the Trust by Professor Harold Livermore, the last owner of Sandycombe Lodge. Professor Livermore’s bequest of the house has made all the Trust’s projects possible, preserving it for the nation and future generations.
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Richmond Council’s Cabinet Member for Community and the Voluntary Sector, Cllr Susan Chappell, said: “The Civic Pride Fund offers grants to various deserving local organisations including those maintaining and protecting the Arts. We are delighted to fund Turner’s House Trust’s cataloguing project. We are aware that there are a number of Turner enthusiasts in the community and are very pleased to be able support this magnificent organisation.”

“Thanks to Civic Pride, when Turner’s House conservation is complete and reopened to the public, a full professional catalogue will be a valuable resource for teachers and students and will allow interested members of the public to explore the wealth of information, which these works hold,” said Catherine Parry-Wingfield, chairman, Turner’s House Trust.
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Professor Harold Livermore and his wife Ann bought Sandycombe Lodge in Twickenham in 1947, restoring it after its wartime use as a ‘shadow factory’. In 2005 Professor Livermore set up the Sandycombe Lodge Trust (now Turner’s House Trust), with the aim that the house should be preserved ‘as a monument to Turner in Twickenham’.

Turner’s House Trust became the owner of the house, late in 2010 following Professor Livermore’s death. The bequest included the collection being catalogued.

Largely unspoilt, apart from later additions, the villa is threatened by damp and lack of attention over the years. It is now a Grade II* listed building on English Heritage’s Heritage at Risk Register.

Turner’s House Trust followed Professor Livermore’s wish that the house should be preserved as a monument to Turner in Twickenham. A rescue strategy to secure an exciting and fitting future for the House was put in place, dependent upon raising £2.4 million for the job to be done properly. Thanks to funding promises from the Heritage Lottery Fund and other funding bodies, the generosity of members of the public and the Trust’s recent successful Crowdfunding campaign, there is now less than £100,000 to be found.

Work is scheduled to begin, by leading conservation architect Gary Butler of Butler Hegarty and many specialists, next month. Turner’s House will now be closed until the summer of 2017.

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Brian Doubleday - Business Growth Expert

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Local business growth expert steps in to save SMEs abandoned by the government

Brian Doubleday, a local business expert, is helping SMEs left in limbo by the government’s shock decision to scrap its Growth Accelerator programme (GA).

This scheme provided heavily subsidised coaching to help them grow. For example, under the old GA scheme, depending on your business size for just £600 you received £3,500 worth of advice and guidance face-to-face with experts like Brian after paying VAT which was recuperable.

According to the government’s Business Growth Service (BGS) website, the hugely popular, GA signed up 18,000 businesses, helping them to raise more than £100 million with a 94% approval rating. But the Chancellor ditched the programme in November 2015, leaving those who’d spent hours applying, furious, and those in mid-course exasperated as the scheme was stopped on 1 March.

“The government has given up on SMEs,” says Doubleday, formerly a Marketing Director at ICI, and now a franchise owner with Action Coach, the world’s leading business coaching firm. “What I do is help entrepreneurs and CEOs realise their vision and free up their time by making better choices to get better results. I help improve the way they work, so they can delegate and leave others to run the business. I also get them to think strategically, dream BIG and sharpen up their marketing and lead generation, which are key to growth.

“Ultimately I want them to regain their lives and stop working 80 + hours a week. At the same time they can greatly grow the value of their business and turn the business into an asset.”

Doubleday says that Olympic athletes have coaches, like top ballerinas and world-class footballers like Lionel Messi. “We all need coaches to help us see things differently and improve what we undertake. “It’s a shame the government has pulled such a popular and effective coaching programme as part of the latest cuts to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. However, I am now offering to step into the breach.”

To find out more about how Brian can help you can contact Brian Doubleday at: or take a look at his Twitter feed, or you can find me on LinkedIn or call Brian on 07703 107070.

The Grange, Surrey’s leading charity providing services to people with learning disabilities

Catering group

The Grange in final push to complete Lifting Expectations Appeal to fund a major refurbishment

The Grange, Surrey’s leading charity providing services to people with learning disabilities, is seeking a final £145,000 to complete a major refurbishment.

Already it has raised £475,000 which will help create spaces for 25 new people, enabling them to learn essential skills for the workplace.
The project will deliver a larger IT suite, two extra rooms for skills training and activities, and a Heritage Room telling the story of The Grange, dating back to 1938 in Great Bookham. Then it was The School of Stitchery & Lace for young disabled girls whose work included embroidery for the Royal Family.

The refurb will involve levelling the upstairs floors and widening all corridors for the 15 wheelchair users. Also new will be a lift and automatic doors allowing people to move around more freely.

“This is a fantastic project,” says CEO Sally Lines OBE. “And, if we can get the last £145,000, it will make a huge difference as it will mean we can do the refurbishment in one go and more quickly and economically than if we had to stop and start again.

“The Lifting Expectations Appeal will create 96 new sessions every week, including growing and selling plants; catering for and serving in our two cafes; crafting wooden planters and bird boxes; doing every kind of art and craft activity, and mini experiences like fudge-making and book order fulfilment.

“It’s very sad – some would say a scandal – that people with learning disabilities have the highest rate of unemployment in the UK - over 90%. But we can change that by helping them to build self-esteem and skills and to find work experience or paid employment.”

For more information please visit

Fundraiser Fashion Show


Thursday 14 April at 7pm at the McComish Hall

The Fashion and Textiles Department and the BHSA will be hosting the first Box Hill School Fashion show in 6 years! Students from Years 7 to 13 will be showcasing work with a variety of themes. Music produced by students will be played throughout the evening.
Surrey’s Premier Lifestyle Magazine