Professional rivalry was put to one side on Friday 29th August as three Woolley's specialists joined forces with other UK auctioneers to take on the dealers in the annual Auctioneers vs Dealers football match, held at the Bank of England Sports Club, Roehampton. This event, now in its 6th year, is organised by furniture dealer Lennox Cato, and sponsored by the Antiques Trade Gazette, to raise funds on behalf of Breast Cancer Haven.
Flying the flag for Woolley and Wallis were Michael Jeffery (20th Century Design) and Mark Richards (Furniture), both of whom are regular participants. This year they were joined by Jim Gale (Furniture), winning his first virtual cap for the Auctioneers' team. All three, together with the rest of the team, played with great enthusiasm; a strong pass from Michael Jeffery set up the first goal of the match, and a sudden run by Jim Gale, very late in the second half, came close to winning the match for the Auctioneers.
The match ended with a very fair 2-2 draw, but organisers insisted on a winner being decided by a penalty shoot-out. Not wishing to become the industry's equivalent of Gareth Southgate, our three players stood by and crossed their fingers (see image). Their decision may have been a right one, as an early miss by one of their team mates resulted in the Dealers going through 5-4 on penalties.
However, there were no hard feelings and post-match festivities of a barbecue, raffle and charity auction helped boost the total raised for Breast Cancer Haven to over £10,000.