1754-1780 / Chair, Thomas Chippendale ©V&A Museum

The Society is governed by an elected Council supported by specialist officers. Council members are elected to serve a 3 year term and are responsible for ensuring the Society fulfills its aims and objectives. Council meetings take place quarterly.

Sir Nicholas Goodison – President

President of the FHS since 1990, author of Furniture History: Forty Years On (2004), a history of the Society, updated in the 2014 volume of Furniture History. His numerous publications and articles in learned journals include Ormolu: The Work of Matthew Boulton (London 1974).  His interests in the decorative arts are wide-ranging and include commissions to contemporary artists and craftsmen. His wife, Judith, Lady Goodison, is also a prominent furniture historian and supporter of the FHS  and the author of The Life and Work of Thomas Chippendale Junior (2017). 

Sir Nicholas’s banking career included the chairmanship of TSB, which merged with Lloyds in 1995. As Chairman of the London Stock Exchange (1976-88) he led the institution into the ‘Big Bang’, which revolutionised the City and transformed the trading of stocks and shares.  His artistic activities have been no less distinguished, including prominent roles at the Courtauld Institute, the Burlington Magazine, the Walpole Society and the National Heritage Memorial Fund.  He published in 2004 for HM Treasury, the Goodison Review (report Securing the Best for our Museums: Private Giving and Government Support). His honours include the CINOA Prize for Lifetime Achievement in Arts 2004, Robinson Medal V&A Museum 2007; Liveryman: Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths, Worshipful Company of Clockmakers; Hon DLitt: City University 1985, University of London 2003; Hon LLD University of Exeter 1989, Hon DSc Aston University 1994, Hon DArt De Montfort University 1998, Hon DCL University of Northumbria 1999; Hon Fell King's Coll Cambridge, Hon Fell Courtauld Inst of Art; Hon Fell Royal Acad, Sr Fell RCA 1991, Hon FRIBA 1992, Hon Fell City and Guilds; CIMgt, FCIB 1989 (vice-pres 1989), FBA, FSA, FRSA; Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur 1990.

Christopher Rowell – Chairman

Christopher Rowell is the National Trust’s Furniture Curator. This specialist role involves researching, publishing and advising on an extensive international collection displayed in historic interiors in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. About eighty of the Trust’s houses contain notable furniture, woodwork and picture frames. He has published widely on country house collections, including editing and contributing to Ham House: 400 Years of Collecting and Patronage, published in July 2013 by Yale University Press. This is the first in a series of Yale books, published in partnership with the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, on individual great houses of the National Trust and on aspects of its rich and varied collections. Forthcoming volumes will include Christopher Rowell’s Furniture in National Trust Houses.

Dr Megan Wheeler – Honorary Secretary

Megan read Modern History at Christ Church, Oxford and in 2006 completed her DPhil on the persecution of Protestants in England in the reign of Mary I, before turning to Art History.  Having worked as a Specialist in Furniture and Works of Art for Bonhams Auctioneers until 2015, Megan is now the Lead Cataloguer on the National Trust’s Furniture Research Project.  She is also a member of the Regional Furniture Society, and sits on the committee of the Antique Metalware Society.

Martin Williams – Honorary Treasurer

Martin Williams trained as an accountant. For 20 years from 1976, he was chief executive of the Musicians Benevolent Fund. From 1995-2011, he was company secretary of four of The Prince of Wales’s charities and carried out projects for a wide range of organisations including the Royal College of Music and Imperial College. Martin is trustee of a number of charities including the Royal Albert Hall and the Kathleen Ferrier Scholarship Fund. He administers the Ouseley Trust, a charity supporting the choral liturgy of the Church of England. Martin was a trustee of the Society of Antiquaries of London from 1994-2000 and still serves on its Finance committee. He has been a non-executive director of Marlin Chemicals Ltd for over 30 years, and, currently, he is the non-executive chairman of the Edition Peters Group - international music publishers based in Leipzig.

Dr Megan Aldrich – Honorary Editorial Secretary

Megan Aldrich is an independent historian of architecture and design, including gardens, furniture and interiors.  Her past work has focused particularly on historicism and the Gothic Revival during the period 1750-1850.  She began her carerr at the Victoria and Albert Museum, is the former Academy Director of Sotheby's Institute of Art in London, and edited Furniture History from 2001 to 2005.  She lectures and published widely, and in 2019 will offer courses at Oxford and Reading Universities.  Recent publications include a study of medievalism in the landscape gardens at Stowe for an exhibition at Wörlitz in Saxony in 2015, a study of Capability Brown as an architect at Burghley House for the ICOMOS conference in Bath to commemorate the tercentenary of Brown's birth (Garden History 2016), an an article on 'Thomas Rickman and the Victorians' in a volume of the same name, co-edited with Alexandrina Buchanan as part of a research project on the architect and antiquary Thomas Rickman (1776-1841), (Victorian Society Studies in Architecture and Design, forthcoming).

Additional Council Members
Marcus Rädecke

Marcus Rädecke is a director of long-standing TEFAF Maastricht exhibitor Galerie Neuse in Bremen, where he specialises in important pieces of German and French ébénisterie, Kunstkammer objects and tapestries.  Born in Peru and married to a Swede but an Anglophile since childhood days in the British school system, Marcus has spent much of his life in England, including 17 years with Christie's London, where he was Head of European Furniture & Works of Art.  As a trained cabinet maker and with a diploma in restoration and conservation from West Dean College, Marcus had previously worked in the London restoration workshops of Spink & Son.  He also hold an MPhil in the History of Arts and has served on various vetting committees, including at TEFAF Maastricht.

Jonathan Coulborn

Jonathan Coulborn is the third generation of his family to run Thomas Coulborn & Sons.  He spent a number of years working for Sotheby's in Sussex, London and Madrid before returning to the family business in 1999.  His firm has exhibited at the annual fair of the British Antique Dealers Association (BADA) from 2005 onwards, and he was chairman of the Fair from 2009 - 2011, and chairman of the BADA itself from 2011 - 2013.  His firm exhibited at the 75th and final Grosvenor House Antiques Fair where it won the Gold Medal for Object of the Year.  Since 2010, Thomas Coulborn & Sons has exhibited annually at Masterpiece, and has also shown at other venues both in the United Kingdom and abroad.  Jonathan lectures on the history of furniture in the United Kingdom and in Spain.

Dr Wolf Burchard

Wolf Burchard is an Associate Curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the author of The Sovereign Artist: Charles Le Brun and the Image of Louis XIV (Paul Holberton Publishing, 2016).  From 2015 to 2018 he was the Furniture Research Curator at the National Trust and from 2009 to 2014 he was Curatorial Assistant at the Royal Collection Trust, where he co-curated The First Georgians: Art & Monarchy, 1714 - 1760 to commemorate the tercentenary of George I's accession to the British throne.  He read history of art and architecture and holds an MA and PhD from the Courtauld Institute of Art; he is on the Board of Trustees of the Georgian Group, the Editorial Panel of the Furniture History Society and on the Vetting Committees of TEFAF and Masterpiece Art Fair.

Dr Barbara Lasic

Dr Barbara Lasic is a Lecturer in History of Art at the University of Buckingham.  She studied English Literature and History at the Universite Denis Diderot in Paris, and History of Art at the Unviersity of Manchester where, in 2006, she gained a PhD on the collecting of eighteenth-century French decorative arts in Brtain, 1789-1914.  Barbara has also worked at the Victoria & Albert Museum as part of the curatorial team involved in the redevelopment of the Europe: 1600-1800 galleries.  Before joining the V & A, Barbara held positions at the Wellcome Trust and the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich.

Barbara has published on the subject of art collecting, the history of taste, and museum architecture.  Her research interests include the formation of museums, the private and institutional collecting and display of French art and, more broadly, nineteenth and early twentieth-century cultures of collecting.  More specifically, she is currently investigating the production and consumption of Russeries in eighteenth-century France, the passage of the Camondo collections from the private to the public sphere, and the activities of the 20th-century dealer, curator and connoisseur Edouard Jonas.

Dr Christophe de Quénetain

Christophe is an art dealer and the chairman antiquairs of TEFAF.  He is also the author of Pierre Garnier, 1726/27 - 1806, Les Styles Consulat et Empire and Une paire de fauteuils néoclassiques par Antonio Landucci et Antonio Asprucci 'habillés' par Alexis Mabille.  He read History of Art and Architecture at the École du Louvre, and has degress from the University François-Rabelais de Tours, and the University of Strasbourgh, as well as a doctorate from the Sorbonne.  He was also an auditor at IHEDN ('Institut des hautes études de défense nationale') and has trained at the École Boulle.

Adrian Hume-Sayer

A director of the Private Collections and Country House Sales department at Christie’s, Adrian specialises in furniture and works of art. He has been responsible for a number of notable collection sales including: Harewood, Collecting in the Royal Tradition; The Collection of Professor Sir Albert Richardson; and Works of Art from the Collection of the Marquesses of Londonderry as well as orchestrating  the sales of the personal collections of Margaret Thatcher and Audrey Hepburn.   Training as an auctioneer at the age of twenty-one, he initially worked at Tennants Auctioneers in his native North Yorkshire moving to Bonhams in 2003 and subsequently to Christie’s in 2009.   With a particularly strong interest in all types of English furniture and works of art, Adrian has a been a member of the Furniture History Society for ten years; he also sits on the selection committee for the Attingham Summer School.  Adrian’s other interests include architecture, agriculture and classic cars and he has recently embarked on the restoration of a derelict farmhouse in the Yorkshire Dales, which dates in part to the 17th century.

Other Roles Within FHS

Other roles across the Society exist in order to support Council in their duties.

Sharon Goodman – Newsletter Editor

Sharon Goodman is the furniture and decorative arts researcher for a leading London auction house.  She has an undergraduate degree in History, and a Master's degree in Fine and Decorative Art.  To date, she has published two academic articles on furniture: in 2007, on the designs of the Aesthetic Movement architect Bernard Smith in the Journal of the Decorative Arts Society, and in 2016, on the Mayhew & Ince commission for Sir Thomas Edwardes in Marylebone in the Furniture History Society's journal Furniture History.  She has recently submitted a third article on the work of Paul Saunders for the 9th Earl of Lincoln at Exchequer House (10 Downing Street), London, for publication in The British Art Journal in 2018.

Sarah Medlam – Events Committee Chair

Sarah Medlam studied English Language and Literature at Oxford, before turning to furniture studies.  She joined the Furniture History Society in 1974, when she started working at The Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle, where she was responsible for the furniture collections.  She worked there for eighteen years before joining the Furniture and Woodwork Department at the V&A as a Senior Curator.  She was Deputy Curator on the British Galleries Project, 1996-2001 and later on the team for the new Europe Galleries.  She retired in 2012.  For the FHS she has served as a Council Member, Honorary Secretary and Editor of the Journal.  She is currently Chairman of the Events Committee.

Adriana Turpin – Grants Committee Chair

Adriana is academic director of an MA  run by the Institut d'Etudes Superieures des Arts (IESA) and the Wallace collection on the history and business of art and collecting, which is validated by Warwick University.  Previously she was Deputy Director, Sotheby's Institute where she specialised in the history of decorative arts. She has written various articles on English furniture, including the discovery of a table designed for Queen Mary's Water Gallery at Hampton Court. She also wrote on William Beckford's collections of furniture for the exhibition held at the Bard Graduate Centre and Dulwich Art Gallery, 2002-3 and completed an article on the new world objects in Cosimo I de Medici's collection in Curiosity and Wonder, ed. A.Marr and J.H. Evans published by Ashgate Press. She is now conducting further research into the display of the Medici Tribuna in the Uffizi. Most recently, she has written an essay on the nineteenth-century interpretation of the Renaissance interior.

Jill Bace – Grants Secretary

Beatrice Goddard – Events Secretary

Keith Nicholls – Finance / Membership Secretary

Jill Bace – Publications Officer

To contact a Council Member please email us at the relevant email address:

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To read the set of rules by which the FHS is governed, please click here.