c.1710 / Commode, Andre-Charles Boulle ©Wallace Collection


British & Irish Furniture Makers Online Project

The FHS is now fundraising to support the next phases of this project, involving the revision and expansion of the newly digitised database of British & Irish Furniture Makers to take account of new research and scholarship, and broadening the time-frame to run from 1600 to the present day, entering fields hitherto neglected such as the history of the furniture trade and its impact on Metropolitan history, a speciality of our partners at the Institute of Historical Research. 

The second phase of the project will begin in September 2017 and continue for at least five years.  Costs per year are estimated at £70,000, £365,000 in total, and the FHS has already contributed £45,000 donated to the project from the Society's 50th Anniversary Appeal and £10,000 from donations, leaving an appeal target of £310,000.  This money will be used to fund a post-doctoral research fellow, up to three or more junior research scholars, technical costs, and related FHS-run events such as study days, collection visits, annual research seminars and symposia.

This project and its related activities will help develop the study of the Furniture trade and disseminate the results of this study to a wider audience.

We are delighted to announce that the free at access, fully searchable BIFMO database is now live and online. Visit to view.

If you would like to donate to support this important project, please click the link on this page to download a Donation Form, or contact Jill Bace at

BIFMO is a collaboration between the Furniture History Society and the Insitute of Historical Research.  For more information, visit and


50th Anniversary Appeal

1964  - The Furniture History Society - 2014
The Society was determined to make creative use of the opportunity offered by its 50th Anniversary and has established a fund of more than £250,000 dedicated to education, research and publication in the field of furniture and interior decoration. It has been designed specifically to encourage and support scholars, curators and professionals in the field of the history of furniture and interior decoration who are at an early stage of their career development. This is particularly relevant today as cutbacks in curatorial posts, funding for travel and research, and the associated expenses, are threatening the development of scholarship and expertise. At the outset it was made clear that this fund is not an addition to the Society’s general reserves, but a restricted fund exclusively applicable to this particular charitable purpose.

Although the Society has embarked upon the next stage of its development, the Anniversary Appeal remains open, and we very much hope that further generosity will enable us to substantially exceed the magnificent total received to date . Every donation, small or large, makes a difference, and is much appreciated.

The FHS depends for its income entirely on members and supporters. Please consider leaving the FHS a legacy in your will: it is a registered charity and in the UK all legacies to it are exempt from Inheritance Tax without limit. Legacies can take the form of a lump sum or the residue or a fraction of your estate. They will not be spent on administrative costs but go towards developing our publication programme, helping to promote research projects and enabling the Society to campaign more vigorously to protect the furniture heritage.

The following would be a suitable form of wording to send to your solicitor for inclusion in your will or adding a codicil to an existing one:

“I bequeath to the Furniture History Society, c/o Furniture Department, Victoria and Albert Museum, London SW7 2RL, a legacy of ……. free of all taxes.”

The Hon. Treasurer of the FHS is always happy to advise potential benefactors.

To contact the Furniture History Society regarding a Donation of Legacy please email us at