Category Archives: Reviews

Car Boot Review – Shoreham Flyover

It seems like a while since our last boot fair review and with the Summer Months not exactly living up to their name in terms of the weather, we thought it was best to try and get to as many as possible whilst we can. So, early Sunday morning I dragged Chris out of bed at 8.30am to get to the Shoreham-By-Sea boot fair in West Sussex.

Chris had seen this boot fair many a Sunday on his weekly coastal bike rides with his mates, so it’s good to know that I have got him well trained enough to spot these kind of things, even though his mind should have been on watching the road.

It seemed that a 8.30am start (with a stop off for an early morning coffee) was not early enough for the keen beans of West Sussex, already busy with both people wanting to sell as well as wanting to buy we knew that you had to be here much earlier to stand a chance of getting the best bits.

Unlike the Brighton Marina Boot Fair, this was much more traditional in terms of being full of local people wanting to clear out their unwanted items, and the famous saying ‘one man’s rubbish, is another man’s treasure’ was certainly the case here. I understood from one of the local RNLI collectors (who collected a small dontaion on entrance to the boot fair – optional of course), that this was not the biggest the boot fair had been, which means it had great potential for another re-visit in a few weeks.

Quality of stalls
Bags at the ready Chris and I walked through the busy grassy isles, observing each stall to see what kind of goodies we could find. Definately not a destination if you are looking for furniture or big ticket items to restore. However, if you wanted some vintage crockery, old school wood work tools or an album full of 1950’s stamp collections, then this is the boot fair for you. I am not going to lie, there were probably more stalls than not, that we didn’t even rummage through due to being over powered by the amount of Toys and Kid’s Clothing on offer (though great for any new parents out there), however there was certainly enough to keep us satisfied.

How much spending money
Chris ended up with a Black and Decker work bench for £10, perfect for all the future projects we have coming up, not so great to haul back to the car which was waiting on the other side of the field. I purchased, which I considered to be, a few little gems; an ornamental pig for my garden for £2 (don’t ask me why – I just fell in love with it), some old cotton reels that are perfect for hand quilting, plus I really like the artwork used on the labels, and my favourite purchase, an old stamp collection. What a find! I had to negotiate hard, as the lady wanted £15 for the book, however I manged to get down to £8. Full of gorgeous stamps dating back to 1942, it was a perfect find for graphic and colour inspiration.

In summary, I would certainly recommend a visit to the Shoreham-By-Sea Boot Fair. It may be one that you may only want to go to every 4 weeks or so, but I don’t believe that anyone would walk away empty handed. Free entrance or optional donation to the RNLI, means that you can save most of your pennies for your purchases. Remember though to always take your own bags and take the time to rummage through a majority of the stalls. You are bound to find something that’s worth it.

Where and when
Starts last Sunday in May and then every Sunday throughout the summer.
Open from 8am, sellers from 7am
Located just off the A27 and A283 towards Steyning
Website  Link

Car Boot Fair Review – Brighton Marina

I love a good car boot fair. In fact, I’ve spent many a Sunday morning kicking Chris out of bed early  just so I don’t miss the best bits. Much grumbling is involved, but if there is one thing I’ve learned it’s to get there early for the good stuff. Too many times have I dawdled on a Sunday morning only to discover there’s nothing left but some old VHS tapes and the odd collection of disfigured Action Men.

 

The problem is there are just so many to choose from, especially in the Summer when Britain participates in a mass Spring clean. Some are amazing and filled with all sorts of hidden gems. Others are, well let’s be honest, more of a pound shop and frankly not worth giving your Sunday morning up for. So I thought it only fitting to start reviewing car boot fairs up and down the country to find the best.

First up is a personal favourite at the Brighton Marina, East Sussex. It’s open all-year round so you know you’re only going to see the good stuff. Previously we found an Ercol table which we bargained down to£30, only to have it valued at just over £200 once restored.

 

How much spending money
The good news is that there isn’t an entry fee. The bad news is that these are seasoned stall holders so they know what they’ve got. That’s not to say you won’t find a bargain, you will just need to rummage and negotiate a little bit harder than normal. For example I paid £2 for a hand painted ornate bowl, but an old rug at the stall next door was a whopping £85.

Quality of stalls
It was a rainy day so I wasn’t expecting a big turn out, but overall it was pretty good.  A good mixture of old, new and vintage to choose from with a lovely bohemian atmosphere. There’s a wide range of tastes that truly reflect Brighton and Hove culture and with over 200 stalls at it’s peak you can’t go wrong.

 

Where and when
Every Sunday 7am to 1pm
Brighton Marina,
Brighton, East Sussex,
BN2 5WA