RFS events 2016 for webForthcoming RFS Events for Spring 2018

New thinking about sixteenth century furniture, 24 February 2018 at the V&A, London


The 2018 Research in Progress meeting will focus on the sixteenth century, which saw great change in furniture types, usage, construction and decoration. Although a substantial body of material survives, study of the field is complicated by the importation of furniture, the influx of immigrant craftsmen and the recycling of fragments.  Full details about speakers and their presentations are available on our Research in Progress page.

The meeting will be held at the V&A Sackler Centre, starting at 10 am for 10.30am and finishing at 4.45pm. The fee covers attendance and tea/coffee, but not lunch, which can be purchased at the V&A café.

Fee: £34 for RFS members, £39 for non-members.  Apply by February 5th.

Thomas Chippendale: A celebration of craftsmanship and design, Leeds City Museum Friday 23rd March

A guided tour by Adam Bowett, co-curator of this exhibition celebrating the tercentenary of Chippendale’s birth at nearby Otley in 1718.   This important exhibition explores the life, work and legacy of England’s most celebrated cabinet-maker and furniture designer, including original drawings and documents and many examples of his furniture, some of which will be on public display for the first time.  Suggestions for lunch nearby will be provided. Fee: £10 for members and guests.

For those wishing to explore furniture further: Harewood House, and Temple Newsam are both easily accessible by bus. Apply by February 5th.

One day event booking form for Spring 2018

Shandy Hall and Gilling Castle, North Yorkshire, Saturday June 2nd

A visit to the home of Laurence Sterne, writer, parson and humourist, who became vicar of Coxwold in 1760. Patrick Wildgust, resident curator of the house and its eclectic collection relating to Sterne, will introduce us to his fascinating world in the church, with its magnificent monuments and 18th century woodwork installed by Sterne.

We will then be encouraged to wander through the 15th century house and its collection of furniture and memorabilia which Sterne named after the hero of his successful first novel. After a pub lunch we will visit Gilling Castle, noted for its Elizabethan panelling and stained glass, followed by tea at Ampleforth College which contains locally made furniture.

Fee including entry, coffee, lunch and tea £38. Apply by March 1st

One day event booking form for Spring 2018

Annual Conference – Charles Rennie Mackintosh: Inspired by the past, looking to the future. 27th June  – 1st. July, Glasgow

The main conference starts on Friday 29th June. We will be guests of the Glasgow School of Art for the Annual Christopher Gilbert Lecture: Charles Rennie Mackintosh and his regional influences delivered by David Jones, followed by presentations on the work involved in restoring the fixed woodwork, furniture and historic finishes of the library following the devastating fire in 2014. We will learn of the search for skilled Scottish craftsmen to replicate the incinerated furniture and an opportunity to view work in progress on the restoration of Mackintosh’s masterpiece. We hope that the renovations will be ready in time to host a reception for us at the refurbished ‘Mackintosh at the Willow’ tea room.

On Saturday: a private visit to the Glasgow Tenement House, a unique survival of an artisan class tenement retaining its complete early 20th century furnishings; then to Kelvingrove Art Gallery to view the major exhibition on the 150th anniversary of his birth. On Sunday: the Society AGM followed by ‘the Furniture Surgery’ for members to bring small items of furniture for discussion. After a buffet lunch we will depart.

We will be staying in the new GSA accommodation off Blythswood Square, within a short walk of most of our venues, in comfortable single rooms with en-suite showers arranged in small suites sharing a large well-appointed kitchen. Breakfast, will be delivered for us to self-cater.

As in recent years, there are two optional days to the conference. 2017 was the bicentenary of the birth of Alexander ‘Greek’ Thomson, one of Scotland’s most original architects and furniture designers. On Thursday 28th June, we have been invited to visit the house Thomson built or himself, followed by a visit to the recreated home of Mackintosh at Glasgow University containing his original furnishings.

Many will wish to benefit from our good-value central Glasgow accommodation on Wednesday night to be ready for Thursday morning. Suggestions will be provided for visits and group dining on Wednesday and Thursday.

Fees: Main conference from Friday morning to Sunday lunch, including travel by coach or public transport, accommodation, breakfast, coffee, lunch and dinner in single rooms: £295, per member. Friday- Sunday, non-residential: £200.

Optional day, Thursday 28th. June, fee: £20 (includes no meals or transport)

Optional Wednesday and Thursday accommodation at GSA: £38 per person per night (breakfast not included).   Apply by March 1st.

Conference booking form 2018

Booking forms for all events for events may be download from this website:

One day event booking form for Spring 2018

Conference booking form 2018

Research in Progess Booking form 2018

Since events are sometimes fully subscribed and dealt with in order of receipt, you are advised to apply as early as possible. The RFS reserves the right to amend or cancel elements of events. Significant changes will be communicated to successful applicants.

Jeremy Bate, Events Secretary

For further information and enquiries about RFS events and bookings please contact: