An extremely rare and superb quality oak butterfly joint refectory dining table
and matching six rush seated chairs (4+2) by one of the top Cotswold craftsmen,
Oliver George Morel; c1950.
An early work and with excellent provenance.
Table approx: h: 28" w: 27" l: 68"
Early pieces by Oliver Morel are exceptionally rare and hardly ever appear on the open market.
This commissioned table and chairs were made by him at his workshop in Daren in Wales, for a well known local
architect client (and friend) and has remained in the same family until very recently.
Oliver George Morel (1916-2003) was a very highly regarded maker of Cotswold School furniture.
He was the son of a pacifist MP, who famously beat Winston Churchill for the Dundee seat in 1922
and was a very principled and considerate teacher.
He nurtured his skills in carpentry at an early age, whilst at Rendcomb College, a progressive boarding school near Cirencester (which had links with Gordon Russell at Broadway) and strangely enough declined an offer of a prestigious university scholarship from the Cadbury Foundation as he considered himself undeserving of such academia.
In 1934, he became a pupil of Edward Barnsley, becoming a full member of the workshop in 1936.
He then later set up his own workshop which he kept going through WWII (allowed, as he was a conscientious objector).
When peace broke out, he bought a rundown sheep farm & workshop ( Daren), near Abergavenny in Wales, where he combined his love of the countryside with carpentry.
He later (c1960’s) moved to Moreton-in-Marsh in Gloucestershire, where he later help founded the Sharpe Centre, promoting the work of amongst others, Eric Sharpe.
Some of his work is referenced in the book “Handmade Woodwork of the 20thC”
and one of his pieces (a cabinet) was made for Rodmarton Manor in 1972.
Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museums have a small casket by him in their collection.