We get lots of requests everyday from private sellers looking to sell their discontinued tableware to us, and we understand there may a little apprehension, a few queries regarding how to do this, and what the process is, so we thought we'd answer some of the most frequently asked questions we get

Q - How old can the tableware be that I'm looking to sell?

We generally only look to buy discontinued sets from the late 1950's onwards, this is because the items from this period onwards are still often found in good condition without too much wear and without chips and cracks, and so they are items we can then offer to our customers

Q - Do you have a minimum quantity that you purchase?

Yes, we only look to purchase sets, or quantities of items of 20 or more. Unfortunately buying less than this is not time or cost effective

Q - Do you purchase from abroad?

Unfortunately not. We can only purchase sets from within the UK mainland. This is due to carriage, handling & custom fees

Q - Where are you based & can I drop in?

We have a 5000sq foot warehouse based in Essex (approx 15 minutes from M11 jnc 8) but unfortunately we are not open to the general public

Q - How do I know you would be interested in buying from me?

We reply to everyone who offers china to us, usually within 48hrs.  Unfortunately we cannot buy everything that is offered to us, but if we have no interest in the pieces you are selling, we will advise you of this.

Should we be interested in what you have, we may have a few more questions about the pieces, whether that be clarification on condition, size or quantities, and from there, if we have enough of a need for it, we will then make you an offer

Q - What condition do you accept?

We do not accept any pieces which are chipped, cracked, crazed, have heavy/significant wear to the glaze (either by previous cutlery use or fading by a dishwasher )

We understand that discontinued patterns will be previously owned, loved and used, but it's very important to check every piece thoroughly to make sure there is no damage. Light wear by cutlery use is acceptable, and tends to be visible on the everyday pieces such as dinner plates, cereal bowls and mugs, but we do need to know if any of the items have any such wear, as this may affect any offer we make

If you are looking to sell crystal/glassware to us, we only look to purchase items which are fully marked/etched on the bases (where applicable)

Q - Do you buy everything I've offered?

We make an offer for everything you have offered us, we do not 'cherry pick' the pieces we wish to purchase as some other companies may do. We do not feel this is fair to you, as it usually leaves you with pieces that are not particularly saleable 

Q - How much will you offer me?

This is a tricky one! There are many variables to what our offer may be. We have to take account of what our current stock levels are, do we have customers waiting for the pieces you are offering, what is the condition of the pieces offered, are we already in the process of purchasing this pattern from elsewhere, and do we think our customers may be looking for these pieces in the future, amongst other criteria we need to consider

Q - How long is your offer open for?

Our offers are valid for 28 days. We understand that you may have offered the same set to other china matching services, or maybe you need to consult with family members, and of course you are looking for the best price, for the least inconvenience to yourselves

Q - Do you collect from us?

The short answer is Yes! If you are within 45 miles of our warehouse (CM22 7JY - click to enlarge map) we may be able to collect directly & therefore avoiding the need to pack for a courier collection

Q - How do I get it to you if you can't collect?

If you accept our offer and are more than 45 miles from us, we would arrange and pay for ParcelForce to come and collect from you, however you would need to pack the items to our specifications, but don't worry, we do forward you detailed instructions on how to pack for a safe & trouble free journey!

Q - Do you supply the packaging materials?

No, all the packaging materials are to be sourced by yourselves. But don't worry, you shouldn't have to go to the trouble of buying specialist boxes/paper or bubble wrap. Good sized, strong, previously used boxes are absolutely fine (e.g lawnmower box or similar), and plenty of newspapers provide excellent packaging materials, and these are often found around the house, or can be collected over a period of time

Q - How quickly can you collect?

If your tableware is being collected by courier, then once it is ready, we can usually arrange a collection within 24/48hrs, or a day to suit you. Courier Collections only take place Monday - Friday (exc. bank holidays)

If we are collecting in person, we will arrange a mutually agreed day & time at the first possible opportunity, this can be an evening or weekend if most convenient for you

Q - How long does it take to get to you by courier?

Delivery to us by courier is usually within a day or two (not weekends) and as soon as it lands with us, we'll unpack & check everything

Q - What happens if anything arrives broken?

As long as you follow our packing instructions, it is very unusual for pieces to arrive broken, so it is very important to follow the steps on how to pack your boxes!

If  the items have been packed accordingly, and anything were to arrive damaged, we would still pay you the agreed amount. However should the items arrived damaged/broken because poor quality/sized boxes were used, or not enough packaging materials, etc then we may reduce our offer, or send it back to your at your cost

We always take photographs as we unpack every parcel so in the case of any breakages/damaged items, we will forward these on to you

Q - How do I get paid?

We will contact you usually within 24hrs of the tableware being delivered to us to arrange to make payment. This is usually by bank transfer, but we can also pay by cheque or PayPal