The Speckled Hen was established in Brisbane, in 1967 by Ian Fleming, a young university lecturer (Economics) who by training and taste had an eye for quality. In 1969 he teamed up business and romantic interests when he married Joëlle, a French trained interior decorator. A few months later, in March 1970 ‘The Speckled Hen Antiques’ appeared in Townsville, and it was (and still is) a lot of fun.
The aim of the shop was never to deal in priceless antiques but more about learning, rescuing and promoting an interesting past.
So, what are we? A French ‘Brocante’ perhaps, although this is always inadequately translated in English as either junk shop, second hand shop or worse. A brocante is a place where you can find your treasures, be they expensive or cheap, in good condition or needing repairs, staid and stylish or unusual and quirky; treasures to link our past to our future.
In this, we hope we have succeeded, as the shop is now nearing its 50th anniversary in Townsville, and with the newest member of our team, Tristan ( who brings lots of new knowledge and interest) coming on board five years ago we hope we will keep going a bit longer.
We have solid silver pieces, fine china, crystal, jewellery and all the traditional ‘Antiques’, but we also deal in costume jewellery, in vinyls, vintage technology such as cameras and typewriters, and ephemera such as comics, old magazines, packs of cards, and general memorabilia.