We are now open by confirmed appointments only (Mon - Fri 12:00 - 15:00)     Call now to book your appointment (0)20 7487 5682

Our experienced staff

Over the last 15 years I have been lucky to employ some of the best repairers , musicians and experts London can offer. Our new shop, next door to the British Museum, will allow us to offer that personal one on one service that has been synonymous with Bishop instruments & bows.

Sean Bishop, Director

Martin Sonnenberg

In House Restorer

Martin Sonnenberg has now been  the in house restorer and assistant to Sean Bishop for the past 6 years.

Martin trained at the Milan school of violin making under Luca Primon from 1990-1994 and also trained in bowmaking with Emilio Slaviero and Paul Sadka while living and working  in Cremona, Italy for  24 years.

He has made over 50 violins, violas and cellos , including a violin for the Becket Collection of the Royal Academy of Music. Although busy with restoring instruments and bows from the collection of Bishop instruments, Martin is available for bow rehairs and instrument restoration work.

Please contact him: martin@bishopstrings.com or Mobile : 07476 221658

Jutta Walcher

Bow Restorer

After my training with Matthew Coltman, I established my own business in London in 1994, making bows to commission and restoring bows.

In 1997 I relocated to Oxford. It was then that I was asked to join the firm of Morris & Smith, a vibrant new firm in Waterloo. I worked there on a freelance basis for two years until the partners closed the shop to join forces with J&A Beare and Sons in London.

In 1998, I entered a bow into the Manchester International Competition for cellos and cello bows, winning the bronze medal. That year I was also selected to have a bow featured in the B.V.M.A’s book ‘The British Violin’.

In 1999, I was appointed – on a freelance basis – to look after the bows of the students, the professors and the collection at the Royal Academy Of Music. members of all the major British orchestras.

(Having taken a short break from London during the C-19 problems…we hope Jutta will be back in 2021- Sean Bishop)

Michael Shakespeare


Michael Shakespeare studied violin making at the famous London College of Furniture. After completing his studies he was employed by one of London’s busiest violin shops and then went on to set up his own workshop in Blackheath, South London.

Michael has worked on many famous Italian instruments and has been the main  repairer of Bishop Instruments & Bows. As well as repair work Michael finds time to make a few very fine copy instruments each year.

Sinead O'Carroll

Consultant, Finance, Marketing

Sinead has been involved in the Arts since leaving the Royal Academy of Music in 1993.

We are lucky to have Sinead working with us as a consultant .

Contact Sinead,  Sinead@bishopstrings.com

Jonathan Hill


Jonathan began playing the violin aged 5 and performed J.S.Bach concertos in the Royal Festival Hall three years later. Aged 18 he began working professionally with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and by 21 had played with all the major London orchestras. At 28 he was signed to E.M.I classics as part of the Classical fusion group “The Planets” which went on to sell 500 000 albums worldwide. Jonathan has guest led many of the UK’s top orchestras and for the past 8 years can be heard as the principal violinist of the London Westend show “Les Miserable”. Like his good friend Sean, Jonathan is obsessed with violins and is working his way up the ladder to get that top Italian violin!

If you need a professional violinist to help your search in our shop, Jonathan is always happy to help.(by appointment)

Robin Michael


Robin is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Music, London, having studied with David strange and Colin Carr. He is currently principal cellist in Orchestre Revoluonnaire et Romanque and Solo cellist with Orchestre Les Siecles (Paris). As guest principal Robin has performed with Australian Chamber Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra and English Chamber Orchestra to name but a few. For over 10 years Robin was the cellist in the Fidelio trio, performing at all the worlds most prestigious venues and festivals as well as many recordings. As a lover of instruments and bows, Robin performs on a modern cello and has a collection of new bows made by Nehr, Burke and Leahy!

All of our cellos have been played and tried by Robin and he is available to help you in the shop (by appointment)