Antiques challenge. Auctioneers Thomas Plant and Mark Stacey begin their week's adventure in Kent, on the way to their first auction in Rye, East Sussex.
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It's the nation's favourite antiques experts...
-I don't know what to do.
..with £200 each, a classic car and a goal to scour Britain for antiques.
What a little diamond.
The aim - to make the biggest profit at auction, but it's no mean feat.
Back in the game. Charlie!
There'll be worthy winners and valiant losers.
So, will it be the high road to glory
-or the slow road to disaster?
This is the Antiques Road Trip!
Today heralds the start of a shiny new Road Trip
with old hands Mark Stacey and Thomas Plant.
-We're in Kent.
-The Garden of England.
-It is rather beautiful.
-And we're two orchids,
-so it's a good way of starting, isn't it?
-We're two what?
-I've never been described as an orchid.
I may be a Plant...
Auctioneer Mark doesn't stand any nonsense.
-Take a strong pill cos I'm quite a hard negotiator.
You know that, don't you?
Snapping at his heels is lovable auctioneer Thomas,
a man of many talents.
I used to be a championship fencer.
Our Road Trip pals have packed their suitcases
and have £200 each to spend.
They will zip around the country in the racy 1978 MGB GT.
-Oh, dear, Thomas!
-Watch the gears, Thomas.
Watch the reverse! Oh, no.
I'm sure Thomas will get the knack.
Mark and Thomas will be making a trip of over 500 miles
from Sittingbourne, Kent and will wind all the way
through the south-east of England
through Norwich to finally land
in Oakham in the East Midlands.
Today's journey begins in Sittingbourne, Kent,
and the auction will take place in Rye, East Sussex.
-Right, Mark, here you are.
-Thomas, enjoy whatever you're doing next.
Enjoy your first shop. Buy well, not too.
Mark's gearing up to spend some money in his first shop of the day.
Nice to meet you, Richard. Now, tell me about this place.
From the outside, it doesn't look anything,
so I'm hoping it's going to be better inside.
Charming as ever, I see, Mark.
-Wildwinds is 18 months old.
-12 of us here.
-Am I going to find a bargain?
-That's for you to discover.
Well, look, I'll have a look round
-and then I can negotiate with you, can I?
-Yes, that's right.
Take a strong pill cos I'm quite a hard negotiator.
-You know that, don't you?
Gosh, not had your toast and marmalade this morning, Mark?
After a good old rummage, Mark finds something rather nifty.
It could have been a conductor's baton or something like that.
It has a lovely little plaque. I like things with dates on it.
It says "Reverend Frank Jones, Christmas 1896"
but it's priced at £120
and that's too much of a risk. Lovely thing though.
Mm. He looks a bit like a mature Harry Potter.
Those eyes would put a spell on anyone.
MUSIC: Harry Potter Theme Song
This is quite an interesting thing. It's a brass candlestick.
What is quite fun about it is that it has a little section here
that you can pull out to keep your vestas, your matches in,
and you can strike them on here.
I haven't seen anything like that and I'm sure it's got a bit of age.
I might ask Richard about that.
Brace yourself, Richard.
I've found a quirky little item which I think is rather charming.
It's got a story to tell and it's had a bit of a life, like you and I.
The problem is, I don't want to pay the ticket price.
Do you think they'd take a really ridiculous offer?
-I suspect not.
This little item is owned by one of the 12 dealers here.
The ticket price is £28.
If they can let me have that for £10, I'd really love it,
so have a little word with them for me,
and I'm relying on you, Mr Richard.
Will they accept Mark's cheeky offer?
-How did you get on?
-Gwyneth says, "As it's you."
-I rather like Gwyneth.
I wonder if she's generous enough to negotiate over something else.
Fuelled by Gwyneth's generosity, Mark has a go at the baton.
Now, she might not be as happy about this but that's quite fun, isn't it?
It is. It's a nice piece.
Do you think you could find out what Gwyneth would let me have that for?
What's your best offer?
Well, she's not going to like it and she can beat me with it -
as long as she lets me have it for that price, of course -
but I've got to think of what the auctioneer will say.
I'll whisper it to you.
Mark's offering £40 but it's priced at 120.
Gwyneth says that her best is £50.
I've gone quite off Gwyneth, actually.
Do you think she might do 45?
-Arise, Sir Richard.
-45 it is.
-Are you sure?
-So that's 55 in total?
I'll shake your hand. Thank you so much.
Did he cast a spell on Richard?
Lovely. Thank you very much.
Mm. £10 for the Victorian brass chamberstick
and a very generous deal of £45 for the magic wand.
I mean, the Victorian conductor's baton.
Meanwhile, young Thomas is motoring to his first shop, eight miles away,
in the charming town of Faversham.
This fine emporium is run by Ann and Conon.
-How do you do?
-An old, traditional antiques dealer.
God, you're a rare breed, aren't you?
You're almost as rare as some of the antiques now.
Mm. Not sure if that's a compliment.
-You've got some nice hatpins here.
Hatpins are funny things, aren't they?
I think they need to come back into fashion.
-Are these ones by the great one, the great maker?
Charles Horner of Chester.
The changing fashions of the late 19th and 20th centuries
saw a trend for more and more elaborate headgear and Charles Horner
was the market leader in good-quality hatpins for the masses.
Ladies could always defend themselves with one of those
-if...they had a problem.
-If they had an unsolicited advancement?
-Yes. People wouldn't like to...
-No, they wouldn't, would they?
Well, laws were passed in 1908 to limit the length of hatpins
due to concern that suffragettes would use them as weapons.
It almost looks like a giant humbug sweet, doesn't it?
I think a little collection of hatpins, three of them in a lot,
would be quite a nice lot to sell at auction.
We'll have a look at those,
-see what we can do price-wise on those.
The original combo ticket price is £141.
This is a Japanese bead.
It's got some age to it, as well.
It's a Meiji, isn't it? Meiji period, so about 1860s to 1900s.
Samurai were banned from wearing their swords
and so all the craftsmen had to make other things,
and that's the kind of thing they made.
-Do you think £20 is a reasonable...?
-I think that's immensely fair.
-I do. I think it's really fair.
Well, you would say that, wouldn't you, Thomas?
And then you've got these two little things.
He's also uncovered an Arts and Crafts brooch
-and a little Celtic cross.
-Could we do both of those for 15?
15 for those and 20 for that one.
What have you thought about these? These are quite expensive, aren't they?
They are quite dear. What do you want to do, 100 for the three?
It's a lot of money to spend, £100.
Is there any chance that you would possibly...?
-If I gave you £100 for the lot, that would be a deal.
-No, I don't think so.
-I had to ask.
I'm only charging you £25 each, and I do think that's really cheap,
and £50 for the very traditional looking Horner.
120 and you've got a deal.
No, I don't want to cos they're just so nice.
-I say meet him halfway.
God, that's wonderful. You're a star. Thank you very much.
-No, he is.
-Well done. Thank you for that.
That's really good. That's brilliant.
-I'd better give you some money.
What have I done? £125 within the first shop. Thank you very much.
Right, OK. Cheerio.
Ann and Conon have been very generous.
£90 for the collection of hatpins, £20 for the brooch,
and the Celtic cross and the Japanese bronze bead for £15.
A bold start for Thomas.
Mark is also in Faversham in Medway Antiques.
-Good to see you.
-Nice to meet you.
Chris is the owner of this fine establishment.
Well, I'm on the hunt for bargains.
I've got to buy something to take to auction.
There's plenty of little bits and pieces to have a look at.
I've just sold this piece, which is quite nice.
-So you're feeling in a very generous mood?
-I am in a generous mood.
-I like the sound of that.
-Sounds promising, Mark.
-Well, I'll have a little look round if I can.
That picture's really weird.
The wood has supposedly come out of a church in the north
and I think it's one of the great and good of the church.
-Is it for sale?
-It's for sale.
-Is it a lot of money?
No, it's very little money.
How much is very little?
I think I could let him go for £45.
Good Lord. It does sort of remind me of someone.
I was thinking of Thomas Plant. I think it's rather fun, actually.
This painting is almost 400 years old, but it could be a gamble
because it's a small section salvaged from a much larger work.
Well, shall I throw a figure at you and then you can ask me to leave?
-Don't look so upset. I haven't said it yet.
What about 30?
-40 would leave me a small profit.
-How would that do?
-I think I'll take a chance for 40. I like him.
-If it doesn't make a profit I can blame Thomas
cos I'm sure it's a long-lost relative.
Enough, Mark. Now, give the man some money.
I'm quite pleased with that, actually. Why have I bought it?
Well, because I think it looks quirky.
It's interesting, it's got age to it...
I mean, he does look like a puritan.
The face is so full of character and life.
Well, hailing from the late 17th century,
it's certainly steeped in history.
So, somewhere, Chris, I've got the 40 quid here for you.
-There we are. Thank you again.
-Thank you very much.
-Wish me luck.
I think you might need it.
Thomas, meanwhile, is back in the car
and tootling 27 miles east to the seaside town of Ramsgate in Kent.
Its coastal location made it a vulnerable target during wartime
so, perhaps unsurprisingly, it's home to the largest air-raid shelter
in the UK - the Ramsgate Tunnels.
I had no idea Thomas' fan base was quite so huge.
Thomas is meeting volunteer guide Derek Smith to find out more
about the tunnels that saved thousands of lives
during World War II and, over 75 years later,
are once again open to the public.
-Hi, Derek. It's good to see you.
-Good to see you too.
-You're going to need one of these.
-My own hard hat with my name on - Tom.
-So, an air-raid shelter in a tunnel.
-Here in Ramsgate, on the coast...
Well, it was built by the London, Chatham and Dover Railway
to serve the great big terminal station that was outside
the entrance you've just come into.
The Victorian railway tunnel was built here in 1863
but, as it closed in 1926, it was the perfect starting point
for a massive underground shelter.
In the lead-up to World War II,
local mayor Arthur Kempe headed a campaign to construct the ambitious
new tunnel system that would provide shelter for what was to come.
The tunnels made up a system
of over three miles and had
a capacity for sheltering 60,000 people.
The plans were given the green light in 1939
and cost around £40,000 to construct, around £3 million in today's value.
There were 80 men working shifts, just using the basic tools,
and you can see from the way the walls are,
just the way they were hewn out of it, really.
That's a real feat, isn't it?
It is, yeah, to do three and a quarter miles.
In the time, March to October.
That's right, and all the entrances as well. There are 12 entrances.
By June 1939, the first section of the tunnels was complete.
Three months later, on September 3, war was declared.
-We shall not call a halt until the oppressor is beaten.
The tunnels were built to shelter the entire town,
but little did Mayor Kempe realise how vital the tunnels would become.
The German bombers dropped something like 500 bombs in five minutes
on the town of Ramsgate,
so it was the very, very first civilian bombing raid.
You would expect hundreds of casualties
but, in fact, 29 civilians and two service personnel
were killed during that raid cos everyone else was down here.
With 1,200 homes left in ruins, local people not only used the tunnels
as a makeshift shelter, they began to move in.
At the end of 1940, the census said that there were 1,000 people
who were giving their permanent address as the Ramsgate Tunnels.
Any interesting stories?
I do like the little line that says
on the permit that you use to get...
Underneath it said, "For sleeping purposes only."
Oh, right. Do you think there might have been a bit of...erm...?
Well, we did hear a rumour that there were
a couple of children born in the tunnels.
I just wondered whether you'd like to look at one of the loos.
Now, there's an offer you don't get every day, Thomas.
How many of these were there?
There were 500 individual loos amongst potentially 60,000 people,
so it was probably best to go before you came down.
-Who emptied them?
-Well, there were two men who used to come round
-every morning from Margate.
-Two men? 500 lavatories?
Yeah. I think en suite would not be quite the word you could use
about these tunnels first thing in the morning.
Well, it certainly wasn't the lap of luxury but, over the four years,
the tunnels' occupied living arrangements
became ever more elaborate.
They would start off with something like this.
The council donated the deck chairs, but the idea was
that people would just come here and they would just use them
as they were more comfortable than the benches.
But there was no privacy, so what they did then
was to look at this sort of thing,
which was a bit more private.
-Did they have post delivered here?
-Yes, they did.
Yeah, they had post delivered and newspapers,
and people set up businesses down here,
a barber and all that sort of thing.
Did any families, here living in tunnel town, want to stay?
No, I don't think so.
-I think everyone was quite pleased to get out.
-There were no wannabe hobbits?
-Oh, no, no, no.
Not that we've ever found, anyway.
The tunnels' legacy isn't just that they saved countless lives,
as their impact was seen across the entire country.
When Winston Churchill saw the devastation of the town,
he was moved to revisit national policy,
rebuilding homes destroyed in the war.
From those dark days until the present,
the town below lives on as an important chapter in British history.
Back together again, our couple of rascals are heading
for a well-earned rest. The adventure continues tomorrow.
It's a beautiful morning, here in the county of Kent.
-So, Mark, you're driving me.
-How's it going?
So far I haven't had to hold on to the front cos I'm so scared
and also I'm not using the pedals as my feet, you know, the break.
Are you worried when I drive you?
I was a bit nervous, a bit apprehensive.
Not so with the shopping yesterday though.
Mark had a rare old time of it.
He bought the Victorian Art Nouveau chamberstick,
a Victorian baton
and a late-17th-century oil painting.
He totted up a bill of £95, leaving him with a nice wodge
of £105 to splash today.
Thomas went for a collection of hatpins,
an Arts and Crafts brooch and Celtic cross,
and a Japanese bronze bead.
He's still got £75 for the day ahead.
Thomas is beginning his day in the village of Barham, in Kent.
That's quite loud!
Yes, it's meant to be, Thomas, honest.
-How are you?
-On a day like this, it's perfect, Thomas.
-So this is it, is it?
-This is it.
-This is the showroom.
This fine establishment is family run and jam-packed with curios.
It's quite a... That's a big one, isn't it?
We love a big candelabra.
Now, what Mark doesn't know...
CLATTERING Oh, careful!
-..is that I used to be a championship fencer.
En garde, Mark. Maybe I can be a cut above you.
Maybe you should concentrate on some shopping.
Quite a nice decorative propeller, this.
-What do you know about this?
I know it's a lot smaller than it used to be
and I think it would be something that maybe
you'd put a clock face in, hang it. It would be a decorative piece.
Upcycling wooden propellers like this one into decorative clocks
-is a bit of a trend, so this could be a savvy buy.
-What can you do on that?
-You've got 95 on it.
-So, deal of the century, Christian.
-Well, make me an offer.
-Oh, I don't know. How does 30 quid grab you?
-Oh, £30. That's a fair old whack off.
-It is, isn't it? I know that.
What about £50?
Chocks away at 42.
-You're a good man.
-A smooth landing there for Thomas' fourth item.
-Many thank yous.
-..and I've got £2.
-A little gold one.
A little gold one, yeah.
A rather decorative aeroplane propeller for £42.
What will he buy next?
-Time to fly home.
Mark, meanwhile, has travelled on to the White Cliffs of Dover...
..ready to be illuminated by the history of South Foreland Lighthouse,
a stunning landmark on the White Cliffs.
The lighthouse was built in the middle of the 19th century
to warn mariners of shifting sands
and guide them through the treacherous waters.
A place of innovation and science,
and the first ever lighthouse in the world to shine an electric light.
-Curator Ellie Watson is Mark's guide.
-Good morning, I'm Mark.
-Good morning. Nice to meet you.
-What a lovely morning for coming to look at a lighthouse.
I know, it's incredible. Welcome to South Foreland.
Thank you. Now, why is there a lighthouse situated
-on this foreland?
-It's a very busy area of the coast.
The sandbank is particularly treacherous.
Up to 2,000 ships have actually been lost on the Goodwin Sands.
For most of the time, it's covered by sea and ships can run aground.
-Can run aground.
And what makes this lighthouse so special?
There's been a light on this site, probably since the 14th century...
-Yes. ..with the first light that you would recognise
as a lighthouse being built in about 1635.
That seems a good point to go in and learn more.
The first lighthouses would have had constantly-burning fires
to shine onto the seas below.
Basically, the first lighthouses were brick chimneys
with a fire on top, and it would have been someone's unlucky task
-to keep the fire going all night.
-In all weathers, as well?
-Yes, all weathers, yeah.
-There's no covering to it?
No. No cover, so it wouldn't have been the nicest job
when there was a storm.
The use of fires was both dangerous and unreliable,
so scientists set about trying to find another way.
Michael Faraday was one of the most influential scientists in the world.
In 1836, he was appointed scientific adviser for Trinity House,
an official lighthouse authority.
It must have been such an exciting time then,
learning all about radio waves and electricity.
Michael Faraday is a really interesting character.
He didn't actually have the most auspicious start in life.
-He wasn't from a very wealthy family.
-It must have been difficult.
It was a long process to get the experiment to take place at all
and they originally set out two months and £400.
-Gosh, £400. A lot of money in 1853.
21 years before the world was to see Edison's light bulb,
Faraday was already experimenting on a monumental scale.
His ground-breaking work with generators made him
the perfect person to bring electric light into practical use
for the first time ever.
The beam emitted by South Foreland was a historic achievement.
It must have been quite an event locally.
I mean, the local villagers and people from miles around.
It must have been awe-inspiring. Lighthouse keepers on this side
of the coast, and across the Channel in France,
were keeping logs on the light -
what it was doing, how well they could see it -
so it was a real collective effort.
It wasn't just Michael Faraday here, at the lighthouse, on his own.
Ground-breaking though his work was,
it was still 68 years before technology caught up
because it wasn't until 1926 that the majority of homes in the UK
saw the benefit of mains electric light.
But even with the convenience of electricity,
a lighthouse keeper's job still required some elbow grease.
What is this fierce-looking crank thing here?
This is the mechanism that turns the optic,
so it's not actually the light that flashes.
The optic rotates around with the panes of glass causing the flash.
-So am I able to have a go at this?
-Yes, you can do.
-So, which way do I turn it?
-You need to turn it clockwise.
Put your back into it, Mark.
-They'd have to be quite fit, these lighthouse keepers.
And no lighthouse has the same flash pattern for 100 miles.
-It's going. It is, look.
-Yeah. It's really going now.
-That's wonderful, isn't it?
-It's brilliant. It's amazing.
Ellie, thank you so much. It's been a wonderful visit.
-I've learned so much.
-Thank you, Mark.
South Foreland Lighthouse - a great example of pioneering ingenuity
and the views are breathtaking. Not a bad life, is it, Mark?
Back together again,
Mark and Thomas are snaking their way
to sunny Sandgate, near Folkestone.
-So, we're going to share a shop today.
I'm looking forward to that, Tom.
-Yeah, I am, actually.
Well, I haven't got any money, really, to be spending.
Indeed. £33, to be exact, compared to Mark's 105 big ones.
I will hopefully see things that you will be buying
at huge amounts of money and I'll just swoop in,
and they'll feel so good about taking money off you
that I'll get a real bargain on something.
Mm. This could be interesting.
Oh, well done.
-We've got here.
-We've got here.
First one in the shop gets first dibs.
-I'm like a gazelle!
-Oh, you are wicked, Thomas.
Come on, Mark. Come on!
It's like dealing with an old man.
Yeah, he is taking his time.
Well, Gabrielle, if I find anything, can I shout for you?
-I think you can.
-Lovely. See you in a moment.
I don't mind being in a shop with Thomas cos I sent him downstairs,
as I think he's very much a downstairs sort of person,
-and I'm more the upstairs.
-If you say so, Mark.
He tells me he's bought four items
and spent nearly the entire budget, and he wants to spend everything.
I've got £105 to spend and, if I can't find anything,
I won't spend anything.
But quickly Mark spots a little something.
This is quite wacky, isn't it? Really jazzy and colourful.
Poole Pottery and they've marked it there
with their dolphin mark in England. This is very 1970s, '80s.
The only thing is, it doesn't have a ticket price.
Gabrielle, could I have a word with you?
I've got a limited budget as usual.
-I did find this, this Poole Pottery vase,
which does look a bit out of place amongst all these lovely pieces.
Yeah, you'd be doing Gabrielle a favour, wouldn't you?
Well, I can do it at £30.
Gabrielle, you're breaking my heart. You're breaking my heart.
-I think that's what it would make.
-You love it.
-I do like it,
but I've got to be sensible cos actually it WAS very popular,
it isn't so popular these days.
-Who said that?
-I'm saying it and I always tell the truth.
I can see your nose growing, Mark.
Well, let's make it 25.
-You're a lovely, lovely person.
-No, don't be creepy.
-Oh, I will.
I've got to try. I think 20.
-Oh, get away. All right.
-Are you sure?
-Yeah, but only because you're a friend.
That Poole Pottery vase for £20 makes a total of four items for Mark.
How's Thomas getting on downstairs?
-Hello, nice to meet you.
Would you be a better travelling companion than Mark?
Yeah, I think you would. You just wouldn't answer back, would you?
You wouldn't shout at me, you wouldn't have a go at me
about my driving and you wouldn't moan, so thank you.
The mind boggles.
What's he got his eye on now?
A riding crop.
That's quite a fun thing, really. I could give Mark a good...
-What do you know about this?
This has no price tag on. Does it belong to you? Is it free?
All these questions.
Well, this is actually used for turning our lights on and off
-when we can't reach them.
HE LAUGHS Unusual but practical.
-Is it for sale?
-I'm sure it is.
-Is it expensive?
-I don't think so.
-No, I don't think it is at all.
-What could it be?
I haven't got very much money. I'm very, very poor.
How much do you want to spend...
for our baton for switching the lights on?
You can't even make that up. That's a fabulous story.
I can see the switch now.
And that's probably where these little dings have happened.
Could I be cheeky and offer you a tenner for it?
-20 is probably more...
-20. Is it really?
-You're going to say, "OK, well, 15."
-Yeah, OK, 15.
-So 15 is fine.
-Deal, sir. So £5 would be absolutely delightful.
-I shall get you your change.
That's wonderful. Fifth item done. Over the moon.
Thomas has got himself a 19th-century riding crop-cum-light switcher
for only £15, so the pressure's off.
Thomas? What are you doing?
Well, I'm imagining directing an international film
cos I am the international film director.
I can tell you what, you're not. You're looking very relaxed.
-Well, I'm done.
-What do you mean, you're done?
-Well, I've bought all my items.
-And how much have you spent?
-I've got the grand total of £18 left.
-So you've spent £182?
-That's not bad.
-That's not bad, so I've got the rest of the day for me.
Not so for Mark though.
This is rather interesting.
It says, "Napoleonic War period cannonball.
"Used in Blomefield Pattern cannons circa 1800."
But it is priced up at £130.
-Warren, is this yours?
-Yes, it is, yes.
I have to say, I've never dreamt of buying a cannonball before.
-You're sure it's Napoleonic?
-The research that I have done on it, yeah.
-I think it's quirky.
I think, if it was going into a sale on the internet,
then it would be actually quite a good buy because people would
find it on the internet, but in a general sale it could just be lost.
You're right, Mark. As the auction isn't online,
this specialist item could be a risky buy.
What sort of price could it be?
It could be...
It's 130. I could...
95, only because it's you.
Yes, I know. I know that.
-I know that and it's very generous.
-Well, if it helps, 90.
We couldn't get it to 80?
I think, if you said 80, I'd be mad enough to have a go at it, actually,
just because I think it's interesting and it's historical.
-So £80 then?
Oh, gosh. I can't believe this, Warren.
I don't know how you've managed to do this, but you've managed
to persuade me to part with all my money except a fiver.
-Well, thank... Good.
-So I've now spent more than Mr Plant.
-Thank you very much.
-Oh, gosh. Well, I hope I haven't shot myself.
No, but you have blasted a hole in your budget.
The cannonball is Mark's fifth and final item, bought for £80.
He also has the Victorian chamberstick, the Victorian baton,
the 19th-century oil painting
and the 1970s Poole Pottery vase.
In total, he spent £195. Bravo.
Thomas went for it, buying a huge bag of treasures -
the collection of hatpins, the Arts and Crafts brooch
and Celtic cross, the 19th-century Japanese bronze bead,
the aeroplane propeller
and the riding crop.
Thomas managed to buy the lot for £182.
So, what do the boys make of each other's purchases?
He's bought the cannonball for £80 and I bought my hatpins for 90,
so it's all about those two big buys.
I like the hatpins. They're not really my sort of thing.
I think some of them are very decorative -
I like enamelled ones. But he's got a good name in there,
Charles Horner, one of the best names. 90 quid.
That's a gamble, Thomas, and I do like you when you take a gamble.
It's neck and neck. I really can't call this one.
It all depends on how the ball does and how the pins do.
I think Thomas does have a bit of a whisker though.
He does have a bit of an edge on me. I'm a little bit worried.
Thomas and Mark are heading to their first auction of the trip
in the fortified hilltop town of Rye in East Sussex.
-Well, Mark, auction day.
-Oh, don't, Thomas.
-Auction day! Rye!
-A-day is here.
-A-day is here.
A-day in Rye.
It's been good fun, Tom, and, whatever happens...
we'll carry on smiling.
Here we are, Thomas.
-Thank you, Mark. Yes, we are.
-Can I just say something?
-Oh, it was, wasn't it? I was well-driven.
-Right, who can get out first?
-I can't wait, can you, Mark?
-I think I probably can, actually.
Enthusiastic as usual, Mark(!)
Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to Rye Auction Galleries.
Our auctioneer today is Kevin Wall.
What does he think of Mark and Thomas' offerings?
The thing I do like in the auction room today most of all
would be the early 1900s wooden propeller.
Shame that the tips have been clipped.
They do fetch very, very good money when they're complete.
The oil on canvas portrait,
we've had our expert look at it, she's gone through it.
She's not very keen on it, shall we say.
We think that could be the major flop of the day.
Oh, crikey. Don't let Mark hear you. Now, quickly, take your seats.
-The auction is about to begin.
First up is Thomas' 19th-century riding crop.
-Lot number 120.
-This is it.
I've got 12, 15. I've got 15. Who's got 18 now?
-You've covered your money.
-I've covered my money.
18 is with you, sir. I am out. 18, 20. At £20.
-No, only £20.
-Do I see 2?
-At £20 and selling then.
-It's a work-in...
-You've done it.
-You've got out a profit there, Tom.
-A work-in profit.
Nice start, Thomas. A good profit from the get-go.
Next up, it's Mark's unusual little chamberstick.
Very quirky little item here. I've got conflicting bids
and I've got to start them both at 22. 22 I'm bid.
At 25. 25. 28, sir?
-Get in there!
-..38, 40? At 38 with the new bidder.
-At 38. Do I see 40 now? At £38 on my right.
-Well done, Mark.
-That's all right, isn't it?
-At 42 on my right still.
-Is it still going? 42.
-It's not bad, is it?
-Yes! Well done, you.
-That's all right, isn't it? £32 profit.
-Oh, I'm so pleased!
-Cracking start, Mark.
More than doubled your money there.
I'm just hoping that might help save me on some of the other ones.
So pleased. It's such a nice thing. I'm so pleased.
It is such a nice thing. I'm so glad I found it.
Can Mark's 1970s Poole Pottery vase put more winnings in the kitty?
-£10 for it?
-You can't go £10, Tom!
-£10 I'm bid. £10. Who's got 12 now?
At £10 it's away.
-At £10. Do I see 12?
-12, new bidder.
15? At £12 on my left with the young lady here.
-At £12. Do I see 15?
-Oh, no, Tom!
-At £12. Are you sure and finished?
-Oh, come on.
-I feel like weeping for you.
-Go on, then, weep.
Hang on. It's not that bad, fellas, and it's still early days.
Next, Thomas' Japanese bronze bead.
-Fortunately, you can't see it very well.
-No, you can't, can you?
Lot 169. It's 10 then. Let's get going. 10 I've got.
-12, 15, 18, 20, 22, 25?
-That's more like it.
22 is at the back. At 22 with you, sir. At 22. Do I see 25?
-At 22. Don't miss it.
-At £22 then, are we all done?
-Are you sure? At 22.
-I am shocked at that, Thomas.
-Why are you shocked?
-Because it's worth 30, 40, £50.
It is, it is, but we are in a general sale in Rye, not online.
-And it's a profit.
-It's a profit.
-It's a profit.
That's the spirit, boys. And a small profit for Thomas.
Next up, it's Mark's Victorian conductor's baton.
I'm hoping, Tom, this might do all right. I'm hoping.
-20 we have. 20 here. 2 is it now?
-Oh, my word.
-At 22. At 28. It's very, very cheap, this.
-That is cheap.
Are you all done? Are you sure? And finished at 28.
I can't help but be a little disappointed at that, Tom.
Commiserations, Mark. Not the best performance,
but it's not over yet.
Everything to play for with Thomas' Arts and Crafts brooch
and the little Celtic cross.
-Should be somewhere round about £50.
-Oh, my gosh.
I daren't look.
Somebody start me at 20 then. Let's get going.
-Oh, you've got 20.
-22, 25, 28?
25 is with me. At 25. Do I see 28 now?
At 25, at 25. It's Ruskin. At 25. Do I see 28?
-28, new bidder.
-At £28. I've got to sell it then.
-It's a small profit. Very small.
-You're making profits on everything.
-You're a creeper.
No need to be personal. Ha!
It's Mark's late-17th-century oil painting up next.
-30 to 40 is the estimate.
-What did you pay?
-40, I paid.
Somebody start me at £30. Let's get it going.
30 for it.
Silence. Deathly silence.
Somebody start me at £10 then. £10 I'm bid. At £10 on my right.
-At £10. This does seem very cheap.
-That is cheap.
-Cos it is.
At £10. Are you sure? At £10.
15, 18, 20, 22, 25.
At £25 and selling, then.
-I've only made one profit.
-But it's a healthy one.
-Yeah, £32, but I lost...
-Oh, yes, you've lost, yeah.
-I've just lost...
How much did they sell it for? ..£15 on that.
Mm. The losses are stacking up for Mark.
Maybe his last item, the cannonball, will launch him back into the game.
-There it is, a lump of old metal.
It's the circa 1800 20lb cannonball there.
Somebody start me at £50 for it. Let's get going. £50 to start.
It'd make a good doorstop. Oh, dear. We are coming down.
I'll take your £10, sir. It's a bid. I will take it.
Now we've got them going. 12, 15?
12 is there. 15 I have here. 18, sir?
-18. The bid is with you, sir, at 18.
-He's working. He's working.
Do I see 20 now? At 18. £18. At £18 only.
At £18 are we all done?
-I knew it.
-Why did I buy that?
-18 buys it.
Do you know, as soon as I bought it, I thought, "Why did I do that?"
-Ouch. That's a heavy loss for Mark.
It's all resting on Thomas now. The pricey hatpins are next.
I've got 30 to start. 30 with me. 35, is it?
35 is here. 35. Do I see 38 now?
-A lot paid. A lot paid.
Where's all the hatpin buyers this week?
At £35 on my right. Are we all done and finished?
-That was a bargain.
-That was a big loss.
-That was a bargain for somebody.
Great price for the buyer but a big risk that didn't pay off, Thomas.
Can he recoup on his loss with the aeroplane propeller?
I can start the little ones.
We'll get the little ones out the way first at 25, 30, 35, 40,
75, 80, 5 and 90. 5, 100, 110...
-..is with you, sir.
110. I am out with both of you, but you are leading with 110.
-110. Do I see 120? At 110 on my right.
A bit more. We need to make some money back.
At 110. This is still very cheap. At £110, have we all finished? At £110.
-All sure and finished?
-110 is 16...
-I'm pleased about that.
-I'm so utterly pleased for you, Tom.
That's very kind.
I can't tell you how thrilled I am by that whole experience.
Very sporting, Mark.
I'm going to keep buying cannonballs until one of them makes a profit.
Quite right. A thrilling result for Thomas,
but who will be the winner of leg one? Let's work out the sums.
Both chaps started this Road Trip adventure with £200 each.
After paying auction costs, Mark made a loss of £92.50,
leaving him with £107.50 for the next leg.
Thomas made a small loss of £5.70, which crowns him today's winner.
He has a lovely £194.30 to carry forward.
-No, to the victor, the spoils.
-I shall drive.
-I'm being driven!
-I shall be your chauffeur, Thomas.
-A man of your standing needs it.
-Well, yeah. My limited means.
They're not less limited than mine, Thomas.
-I lost £92.50.
-It's a big'un.
-That is a big'un.
Until next time then, chaps. Cheerio.
Next time on Antiques Road Trip, Mark is a stickler for detail...
Ooh, tea time. No cake, I noticed.
..and Thomas wows us with his expertise.
What do you think that looks like?
Auctioneers Thomas Plant and Mark Stacey begin their week's adventure in Kent. Along the way, Thomas visits the life-saving underground world of Ramsgate, and Mark finds out about the science behind a lighthouse in Dover. They then hit the road and head to their first auction in Rye, East Sussex.