Episode 16 Antiques Road Trip


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Episode 16

Christina Trevanion and Thomas Plant begin their road trip in Ireland. Starting from Cashel, County Tipperary, they hunt treasures to take to auction in Birr in County Offaly.


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It's the nation's favourite antiques experts...

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-This is beautiful.

-That's the way to do this.

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..with £200 each, a classic car, and a goal - to scour for antiques.

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Joy! Hello!

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The aim, to make the biggest profit at auction, but it's no mean feat.

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There'll be worthy winners and valiant losers.

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So, will it be the high road to glory or the slow road to disaster?

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The handbrake's on!

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This is Antiques Road Trip.

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Yeah.

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Today, we begin a very special road trip,

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starting right here in the Republic of Ireland.

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Oh, yes, this'll be a treat for our top auctioneers,

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Christina Trevanion and Thomas Plant.

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What a combo.

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Your impressions of Ireland? You've been here before, I've been here before.

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You can go anywhere in the world, and you can go and visit countries

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and they're beautiful, but it's all about the welcome you get, isn't it?

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Yeah, absolutely.

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It's wonderful, and the people are so friendly, and so accommodating,

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and so sweet.

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Hey, I love the Wedgwood blue wheels, guys.

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Their quirky 1962 Bedford van was manufactured before it was

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compulsory to fit seatbelts, so it's legal to drive without them.

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-Do you know what slightly worries me?

-What?

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That's the engine!

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-It is the engine, isn't it?

-And it's quite nice as a heater.

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It was originally built as a crew van for workers,

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and survivors of its type are rare.

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I did a bit of research about this last night.

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They are the most amazing utility vehicles.

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This was the basis of the ambulance. Ice cream vans.

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-Yep.

-Amazing.

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Our jewellery and silver buffs start their trip with £200 apiece,

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but as they begin in Ireland, they'll kick off with 285 euros.

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Get it?

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Starting in Cashel in County Tipperary,

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they'll get about Ireland, hop across to North Wales,

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whizz around England,

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and then end up, over 700 miles later, in Stoke-on-Trent.

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This first leg will see them travel from Cashel

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towards the opening auction in Birr, County Offaly.

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Third, darling, third.

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-Hang on a minute!

-Well done.

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Those two are like an old married couple already.

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Remember to look out the window once in a while, guys.

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-There's a castle!

-There's castles everywhere.

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-There are kings and queens and clans and everything here.

-Ooh.

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At the southern end of Ireland,

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County Tipperary is known as the subject of a world-famous song.

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It became popular with the British Army after young Irish soldiers

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began to sing it as they marched into battle at the start of World War I.

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# It's a long way to Tipperary... #

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However, it's not far to Thomas's first shop of the trip.

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-See you later. Bye!

-You look marvellous!

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Owner Ruth Barry's in charge here.

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Looks like she does more than antiques, too.

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Bit of lotus, maybe.

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-You're Ruth?

-Yes, I am.

-I saw your name on the door.

-Yes.

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And it's sort of Giver of Hope.

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I'm a yoga teacher and when you do your teacher training,

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they bestow a name on you, and that was Asha, Giver of Hope.

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-Well, I hope you're going to give me hope today.

-I hope so, I hope!

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Make yourself at home and if you need any help, just give me a shout.

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-I will do, thank you.

-All right, thank you.

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THUD! Oh, careful!

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Ruth only opens for alfresco shopping in good weather,

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so enjoy it while it lasts, Thomas!

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THOMAS LAUGHS

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I just totally...

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..love these tambour-fronted cabinets.

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What's even better is this here. Wait for it...

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RATTLING

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Ah! And it's all hidden away.

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This early 20th-century oak cabinet is 490 euros,

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way over Thomas's budget.

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Looks like that's not his only problem now.

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Whoops, has he broken it?

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Ruth, erm, is there a key for this?

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I'm afraid not. What did you do?

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-I just pulled it down and it locked.

-Well...

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you really should have asked for some help with that, Thomas.

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-Now you've broken it.

-I don't think I've broken it.

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Bit awkward, this.

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It has happened before, so Ruth knows how to fix it, thankfully.

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Meanwhile, Christina has headed just half an hour north,

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still in Tipperary, to the small village of Templetuohy.

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Her first shop is Larkins Antiques,

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a family-run affair that's been on the go for over 30 years.

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-Hello!

-Hello.

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-Hello, good morning.

-How are you, Christina?

-Very well, thank you.

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-Nice to meet you, I'm Christina.

-And I'm Mary.

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Lovely to meet you, Mary. My goodness, what a shop!

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-So tell me, Mary.

-Yes?

-I'm going in completely blind.

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I know nothing about the Irish auction market.

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So what are people buying?

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Lovely sets of China. China is in big-time in Ireland.

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Are people buying furniture over here?

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Oh, they are, yeah. Antique furniture.

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I'll go and have a wander and I'll see you in a bit.

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Absolutely. Right.

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Well, neither sell brilliantly in the UK at the moment.

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Just goes to show that local knowledge is key.

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Clever move, there, Christina.

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So China's selling well. That's interesting, isn't it?

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Tea sets, my goodness.

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That's rather fun, isn't it?

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This isn't early enough...

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..sadly, to be a George Jones piece. Quite interesting, though, isn't it?

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Certainly got a look and we're finding that, in the UK,

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majolica is selling incredibly well.

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George Jones began manufacturing this type of elaborately moulded ceramics

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in the late 1860s - however, this was made long after George Jones died

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and that's why it's called "majolica-style".

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What have you got on that, Mary?

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Well, I could give you that for...

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..40 euros.

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-Well, it's certainly got a look to it.

-Absolutely, yes.

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OK, so that could be a possibility,

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-cos I quite like that.

-It's gorgeous.

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But Christina's only scratched the surface of Mary's wares.

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Oh, that's quite fun. How much is on that?

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-Do we know?

-Mike?

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-My husband. This is Christina.

-Hello. Nice to meet you.

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-You're in charge of the furniture, are you?

-Yes.

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How much is on your chair that needs some TLC, Michael?

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Er, that's 100 euros.

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-100 euros. It does need a lot of TLC.

-It does.

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Indeed. At least the frame of this Victorian carved chair

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is still in pretty good condition.

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Is there any flexibility on that price, Michael?

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Maybe a little bit.

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Um, 85?

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85 euro, OK.

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I quite like that.

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It's definitely a possibility. Thank you, Mike, you're a gentleman.

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I will give it some thought.

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Back in Cashel, Thomas has been doing some al fresco browsing.

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-Can I go inside?

-Of course you may, yes.

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He's on to something, look.

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I love these, these are fab.

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They're gorgeous.

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-So we've got the Burgundy, we've got Chartreuse.

-Yes.

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-I have another one inside.

-Do you?

-Yeah, hang on.

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By the turn of the 18th century,

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decanters were popular in the homes of both the middle and upper classes.

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The labels indicating the liquid contents

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were originally called "bottle tickets".

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-Look, "Kew-rac-oh".

-Curacao, actually.

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In perfect condition.

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-So they're on copper with enamel.

-Yeah.

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-And how much are these each?

-Ten each.

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-Ten each.

-They're a giveaway.

-OK, we'll talk about that.

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-Oh, right.

-And then how much are these?

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This one is 12.

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And these two little ones are eight.

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-I mean...

-Two, three, four, five - 50 euro.

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-62.

-OK.

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-78 euros.

-You're good at the maths.

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How about we start at 40 euros and then we work somewhere...

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Oh, my God, no.

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-Where can we meet in the middle?

-Thomas...really.

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-You're not going to sell them to me at 40, I get that.

-OK, 65.

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Ah, that's far too much!

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-No.

-Yes, it is.

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-These are beautiful.

-They are beautiful.

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-I love them.

-You never see these. They're gorgeous.

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-Could say 60 and it's a deal?

-Oh, OK, for you.

-Yeah, you think so?

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-Yeah.

-Let's do it.

-All right.

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60 euros is for the eight

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silver-plated and enamelled decanter labels.

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Before I go, you are a yoga teacher.

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Are there any moves you can teach me to sort of bring me any Zen

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on my trip in Ireland?

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I think the best thing you can do is to practise your breathing.

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As you exhale, simply make a "ha" sound at the back of the throat.

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I think that grunting would kind of annoy Christina quite a lot.

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But it's quite funny, I'm going to do it.

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Lucky Christina!

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Speaking of which, back in Templetuohy,

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she's enlisted Mary's help once more.

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I thought these were quite fun.

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Oh, you've lovely taste.

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Aren't they beautiful?

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I mean, typically 1830, this body to me looks like a Coalport body.

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But that's really unusual decoration.

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I mean, this is what we call a spur handle,

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that typical spur handle of about 1830.

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-Is there any more of the tea set?

-I have.

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-It's so funny, I have.

-Have you?

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And Mary's secret stash is in a drawer behind the counter, obviously.

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What else have you got in that drawer?

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-No, I can't show you what's in my drawers, Christina.

-Oh, my goodness.

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Crikey, there's loads of it, look!

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-Are they not fabulous?

-They are fabulous.

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Are they not the nicest you've ever seen?

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I love the fact that you've got the breakfast cups

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-and you've got the coffee cups.

-I have.

-I love that.

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The tea and coffee service isn't complete,

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but there's so much of it that you could make easily a full set of six,

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with spares.

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-I need 180.

-Oh, God.

-Which is nothing, because it's a beauty.

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Christina, you're never going to see another one. Never.

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Can we do...

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200 for the tea service and the chair?

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-You have a deal.

-I'm still quite tempted by the majolica.

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Can we say 210 for all of it?

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-210.

-For the tea service, the chair and the majolica.

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-She's hitting me the whole time, you are a hard woman.

-Go on. Will you?

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-A smile.

-Will you? Yeah, thank you, Mary!

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Christina has certainly gone big and bold on day one,

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parting with 210 euros for three items.

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She's now taking a break from the shopping, heading north,

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crossing into County Offaly to the Irish heritage town of Birr.

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Its 17th-century castle was once home

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to a hotbed of world-famous scientific discovery.

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This magnificent contraption was once the world's largest telescope,

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known as the Leviathan of Parsonstown.

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It was the brainchild of William Parsons,

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the 3rd Earl of Rosse, and put Birr on the global map.

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Christina is here to meet the castle's current resident,

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the 3rd Earl's great-great-grandson,

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Brendan Parsons, also known as Lord Rosse.

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-Welcome to you, Christina.

-Thank you so much.

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Welcome to the great telescope of Birr.

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This amazing feat of engineering and invention

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played a major role in astronomical discovery.

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What was he trying to do with his telescope?

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He wanted to see further into space than anyone had ever been able

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to see before and he wanted to build bigger.

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How does it work?

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-It works as a reflecting telescope.

-Right.

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-With a mirror in the big black box at the bottom.

-Right.

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The eyepiece picked up the image received

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-in the huge, huge, six-foot mirror at the bottom.

-At the bottom.

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Armed with an idea and a degree in mathematics from Oxford,

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William Parsons and his team, made up largely of locals from Birr,

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spent three years inventing and building

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the telescope's component parts in the castle workshop.

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So, did he build the telescope...

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did he get someone in to design and build it for him?

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He had to think it all up himself and make it all himself.

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Every single thing.

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He had to start by setting up foundries in the boat,

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-fired by the fuel from the turf from the local bog.

-Uh-huh.

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The biggest challenge was constructing

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the central piece of the telescope, its huge mirror.

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I would imagine that in the 1840s,

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creating a six-foot diameter mirror was not easy.

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It was impossible to create a mirror of anything like that size

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in glass, as one would expect today.

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The first mirrors cracked

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because the outside cooled before the inside.

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Can you imagine the disappointment?

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But there was far greater determination.

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And the determination paid off.

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In 1845, work was complete on the 54-foot, 16-ton telescope.

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Its fame quickly spread around the world.

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What did they discover?

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His greatest discovery was what's now called the spiral nebula.

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It was groundbreaking at the time, and for the next few decades,

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hundreds of the world's greatest minds came to Birr

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to observe the great discovery.

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Three years after unveiling his telescope,

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William Parsons became President of the Royal Society,

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a world-renowned scientific organisation.

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When he died in 1867, his telescope was still

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the largest in the world, and would remain so for a further 50 years.

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Birr became a global centre for astronomical research,

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spurring on further generations of the family,

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most notably the 4th Earl, who focused his attention on the moon.

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What do we have here, Lord Rosse?

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This is a machine that was made by the 4th Earl

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-in 1867.

-Did he inherit the telescope?

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So he inherited the telescope and a passion for astronomy,

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but focused it slightly more on measuring the heat of the moon

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-with this instrument.

-Measuring the heat of the moon?

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Yes, he spent years and years trying to measure the heat of the moon,

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only to see his measurements dismissed at the time

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as the madness of a typically mad Irish Earl, he was thought to be,

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wasting all his time.

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Amazingly, it wasn't until man finally stepped on the moon

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that the 4th Earl's calculations

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were tested and found to be more accurate than originally thought.

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So, this is a letter from Neil Armstrong?

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That is a letter to the my mother...

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-Yeah.

-..after his visit here,

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and sharing with her the temperature of the moon as he found it,

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as it related to the temperature of the moon as measured

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by my great-grandfather, the 4th Earl, with that instrument there.

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-So, the 4th Earl...

-It wasn't as mad as was dismissed at the time.

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In fact, it was accurate to within about 4%.

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-So, almost 100 years later, he was proved right?

-Yes.

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Through the ingenuity of the Parsons family,

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Birr Castle was a hub of discovery and innovation.

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Now, with its modern-day science centre, they hope to continue

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inspiring budding astronomers to follow in their footsteps.

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I have to say, it's been absolutely fascinating

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learning about your astronomical family. Thank you so much.

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Thank you, Christina, for your interest.

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Meanwhile, rival Thomas has joined Christina in Birr, County Offaly,

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but he's here to shop.

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-Hi, Tom, how are you?

-Very well.

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-What's your name?

-Breda.

-Breda?

-Yes.

-Nice to see you, Breda.

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Indeed, nice place you've got here too.

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Lovely office chair. Just a bit more than I've got to spend.

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There's loads to look at,

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so hopefully I shall be buying something.

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The question, of course, is - what?

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Quite a cool cocktail shaker.

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You know, drinking is always a popular thing.

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And certainly cocktail shakers, it evokes that sort of vintage style.

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It's silver-plated.

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And one puts your mixers in there.

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It's got a cork stopper, which means that none of the mix will fall out.

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Rather lovely, really, with a handle,

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and it just looks rather good fun.

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Not a bad option, though.

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But I'm sure there's more temptation somewhere.

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This is an extraordinarily thing.

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Being marked sterling means it could be American.

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Cos that's how the Americans stamped their silver,

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with the sterling mark, rather than our British hallmarks.

0:16:470:16:51

British and Irish hallmarks, one should say.

0:16:510:16:54

I'm not going to spend 95 euros on something I don't know what it is.

0:16:540:16:58

Perhaps Breda does.

0:16:580:16:59

-What is this?

-It's a cake breaker.

0:16:590:17:02

If you have a very fresh sponge, what the Victorians -

0:17:020:17:05

and they had something for everything, as you know yourself -

0:17:050:17:09

they'd push it down through it

0:17:090:17:11

and it would stop the cake literally from breaking.

0:17:110:17:14

And they'd slip the knife in and then you'd have a perforated slice.

0:17:140:17:17

Oh, yes! Cor, those Victorians certainly knew how to prevent

0:17:170:17:21

their cakes from being squashed!

0:17:210:17:22

What an interesting object.

0:17:220:17:24

In the right sort of climate, really.

0:17:240:17:27

Baking is quite popular these days, isn't it?

0:17:270:17:30

Another one to ponder.

0:17:300:17:31

Some soda siphons, they could...

0:17:310:17:34

We could make a sort of cocktail lot.

0:17:350:17:38

"Mineral Waters Distributors Ltd, Dublin."

0:17:380:17:42

So an Irish soda siphon.

0:17:420:17:45

There's a pewter one there.

0:17:460:17:48

Here we are.

0:17:480:17:49

"A & R Thwaites & Co."

0:17:490:17:53

There's no price on there. It's obviously free.

0:17:530:17:56

Hey, time to do some buying. You're needed, Breda.

0:17:560:18:00

-The cocktail shaker.

-OK.

-What can that be?

0:18:000:18:03

-There's a price of 45 on it, isn't there?

-Yes.

0:18:030:18:07

-OK.

-I was thinking maybe 25.

0:18:070:18:10

Well, since you're such a nice gentleman,

0:18:110:18:15

-and you obviously need it...

-Yeah, I do.

0:18:150:18:17

-OK.

-25 for that.

-Yeah.

-Great.

0:18:170:18:20

-So that's one thing out of the way.

-OK.

0:18:200:18:22

What about that rather unusual cake-breaking thingy?

0:18:220:18:25

-What could you do that for?

-Well, it's 95.

0:18:250:18:29

-Yeah.

-Mm.

0:18:290:18:32

What about 45?

0:18:320:18:33

-Now, it is nice, and it is silver.

-It is, yes.

0:18:350:18:38

-I would be very happy with 55.

-55. I think you've got yourself a deal.

0:18:380:18:42

-OK, very good.

-I like it very much.

0:18:420:18:43

He's clocking up the purchases in here,

0:18:430:18:45

and those soda siphons are still an option.

0:18:450:18:48

Pub is very much in vogue at the moment. A lot of people collect it.

0:18:480:18:52

And they're going away from the contemporary look in pubs

0:18:520:18:55

-and are actually doing them up in the old style.

-Are they?

0:18:550:18:58

How much can the three of them be? 30?

0:18:580:19:00

-35?

-No, I didn't have that number in my head, no.

0:19:000:19:04

-40, then?

-Well, as I said, you are such a gentleman, yeah, OK,

0:19:040:19:09

40 would suit me.

0:19:090:19:10

-Would that suit you?

-Mm.

0:19:100:19:12

-Deal. That's another deal.

-You are very welcome.

0:19:120:19:16

Good work, Thomas, that's the Art Deco cocktail shaker,

0:19:160:19:19

a sterling silver cake-breaker

0:19:190:19:21

and three soda siphons for 120 euros.

0:19:210:19:24

Well, a successful sort of day, really.

0:19:270:19:29

We've got...mainly drinking and eating items.

0:19:290:19:32

Tomorrow I've got to buy that sure-fire profit.

0:19:320:19:36

And with that, it's time for our experts

0:19:360:19:39

to head off to the land of Nod.

0:19:390:19:41

Night-night.

0:19:410:19:42

Another glorious day in Ireland.

0:19:460:19:49

I keep on going...for...

0:19:490:19:51

this gear stick here.

0:19:510:19:52

-It's here, darling.

-I know, I know.

0:19:520:19:54

-The stick here is here. The stick is here, Thomas.

-Well done.

0:19:540:19:58

And third, go on, go on, you can do it, you can do it, go on.

0:19:580:20:01

-Go on! Third is easy.

-Hurrah!

-Third is easy.

0:20:010:20:05

Fortunately, Thomas is better at dealing than driving.

0:20:050:20:09

Yesterday, he secured some decanter labels,

0:20:090:20:12

a cocktail shaker,

0:20:120:20:13

three soda siphons

0:20:130:20:15

and a cake breaker for 180 euros,

0:20:150:20:18

leaving him 105 euros.

0:20:180:20:21

Christina spent big, blowing three-quarters of her budget

0:20:220:20:25

on a tea and coffee service,

0:20:250:20:27

a Victorian chair and a majolica-style jardiniere.

0:20:270:20:31

So, she has just 75 euros to spend today.

0:20:310:20:34

-How was your shopping?

-It was good.

0:20:340:20:36

However, I did feel that maybe I spent a little bit too much money.

0:20:360:20:40

But Mary did give me some good tips

0:20:400:20:41

about what was selling in Ireland and what wasn't.

0:20:410:20:43

-Well, what is selling well in Ireland?

-According to Mary,

0:20:430:20:46

anything that's not selling in the UK apparently sells well in Ireland.

0:20:460:20:50

-That's superb.

-So I bought brown furniture and tea sets.

0:20:500:20:53

THEY LAUGH

0:20:530:20:55

But will Mary be proved right, come the auction?

0:20:570:21:00

This morning, our duo are starting at Portlaoise.

0:21:000:21:04

-Where we were yesterday?

-Where we were yesterday?

0:21:040:21:08

-We were in County Tipperary, weren't we?

-And where are we today?

0:21:080:21:10

Portlaoise?

0:21:100:21:12

# We're a long way from Tipperary

0:21:120:21:14

# It's a long way to go. #

0:21:140:21:17

And on that rather terrible note, Portlaoise, in County Laoise,

0:21:190:21:24

is an attractive, rapidly-growing market town.

0:21:240:21:27

-Don't buy too well.

-Enjoy. Don't break it.

-I won't break it.

0:21:280:21:32

Christina's next shop is run by David Kane and Robert Colin.

0:21:330:21:39

-Good morning, how are you?

-Good morning, I'm very well.

0:21:400:21:42

You're very welcome to the Store Yard.

0:21:420:21:44

-Thank you, what's your name?

-I'm Robert.

0:21:440:21:46

-Lovely to meet you, Robert. And you are?

-David, how are you?

0:21:460:21:49

-Pleased to meet you.

-This is amazing.

0:21:490:21:51

-This is a sort of hidden world.

-It's a treasure inside.

0:21:510:21:55

Oh, yes, it's big enough

0:21:550:21:56

and rammed with architectural and decorative items.

0:21:560:22:00

I know nothing really about the Irish market

0:22:000:22:03

because we are selling in an auction in Birr.

0:22:030:22:07

-Do you know about auction houses here?

-I do.

0:22:070:22:09

-I do know the one in Birr.

-Good, I like that.

0:22:090:22:11

-It's a strong family auction house for years.

-Brilliant.

0:22:110:22:14

-Insider information, I like it. Brilliant.

-Do lots of rural bygones.

0:22:140:22:19

-Quirky things also, actually.

-OK.

-Good house.

0:22:190:22:22

What about...fairly knackered old chairs?

0:22:220:22:25

-Do you think that will sell well there?

-No.

-Oh, really?

0:22:250:22:29

Oh, Christina, perhaps you can spread the risk with some more items?

0:22:290:22:34

I think it's the most beautiful antique shop I've never been into.

0:22:340:22:38

-Thanks very much.

-I'm in love with it. It's wonderful.

0:22:380:22:41

David and his team often provide pieces for sets of period dramas.

0:22:410:22:45

-Ah, beautiful.

-More there for you.

0:22:450:22:47

Like an alleyway of gorgeousness, isn't it? Look at those colours.

0:22:470:22:50

They can kit out entire rooms for certain periods.

0:22:500:22:53

This is beautiful!

0:22:530:22:55

Even down to wall coverings,

0:22:550:22:57

like this room of 18th-century American pine panelling.

0:22:570:23:01

-Is this room for sale?

-Yes.

0:23:020:23:04

Just stunning. I love it.

0:23:040:23:06

How much would it cost me to buy this room?

0:23:060:23:09

The price of a bungalow in Ireland at the moment.

0:23:090:23:11

Oh, really? I definitely haven't got that in my budget.

0:23:110:23:14

Ha! I bet you wish you had more than 75 euros left, eh, Christina?

0:23:140:23:18

-That's quite nice.

-That's a nice little thing, actually.

0:23:180:23:21

It's priced very well, there is some damage.

0:23:210:23:23

But it's nice Florian ware.

0:23:230:23:25

Florian ware was the company that Moorcroft started working for.

0:23:250:23:28

-Correct.

-Before he started his own factory.

0:23:280:23:31

And you've got "WM des", so William Moorcroft designer.

0:23:310:23:34

Nice Florian ware stamp.

0:23:340:23:36

-25 euros?

-Yeah.

0:23:370:23:39

I mean, yes, it's got some damage to it, but I still think

0:23:390:23:41

for a Moorcroft collector, that's a really nice thing, isn't it?

0:23:410:23:45

A good thing, yes, a very good thing.

0:23:450:23:46

Well, that's a distinct possibility, David. I like this a lot.

0:23:460:23:50

-OK, shall we keep wandering?

-Yeah.

0:23:500:23:52

Sounds positive.

0:23:520:23:53

Let's leave Christina to explore her new favourite shop

0:23:530:23:57

and join our other intrepid antiques hunter.

0:23:570:24:00

He's taking a breather from shopping to find out

0:24:000:24:02

about one of Ireland's great heroes -

0:24:020:24:04

a world-renowned explorer

0:24:040:24:06

and pioneer of the heroic age of Antarctic discovery.

0:24:060:24:10

Thomas is visiting Athy Heritage Centre

0:24:130:24:16

just a few miles from the birthplace of Sir Ernest Shackleton.

0:24:160:24:21

Thomas is here to meet head of the Shackleton Society, Seamus Taaffe.

0:24:210:24:26

Seamus, we're here because you have a famous hero, a man of great note.

0:24:260:24:32

Yes, we're very lucky, we have one of the greatest explorers

0:24:320:24:34

of all time. Ernest Shackleton was born in Kilkea.

0:24:340:24:37

As the eldest son of 10 children,

0:24:370:24:39

Shackleton was expected to help support his family.

0:24:390:24:43

But instead, at 16 he went off to sea and became a master mariner.

0:24:430:24:47

He charmed his way onto Captain Scott's Antarctic expedition in 1901,

0:24:470:24:54

gaining experience that led to his own endeavours

0:24:540:24:58

into the then uncharted continent.

0:24:580:25:00

We know Shackleton had lots of expeditions.

0:25:000:25:02

Which one is the one we all know?

0:25:020:25:05

The greatest expedition is obviously

0:25:050:25:07

his 1914 Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition.

0:25:070:25:10

Bear in mind, at this stage,

0:25:100:25:12

the pole has been reached by Amundsen and Scott in 1913.

0:25:120:25:14

So he comes with a plan - he's going to cross the Antarctic from sea to sea.

0:25:140:25:18

The South Pole, the Antarctic?

0:25:180:25:20

-Yes.

-Cross it?

-Yes.

0:25:200:25:21

But from the very start, it all goes terribly wrong.

0:25:210:25:24

The mission was to sail from South Georgia to the Weddell Sea.

0:25:270:25:30

Once they hit land, they would continue by foot and sledge

0:25:300:25:33

until they reached the Ross Sea.

0:25:330:25:36

It had never been done before, and when they got near,

0:25:360:25:39

disaster struck.

0:25:390:25:40

The 28-man crew got stuck in ice in the Weddell Sea.

0:25:400:25:44

Their ship, Endurance, eventually sank,

0:25:440:25:47

forcing them to set up camp on the ice.

0:25:470:25:50

20 months after setting out, the ice finally melted

0:25:500:25:53

and starts pulling them in the wrong direction.

0:25:530:25:56

How did they survive?

0:25:590:26:00

They kept three lifeboats from the ship which they're pulling

0:26:000:26:03

across the ice towards the direction they want to go,

0:26:030:26:06

but the ice is still drifting, so eventually they get into open water.

0:26:060:26:09

They decide to go for a place called Elephant Island,

0:26:090:26:12

a desolate rock in the middle of nowhere in the South Atlantic.

0:26:120:26:16

And they spend about seven days in the three boats

0:26:160:26:18

until they get to Elephant Island.

0:26:180:26:19

-How do they do that - under sail or rowing?

-A bit of both.

0:26:190:26:22

But there's no hope of being rescued from this small, inhospitable island.

0:26:230:26:28

Shackleton knows, to stand the chance of survival,

0:26:280:26:31

he must take his five best sailors in one lifeboat and travel

0:26:310:26:35

over 1,000 kilometres back to the inhabited island of South Georgia.

0:26:350:26:39

The other 22 men are left behind.

0:26:400:26:43

The South Atlantic is a miserable place to be,

0:26:440:26:46

-the southern oceans, it's the worst...

-Big waves.

0:26:460:26:49

Big waves, daylight is very poor, it's very hard to read.

0:26:490:26:52

And after 70 days, they reach South Georgia,

0:26:520:26:54

an extraordinary boat journey, there's nothing to compare to it.

0:26:540:26:58

Despite their incredible achievement,

0:26:580:27:01

they arrive on the wrong side of the island.

0:27:010:27:03

The boat is battered and the crew exhausted,

0:27:030:27:06

so Shackleton then has to lead his team across uncharted,

0:27:060:27:10

rough, icy terrain by foot

0:27:100:27:12

to get to the whaling station on the northern side.

0:27:120:27:15

They spent 36 hours crossing non-stop.

0:27:180:27:20

At one point, the men are very tired,

0:27:200:27:21

so Shackleton says we'll have a sleep.

0:27:210:27:23

He lets them sleep for five minutes.

0:27:230:27:25

Then he wakes them up and says, "That was an hour, lads, great."

0:27:250:27:29

He was very clever how he managed his men.

0:27:290:27:31

But eventually they get across

0:27:310:27:33

and they hear the sound of the steam whistle of the whaling station.

0:27:330:27:36

In the morning, they know they've reached safety.

0:27:360:27:38

But Shackleton couldn't rest

0:27:380:27:41

until he'd saved all his crew from Elephant Island.

0:27:410:27:44

He mustered boats from Norway and Chile

0:27:440:27:47

to make several rescue attempts.

0:27:470:27:49

But it wasn't until 25th August 1916 that he reached his remaining 22 men.

0:27:490:27:55

They'd been stranded for almost four months

0:27:550:27:58

with very little in the way of provisions, but they all survived.

0:27:580:28:02

Seamus, what have we got here?

0:28:020:28:03

This is actually one of the few relics

0:28:030:28:05

we have of the Endurance expedition.

0:28:050:28:07

It's the last biscuit that Shackleton had in his pocket

0:28:070:28:09

crossing South Georgia.

0:28:090:28:11

The last bit of food he had left to feed himself and his men with.

0:28:110:28:14

I think he kept it as a reminder to himself for the rest of his life

0:28:140:28:17

-of how close they came to death at that time.

-That's marvellous.

0:28:170:28:20

Although Shackleton didn't achieve his scientific goals,

0:28:200:28:24

his heroism has gone down in history.

0:28:240:28:27

He set off on what would be his final Antarctic expedition

0:28:270:28:31

in late 1921, this time aiming to circumnavigate the continent.

0:28:310:28:35

Is this the album of his last voyage?

0:28:350:28:38

It's images from the expedition from the very get-go.

0:28:380:28:41

This album is in some ways a sad relic of the expedition

0:28:410:28:44

because that's where he died -

0:28:440:28:46

at the scene of his greatest triumph, where he rescued his men.

0:28:460:28:48

-He died there.

-He died there.

0:28:480:28:50

Shackleton died of a heart attack in January 1922

0:28:500:28:54

and was buried on South Georgia.

0:28:540:28:56

His courage and skill in keeping everyone alive

0:28:560:28:59

on his trans-Antarctic expedition has become his enduring legacy.

0:28:590:29:05

Back in Portlaoise, Christina is still shopping in heaven.

0:29:130:29:17

-That's quite smart, isn't it?

-Yes, nice little pond yacht, actually.

0:29:190:29:23

I mean, it's typically early-20th century, isn't it?

0:29:230:29:26

-Can you imagine the hours of fun someone's had with that?

-Exactly.

0:29:260:29:29

-Pure enjoyment.

-Yeah, exactly.

-And the sails are all original.

0:29:290:29:33

-Have you got the stand?

-I don't have the stand, unfortunately.

0:29:330:29:36

-But the condition is good.

-I do love these things.

0:29:360:29:38

What have you got on that, David?

0:29:380:29:40

125 we have on it, but we'll do something on it.

0:29:400:29:43

Could you do quite a lot on it?

0:29:430:29:45

-Do I have to sit down?

-I think you might have to.

-Tell me.

0:29:470:29:51

I really don't have much money left and I don't want to offend you,

0:29:510:29:55

-but I love the Moorcroft.

-Mm-hm.

0:29:550:29:57

I mean, would you really, really, really, really

0:29:570:30:00

throw me out of this beautiful place - please don't,

0:30:000:30:03

because I love it - if I said 50 euros for the two?

0:30:030:30:07

I'll do 60 for the two. Is that fair?

0:30:070:30:10

-60 for the two, I think that is more than fair.

-Very good.

0:30:100:30:13

You're incredibly generous.

0:30:130:30:14

That you are.

0:30:140:30:15

That's 60 euros for a reasonably priced, but slightly damaged,

0:30:150:30:19

Florian ware butter dish

0:30:190:30:21

and a late-Victorian or early-Edwardian pond yacht.

0:30:210:30:24

Meanwhile, Thomas has one last chance to shop in Kilkenny,

0:30:280:30:33

at Darcy & Ralph Antiques.

0:30:330:30:36

-Hello.

-Hello.

-I'm Thomas.

0:30:360:30:38

-I'm George.

-George, nice to see you.

0:30:380:30:41

Have you got anything particularly sort of Irish related?

0:30:410:30:46

I had Waterford glass yesterday, but I've run out today.

0:30:460:30:49

-But I've got some Belleek.

-Belleek over there, is there?

0:30:490:30:53

Yes, there's a bit of Belleek and a lot more besides.

0:30:530:30:57

It doesn't sort of stop, does it?

0:30:570:30:59

You've got pictures, mirrors, guitars,

0:30:590:31:02

fans.

0:31:020:31:03

I need to cool myself down. Scales.

0:31:050:31:07

This is what George mentioned, a bit of Belleek.

0:31:070:31:09

Belleek's founder, John Caldwell Bloomfield,

0:31:090:31:13

set up the Northern Irish pottery business

0:31:130:31:16

to provide employment after the potato famine

0:31:160:31:19

in the mid-19th century, and has been producing fine China ever since.

0:31:190:31:23

Oh, look at this.

0:31:230:31:25

-County Fermanagh.

-Yeah, that's right.

0:31:270:31:30

County Fermanagh.

0:31:300:31:32

Marked "Ireland".

0:31:320:31:34

-Green mark.

-Hm?

0:31:340:31:36

Green mark.

0:31:360:31:37

-The green mark is the later one?

-Yes, it is.

0:31:370:31:40

A possible, then.

0:31:400:31:42

Or there's this Irish transfer-printed dinner service.

0:31:420:31:45

Look at that, made in the Republic.

0:31:450:31:48

You could have that for 40.

0:31:480:31:50

-40!?

-Yeah.

0:31:500:31:51

-You're having a laugh. 40?

-Mm.

0:31:520:31:55

-It's perfect, though, isn't it? Arklow pottery.

-Yeah.

0:31:550:31:57

HOLLOW RINGING

0:31:570:31:59

A good ring.

0:31:590:32:00

But there's more there.

0:32:000:32:02

In fact, George has got tons of it.

0:32:020:32:03

But it's not a complete dinner service and there is some damage.

0:32:030:32:07

I do like this Belleek, because it's known and although it's modern,

0:32:080:32:12

its lustre, it's rather smart, very fine porcelain.

0:32:120:32:16

HOLLOW RINGING

0:32:160:32:18

-Sounds good.

-A good jingle out of it, yes.

0:32:180:32:21

A bit of paint on there, but that's not the end of the world.

0:32:210:32:24

So, would you take 20 euros for this?

0:32:240:32:27

-I will.

-You would?

-I will.

-You have a deal. Thank you.

0:32:270:32:30

You're a star. I'll give you some money.

0:32:300:32:32

Swift business. 20 euros for a Belleek jug and bowl.

0:32:320:32:36

-I wish you good luck.

-Thank you.

-Thanks a million.

-You're a star.

0:32:360:32:39

Thank you. Thanks a lot.

0:32:390:32:41

And with that, their first shopping trip draws to a close.

0:32:410:32:45

Christina spent 270 euros on a rather worn Victorian chair,

0:32:450:32:49

a majolica-style jardiniere,

0:32:490:32:53

a tea and coffee service,

0:32:530:32:55

a Florian ware butter dish

0:32:550:32:57

and a pond yacht.

0:32:570:32:59

While Thomas paid out 200 euros for eight decanter labels,

0:32:590:33:03

an Art Deco cocktail shaker,

0:33:030:33:05

a cake breaker,

0:33:050:33:07

three soda siphons,

0:33:070:33:08

and a Belleek jug and bowl. So, what do they think?

0:33:080:33:11

I think this is going to be really interesting.

0:33:110:33:14

Cos there's a couple of things Christina has bought

0:33:140:33:17

which I would never have entertained.

0:33:170:33:19

There seems to be quite a common theme to Thomas's purchases,

0:33:190:33:22

I think the Irish black stuff might have slightly gone to his head.

0:33:220:33:25

He's bought a lot of sort of alcohol-related ephemera.

0:33:250:33:27

I don't know if he's trying to build himself

0:33:270:33:29

a little category in the auction, maybe, to attract buyers.

0:33:290:33:32

One thing I think should be consigned

0:33:320:33:36

to the hole of hell of antique buying,

0:33:360:33:39

that's that reproduction jardiniere. What?!

0:33:390:33:44

The cocktail shaker is just Thomas through and through.

0:33:440:33:46

It's sleek, it's a bit glam, it's quite suave.

0:33:460:33:49

I think it's fabulous, I love it, I'd buy that, I think it's great.

0:33:490:33:52

After setting out from Cashel, our experts are now heading for

0:33:520:33:57

their first auction, back in Birr, County Offaly,

0:33:570:34:00

which is Offaly nice!

0:34:000:34:02

-So, did you enjoy our first Irish buying leg?

-I did, I loved it.

0:34:020:34:06

I want to stay here, I don't want to go back to the United Kingdom.

0:34:060:34:09

But will he be saying that after round one of Trevanion versus Plant?

0:34:090:34:14

So, first leg.

0:34:140:34:16

First up, literally both of us straight out of the box.

0:34:160:34:21

Who's going to be victorious?

0:34:210:34:22

Christina, I think you might come out of this one better than myself,

0:34:220:34:27

-although you have risked more on the bigger lots.

-Yeah, I have.

0:34:270:34:31

I'm not confident about any of my lots, I am not confident.

0:34:310:34:35

Too late now, Thomas.

0:34:350:34:37

Oh, there you are.

0:34:380:34:40

You have mastered this thing now.

0:34:400:34:42

-Well, I knew I would.

-Right, neutral?

-Yeah.

0:34:420:34:46

-I'm in neutral, it's off.

-Handbrake?

-Handbrake on, come on.

0:34:460:34:50

-Ladies first.

-Thank you.

0:34:520:34:54

Welcome to 45-year-old Purcell Auctioneer's.

0:34:540:34:58

Today's guy with the gavel is Conor Purcell.

0:34:580:35:01

What does he think about our expert's treasures?

0:35:010:35:03

Chair, yeah, I really don't see the demand for that at all.

0:35:050:35:09

The pond yacht is a nice decorative thing.

0:35:090:35:11

Lovely in a man cave or something like that.

0:35:110:35:13

The set of decanter labels are lovely and pretty,

0:35:130:35:16

but I don't think people leave alcohol that long.

0:35:160:35:19

So it might struggle.

0:35:190:35:21

The cocktail shaker is a nice, collectable thing.

0:35:210:35:23

I would imagine it will certainly...it'll do OK.

0:35:230:35:27

Time to find out who has the luck of the Irish.

0:35:270:35:30

First up is Thomas's Belleek jug and bowl.

0:35:320:35:34

20 anywhere for this lot?

0:35:340:35:36

20 anywhere? 10 and see what happens.

0:35:360:35:38

-Any advance on 10?

-10, he's got 10. 12?

-Any advance on 12. 14 online.

0:35:380:35:42

-Any advance on 14?

-Come on.

-16 in the room.

0:35:420:35:45

Still in the room at 16. It's against you, online bidder.

0:35:450:35:49

Last chance. I'm selling in the room at 16.

0:35:490:35:53

It's a shaky start, but it can only get better.

0:35:530:35:56

Easy for you to say.

0:35:580:36:00

Let's see if Thomas's Art Deco cocktail shaker

0:36:000:36:03

can turn his luck around?

0:36:030:36:05

The commission is here with me at 30, and two,

0:36:050:36:07

-and five, and eight, and 40, and two.

-Profit.

-42 now.

0:36:070:36:11

-45 online. 45, 48 commission.

-And rightly so.

-Go on.

0:36:110:36:15

On commission at 48. All done and dusted.

0:36:150:36:17

It's here to be sold, and selling at 48.

0:36:170:36:20

-Well done. See?

-Yes!

0:36:200:36:23

-I've made back that four-euro loss.

-And some.

-And a bit more.

0:36:230:36:26

-You're doing well.

-It's a good profit really there.

-Well done.

0:36:260:36:30

-So, are you feeling happy about that for me?

-Not really.

0:36:300:36:33

All's fair in love and antiques.

0:36:330:36:36

Thomas has almost doubled his money on the cocktail shaker.

0:36:360:36:39

Now, it's over to Christina's majolica-style jardiniere.

0:36:390:36:44

-Lovely squirrel handles there.

-Ahh!

-Lovely squirrel handles.

0:36:440:36:48

50? Have we 40 anywhere? See what happens. 40 anywhere? 40 bid online.

0:36:480:36:52

-At 40 bid.

-Christina!

0:36:520:36:55

42, lady's bid. 45. 45, 48. 50 bid.

0:36:550:36:58

-50 bid online.

-Well done.

-50 bid.

0:36:580:37:02

-Any advance? 55. 60 bid. Two bidders online.

-I'd stop now, it's fine.

0:37:020:37:07

60 bid. Any advance on 60 bid? 65 bid. At 65. Any advance on 65?

0:37:070:37:12

Still there at 65. Online bidder winning. At 65, and selling at 65.

0:37:120:37:18

-High-funf, young girl.

-I'm going to lose it all in a minute.

0:37:180:37:22

Have faith, milady, have faith.

0:37:220:37:24

Next up, it's Christina's biggest spend,

0:37:240:37:27

the tea and coffee service, loads of it.

0:37:270:37:29

50 anywhere for this lot? 50, 60, 70, 80 online.

0:37:290:37:34

You see, 90 now.

0:37:340:37:35

-90 bid.

-Oh, come on. Come on, internet!

0:37:350:37:39

Any other hands in the room at 90? 95, 100.

0:37:390:37:41

-It's still hugely losing money.

-It doesn't matter. 120.

0:37:410:37:45

Still there at 120. 130 bid. 140. 140 bid.

0:37:450:37:49

All done at 140.

0:37:490:37:52

Online bidder... At 150 bid.

0:37:520:37:54

Last chance to you all, online, in the room and elsewhere at 150.

0:37:540:37:57

It's selling at 150.

0:37:570:38:00

Well done. See? All of that. How do you feel?

0:38:000:38:04

-You must feel exhausted.

-Relieved. Hugely relieved.

-Exhausted.

0:38:040:38:07

It's a lucky escape, with only a small loss after auction costs.

0:38:070:38:11

Now, it's back over to Thomas with his three soda siphons.

0:38:110:38:15

Nice lot again. And straight in. 32, 35, 40, 42, 45, 48, 50 bid.

0:38:150:38:21

-That's a profit.

-That's a profit. Ugh!

-That's a profit.

-At 55.

0:38:210:38:25

I'm out at 55. In the room at 55.

0:38:250:38:27

-More, more, more.

-Any advance on 65? 60 bid.

-60.

-Oh, my goodness.

0:38:270:38:32

Any advance on 60? 60 bid. Last chance, going, going... 65.

0:38:320:38:36

-65, go on.

-Stop it.

0:38:360:38:38

Any advance on 65?

0:38:380:38:40

-With a little encouragement at 65.

-One more?

0:38:400:38:43

-No, he doesn't need any encouragement.

-And selling at 65.

0:38:430:38:47

Well done. Seriously, well done. I'm amazed.

0:38:470:38:49

Top job, Thomas. Another solid profit.

0:38:490:38:53

Now for Christina's bargain Florian ware butter dish,

0:38:530:38:56

but will the damage hold it back?

0:38:560:38:58

-Commissions in again. 30, 32, 35, 38, 40 bid.

-Starting bids.

0:38:580:39:03

-Two, five, six.

-45 with me. At 45. 48? 50 bid.

0:39:030:39:06

55. Takes me out at 55.

0:39:060:39:09

-Come on, internet. Come on.

-Oh, no!

0:39:090:39:12

-Five.

-That should have made more than that.

0:39:120:39:15

-I feel bad for you, Christina.

-It's a profit.

-It's a profit.

0:39:150:39:18

Don't feel too bad, she's doubled her money.

0:39:180:39:21

Christina's Victorian chair is up now. Stand by.

0:39:220:39:25

Needs a bit of TLC. Who will start us at 80? 60? 50?

0:39:270:39:31

-Have we 40 anywhere? 40 anywhere?

-Go on. It's beautiful.

0:39:310:39:35

-30 have we? 20 anywhere?

-Ouch!

0:39:350:39:38

20 anywhere for this one? 20 anywhere?

0:39:380:39:41

I think I might take that and be grateful for it.

0:39:410:39:43

-20, all done around the room?

-That's not great news, is it?

-Oh, no!

0:39:430:39:47

-20 euros. I can't really...

-Mary.

0:39:470:39:51

It's not exactly in peak condition, Christina.

0:39:510:39:54

Can the pond yacht do any better?

0:39:550:39:58

50 anywhere? 50 anywhere for the pond yacht? 40, start me at 30.

0:39:580:40:02

-30 bid. 30 bid.

-Come on!

0:40:020:40:05

32 online. 32. And 35.

0:40:050:40:07

-One more, come on. Come on.

-Any advance on 35?

-Come on, come on!

0:40:070:40:11

Any advance on 35? 38 bid. 38 bid.

0:40:110:40:14

-It needs to make a bit more than that.

-Last chance to you all.

0:40:140:40:17

-It's going, going at 30... At 40 bid.

-Hooray!

0:40:170:40:21

42 bid in the room.

0:40:210:40:22

-Oh, he's in the room as well.

-Two in the room now.

-45, 48.

0:40:220:40:26

They can put their hands down now.

0:40:260:40:28

-She's getting too big for her boots.

-Selling at 48.

0:40:290:40:32

I think you have done tremendously well.

0:40:320:40:36

-Well done, you.

-That's it, I'm done.

0:40:360:40:37

That's Christina all out, ending with a nice little profit.

0:40:370:40:41

But Thomas still has two more items to go,

0:40:410:40:43

starting with his sterling silver cake breaker.

0:40:430:40:47

Commission is in at 50, and five, 60 bid.

0:40:470:40:51

-What did you pay for it?

-55.

-Oh!

-Put your hand up if you are bidding. 65.

0:40:510:40:56

-70 bid.

-70 bid, whoa, yes!

0:40:560:40:59

-Any advance? 75.

-75.

-It is there, isn't it?

0:40:590:41:02

My commission buyer is winning.

0:41:020:41:04

At 80 bid, make no mistake, I'm selling at 80.

0:41:040:41:07

Goodness. That was really good. Well spotted.

0:41:080:41:11

Cakes are popular, people like baking at the moment.

0:41:110:41:14

But it would also be very useful if you'd forgotten your hairbrush.

0:41:140:41:17

Another little earner for him.

0:41:170:41:19

Finally, it's Thomas's eight decanter labels.

0:41:190:41:24

Starting at 40.

0:41:240:41:25

30, nice things, these. 30 anywhere?

0:41:250:41:28

-Oh, no, he we go.

-20 anywhere for all the labels? 20 bid.

0:41:280:41:31

-Any advance on 20?

-Go on.

-22.

-22. 22 bid. 22, 25.

0:41:310:41:37

-Go on.

-It's a bidding war.

-30 bid. Any advance on 30 bid?

0:41:370:41:41

Here to be sold. Selling at 30.

0:41:410:41:45

-It's a hard loss.

-Welcome to my world.

-It's a horrible loss.

0:41:450:41:49

This one could be a close call.

0:41:490:41:51

Let's go check the figures and have a cup of tea.

0:41:510:41:53

-Maybe we can go and use your cocktail shaker.

-I've sold it now.

0:41:530:41:56

-Oh, Thomas!

-It's gone.

0:41:560:41:58

-Come on.

-Come on, then.

0:42:000:42:02

Thomas began with 285 euros.

0:42:040:42:06

After auction costs, he lost four euros, two cents,

0:42:060:42:10

leaving him with almost 281 euros to spend next time.

0:42:100:42:15

Christina started with the same sum.

0:42:170:42:19

After deducting auction costs,

0:42:190:42:21

she made a profit of seven euros, 16 cents,

0:42:210:42:25

giving her the early lead and just over 292 euros.

0:42:250:42:29

-My goodness, what a roller coaster!

-Up and down.

-Up and down.

0:42:290:42:34

-Losses, profits.

-I think we are almost on the level.

0:42:340:42:38

No, I made a little bit of a profit, and I have to say that

0:42:380:42:41

-because it hardly ever happens.

-In you go.

-So what happened...?

0:42:410:42:44

I'm not telling you. Get in.

0:42:440:42:45

-Did you make a profit or a loss?

-Get in, I'm not telling you.

0:42:450:42:48

-I was about equal, all right?

-I don't think it was.

0:42:490:42:52

I was about equal, remember? Do we need to talk about this?

0:42:520:42:56

-I think we do.

-It's not fair.

0:42:560:42:58

Next time, on the Antiques Road Trip, Christina gets in a muddle...

0:43:000:43:04

And I in the right place? I'm very confused.

0:43:040:43:07

..and Thomas takes a relaxed approach.

0:43:070:43:10

I'm feeling very confident... which is always a bad thing.

0:43:100:43:14

Christina Trevanion and Thomas Plant begin their road trip in Ireland. Starting from Cashel, County Tipperary, in a 1962 Bedford van, they hunt out treasures to take to auction in Birr in County Offaly.