Episode 16 Antiques Road Trip


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Episode 16

Antiques experts James Braxton and Thomas Plant begin their tour of north east England. James gets to blow some Northumbrian pipes, albeit badly.


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The nation's favourite antiques experts, £200 each and one big challenge.

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Testing, testing.

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Who can make the most money buying and selling antiques as they scour the UK?

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I don't mean to drive a hard bargain.

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The aim is to trade up and hope each antique turns a profit.

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But it's not as easy as it sounds and there can only be one winner.

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-Punching the air!

-So will it be the highway to success or the B-road to bankruptcy?

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I'm going to be like Rocky. I'm going to come from behind.

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This is the Antiques Road Trip.

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On the road trip this week we're meeting a pair of fine young gentlemen, both antiques experts,

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both eager to buy low and sell high, both keen to win!

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James "The Hammer" Braxton is an auctioneer who loves pretty objects from around the world.

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-Pretty. Good design. Very Russian.

-And he certainly knows a good deal when he sees one.

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(It's free. It's got no price on it.)

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The man from Bristol, Thomas Plant, is an expert in all things 20th Century.

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He's new to the Antiques Road Trip and ready to put himself out there.

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You really are sort of putting your reputation on the line.

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-Thomas, here we are.

-Here we are.

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-Now what do we have here?

-Berwick-upon-Tweed.

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Oh, fabulous!

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Beautiful coastline.

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-Are you nervous?

-Umm, no, I'm not.

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I'm going to spend absolutely nothing.

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Just a couple of horse brasses and some sort of brass poker, I thought.

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Do you think I should go the other way and spend the lot?

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Yeah, go large.

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Either go hard, or go home.

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The boys will be racing through the north-east of England,

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from Berwick-upon-Tweed to Driffield in East Yorkshire.

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And today, they're heading for an auction in East Boldon in Tyne and Wear.

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James and Thomas are starting this week's road trip with £200 each

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and hoping to turn a profit at auction.

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Berwick-upon-Tweed is officially the most northern town in England,

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or still part of Scotland, depending on who you ask.

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The town is famous for its bridges spanning the River Tweed,

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a grand estuary leading out to the North Sea.

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The stunning Royal Border Bridge

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was designed by Robert Stevenson, son of George Stevenson.

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You know, the one who invented trains.

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This Victorian structure was opened in 1850.

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Now looking at that view, I'm feeling a wave of optimism.

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Do you mean there's some lucky antique dealer about to welcome your £200 in cash?

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Avid road trip fans will know that James Braxton drives his own classic car.

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And it's working better than ever... Well, sort of.

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Let's just have a small inspection.

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No, I think we're all right now.

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It still feels quite hot.

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Now our boys can get cracking.

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Their respective £200 starter-packs must be burning holes in their pockets!

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Let's just leave it for a while.

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Do you think we should go and buy some antiques?

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-No, I don't want to do that.

-Really?

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No, but I think we should.

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-Do you know where you're going?

-I think I might go down there.

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-Really? I think I might go down there as well.

-Good luck.

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And it doesn't take long for James to fan the flames.

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Rather nice desk stand. Ebony.

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Carved ebony, sort of profusely carved.

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And you know it's Indian because every surface is worked.

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And rather a nice drawer here with the very nice dovetail joints in it.

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Yeah, very nice action, that.

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No juddering.

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Mmm, very nice.

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A lovely collection of hats - look at that.

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Probably get that for Thomas. Motoring hat.

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-Rather nice.

-I don't think Thomas would thank you for that - he's already got a hat!

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Across town we find this innocent man, new to the sink or swim ways of the Antiques Road Trip,

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but about to throw himself, gallantly, into the fray.

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I think this guy must be a house clearer.

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It all looks like it's come straight out of a property.

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So hopefully, you never know, he might have some gems.

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-Hello, what's your name?

-John.

-Tom.

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-Very nice to meet you.

-Finding all the bargains?

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Finding all the bargains. Can I have a look at that glass cane?

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This has travelled a long way.

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A long way.

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-Don't you think?

-I would have thought so.

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This has come from a little town, a little village just outside Bristol called Nailsea.

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There was a huge demand for glass windows and bottles during the Industrial Revolution.

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So, many successful glass manufacturers began

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making items for the home, such as these pretty glass canes.

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They would probably go on for another...

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another same length as this and they were hung over fireplaces.

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But as it's been cut down I'm probably going to leave this one.

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It's lovely, but it's not right.

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Now, something sparkly has caught James' eye.

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It's a silver sweets bowl.

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And it's only £10!

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Quite a nice little Indian silver bowl. I rather like it.

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Heavily adorned - there should be no flat surface that is left without some fellow punching it out.

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And they did punch them out with an old nail and a hammer,

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so of course legs are very vulnerable, getting bashed.

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Thrown at errant husbands.

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Silver is one of the oldest metals known to humans

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and has been considered precious since ancient times.

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Britain once used silver as payment for imported goods, such as tea it bought from India.

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So Indian manufactured silver goods became popular during the days of the Raj.

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Now, as I'm a very poor Southern boy coming up to you...

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-We usually put the price up for southerners.

-I would!

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Now, can I be very cheeky?

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Could you do that for £3?

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No! You can have it for £8.

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-8?

-My god, £10.

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Nobody asks for a discount on £10.

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-Don't they?

-Well, being polite, no-one would haggle below £10.

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But this man is from the Antiques Road Trip and the rules are...

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Well, there are no rules!

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What about five then?

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-Meet me halfway?

-Seven.

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Whoa, there's a slight

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slippage here. Six, can you do six?

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-No.

-Still sounds like you're being cheeky, James.

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But where there's a pound, there's a haggle.

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-Seven, go on.

-I'd very much like to do it at seven anyway.

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That's very kind.

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-Thank you.

-I hope it makes you a fortune.

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I don't think it will but it will help me on my way.

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Although it's not a startling piece, the reason I bought it - India, you know, the emerging economy.

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Lots of people will start repatriating things.

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Whether they do in time for the auction, I don't know.

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Well done, James.

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A fine bit of silver from far away.

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Now, how about something closer to home?

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Can I have a look at the cake swing basket?

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It's Elkington.

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Is it Elkington?

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It's stamped E & Co, Elkington and Co with the crown.

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Now, Elkington were the boys in the late 19th century.

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They were the guys who really, you know, took the plate industry on.

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George Richards Elkington was a silver manufacturer born in 1801,

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and he patented the process of electro-plating.

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Elkington and Co.

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grew after George's death in 1865, and the Elkington name still manufactures plated silverware today.

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Look at this lovely handle here.

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This rose and leaf design.

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With the scroll, I mean it's so Victorian, but, you know, I think that with cupcakes on...

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Fit for a king really.

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Ooh, cupcakes. Lovely!

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What's the best on this one?

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I could do it at...45.

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45? I was more like thinking 30.

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I'll meet you half way and we'll say 40.

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35.

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37.50.

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-36.50.

-35. Go on.

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-35? Yeah?

-Deal.

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First purchase. Quite pleased.

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I believe I've done quite well, actually.

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Good basket, and I can see it in a good cake shop in Newcastle, polished up.

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These cupcakes are so fashionable.

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Laden with cupcakes in a great cake shop.

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I reckon that's where it's going to end up.

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Don't get too distracted by cup cakes, Thomas.

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A second on the lips - a lifetime on the hips!

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And stop looking in that baker's shop window!

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So our boys have done very well with their first silver-plated purchases.

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Let's hope a fine reward awaits them!

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-Uh-oh!

-No!

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I don't believe that!

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Hey! You naughty, naughty people.

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Our experts have wandered into a local practical joke.

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A sly note, stuck inside an old parking ticket sleeve.

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Got to watch those chaps in Berwick-upon-Tweed.

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Very good, very good.

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A very close shave!

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I don't think even our experts could haggle with a parking attendant!

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MUSIC: "The Chain" by Fleetwood Mac (TV FORMULA ONE THEME)

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Now let's get back on the road.

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The road trip is taking our emboldened experts 30 miles due south

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to Alnwick, where great adventure waits.

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According to legend in 1816, Alnwick's famous Percy Tenantry Column was a gift

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from the area's tenants in gratitude to the second Duke of Northumberland.

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The Duke had kindly lowered land taxes.

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But the Duke wondered how the locals could afford such a column, so he raised the taxes again!

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Today in Alnwick, you still find the occasional tight-fisted visitor... or two!

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This is your stop, Thomas.

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Lovely sunny day for a book shop.

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Well, I'm meant to be going in there, the antique shop.

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But there's this book shop and it's an old station.

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And I'm really quite interested in going to have a look so...

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It's a bit of a jaunt, bit off the beaten track.

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Thomas, you are too easily distracted when you should be shopping.

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Why do big boys love little trains so much?

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The old Alnwick Station closed in 1968 and has been turned into an enormous second-hand bookshop.

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But there's still a small... very small... Local service.

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Look at that, Santa Fe.

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2.5 inch gauge, I think that is.

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Thomas finds David, the first-class restorer of this fine building.

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It's one of the most popular things in the shop.

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We really love the building and I think that's shown in the way we've

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restored parts of it back to what it used to be.

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We've got all the old waiting rooms, the gentlemen's first class waiting room,

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the ladies' first class waiting room, the third class waiting room.

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This is a "brief encounter" with a more class-rigid Britain,

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where toffs and commoners waited separately for a ride home.

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In fact, Alnwick used to be a branch stop, with once important visitors

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and appropriate head gear for a stationmaster.

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Here we have a portrait of the first top-hat stationmaster.

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Now, a top-hat station would be York, Newcastle, Kings Cross, Edinburgh,

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but the only one that we know of that was on a branch line was Alnwick,

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because there were so many royal trains and foreign heads and dignitaries came here,

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to the castle, so the stationmaster was a top-hat stationmaster.

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This is amazing. Wow, look at that!

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Here we have the arrival of the royal train in 1908.

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The Prince and Princess of Wales, future King George V and Queen Mary.

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It must have been a really colourful station.

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Oh, it was. I used to bring my first girlfriend here, thinking I was so sophisticated.

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-Can you remember her name?

-Oh, yes, I can.

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Oh, but you won't say?

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She knows.

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Looks like this was once a station of love.

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But, as all waiting-room romances must come to an end, Thomas must now get on with some shopping.

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Meanwhile, seasoned barterer James Braxton

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is heading out of town to unearth a rare, glittering antiques centre.

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Ah, here it is!

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This is an Arts and Crafts-y sort of number.

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It's just very nicely made and it's typical sort of Edwardian aspidistra jardiniere

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on the top here, so it was tiled so you didn't damage the surface.

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Victorian edging tiles.

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Look at those. £85 for the lot.

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Ooh, they'd look nice round my garden.

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But how about something to buy, James?

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Haven't found my winner yet, I'm afraid.

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Well, better leave you to it, then.

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Let's see if Thomas is hard at it.

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Ah, a light and airy antiques shop, for a refreshing change.

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But straight away, something dark and powerful catches Thomas's eye.

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-Hello... Can we have a look at these hooves?

-You certainly can.

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-There you go.

-Thank you very much. Now, what do you know about these?

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I bought them about 10 years ago with lots of silver photograph frames.

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It said it's first prize for a pig sticking competition.

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Pig sticking? Do you know what pig sticking is?

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-No idea.

-Well, I think we need a search engine, really.

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Well, I may be of some use here.

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If you can imagine a frightening combination of fox hunting and bull-fighting -

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pig sticking is a kind-of wild boar chase.

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Although, actually, I think these are cow's hooves.

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And strangely, someone's turned them into a pair of Valentine pincushions.

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We're looking at sewing items.

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Sewing is so dainty, isn't it?

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-I don't think you'd want those on your dressing table, would you?

-No.

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Now there's no price on them.

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I was hoping you'd make me an offer.

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Are you expecting more than £30?

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I was thinking 40 for the pair.

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I still have 30 in my head.

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Because they're so unusual and I could lose everything.

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40, it's even more to lose.

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30, you know, we could make a 30 profit on something else.

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-Go on.

-Really? We've got a deal.

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-Yes.

-Brilliant. Thank you very much.

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So, Thomas has bought himself some very unusual cloven hooves. Has he sold his soul for auction glory?

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I'm actually very nervous about them because not everybody likes animal parts, body parts

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floating round their house, but there are plenty people who do.

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But right now I'd better go and find that Braxton chap and make sure he hasn't got anything really good.

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Ah, yes, Braxton, James.

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What ever became of him?

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Looks like he's still looking round that Antiques Centre.

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James has only one item in his auction arsenal. Thomas now has two!

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Sands are shifting.

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Found anything yet, James?

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No?

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Nothing?

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Well, we'd better stick with Thomas then.

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-At least he's on a roll,

-Magnificent!

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In fact he's on a path, heading for a date with one of Britain's most intriguing historical ladies.

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For centuries, Alnwick Castle has been the baronial home

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of the Percy family, latterly the Dukedom of Northumberland.

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Last year, the estate celebrated its 700th birthday -

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and it doesn't look a day older than 690!

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-Good morning.

-Good morning.

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-What a wonderful day.

-It is a good day, isn't it?

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Thomas meets Michael, collections and archive assistant for the past 20 years, and our guide for the day.

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I am gobsmacked at how beautiful it is.

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-It is beautiful, isn't it?

-But it hasn't always been as beautiful. It's been a bit bloody, hasn't it?

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It was mafia country. This wasn't either England or Scotland.

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It's border country and they made their own laws, they did their own things.

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-It's just been strategically important, but traded back between two countries.

-Yes.

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I can't wait to go inside.

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In the 17th century, the reigning Duke restored the estate,

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using architect Robert Adam and the famous landscape designer, Capability Brown.

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Forever known as "England's Greatest Gardener",

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our Lancelot was responsible for over 170 stately gardens from Kew to Warwick to Alnwick.

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And if you thought the gardens were lovely...

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This is fantastic. Wow!

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This is the dining room.

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-Is this where you have your lunch?

-I consider it sometimes.

-Really?

-Yes.

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Oo-ar - a bit grand in here for nibbling a cheese ploughman's.

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And there's something else rather special waiting on the table.

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-It's in here, is it?

-It's in here.

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I'll just put these gloves on.

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-I feel quite honoured.

-And it's this.

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Wow! Look at that.

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A stunning velvet-covered Tudor prayer book. But whose was it?

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This is the prayer book of Queen Anne Boleyn.

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-Queen Anne Boleyn.

-Yes, indeed.

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Well, if anyone needed a prayer, it was old Anne Boleyn!

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This book is never normally on display as it's far too precious.

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She had a relationship with the sixth Earl when he was at Henry VIII's Court.

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The sixth Earl of Percy, was it?

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Yes. He was known as Henry the Unthrifty.

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-Henry the Unthrifty?

-Yes, cos he lost almost, well, he did, he lost the entire Percy fortune.

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So the Alnwick Henry had a fling with the infamous Anne Boleyn,

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before she was stolen away by big, fat Henry VIII.

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Yet her prayer book remained at the castle.

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This could have been a parting gift, then?

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It could've been. It could have been something she had on the scaffold.

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However the prayer book got here, it's not something you can take to auction, Thomas.

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Meanwhile James is hurtling back from his unsuccessful afternoon's shopping to collect his travelling companion.

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-Berwick. How did you get on?

-That's for me to me to know and you to find out.

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-For me, I think there's a bit of money in the bank.

-Oh, really?

0:19:220:19:25

I didn't spend a lot. Small increments.

0:19:250:19:27

HORN HOOTS

0:19:270:19:29

The next morning, James and Thomas hit the road.

0:19:350:19:38

So far, James has spent a mere £7 on just one item - the Indian silver bowl, leaving £193 to spend today.

0:19:410:19:49

Come on, James!

0:19:490:19:52

Thomas, meanwhile, spent £65 on two items - the cake basket

0:19:520:19:58

and the hoof pincushions, leaving £135 for today's shopping.

0:19:580:20:04

19 further south from Alnwick is the handsome market town of Morpeth,

0:20:050:20:11

first stone-built in medieval times and spanning the River Wansbeck,

0:20:110:20:17

and enjoyed by all creatures, two-legged and four.

0:20:170:20:21

Both our experts really need to get on with their shopping today, especially James.

0:20:210:20:25

And yet, here he is, on his way Morpeth's Bagpipe Museum.

0:20:250:20:30

Naughty boy!

0:20:300:20:32

Bagpipes date back to...well, who knows when, frankly?

0:20:320:20:36

Possibly as far back as 400 BC and were brought to Britain by the Romans in the eighth century.

0:20:360:20:43

And they became popular in Scotland and the Borders around the 16th century.

0:20:430:20:48

-Take me to your fabulous museum.

-OK, just up the stairs.

0:20:480:20:51

Kim is the curator here and welcomes James into the world of wind.

0:20:510:20:55

The earliest evidence we have of pipes being played in Northumberland is a carving from Hexham Abbey

0:20:550:21:03

and you can see a rather squat-looking chap playing a double chanter -

0:21:030:21:07

the chanter is the bit you play the tune on.

0:21:070:21:09

So the drones are the big long pipes that people associate...

0:21:090:21:12

Yes. That you see in the modern Highland bagpipes.

0:21:120:21:16

More popular here are these Northumberland pipes.

0:21:160:21:21

They differ from the Scottish bagpipes with a canny set of belt-bellows to fill your wind-bag.

0:21:210:21:26

You've got the black and white plaid there, the tartan, which is the basic tartan,

0:21:260:21:32

which the shepherds of the Borders, both on the Scottish side and the Northumbrian side would wear.

0:21:320:21:37

And the Duke of Northumberland's piper wears that plaid.

0:21:370:21:40

This is another example of the mixture of Scottish and English culture in Border country.

0:21:400:21:47

This case shows some pipes and engravings to do with Jamie Allan, the first known Northumbrian piper.

0:21:470:21:55

He was a bit of a rogue. He was supposed to have married three times without bothering to divorce.

0:21:550:22:00

He joined the army and deserted several times and ended up in Durham Jail in the house of correction

0:22:000:22:05

for horse stealing and died in 1810,

0:22:050:22:09

but of course modern pipers aren't like that - they're terribly refined.

0:22:090:22:11

Sounds like Jamie Allan was a medieval bad boy,

0:22:110:22:15

the Keith Richards of bagpiping.

0:22:150:22:17

I'll just play you a quick tune. I'll play Jamie Allan, which is

0:22:190:22:22

the tune that celebrates our roguish piper in the other room.

0:22:220:22:26

Far more dignified than somebody getting red hot and bothered, going...

0:22:410:22:45

Well, you can get hot and bothered. This arm has to do quite a bit of work.

0:22:450:22:50

That's going to be your challenge, to see what this arm does.

0:22:500:22:54

-I'm up for it!

-Pump away with the bellows on one side but then you've got to remember to breathe.

0:22:540:22:58

That's it.

0:22:580:23:00

Oh dear, that's rather embarrassing.

0:23:000:23:03

This could be interesting!

0:23:030:23:04

Ooops! Looks like someone's been tucking into Thomas' cup cakes.

0:23:040:23:09

Obviously they're very small in Northumberland.

0:23:090:23:12

Just about. You have to breathe in, I think.

0:23:120:23:15

No, I don't.

0:23:150:23:18

-Push through... Ah!

-NOTE PLAYS

0:23:180:23:20

Excellent. Now put that finger back.

0:23:200:23:23

THE NOTE DIES

0:23:230:23:25

I'm trying to, yeah, found it.

0:23:250:23:28

James plays us one of his favourite tunes here - the Ballad of the Dying Cat.

0:23:280:23:35

Oh dear, that's quite enough, thank you.

0:23:370:23:39

Time to move on and continue the all-important shopping spree.

0:23:420:23:47

19 miles south-east from Morpeth is the quaint seaside town of Tynemouth.

0:23:470:23:52

It's lovely to see the sea, James, it's absolutely fantastic.

0:23:530:23:57

I find the sea is best enjoyed in the sunshine, though.

0:23:570:24:01

Really, being a Plant, I enjoy the rain, especially when driving, in the eyes, on the cheeks.

0:24:010:24:08

Holiday-makers come here for the sea, the sun and the fun...

0:24:080:24:14

as well as a stroll along Tynemouth's sometimes scenic pier,

0:24:140:24:18

but our boys are here to shop.

0:24:190:24:21

-Well, James, this looks like my stop.

-Yup.

0:24:210:24:24

See you soon.

0:24:240:24:26

I'm counting my money because I'm just not entirely sure how much I've got left.

0:24:260:24:30

You've got £135 left, Thomas.

0:24:300:24:33

And the clock is ticking.

0:24:330:24:35

But the thing is, if I get something which I think will make a lot of money at auction,

0:24:350:24:39

I don't mind blowing it all,

0:24:390:24:41

so let's hope there's some good stuff in here.

0:24:410:24:44

Did I hear the words "blowing it all"? Very courageous, Thomas.

0:24:440:24:48

But just to be safe, why not get some advice from Ian?

0:24:480:24:51

-You've got a fantastic collection of Sunderland lustre.

-That's right.

0:24:510:24:55

I've been collecting and specialising for the last 25 years.

0:24:550:24:59

That pink lustre, that's what gave it its name, isn't it?

0:24:590:25:02

That's right.

0:25:020:25:04

Sunderland lustre became very popular in mid-19th century, made by many ceramics firms such as Dixon and Co.

0:25:040:25:12

These items are still loved today for their pretty pastel tints and local scenes.

0:25:120:25:18

It very much reflects the social statement of the time.

0:25:180:25:23

Whether it be sailing, farming...

0:25:230:25:27

-There's a masonic one there, isn't there?

-Masonic as well, yes.

0:25:270:25:29

This was made in the North-East about 1820, 1825.

0:25:290:25:33

What is the price of that? You've got £285.

0:25:330:25:36

That is well beyond our price range.

0:25:360:25:38

It's a rare piece, you know.

0:25:380:25:40

-There with the masonic sign, it looked good, didn't it?

-£285?

0:25:400:25:45

Blow it all if you want Thomas, but you've not got enough money for that.

0:25:450:25:48

This is just absolutely wonderful, isn't it?

0:25:480:25:53

It's basically this design, this slipware design.

0:25:530:25:55

What you've got to think about with antiques is fashion.

0:25:550:25:59

That is extremely stylish. It can be in any...

0:25:590:26:03

interior, whether it be ultra modern or ultra antique.

0:26:030:26:08

That's what's so...

0:26:080:26:10

brilliant about it.

0:26:100:26:12

That's why it's good, that's why it's £350.

0:26:120:26:15

OK, well let's leave that alone too.

0:26:150:26:18

Perhaps find something a little smaller. And remember where the auction is, Thomas.

0:26:180:26:24

I wouldn't mind a bit of advice because you're local to the area.

0:26:240:26:27

We're selling in Boldon Auction Galleries.

0:26:270:26:29

I'd like to buy something to put in there.

0:26:290:26:33

I may have something. Sunderland plaque, made about 1860 by Anthony Scott of Southwick.

0:26:330:26:40

Transfer printed with a sailing ship.

0:26:400:26:43

Orange lustre. What's the difference between the orange and the pink?

0:26:430:26:47

Is it as widely collected or...

0:26:470:26:49

The orange lustre was made later on in the century.

0:26:490:26:52

So we're talking sort of 1880s here?

0:26:520:26:55

Well, 1850s, 1860s and that is in perfect condition and that can be £95.

0:26:550:27:03

95. I wouldn't mind going as much as paying £60 for something but 90 would be eating too much

0:27:030:27:09

-into what I've got because I'm not entirely sure what's going to happen at the auction.

-I see.

0:27:090:27:15

-Well, I can budge a little bit.

-How much?

0:27:150:27:18

Well, I said 90...

0:27:180:27:20

-You can have it for 75.

-75.

0:27:230:27:28

It's a good thing. Can you do any more?

0:27:280:27:31

Wow. Thomas is really working hard and torturing poor Ian.

0:27:310:27:36

-James would be proud.

-You're a hard man.

0:27:360:27:38

I'm not a hard man!

0:27:380:27:40

I'm quite a nice man.

0:27:400:27:42

I'll take another £5 but that is it.

0:27:420:27:46

So we're talking £70.

0:27:460:27:48

You couldn't go down to 65?

0:27:480:27:51

65? Yes, OK, that's a deal.

0:27:510:27:54

-That's a deal?

-That's a deal.

-I don't mean to drive a hard bargain.

0:27:540:27:58

Oh, I think you do, Thomas. And I'm pretty sure that antique shops are really supposed to make a profit.

0:27:580:28:05

Now it's time for James to reclaim his lustre and get some serious antiques in his auction arsenal.

0:28:050:28:10

James has made his way just eight miles west of Thomas, to the Newcastle suburb of Benton.

0:28:100:28:17

No pressure at all here, James. Well, actually, quite a lot of pressure.

0:28:170:28:21

It's getting pretty late in the day, the shops are going to shut soon and you've only spent £7!

0:28:210:28:27

That's a mighty fellow, isn't it?

0:28:270:28:30

Huge copper pan.

0:28:300:28:33

A slightly odd item to take to auction.

0:28:330:28:36

James might have more chance of getting rid of this pot at a scrap yard.

0:28:360:28:41

Then again, one man's scrap is another man's antique.

0:28:410:28:44

So this is bronze. Mercury, the winged messenger, seated.

0:28:440:28:49

1920s Art Deco figure.

0:28:490:28:51

On this fine fellow,

0:28:510:28:55

could you do something like 50 quid on that?

0:28:550:28:57

I couldn't be doing 50 quid.

0:28:570:28:59

No, almost 50 per cent you're asking for.

0:29:010:29:03

I know, I'm a hard man.

0:29:030:29:05

-You are!

-I'm not a hard man, I'm a desperate man.

0:29:050:29:07

You're a desperate man!

0:29:070:29:09

Give me 75 quid, that's 25 per cent.

0:29:090:29:12

Yeah, I know. 75.

0:29:120:29:15

Right. Let me have a look.

0:29:150:29:16

Mercury was also the winged god of trade.

0:29:190:29:22

In fact, I think he has a message for James.

0:29:220:29:25

Buy something!

0:29:250:29:28

These are quite fun.

0:29:280:29:29

These lovely '30s, Deco glasses with the peach glass here.

0:29:290:29:34

And it's in quite good order, there's no problems, I don't think.

0:29:340:29:38

That's quite stylish, isn't it, for something?

0:29:380:29:41

Yes, James. They're all lovely.

0:29:410:29:46

But you're going to have to buy at least one of them very soon.

0:29:460:29:50

At least Thomas has the shopping bug.

0:29:520:29:53

Back in Tynemouth, something small and delicate

0:29:530:29:56

has charmed the talented Mr Plant.

0:29:560:30:00

Just a really nice 1920s, similar kind of arts and crafts brooch

0:30:000:30:04

but it's silver, with enamel on.

0:30:040:30:07

At least this is enamel.

0:30:070:30:08

It's really cool.

0:30:080:30:10

'It's lovely and there's nothing wrong with a red-blooded man looking at a broach.'

0:30:120:30:16

What's your very best on that?

0:30:160:30:19

That can be £8.

0:30:200:30:22

-Can it be five?

-No.

-Really?

-No.

0:30:220:30:27

-It can be... Oh, £5, go on.

-Yeah?

0:30:270:30:30

-Yes, go on!

-Yes, yes, yes!

0:30:300:30:32

'Oh, Thomas, you've broken him.

0:30:330:30:36

'This is just too easy now.'

0:30:360:30:37

I'm really pleased.

0:30:370:30:39

£5 for a silver and enamel brooch. Go and find me one of those again.

0:30:390:30:43

I don't think I'll find one of those all season.

0:30:430:30:46

Thomas is now leading the shopping tally.

0:30:470:30:50

Four items bought to James' one.

0:30:500:30:53

So how about slow-coach James?

0:30:530:30:56

I'll bet he still can't decide between the Mercury statue,

0:30:560:30:59

the Art Deco mirror, and the great big copper pot.

0:30:590:31:02

Oh, Lord!

0:31:030:31:05

Looks like he bought the lot!

0:31:050:31:06

Well, thank goodness for that.

0:31:060:31:10

Really pleased with the items.

0:31:100:31:11

£50 for Mercury,

0:31:110:31:13

£20 for the peach glass mirror and £50 for the copper saucepan.

0:31:130:31:20

Could this 11th hour bulk-buy seal James' fate at auction?

0:31:200:31:25

We'll soon find out.

0:31:250:31:28

Now it's time for the all-important show and tell.

0:31:280:31:31

These weary experts have worked very hard.

0:31:310:31:34

Well, Thomas has at least.

0:31:340:31:36

Thomas, what do you think of that?

0:31:360:31:37

Bit of Indian silver.

0:31:370:31:39

-Not too bad, is it?

-No.

0:31:390:31:42

I like the fish on it, sort of Berwick-on-Tweed.

0:31:420:31:44

-Yeah, absolutely.

-Guess the price?

0:31:440:31:47

Um...£25.

0:31:470:31:49

Seven.

0:31:490:31:51

-Seven?

-£7.

0:31:510:31:52

I feel terrible now.

0:31:520:31:54

-Oh, that's a lovely basket.

-Elkington & Co basket.

0:31:560:31:59

I think 50 to 70.

0:31:590:32:02

-£35.

-I think you've done well.

0:32:020:32:04

That's great. It's nicely cast, isn't it?

0:32:040:32:07

Heavy fellow.

0:32:070:32:08

As you can see, this came out of a bin.

0:32:080:32:12

-It's a rather nice Deco peach cast fellow.

-I like that very much.

0:32:120:32:17

-Guess the price.

-£40.

0:32:170:32:19

Near.

0:32:190:32:20

-Guess again, Thomas.

-55.

0:32:200:32:22

20.

0:32:220:32:24

No! No!

0:32:240:32:25

-Beat that! Go on!

-Promise not to laugh?

0:32:250:32:30

Well, James won't, but I might.

0:32:300:32:33

Oh! Right, OK.

0:32:360:32:38

Pin cushions, what do you think?

0:32:380:32:40

HE LAUGHS

0:32:400:32:42

Do you think this a cowman's valentine then, pin cushions?

0:32:420:32:45

Yeah!

0:32:450:32:48

20, 30?

0:32:480:32:49

I paid £30 for them.

0:32:490:32:52

They are weird things.

0:32:520:32:54

Thomas, my third is over here.

0:32:540:32:57

It's a heavy beast.

0:32:570:32:59

-Looks like a beast!

-A beasty beasty.

0:32:590:33:01

Oh, great! Look at that!

0:33:010:33:04

It's a mighty beast, isn't it?

0:33:040:33:05

James, whatever you paid for this, it's worth its weight.

0:33:050:33:08

-I paid £50 for it.

-Well done, you.

0:33:080:33:12

-Sell it or scrap it, Thomas.

-Sell it or scrap it.

0:33:120:33:15

I bought this under duress. I shouldn't have bought this.

0:33:150:33:19

-I shouldn't have bought this.

-That's rather nice, isn't it?

0:33:190:33:22

Sunderland lustre, 1860s, 1870s.

0:33:220:33:26

What do you think I paid for that?

0:33:260:33:28

Cor... 30, 40?

0:33:280:33:31

-More!

-More, more, more?

0:33:310:33:33

Oh, yes. Definitely more!

0:33:330:33:35

-More, more, more.

-50?

-More.

0:33:350:33:37

-80?

-No, less.

0:33:370:33:39

-Oh, 70.

-65.

0:33:390:33:41

-65.

-It was marked at 135.

0:33:410:33:44

The chap was ever the opportunist, wasn't he?

0:33:440:33:47

Well, you'll probably take that to your grave, Thomas.

0:33:490:33:53

Well, maybe try taking it to auction first, eh?

0:33:530:33:56

James, how very camp.

0:33:560:33:59

-It's very camp, isn't it?

-You know who he is, do you?

0:33:590:34:02

I think he's Mercury. What do you think?

0:34:020:34:04

OK. He could be Mercury.

0:34:040:34:06

Is he a resting, winged messenger?

0:34:060:34:08

-Yeah, definitely.

-There's quite a lot of detail.

0:34:080:34:12

He's quite good, actually.

0:34:120:34:13

But he's not '20s.

0:34:130:34:15

Guess the price, come on, in one!

0:34:150:34:18

-£45.

-£50, I paid.

0:34:180:34:22

That is a 19th century Italian bronze

0:34:220:34:26

and I reckon that's worth a lot more. Well done.

0:34:260:34:30

Dun, dun, dun...!

0:34:300:34:33

That's very pretty, isn't it? Basket.

0:34:330:34:34

-A little basket.

-Silver enamel brooch.

0:34:340:34:38

A little brooch. Oh, that's very pretty.

0:34:380:34:40

-You paid £30 for it?

-No.

0:34:400:34:44

Lower? Higher?

0:34:440:34:46

-Lower.

-Er, 20?

-Lower.

-Really?

0:34:460:34:49

Great. It's "Guess The Price" again.

0:34:490:34:51

Lower this time.

0:34:510:34:53

How much? What, ten, 15?

0:34:530:34:54

-£5!

-£5!

0:34:540:34:58

-I think that could be your winner.

-THEY BOTH LAUGH

0:34:580:35:02

-Thomas, good luck.

-And you, James.

0:35:020:35:04

-Off to the auction.

-Off to the auction.

0:35:040:35:07

Smooth talking, boys.

0:35:070:35:09

Now, tell us what you really think.

0:35:090:35:11

The Sunderland lustre plaque, with the boat on it,

0:35:110:35:15

Well pitched for the area, but has he paid too much at 65?

0:35:150:35:19

I'm a bit disappointed in myself, to be honest.

0:35:190:35:22

I think it could be 1-0 to James.

0:35:220:35:24

He's bought that really good bronze figure.

0:35:240:35:27

I think he's got a real winner in the brooch.

0:35:270:35:29

-That lovely enamel and silver.

-The copper?

0:35:290:35:32

that could be the sticking point, but if there's a copper dealer,

0:35:320:35:36

it's worth its weight.

0:35:360:35:37

The toenails. Dear, oh dear!

0:35:370:35:40

Nervous? I'm just trembling with anticipation.

0:35:400:35:43

Well, that makes two of us.

0:35:430:35:47

The road trip for this leg finally arrives in East Boldon,

0:35:470:35:52

at the end of its exciting journey from Berwick-upon-Tweed

0:35:520:35:56

through wonderful Alnwick, Morpeth, Benton and Tynemouth.

0:35:560:35:59

It's auction day and our two experts proudly roll into town.

0:35:590:36:03

Boldon Auctions first opened its doors in 1981

0:36:030:36:07

and is loved in these parts for selling all things weird and wonderful.

0:36:070:36:11

Today is the general sale, perfect for the mixed bunch of items

0:36:110:36:15

our boys have garnered from Northumberland.

0:36:150:36:18

Tom Robson is the auctioneer

0:36:180:36:19

and has his own thoughts on James and Thomas' items.

0:36:190:36:24

I think the hooves are arguably the most interesting,

0:36:240:36:26

but not the nicest of things.

0:36:260:36:28

What do you do with them? I think the thing that stands

0:36:280:36:31

to do the best is probably the Sunderland lustre plaque

0:36:310:36:34

or the plated cake basket.

0:36:340:36:35

James started this leg of the road trip with £200.

0:36:350:36:40

He spent a proud £127 on four items.

0:36:400:36:46

That's very kind, thank you.

0:36:460:36:47

Thomas took his £200 starter pack and boldly spent £135 on four items.

0:36:490:36:55

My first buy of the series.

0:36:570:36:59

An expectant calm begins to settle at Boldon Auctions,

0:36:590:37:04

as our experts take their seat and the gavel gets ready to strike.

0:37:040:37:09

The auction is about to begin.

0:37:090:37:10

First up is James' Indian silver bowl bought in Berwick-on-Tweed for £7.

0:37:100:37:17

Somebody bid me a fiver for it, please? Anybody? £5 bid upstairs.

0:37:170:37:20

£8, anybody else?

0:37:200:37:22

£10, gentleman's bid, £12?

0:37:220:37:25

That's a £3 profit so far.

0:37:250:37:28

15? £18, lady's bid upstairs.

0:37:280:37:30

£20, anybody else now. Yes or no?

0:37:300:37:34

It's a profit. A profit's a profit.

0:37:340:37:36

An agreeable, double your money turn for James.

0:37:360:37:40

Next up are Thomas' toenails,

0:37:400:37:42

the peculiar pin cushion hooves from Alnwick at £30.

0:37:420:37:46

Thomas, how do you fancy your chances, toenails?

0:37:460:37:49

Don't be rude about my toenails.

0:37:490:37:51

-Can you remind me how much you paid for them?

-£30.

0:37:510:37:54

-Feeling good about that?

-No.

0:37:540:37:57

Lot number 120. A pair of 19th-century hooved-pin cushions

0:37:570:38:01

with velvet tops and I'm bid £4 for 'em.

0:38:010:38:03

-£4, this is awful.

-6, 8, 12?

0:38:030:38:08

-15, 18?

-He's exceeded my expectations.

0:38:080:38:10

That's good.

0:38:100:38:11

20, behind you, 22, 25.

0:38:110:38:14

£25?

0:38:140:38:16

Go on, a bit more.

0:38:160:38:18

There's no need to push it.

0:38:180:38:20

Well, the cloven hooves failed.

0:38:200:38:23

That's an unwelcome loss to kick off Thomas' auction.

0:38:230:38:26

Now a bit of old scrap or a fine 19th-century copper pan,

0:38:290:38:32

depending on your point of view.

0:38:320:38:34

£10 to start. £12. Anybody else?

0:38:340:38:37

20, 22, 25, £30 now?

0:38:370:38:40

32, 35, 38, 40

0:38:400:38:44

42, 45, 48, 50?

0:38:440:38:47

55, 60, 65, 70? 75?

0:38:470:38:52

£75 back right?

0:38:520:38:54

Oh, well done.

0:38:570:38:58

Not too scrappy and I think James could rightly be pleased

0:38:580:39:02

with that small investment.

0:39:020:39:03

Now for something a whole lot prettier.

0:39:030:39:06

Thomas' lovely Art Deco broach. A snip at £5.

0:39:060:39:09

My whole profit margin rests on this £5 brooch.

0:39:090:39:14

£5, lady's bid upstairs. £8? Anybody else?

0:39:140:39:17

10, £15, lady's bid upstairs. £18, 20? £22?

0:39:170:39:21

-The lady's...

-All right, steady on.

0:39:210:39:25

Come on! Bit more!

0:39:250:39:28

28, 30? 32?

0:39:280:39:30

35? £42? Anybody else?

0:39:300:39:33

-35 in the bin!

-In the bin.

0:39:350:39:38

A great result for Thomas there, and that's him back in the game.

0:39:380:39:42

But James needs to reflect on the situation and fortunately,

0:39:420:39:45

his £20-mirror is up next.

0:39:450:39:48

Just drop it, drop it and break it.

0:39:480:39:51

I've got two bids. £35.

0:39:510:39:53

£15 profit, already.

0:39:530:39:55

38, 40, 42, 45?

0:39:550:39:57

£48? Anywhere else for it. Yes or no?

0:39:570:40:01

Well done, James. Well done!

0:40:010:40:05

-The gods are shining on me.

-That's profits on everything!

0:40:050:40:10

Edging slightly further into the lead, James can be pleased with that.

0:40:100:40:13

Now, what could please Thomas?

0:40:130:40:17

How about his tasty cup cake holder?

0:40:170:40:20

Oops, I mean plated cake basket?

0:40:200:40:22

I've got two commission bids. £40 starting.

0:40:220:40:25

-Oh, I've made a profit already.

-Well done.

0:40:250:40:28

£50? Anybody else now? £50?

0:40:280:40:31

-Go on.

-Yes or no?

-Go on.

0:40:310:40:34

It's still close between these two.

0:40:340:40:37

They have just one item each left to sell.

0:40:370:40:40

Can one of them get that all-important profit?

0:40:400:40:43

Next up, a message from the antique gods.

0:40:440:40:47

Can Mercury bring James something celestial?

0:40:470:40:50

One, two, three, four bids.

0:40:500:40:52

I'm straight in at £50. £55 if anybody wants it?

0:40:520:40:55

£60 anybody else?

0:40:550:40:57

70? 75, 90? 95, 100?

0:40:570:41:01

Oh dear, Thomas. This is looking rather good for James.

0:41:010:41:06

And not so great for you.

0:41:060:41:07

150, £160 now.

0:41:070:41:09

-Not bad for an Art Deco figure.

-Not bad.

0:41:090:41:12

Mercury has fulfilled his errand for James

0:41:120:41:16

and that's a fantastic profit.

0:41:160:41:18

A big challenge for Thomas.

0:41:180:41:20

I've got butterflies in my tummy now.

0:41:200:41:23

This is my big purchase of the day.

0:41:230:41:26

He spent big and bought this lustre plaque.

0:41:260:41:30

Fingers crossed for Mr Plant.

0:41:310:41:33

A bid, £5 to start.

0:41:330:41:36

At least it's got a bid.

0:41:360:41:38

..£18 with the lady upstairs. 20 now.

0:41:380:41:41

25, 28, 30, 32, 35? 42.

0:41:410:41:44

Come on!

0:41:440:41:46

Surely some more.

0:41:460:41:48

..Yes or no?

0:41:480:41:50

-Go on, make it 50.

-£50, anybody else? Yes or no?

0:41:500:41:53

No more bidders.

0:41:530:41:56

Oh dear, Thomas, you spent too much.

0:41:560:41:58

-That's minus...

-I'm not laughing, I'm really not.

0:41:580:42:03

Well, the experienced James Braxton has taken an early lead.

0:42:030:42:07

James and Thomas both started today's show with £200

0:42:080:42:12

and each bought four items.

0:42:120:42:15

After paying commission to the auction house,

0:42:150:42:17

James made a satisfying profit of £118.48

0:42:170:42:21

and has a fabulous £318.48 to carry forward.

0:42:210:42:25

Thomas has nothing to be ashamed about,

0:42:260:42:28

but made a minor loss of £4.85.

0:42:280:42:31

He's just down with £195.15 to start the next show.

0:42:310:42:36

Of course, it's early days yet

0:42:360:42:38

and there will be much to learn this week.

0:42:380:42:41

Four profits for you.

0:42:410:42:43

Yes, I can't stop smiling.

0:42:430:42:45

I must stop smiling.

0:42:450:42:47

-I am. I'm basking in it. Thomas, you?

-Two profits for me.

0:42:470:42:50

-That's all right.

-It's not too bad.

0:42:500:42:52

I haven't done as well as I wanted to do, but first time...

0:42:520:42:56

Looks like the winner gets the passenger seat today.

0:42:560:42:59

But no looking back for Thomas, just the road ahead.

0:42:590:43:03

-I forget there's no wing mirrors James!

-No.

0:43:030:43:05

Next time on the Antiques Road Trip,

0:43:110:43:13

James and Thomas head for Darlington, County Durham.

0:43:130:43:16

James tries a new look.

0:43:160:43:19

Are you sure it's not a bit big?

0:43:190:43:21

Room to grow into, I like to say.

0:43:210:43:23

Thomas tries a new career.

0:43:230:43:25

I wouldn't mind a service hat

0:43:250:43:27

so I can feel like I'm in a staff car with Braxton.

0:43:270:43:30

And they both try their luck on the antiques trail.

0:43:300:43:33

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:43:520:43:56

E-mail [email protected]

0:43:560:43:58

Antiques experts James Braxton and Thomas Plant begin their tour of North East England by travelling from Berwick-upon-Tweed to East Boldon in Tyne and Wear. With a starting budget of £200 each, they seek out the most interesting antiques shops in the area, hunting for treasures they hope will make a profit at auction. Thomas gets to see something special at Alnwick Castle and James gets to blow some Northumbrian pipes, badly.