Antiques experts Paul Laidlaw and David Harper begin their road trip in the Cumbrian town of Windermere, visiting West Burton and Middleham en route to East Boldon.
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It's the nation's favourite antiques experts, with £200 each,
a classic car, and a goal to scour Britain for antiques.
-I think I've arrived!
The aim - to make the biggest profit at auction, but it is no mean feat.
-There will be worthy winners and valiant losers.
So, will it be the high road to glory or the slow road to disaster?
This is the Antiques Road Trip.
CAR HORN BEEPS
Today sees the start of a new journey with two Road Trip veterans.
Auctioneer Paul Laidlaw has a passion for militaria...
an eye for detail...
..and is always keen to pass on his specialist knowledge.
What more can the antiques expert tell you about it? Not a lot, really!
Trying to beat him at auction is antique dealer David Harper.
He enjoys taking a risk...
all things oriental...
and isn't afraid of a bit of hard graft.
-Look at that.
-I've never seen a man work like this!
-Have you not?
Never seen me work like this!
Ha-ha, well, with £200 each in their wallets,
the best of the British springtime, and this 1968 Triumph Herald,
our experts are in for the trip of a lifetime.
I'll tell you what, Paul, it's very good to be back in a classic.
-You like it?
-Oh, and the sun shining.
-You are lapping this up, aren't you?
-I'm back in the zone, says David Harper!
-I'm back in the zone, I am!
On this route, our boys set off from Windermere
in the English Lake District and cover almost 600 miles.
They will cross the border into Scotland,
ending the week in the city of Dundee.
On this leg, they will start at the Cumbrian town of Windermere and
weave their way towards the auction in East Boldon in Tyne and Wear.
-Kendal, my adopted home.
-And where are we going to end up?
-I have no idea.
-Where are we going to end up?
-God's own country.
-We're going to Scotland.
-But what a journey for us!
-Aye, my grandmother was Scottish...
-..a proper Scot.
-So there's Scottish blood running in these veins.
Lake Windermere, at ten-and-a-half miles,
is the longest natural lake in England.
-Look at that!
On a good day, Britain, for me,
is the most beautiful place on the planet.
The nearby town of Windermere was named after the railway station
built in the mid-19th century
and had, before then, been known as Birthwaite.
Our experts' first stop is tucked away in a little courtyard
-and run by Jean and Barry.
-Hi, I'm David.
Barry, nice to meet you. Where do you want to go?
-You want me to go that way? What do you want me to do?
-Go to hell!
Oh, no, oh, no! Oh, charming!
What a great start. Do you hear that? Mm.
The gloves are off now, Harper!
Now, now, fellas, don't fall out so early in the trip.
That is one cracking chandelier.
And it's... Well, I'm not far away.
I've got £200 to spend, so I'm short £2,450.
From David's expensive tastes to Paul's sense of humour.
I CANNOT believe it.
In 20 years, usually, these retail at about £500-£700.
-This has got real mileage.
-Don't fall for it, David.
Catch any of that?
You little horror!
I'm going to have to watch him. Come on in, Paul. Have a great time.
Shall we look for one of the bargains?
I think you should buy furniture.
It's doing particularly well at the moment.
Huh! They're both at it now. Come on, chaps, time is ticking on.
So what have we got, then, you two? Come on, dealer to dealer,
what have we got in here that stands you at no money?
-I've come up with two little pieces for you.
Might be good. You never know. It's probably saved me hours.
He may not trust Paul, but Jean and Barry have got some hidden gems,
including this 19th century Staffordshire character pepper pot.
Ticket price, £95.
He's a big, portly fellow. He's a happy, well-fed chap.
I would love to have a go at him, I would, because I think he's rare.
But in auction, I think it might be,
because of the damage, £20-£30.
-If you'd take £20 for him...
-I couldn't do it, David. No.
-I couldn't do it.
-Barry's not having that.
Some objects do get you, you know. There's just something.
They just grab you. And he grabs me because he's just got that...
-quirky appeal, hasn't he?
I'd have a go at 20 quid. It would be my first purchase.
-We can't do 20. Will you do 30?
-I tell you what, I'll spin a coin.
Oh, no, not again, "spin a coin". It's a risk, Harper.
-25, 35. Are you going to do that?
-Go on, then.
25 if I win, 35 if you win. You ready?
-Good luck, everyone.
-I'll win this.
And Harper wins with heads.
Thank you very much, you two. My first purchase.
-Can I have my 10p back?
And with the flip of a coin, he's bought his first item for £25.
With David now done with shopping,
can Barry and Jean tempt Paul with a little treasure?
-That's a Stanhope, isn't it? The wee...
-No, it isn't.
-Is it not?
-How much is that?
-That can be...a fiver.
I'd like to spend more. But I'm not talking you up!
Come on, Paul, give us the lowdown on your tiny find.
-Yeah, I've got to come clean. It's a Stanhope.
It is. And I wouldn't want to do the dirty on you and walk outside and go,
"Do you know...?"
What a decent chap. And so full of knowledge.
Stanhope, named after the man, in the 19th century, developed...
If I say "microfilm", it's painting a picture.
It is photography greatly diminished in scale.
And you look down them, and there are two little views.
So you get two Stanhopes for the price of one there.
Ooh, I think he spies great profits with these little binoculars.
-Have we got a deal at a fiver then, yeah?
-I can't go back on it, can I?
You're a gentleman, Barry. Wish me luck. Pray to God I'm right!
You're going to get some luck with that!
One of the smallest things we've seen on the Road Trip.
Next, I'll buy a wardrobe.
He's certainly eyed up a bargain with this one.
I still can't see it.
Meanwhile, David is back on the road, off to the village
of Coniston, sitting in the Lake District National Park.
The 19th-century poet, art critic and philosopher John Ruskin
made Coniston his home and has been commemorated with a museum.
But more recent notoriety has come from Coniston Water
and the world speed records that have been attempted and set by
one of the greatest sporting dynasties this country has ever known.
And David's in for a taste of life in the fast lane
at the Ruskin Museum, courtesy of museum director, Vicky.
-Hello, David, how nice to meet you.
-Thank you very much.
-Welcome to the Bluebird Wing at the Ruskin Museum.
-So can you show me around?
-Yes, of course.
The museum tells the story of record-breaker Donald Campbell
and his father, Sir Malcolm,
who broke land and water speed records in the 1920s and '30s
using specially constructed vehicles he named Bluebird.
This is something I have never known and I have always wanted to know -
why were the boats and the cars for Malcolm and Donald called Bluebird?
Apparently, in 1912,
the hit play in the West End was called The Blue Bird.
And it's about two children pursuing the Blue Bird of Happiness.
And Sir Malcolm thought
that the elusiveness of the Blue Bird of Happiness
was similar to record-breaking.
Just never quite able to get your hands on that bird.
-Nearly within reach, but you couldn't grab hold of it.
-Yeah, I know the feeling.
And, of course, it was a very effective piece of marketing,
because it meant the blue colour was used for all the cars and boats.
But Donald carried on the family tradition,
breaking seven world water-speed records
and, to this day, is the only person
to hold both the world water and land speed records in the same year.
So great was his passion for speed that his last vessel,
the Bluebird K7, was more aircraft than boat.
-It looks very insect-like.
A bit like a water boatman or something.
Yes, absolutely, as if it is hovering on top of the water.
And it did. And Donald Campbell, in order to go faster,
actually bought a Gnat Trainer fighter
from the Ministry of Defence, who were decommissioning...
-So it's a fighter engine, an aircraft engine?
-Oh, yes, yes.
But water speed records are a dangerous dream to chase.
Over the winter of 1966-1967,
Donald was pushing to better his own 276mph record at Coniston.
These images were taken during weeks of unsuccessful attempts.
Then, on 4th January, Donald was on target to smash the record
when disaster struck.
Whilst speeding at over 300mph, Donald lost control of his craft.
The Bluebird somersaulted in the air and nosedived into the water,
breaking up an impact, and killing the 45-year-old husband and father.
In a way, it is sort of more or less implicit from the start
that there is that risk.
The water speed record is...
has the highest attrition rate of any sport, as far as I am aware.
-It's 80-odd percent.
The awful thing is that had he just managed to control her
for another sort of hundred yards or so, he would almost...
Well, he would have certainly broken his own record
and the record that he set could even still be in place,
because the record currently stands at 317.
Donald's fame in life has been mirrored in death
as he and his craft remained in the lake for over 34 years
before they were recovered.
And since 2001,
the wreckage of Bluebird K7 has been undergoing a painstaking
restoration project in preparation for display in the museum.
And now all you need here, Vicky, is the boat.
-You need her here, don't you?
I mean, she will be coming here in due course,
but the conservation rebuild is being carried out by volunteers
-and they're not doing it 24/7.
-Will you let me know
-when she arrives? I'd love to come back.
-We'll let you know.
-Vicky, it has been an absolute delight...
-Thank you for coming.
-Thank you for coming.
-My pleasure. Thank you for inviting us.
-Glad you've enjoyed it. It's quite a story.
Meanwhile, Paul is heading towards the next stop of the trip -
the historic market town of Kendal.
Since the Roman settlers began dealing with the local tribes over
2,000 years ago, trading has been an important part of Kendal's history.
Today, it is still famed for its variety of shops,
and Paul's heading for one with a past.
Housed in a listed 17th century manor house, owners Robert and Andy
have packed it full of eclectic and tempting antiques.
I did say before I was looking for somewhere to rummage.
I think I've arrived!
The trick is to turn this treasure trove into your own pot of gold.
The context is bric-a-brac. That's car-boot sale on a table, is it not?
And in amongst it is rather a rich thing.
So, period -
second half of the 19th century.
Medium gilt brass.
With applied enamelled porcelain plaque there.
It is a rich piece of Victorian, very decorative, metalwork.
He's taken with this gilt brass chalice-like vessel,
but it's not the only item he's got his eye on.
African...carved wooden stool.
My children could have told you that. What more can the...
the antiques expert tell you about it?
Not a lot, really!
At least he's honest.
That has a pleasing...patina.
It's got wear and tear.
It's unlikely to have been brought about over here.
Because over here,
it sits in the corner with a plant on it, does it not?
Um, any port in a storm.
In this case, it could be an African port.
We'll give that a try later on, shall we?
A man on a mission with two items in his sights and no sign of surrender.
That is an officer's service dress. That's the correct terminology.
Royal Army Medical Corps captain.
Why am I looking at it? Well, it's a strong market. Military, hot.
It's all there. It has its belt and it also has its trousers.
With a passion for militaria, Paul's gunning for glory.
Here's another one.
In this instance... That was Royal Army Medical Corps.
This one has collar badges of the Royal West Kent Regiment.
And, of course, collectors chase relics of particular regiments.
OK, another one I can ask about.
This place certainly has him all lit up.
-And he has also found a Chinese carved table lamp.
I love it. I must admit, I absolutely love these things.
Bags of character there.
And you put yourself a nice silk shade or a pagoda form shade on that,
what's not to love?
What about the £185 price tag, Paul? It's worth a shot.
A few wee bits and bobs. The likes of the officer's service dress there.
-We're looking for £87 for that.
-OK. That's unlucky, but c'est la vie.
-You've got a Victorian cup.
-We've been looking for £150 for that.
-I know, I know, I know.
-So where would you want to be?
Oh, I'll say my limit and not play any games. At 50, I take a punt.
We'll let you have a deal at 50 and see how you go with that.
Laidlaw's gaining ground with a third off the Victorian brass.
There's a wee African stool sitting on the floor in front of you.
That's unusual. Anything ethnic these days,
-again, we're looking about £45 for that.
It was going to be my parting shot, just because you've asked,
a tenner, to be honest with you.
Have a go with that, just for interest, to see what it'll bring...
Take a punt at those two, then.
It's another great deal at £10 for the stool.
And now for his final strike.
-Strike while the iron's hot. Long shot. Two more things.
There was the two service dress tunics.
I didn't even ask you about it -
the Chinese carved hardwood for your lamp...
-..at the top of the stairs.
-It's got a massive price tag on it.
-You're welcome to bid us on that.
Yeah, so no pressure at all.
-I want to pay 70 quid, the lot.
-And the Chinese lamp.
-70 quid, plus stool at 10, brass at 50.
Well, I never! That's a saving of almost £600.
Parting with over half his cash, Paul's making off with four items.
And joining David once more, they wind down together for the night
after a fast and furious day on the road.
It's the start of a brand-new day on the road trip.
So have we suddenly gone back to November or something?
-Is it near Christmas? This is freezing!
-Bracing, eh, chaps?
This is real motoring. It's raw.
Hypothermia in the morning, nothing like it!
Yesterday, Paul parted with £135 and picked up five items -
the Stanhope binoculars,
the African stool,
a pair of Second World War dress tunics,
an early 20th century Chinese table lamp,
and the Gothic chalice-like vessel with the porcelain plaques.
Which leaves him with £65 to take into the end of the day.
On the toss of a coin,
David bought the Staffordshire character pepper pot for £25,
which means he still has £175 to spend.
Our experts are braving the British spring weather
en route to Hawes in North Yorkshire.
Sitting to the east of the Pennines, this picture-postcard market town
makes it particularly popular with visitors.
And one big draw is Paul's next stop -
the proud home of Wensleydale cheese.
Listen, have a great day.
Yeah, well, you get pickle, cheese, and crackers, OK?
-OK, what kind of bread do you want?
-Just lots of bread?
-OK. All right. Good luck.
-See you later!
-See you, Paul.
This crumbly cheese has a rich heritage
going back to the 12th century.
It is now enjoyed globally,
including by animation stars Wallace and Gromit.
Although there are other producers of Wensleydale in the UK,
this is where it all started and, as such,
houses a museum charting its cheesy past.
Today, it is still made only using milk from local farms
and has been the recipient of almost 400 awards in the last decade alone.
So, pucker up, Paul, for a real taste of Yorkshire history,
courtesy of managing director, David.
Well, this is not what I expected. I know we're in a museum setting.
I expected a farmhouse sort of environment. And I see Norman arches.
Well, yes, because the story of Wensleydale cheese really started
with those first monks who came over from France
after William the Conqueror had taken over the country.
So they arrived in the 11th and 12th century,
and they were the people who really brought cheesemaking to these parts.
Back then, cheese was primarily a way of preserving sheep milk.
Over time, the art of cheesemaking evolved.
Cow's milk was largely used
and the process moved out of the monastery and into the farmhouse.
These are stone pressers, and these would have been used to press
cheese in a farmhouse location.
These would have been built into a wall
or built into the inside of a building.
And what always fascinates me about Wensleydale cheese
is people describe it as a lightly pressed cheese.
Can you imagine that lightly pressing something? It's incredible.
It wasn't until 1897 that cheese was made commercially in the area,
when local merchant Edward Chapman sought to standardise quality.
But it was the now legendary local businessman Kit Calvert MBE,
captured here on the left, who rescued the business from closure in
the 1930s and started the creamery, as we know it today, in 1953.
So we've got a fantastic document here which is
the souvenir of the opening of the new creamery.
But there is a fantastic paragraph there. Really sums the picture up.
"This new creamery is only what our industry deserves,
"and if treated with much care
"and respect as it was by our predecessors,
"it will pay its trustees worthy compensations." A heritage...
-..runs through it, doesn't it?
The current custodians of this heritage and taste continue
to invent new cheeses, including Kit Calvert Wensleydale,
which is handcrafted to an old traditional recipe.
Wensleydale cheese changed during the Second World War
when the Ministry of Food really encouraged cheesemakers
to have cheese ready and available faster.
Therefore, the moisture went up, and that's where the characteristic
white, crumbly style of Wensleydale, still very milky
and still very appealing, came to the fore.
-And probably these older recipes of Wensleydale cheese got forgotten a little bit.
But just as a way of commemorating Kit Calvert, we were encouraged
by certain customers saying, "Can you make us an old-style Wensleydale?" Which is what we did.
-So if you just break a bit off the end there...
-Just a little bit.
Have a generous bit. It's worth it.
-You will see how smooth and creamy...
From the nose to the palate...
Man alive, David!
-You're my new best friend, you know that?
-I see you really enjoyed it.
-I have! Wonderful. Thanks very much.
As Paul hits the cheese,
David has been hitting the road
en route to West Burton in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
Where he has been met by a slower pace of rural life.
Hurry along, girls!
The beautiful village of West Burton was a thriving market town
around the late 18th and 19th centuries.
And the market cross and stocks can still be seen today.
David's appointment is at The Old Smithy Antiques with owner Elaine.
-Hi there, gosh, this is gorgeous. Lovely to meet you.
-What a gorgeous place.
-It is, it's lovely, isn't it?
-And a lovely heat source.
-Yeah, it is.
-It's lovely on a cold day like today, isn't it?
And I've been... Feel my hands.
-Oh, they are cold! Oh, my word!
-Bitter. But a warm heart.
A very warm heart.
And with only one purchase so far, you had better warm up fast, David.
I think it's Japanese, but...
It's a silver cigarette case, but the inside is quite something.
The silver cigarette case has a ticket price of £85 and an engraved
picture of the volcano, Mount Fuji, the highest mountain in Japan.
That's copper laid on top of silver. It's got a good weight.
-Put it aside for now, is that OK?
-I will, yes. I'll leave it there.
-Right, I'll dive in here again.
Will the cigarette case erupt into profits at the auction?
Or perhaps this little 19th century glass dish will?
I know it's masonic,
but I think that has quite a bit of an age to it.
I'm pleased you pointed that out to me, because anything
with any sort of masonic emblem is sought-after, isn't it?
And they can do quite well.
I mean, that's a good chunk of hand-blown glass.
I think it's some kind of... It's a paperweight of some sort.
-Yeah, but... Yeah.
-For anything. Pins...
-You never know with the Masons, do you?
-You don't know.
-Let's shake your hand.
-Oh, you're one of those, aren't you?
Er, well, er, no!
No, women aren't allowed, of course. I'm sorry, I'm sorry!
Ticket price is £18,
but maybe another handshake could bring that down, David?
Can it be a tenner?
-Yeah, I think it could.
-OK, let me have that for a tenner, Elaine.
Thank you very much. That's the first one. Thank you.
Now let's go to the Japanese cigarette box.
It's nicely engraved, but you have got some silver polish,
-so if I buy it, can I buff it up?
-I would think so.
How much can it be? Go on. Give me the double-best death price.
-65 is the death on that, I'm sorry.
-Oh, no! I'll have it for 50.
If you say yes, I'll take a chance on it.
I could do it at 60, maybe, at a push.
-I can't, I can't.
-No, 55 is the very death. The very death.
65, really, but I would do it at 55 and that's as far as I can go.
-OK, I can see it in your eyes, I'll have it. Thank you very much.
-OK, thank you very much.
A good deal, but can it shine, David?
Oh, look at that! Elaine, you are absolutely dreadful.
-What is your house like?!
-Oh, gosh, don't ask!
Oh, my goodness me, Elaine, you're going to be absolutely devastated.
No, the price is going up.
That is Japanese silver, baby,
looking the way it did when it was made.
-I've never seen a man work like this!
-Have you not?
-Never seen me work like this.
-It's worth twice as much now.
-Elaine, you're so right.
Do you know, he's always been one to add a bit of sparkle,
even to little lumps of stone.
They are depicting typical Chinese scenes.
We've got people here, we've got landscape, outcrops of rock,
and we've got some age to them. But they're probably tourist pieces.
No price, which probably means they're free... Elaine?
I don't know how much those are. How much do think they should be?
-Shall I tell you?
-Go on, then.
-I think they should be, for the pair, a few pounds.
-A few pounds.
-Well, I was thinking more like a tenner apiece.
-But I suppose I could do the pair for 15.
-A fiver for the pair.
-Can you squeeze up to
-£8? Oh, go on, only cos you're gorgeous!
Oh, go on, then! Thank you.
So, with these 19th or 20th century early Chinese stone carvings,
-he's walking off with three items.
And back in the Triumph with Paul,
they head to their final shopping destination.
How many items do you need to buy?
-I'm not telling you.
-You can tell me. You can, honestly!
Paul, no-one is listening. Tell me anything you like.
Come on, personal issues, I can help you.
You couldn't handle my personal issues!
Are they as bad as people say?
Oh, I say!
They're en route to the town of Middleham.
-This is my territory, Mr Laidlaw.
-This is... Am I on your patch?
-You're on my patch.
The town's castle was the childhood home of Richard III and still
rises over its inhabitants today.
As it was left to go to rack and ruin by the Tudors,
the stone was used to build many of the local houses.
PAUL CHUCKLES Is that handbrake on?
Er, yeah, I think so!
If it isn't, it's going down the hill with you.
-And I think, Paul...
-Good luck, yeah?
-..you are that direction.
-If you can find five things.
-It's all downhill for you from now on.
-See you later.
-What a carry on!
And off he goes to Middleham Antiques to meet Road Trip regular, Angela. Hi, Ange!
-Paul, pleased to meet you.
-Yes, I know.
-One of me favourite presenters.
-I'm loving you!
-You talk a lot of sense.
And you're one of my favourite antique dealers!
Because you're talking a lot of sense. I'll do my "thang".
-Just shout when you want me.
They're like old friends already.
Oi, oi, oi, oi, oi, that's good.
He's getting warmer in this room.
One of the daftest things for me to pick up is an old stoneware...
I'm not going to call it a flagon, but a jar.
-But it's got 22 quid on it.
-Oh, yeah, I think we can do something on that.
-I need you to knock 20 quid off that.
-I could let it go for five.
-But not two.
-Sell us that for a fiver?
-No point in being silly about it.
-Old stock. Everything is movable.
-It is not set in stone.
-I'm loving your work.
A deal for an old jar. You do spot some corkers.
I'm going to tell you why I bought it.
-Ah, it's the name. And what's that?
The best story I've heard yet - Services Ration Department.
You know what these stored? Rum.
But the SRD makes it appealing to me because it's a military thing.
A tipple on yet more militaria, but Paul is a man with a plan.
I have got one good military lot that just got better
by virtue of a rum jar. That's magic. Totally comfortable with that.
£20 for two service dress tunics yesterday,
it is now £25 for two service dress tunics and an SRD rum jar.
-Telling you, that's getting to be a nice wee lot.
But has David been having as much luck with his shopping endeavours
with the help of Richard?
-I did walk by the window just now and I saw that.
-The Chinese pot?
-I mean, it's new, isn't it?
-That's right, it is 20th century.
I've got it in for 695,
which I think is about an average price for that.
-OK, I think you're probably right. It's a big lump, isn't it?
I bought it to put the wife in, but she wouldn't fit.
Hey, I hope your wife's not watching, Richard.
There's going to be pillow talk.
It seems like you might have Chinese on your mind.
Oh, I've always got Chinese on my mind, that's for sure!
-I have this, this one here.
-Is it a teapot?
Yes, it's an interesting piece, isn't it?
-It's pretty modern, isn't it?
He's tempted by the cockerel-shaped teapot,
but at £75, he's not counting his chickens just yet.
-Hmm, can the jade teapot be... Are you ready for a bid?
-No, I couldn't do it for that.
-I wouldn't cover my costs on it, David.
-Are you sure?
-If you offer me 50, I'll take it.
-There we go.
-You know where we've got to go with this, Robert.
You know where we have to go.
Thank you very much. Chinese jade teapot.
With that final purchase, our rivals regroup and make the short journey
to the town of Aysgarth for a showdown.
Do not kill me, Paul.
-Behave yourself, David, you're playing this down!
-Are you ready?
Oh, my gosh, oh, my gosh. OK.
-All right. OK.
-Where do you want to go? Where do you want to go?
-Show me the wee Staffordshire piece.
-And who is he?
-I don't know. It's a late 18th century character,
but I love his face and he's got comedic value.
He is a toping gentleman.
Yes, he certainly is. But I think he's fun.
-I love such things.
-It's a great period.
-Oozes charm, totally with you in every regard.
-Thank you. But...
-But I don't think you paid a lot of money for it.
-No, I didn't.
Indeed. And all thanks to the toss of a coin.
We've got a mottled jade Chinese teapot.
And do you know where it is from, what period?
The "Ming Ding Dong" Dynasty.
You definitely set me up there!
Which is about made yesterday.
The guy just finished it like this and I went, "There you go,
"there's 45 quid." Effectively that. There is no age to it.
You're a gambler. And that's a clever buy.
You put it in there and find a couple of people who think, "Gosh, that might be an old one."
So that's me, Paul. I'm done.
-I think it's a very astute portfolio you've got there.
And we both know it has potential.
Will Paul's items pack as much of a punch?
-Well, of course, militaria. That is obvious.
Ah, very interesting!
-The smallest thing I bought.
-Oh, my gosh!
Can see the little flecks in it. Is that a little bit of...?
What is that marking?
-It's a double Stanhope viewer.
-Oh, how gorgeous! What is in there?
-What can we see?
-It took some doing, but it transpires
it's Conwy Castle and a little local village, Deganwy or something.
-That is super, Paul.
-Sweet little find, that!
-How did you even see it?
I wouldn't see it! Very sweet.
-The piece I'm least proud of is my ethnic African stool.
-Can I tell you what I think that is?
-I think it's Asante.
-I think it's West Africa, Nigeria.
And I think it's absolutely cracking. Is there lots of wear?
There's good wear.
And look at the wear from the clay soil up, importantly.
-I like it, Paul. I like it.
-Yes, I like it.
I think it's a proper Asante, and I rate it.
-It's a good table, isn't it?
-It's a very good table.
I tell you what, we could stand here a fair, couldn't we,
and I think we could make ourselves, you and I,
enough to have a good weekend away somewhere.
Eat and drink as much as we could consume. I reckon we could do it.
-I like the way your mind works!
-Wouldn't that be good?
They may be heading off on holiday hand-in-hand,
but do they think they will be neck-and-neck at the auction?
Some shrewd purchases. I know why he bought every single piece.
And he's only made one mistake, that being the Staffordshire pepperette.
It's a loser. But everything else, I think, has got some potential.
It's a good offering, good portfolio, as I said. Like it.
I think it'll be a close call.
I don't think any of us are going to be embarrassed by the things that we bought, and it is anyone's game.
And bizarrely, we've both spent about the same amount of money, too.
So, very interesting.
Will their purchases pay off?
Time to find out as they head to auction in East Boldon.
-So, the auction, Paul Laidlaw, the auction.
-This is it. D-day.
The first one. And I'm feeling remarkably, stupidly, confident.
No-one else will build you up other than yourself, so you might
as well get yourself on a pedestal and chop yourself off at the base.
-Why don't we build one another up?
-Shall we do that?
-I've always said you were amazing.
-Paul, you know what? I think I love you.
The Boldons are a group of three villages
surrounded by green belt land with a deep connection to mining.
Today's auction is at Boldon Auction Galleries.
-After you, Paul.
-Thank you very much.
And while our experts get their teeth stuck into the competition,
auctioneer Giles Hodges shares his thoughts on their lots.
The market for Staffordshire on the whole is pretty flat because,
unfortunately, there is a lot of reproductions around.
We have got two Chinese soapstone carvings.
The word "Chinese" sort of brings a bit of excitement
to most salerooms at the moment,
but they are fairly crude, fairly standard,
and I think they might just struggle a little bit today.
Paul spent £140 of his original £200 and is offering up five lots.
David also began with £200 and spent £143 on five lots,
with £57 cash left over.
So, take it away, Giles!
First up is David's pepper pot.
Tenner to start me.
-Fiver, off we go.
-£5 here, at five, at five. Eight, 10,
-£10. You were wrong.
-£10, a bid down there. You're both out.
-Come on, go on!
-15. At £15, a lady's bid at the moment.
-Go on. Go on, lady.
£15 you are bid, all done at 15...
Paul was right about that one.
It's a loss.
Not a bloodbath.
Over to Paul now and his Gothic piece of Victorian gilt bronze.
10, 15, 20, five, 30, five, 40, £40 upstairs. Another fiver?
That's got to be.
45. 45 downstairs. The bid is downstairs. All done at £45.
Mmm, close, close. A small loss.
£5, to be precise, David.
Even more after commission.
Not a great start, fellas.
David is hoping to carve out better profits
with his two pieces of Chinese stone.
£5 bid downstairs, at five, at five...
Eight, 10, 12, 15...
-Come on. I need that tenner, but I... Go on!
At £15, we're away. At 15...
I'm crawling back, Paul. I'm crawling back with desperation!
You'll be up and walking in no time with that £7.
Now for Paul's Chinese carved table lamp.
I've got two commission bids. I start at £30, I've started.
35, 40, five...
50, five, 60, five, 70...
It's hotting up.
-At £75, gentleman's bid upstairs to the left...
-I'd buy it at that.
-I still think it's cheap.
-It's still cheap.
-I'll take it.
-Take it, Paul, take it. I'm giving it to you.
That's kind of him.
And that £25 puts Paul in front.
Is his next lot sitting on yet more profits?
Got two commission bids and 20 starts me straight in.
25, 30, 35, bid is upstairs on the balcony.
At £35, if we're all done...
Another £25 helps Paul increase his lead.
-It's a nice earner. Well done.
-It's all right.
-Steady away, that.
let's hope your masonic engraved glass can dish out more cash.
-Somebody bid me £5 for the masonic.
Gentleman at the forefront at five, 10, 15, 20, five...
25 at the forefront, 30, £30 on the right-hand side.
-£30, ladies and gents.
-Are we all done at 30?
-No, we're not!
He's catching up now, though, with a £20 profit all of his own.
I wanted...and I got 10% back!
Up next is his big risk - the Chinese jade teapot.
Somebody start me at £50. 50 bid, straight in at 50.
55, 60, £60 down to the left.
-At £60, are we all done, ladies and gents?
-Egg them on, egg them on!
-At £60, the first and the last time...
-Egg them on! Egg them on!
Love you though I do, you're on your own.
Not pouring out much of a profit, but it's good at £15.
I wanted 120, I got half.
Can Paul's miniature lot give him a big return?
Bid at 15 to start me. At £15. 18, anybody else? 18.
20, 22, 25, 28.
All done, ladies and gents? At £28...
You've got your eyes on the prize now.
-That is a good profit.
-From a fiver.
It's better than my blinking jade Chinese pot!
David's last offering - the silver Japanese cigarette case.
Will it be a smokin' lot or not?
20 to start it, 25, 30, five, 40, five, 50, five, 60...
Come on, come on!
-At £65 and all done... At 65...
-Come on! No!
Not exactly a towering mountain of profit, I'm afraid, David.
And for Paul's last lot, he has combined his Second World War
dress tunics with the First World War rum jar.
Can it seal his victory?
Somebody bid me a fiver, the lot, please. Bid at the back of the hall.
Five, 10, 15, 20, five, 30, five,
40, five, 50, 55, 60, five,
Downstairs at 75. Are we all done?
At £75, we are away at £75.
And that profit is bang on £50, which gives victory to Laidlaw.
-A good day out.
-No bloodshed there. Pie and a pint, my man?
Pie and a pint sounds marvellous! You're great, you are, Laidlaw.
David Harper started with £200 and after auction costs,
he made a profit of £8.70.
Ha! Which gives him £208.70 to spend next time.
Paul Laidlaw also started with £200
and has made an impressive profit of £71.56 after costs.
That puts him in the lead with £271.56 to spend on the next leg.
-Very good. All very successful, I think.
-Not a bad morning's work.
I know you're the one with the maths degree,
but I think you will find that 208 beats 271.
-In what parallel universe are you?
-In my universe!
-And winner drives.
Next time on the Antiques Road Trip, David Harper
shows off his love of antiques...
I almost want to kiss it. Is that really wrong?
..and impresses Paul Laidlaw with his purchases.
-Stunning beyond belief.
-A belting good thing!
Paul Laidlaw and David Harper begin their road trip in the Cumbrian town of Windermere, weaving their way through West Burton and Middleham before reaching the auction in East Boldon, Tyne and Wear.