Antiques experts travel the UK searching for treasures. Paul Laidlaw and Thomas Plant start in Preston, Lancashire, then make their way towards an auction in Nantwich.
Browse content similar to Episode 17. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!
It's the nation's favourite antiques experts...
All right, viewers?
..with £200 each, a classic car
and a goal to scour Britain for antiques.
I'm on fire. Yes!
Sold. Going, going, gone.
The aim? To make the biggest profit at auction,
but it's 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?
It should be a good one!
This is the Antiques Road Trip.
On this week's Road Trip,
we're on the road with two frightfully nice fellows.
Despite losing the last leg,
auctioneer Thomas Plant is flexing his antique hunting muscles
and doesn't shy away from blowing his own trumpet either.
BLOWS BUGLE Yeah, that works.
Well, bugle, anyway. His antique adversary is Paul Laidlaw,
another auctioneer who will stop at nothing to stay in front.
I'm not going to make you a reasonable offer.
-I'm going to make you a bad offer.
On the last leg, Thomas started with £200,
but made a loss at auction of £19.46,
so begins the day with £180.54.
Paul also started with £200,
but after clocking up impressive profits of £101.14,
he's got £301.14 to flash about today.
The thing is, obviously you still feel that we are... We are matched.
Even now, there's that gaping, gaping vast quantity of money
-between the two of us.
-I prefer to see it as sparring partners.
Their valiant vehicle for this adventure is a 1963 Sunbeam Alpine,
the perfect choice for this rather boyish antiques tussle.
-In the left-hand seat, delicate flower...
In the driving seat, brutalist!
The Brutalist Laidlaw.
These competitive chaps kicked off this route
in the town of Morecambe, Lancashire,
and, covering around 600 miles,
will end the week in the county town of Bedford.
Today they're starting in Preston in Lancashire
and will weave their way to auction in the Cheshire town of Nantwich.
Preston, I don't know its... its history very well. Do you?
Nor I. Not a clue.
I only live, what, 90 miles away.
Why don't you know this?! Why don't you come here?
Well, Paul, you've been missing out on a rich architectural history,
as Preston's fortunes go back hundreds of years,
and in the 17th century it was
one of the country's most prosperous market towns.
It's a market! We need to be shopping.
Guys, we need to be shopping. We need to be shopping!
Look at this!
As this enthusiastic pair have noticed,
the markets are still going strong,
and it looks like today it will be graced with an impromptu visit
from our beady-eyed experts.
Fabulous building. Cast iron, Victorian...
and it's full of people selling car parts, tyres,
antiques. I mean, it's just everything here.
I mean, it's great.
HE LAUGHS Something for the garden...
for four quid. I mean, it's brilliant.
Look at that. He's already diving in
with this architectural stone tablet,
which dates from the 19th century.
-It might have been a funeral or...
-Something like that.
I can imagine somebody putting that in their garden
and sort of making a feature out of it.
-And it's not that big, is it?
-That's right, yeah.
-Will you take a couple of quid for it?
-Yeah. Go on, then, yeah.
We'll have that for a couple of pounds.
I can't go wrong, can I?
He's wasting not time at all.
One purchase down even before all of the stalls are set up.
-Anything military still to come out?
-Not at the moment.
I dreamt about a gas mask bag last night.
How wrong is that? I'm a very sick puppy.
Keep looking, then, Paul.
In this place, even your dreams might come true.
Any idea what that is?
I've not a clue.
It's Portland stone or whatever from...
the Houses of Parliament.
That's another lump of stone.
I'd say this one's a magazine rack made from reclaimed
pieces of the Houses of Parliament after it was bombed in the Blitz.
Ticket price is £5, which is ridiculous.
Who's no' taking a punt at a fiver? I'm into that.
Yeah, I'll take a punt at that.
-He's got an eye for a bargain and a head for the facts.
-All the best.
It's a big lump, and I like the fact that I've not seen one before
cos I've seen more than my fair share of this material,
so this is a rarity.
That's worth 40 quid of anybody's money
and it's worth 80 if this is your bag.
-A fiver. Sweet as a nut.
Last of the big spenders, these two.
Although it looks like Tom is seeking out some riches here.
What's that...? What's that got to be?
-It's nine carat, that is.
-I think it is anyway.
-No, that's not nine.
Yeah, it's plated, you're right.
Dating from the 19th century originally,
this would have been part of a bracelet
and Tom's rather taken with it.
What can that be?
-Halfway at 12?
-Go on, give me 12 for it.
You're a star.
Within, like, five minutes. That's the way to do it, isn't it?
It certainly is. So, with three items between them already,
it's back in the car and back on the road.
Have you clawed it back? Are you...?
You've spend £10 on two things that are going to make 100 quid.
No! I wish!
-Because I did.
A bit of friendly rivalry en route to the next shop.
Luckily, it's big enough for both of them. Mind the wall.
Are you all right? Are you sort of taking your time?
-My work is done today.
-Is it done? Is it?
Not likely, Paul.
You're walking into 75,000 square feet of antiques here.
See you later.
It's a fabulous shop.
Lots of dealers with lots of stuff, but it's just...
I need to find things with profits...
and I'm sure there are things here with profits.
Maybe I'm not seeing them,
but I'm just not feeling it immediately.
That's my...main issue.
Thomas may be feeling the pressure,
but this place is throwing up more riches for his rival.
That's quite a lovely object, is it not?
That...is a wine bottle...
that's 300 year old if it's a day.
I love this. I think it's a great piece.
They're worth about £100 retail.
That's priced at £48...
and I think that's a great buy for such a stylish and evocative piece
of early glass.
These hand-blown bottles aren't rare
but with a reasonable ticket price of £48,
this one might be worth a tipple,
unless there's something here with a bit more scope for profit.
The one thing that keeps making eyes at me is this...
Er...which I have a weakness for.
It's a lovely piece of brass,
but can you see any profit in it with a ticket price of £250?
That's gorgeous! Look at it!
Let's say it dates from 1830 to 1850, so some real history here,
and look at it as an object.
If you are lucky enough to have a nice bay window
and a desk or a table nearby,
this sitting there...
Does it not just cry out, "Come and play with me"? "Have a look"?
I adore that.
He's certainly taken with the telescope.
The only thing in his way is that hefty ticket price,
and Sue will be doing the deal on behalf of the owner.
What can that be at?
You go first.
-Well, to be really honest with you...
..regardless of where we're starting, I'd be very interested...
I think the very best price will be 125.
And that's pretty darn close to where I want it to be, isn't it?
I wouldn't dare go any lower.
And at 125, yeah, you've got a deal.
-I'll buy that.
-Oh, that's wonderful.
-Thank you very much.
Well, you can't argue with half price, can you?
It's such a great deal that he's been tempted back
to the £48 wine bottle.
-Would you sell me that at 35? 35...
-I will do.
I'm pretty close at that, aren't we?
I'm not going to be silly and play games.
Great stuff! Thanks for that. And with that I am out of your hair.
So one expert may have left the building,
but there's another one in here...somewhere.
I don't know how I got here. I'm sort of almost...
Do you know what I'm thinking?
That these are probably growing legs...and attacking me.
Like a sort of Day of the Triffids,
but it's a day of... It's a day of furniture.
We've got to sort of...move things out the way.
Struggling somewhat, I see.
Free at last to find his fortune.
God, do you remember these benches from school gym days?
They were used for everything from...
Sitting and watching the...
-..school nativity, to tricep dips.
-He's easily distracted, isn't he?
That's about the level of my boredom at the moment.
Oh, try to focus, Thomas.
This is brilliant. This is a large Salter...scale.
Huge, massive dial.
I mean, I've never seen one this big.
And it goes up to 11,020. It's massive. It weighs a ton.
What you do is, this would be hung
and it would weigh really heavy objects...
probably for trade, you know, grain and stuff...
Potatoes. Produce mainly.
It's a good weight.
There's a spring in there
and things would get attached to this steel ring round here.
At 30 quid it's going to make a profit...
but at 75 it's not.
His head's back in the game. His heart's fallen for the scales,
but will his hands be reaching into his pockets?
Do you think you'd come down to a really wonderful, wonderful price?
Tell me what you think is a wonderful price.
Well... Well, it's really low.
£30 and I'll take it off your hands and I'll walk away today.
If you say 35 I'll let you have it, but that's it.
At 30 there's profit. Do you see what I mean?
At 35 I could be struggling.
Yeah, I agree with you there. OK, 30.
The scales tipped in Thomas's favour
with another hefty discount from the generous Sue.
I think he's going to need a bit of a rest after all of that.
Paul, however, is embarking on a mission
to explore Preston's revolutionary past.
Like many cities up and down the country, Preston's population,
and particularly the working class,
felt the often brutal consequences of industrialisation.
By the early 19th century there was an acute social problem
and it was ruining lives.
The root cause was alcohol - it was everywhere and it was cheap.
The general population, including children,
were drinking away their wages and their lives.
Action was needed, and a group of social revolutionaries
from Preston rose to the challenge.
They became an important part of the temperance movement,
encouraging people to help themselves out of poverty,
starting with abstinence.
It grew to be a worldwide movement
with millions of members.
And to find out more, Paul's come to the University
of Central Lancaster's Art Centre to meet Dr Anne Marie McCallister,
a senior research fellow in history and a specialist on temperance.
Mine's a gin and tonic.
So why Preston in particular?
Well...Preston was a large industrial town, where people were
packed in and many working class people were in difficult conditions.
It could have been Manchester, it could have been Liverpool,
it could have been Glasgow, but Joseph Livesey lived in Preston
and that was what made the difference. He was born in 1794.
He's one of these wonderful Victorian entrepreneurs,
and he was very interested in social reform
and in helping his fellow man.
And in 1830, the government passed an act making it easier to
open a shop and sell beer.
So by 1832, Livesey was seeing the results of this so-called moderation
and therefore he and six other men got together
to sign what was the first total abstinence pledge.
The movement gathered pace and numbers.
They used heavy-handed tactics, and their message,
often communicated with frightening images,
had become far-reaching.
By the end of the 19th century, the movement claimed
millions of adults and around half the country's children as members.
The idea was with children...
We may not think that they would be at risk with drink, but they were.
Indeed, children, child workers were paid in pubs.
And we have records of drink shops saying,
"If any child buys drink at this shop in the week,
"they'll get a free piece of cake on Sunday."
What? How times change.
And Livesey himself said that we needed to educate children
because that's the soil in which the temperance movement will grow.
But even more excitingly than that, I think,
the children were made agents.
In other words, they were encouraged in what they read,
in what they did at the meetings, to...
-pester adults essentially.
Well, it's as powerful today as it was then,
that little motivator.
But temperance was more than just a message of abstinence.
It encouraged good health, education and cultural pursuits.
Many football clubs and brass bands started as temperance organisations.
Music was composed and new words were written to well-known
campaign songs to rally the troops.
The aim was to provide an alternative to alcohol
that educated and entertained the masses.
One of the things that they always used to do in temperance meetings
and band of hope meetings was have a sing.
And I wonder if you'd like to learn a little bit of a temperance song.
It was actually to get a million more.
It shows the numbers of these movements, that they
-had campaigns to get a million more.
And this was the Million More song from early in the 20th century.
The chorus goes...
# Come, boys, come and join our army
-PAUL JOINS IN:
-# Come, girls Come and lead the way... #
-Are we ready to go again?
BOTH: # Come, boys, come and join our army
# Come, girls, come and lead the way. #
There's a lot more but I won't make you sing the rest!
Paul Laidlaw singing, eh?
Now, that IS a sobering experience!
Thomas, meanwhile, is keen to catch up with his rival
and has been hurtling towards the market town of Ramsbottom.
I'm trailing behind, feeling really glum about it,
but I have to pick myself up and see what can happen.
That's the spirit, Thomas!
Fortunes could be waiting for you at the next destination.
R-R-Ramsbottom! I love saying it!
R-R-Ramsbottom! And it looks a very sweet town.
I wonder what the industry was here. Was it wool? R-R-Ramsbottom.
Well, he's half right.
The town was built up around the mills
of the Industrial Revolution, including woollen mills.
But the name Ramsbottom predates this.
But why let the truth stand in the way of a good story, eh?
And he's here for his last shopping trip of the day
at Memories Antiques.
Hello, I'm Thomas.
-Hello, I'm Mavis.
-Mavis, lovely to meet you. Is this all yours?
-No, it's shared by about 20 of us.
-20 of you?
That sounds like a whole lot of antiques in one place. Wow!
There's so much! It's just...
..an assault. I should be used to it by now.
But it does surprise you every time.
It's gone from bad to worse for poor Thomas.
There's dressing-up galore.
Oh, no! Another distraction.
Hang on, wait for it.
in a tight jacket.
Somehow, this isn't quite fitting.
Strange, that. My barrel chest,
my Falstaff physique!
Phoo! Don't think I can even do a button up.
All those push-ups were for nothing! Come on now, Thomas.
You'll get nowhere against Paul in the dressing room.
So in here...
"Canton plates, circa 1880.
"As featured on Antiques Road Trip.
"Anita sold it for 50 for one."
But these are 35 each.
I think that's just wonderful, that bit of labelling.
-Now, who is responsible for that? Is it you?
Anita did sell a very similar plate for £50,
so could this pair prove to be a money-spinner for our Thomas?
£35 each - what's your best on those?
-Well, what - 50 for the pair?
-50 for the pair?
I was more like thinking 20 for the pair...
40 for the pair. 40, 20 each.
-You promise? You're happy?
-Thank you, yes.
-Oh, thank you very much.
Hopefully, they'll turn a bit of a profit. I don't know.
Well, if Anita can, then you can.
No pressure there, then! All will be revealed at auction.
But for now, our pair of exhausted experts can relax
after a rather busy day. So...night-night.
Morning has broken and the chaps are back on the road.
-I'm feeling a man today.
-Are you?! When?
Is it a rendezvous you've got arranged or what?
-No, it's cos I'm wearing long trousers.
-Oh, I never noticed!
Look at you, all grown up.
Gosh, they're fiery today!
-How many items have you bought so far?
-Three things bagged.
-Three things bagged?
-And I've two shops today, so...
-Oh, you're sitting pretty.
-Pas de probleme!
-And it's true, you've just got to keep on looking, haven't you?
Seek and ye shall find, Thomas. And yesterday, they certainly did.
Paul's collection includes the World War II Portland Stone magazine rack,
the 19th-century brass telescope and the early 18th-century glass bottle.
That bundle cost him a grand total of £165,
leaving him with £136.14.
Thomas picked up four items -
the 19th-century stone garden ornament,
the mini mosaic,
the large spring-balance scales
and the pair of 19th-century Canton plates - spending a total of £84.
And he now has £96.54 left for today.
This morning, they're in Manchester,
celebrated for its architecture, culture and sport.
The city played host to the Commonwealth Games in 2002
and is home to two Premier League football clubs,
one of which is opening its doors to young Thomas today.
-I would say, "Have a good 'un," but it's too easy.
-It is too easy.
Sometimes I have to pinch myself! THEY CHUCKLE
"Is it true? Is it true?"
What a start to the day - a treat at Old Trafford,
the grounds of the biggest football club in the world.
Worth in the region of £2 billion
and with a global following of over 600 million people,
Manchester United is one of the most successful
sporting teams in history.
From humble beginnings, the club's story over the last 130 years
charts its record-breaking highs and devastating lows.
And here to share it all with Thomas is museum guide
and lifelong fan Bill Goddard.
-Hello, I'm Thomas.
-Welcome to Old Trafford Museum.
Thank you very much. Thank you.
What's the history behind this fantastic club?
Well, in 1878, a group of railway workers established
a football team and they gave themselves the name
Newton Heath (Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Cricket And Football Club),
playing both cricket and football on the same pitch.
But not at the same time!
The team became known as Newton Heath but, in 1902,
changed its name to Manchester United.
By this time, they were a professional team
and needed the grounds to match.
The pitch they played on was not very good,
so they decided to look for another location and, 1910, they moved here.
-A new stadium was built on this site.
-We're looking at...
In 40 years, under 40 years,
the team went from happy amateurs to a professional outfit
with a new stadium being built.
That's pretty impressive, isn't it?
Yeah, and even more impressive was,
on their first full season here they won the league championship.
They had tasted success
but it wasn't until manager Matt Busby took the reins in 1945
that the club really grew.
He invested heavily in a youth team
and soon his Busby Babes started winning titles.
But in 1958, tragedy struck.
Returning home from a European match,
the plane carrying the team crashed.
44 people were on board and 23 died,
including eight players and officials.
What became known as the Munich Air Disaster
devastated the team and shocked the nation.
Just a very, very sad occasion in the history of the club, really.
The crash in 1958 was probably the most historic disaster
for players within any football club within the world.
Certainly in my experience, it's the worst disaster.
And what it did do, of course -
it brought Manchester United into the sphere
where many people throughout the world became interested
in the club because of the disaster.
-And what happened afterwards?
-The team was rebuilt.
It took bit of time but Matt Busby and his assistant manager
Jimmy Murphy eventually rebuilt the team to a standard that enabled
them to become the first English team to win the European Cup.
That was 1968, only ten years after the Munich crash.
I think that was a tremendous achievement.
Since those testing times, the club has gone from strength to strength -
as has its home Old Trafford, now known as the Theatre of Dreams.
Wow! This is incredible, isn't it? Theatre of Dreams.
-This is a cathedral to football.
-It really is amazing.
-76,000 people in here.
-Can you imagine the noise?
What I'll take away from all of this, what's tremendous,
is how the boys from Newton Heath,
the railway workers, the carriage workers...
From that all the way through to here -
that's tremendous, isn't it?
-It's a tremendous transformation, really.
-Story! What a story.
Many a tale has been told but thank you very much.
-It's been a real pleasure.
-Thank you very much for coming.
As the final whistle-blowers on Thomas's foray into football,
Paul is preparing to tackle his next shop.
He's travelled the short distance to the Manchester Antiques Company
in the hope that Road Trip regular dealer John Long
can help keep him in front.
-Hi there, I'm Paul. You are?
-John? Great to see you.
-May I just go for it?
-Just wander about?
-Absolutely superb. Right, I'm chomping at the bit.
-I'll see you in a mo.
Never buy anything you're going to have to apologise for!
And I'm looking at a globe in two pieces.
Is he floundering in this land of furniture?
Screwed to the wall!
It's no use to me, then.
That's a SPLENDID bracket!
I think from this perspective... My word, it is!
You've got to see it from here. That's good work.
From the side, it's awful.
He sure knows how to sell something(!)
It'd need to be cheap. John's got to have no expectations.
Or I'm doomed. Or I may be...
Sorry, the eyes are...
I may be walking out of here empty-handed
and you know how that smarts.
Let's talk pounds, shillings and pence with John.
So, an AWFUL piece
with the saving grace of the decorative shell carving.
Can Paul persuade John to part with it?
Is that bracket - the shell bracket
bolted to the wall - is that for sale?
-Everything's for sale, Paul.
-Excellent. Is it dear?
No, no, I'm not going to say it's dear, am I?
I'm looking for the cheapie!
I'm looking for something bargain basement at this stage.
That's one way to do it, John. Just pull it off, mate!
In my world, it's worth...
And that's at auction, so it's lean.
It's a 40-to-80-quid piece of wood carving, isn't it?
-I suppose it is, yes.
Can that be bought for less than 40 quid or not?
£40 - done.
Easy as that. You're an easy man to deal with. I like your style.
So, an 18th-century wall bracket for £40.
I think part of an elaborate pew, actually.
And keen to keep up the shopping momentum,
the chaps regroup in the Sunbeam and brave the summer rays.
-Is that keeping the sun...?
-Yeah, it is.
-So demanding! Is this legal?
Don't worry, don't worry. Yeah, keep both hands on the wheel!
There we are. I'm just losing a bit too much in the old crown.
You know, I love the sun. I love the sun. I'm a bit like Superman, really.
-I get my power from the sun. How are you?
Yeah, I'm a Scotsman. I mean, I cook.
So it's Superman and the Scot making the short journey
to the town of Sale.
A thriving magnet for commuters, Sale lies on the banks of
the Bridgewater Canal and the River Mersey.
But no time for a dip today, fellas. There's shopping to be done.
-Oh, well done, Laidlaw. This is my shop.
-Plenty of it.
-Yeah, plenty of it.
-There's a lot to look around.
Whether there's anything here, you never know.
-I'm sure you'll find it if it's there.
-I'll try, I'll try!
Thomas is pinning his hopes on Barry,
one of the dealers at the vast Levenshulme Antiques Centre.
You've got to go for the definite profits - no risks to be taken.
Feeling fuzzy, are we, Tom?
-The signs aren't good in here!
A walking cane with a split in it.
That's no good.
BUGLE PARPS Yeah, that works, but it's come to the end of its life, realistically.
It would need to be a lamp.
Great idea, but he's not feeling inspired today.
-I think I'm going to love you and leave you.
-You're a nice man.
-Right, see you soon.
Well, I don't think I can find anything,
and there's no point buying it if I don't see a profit in it.
So I've got my four items. I've been a bit mean,
but the cards just haven't been laid out for me this time. Maybe next leg.
Thomas may have thrown in the towel but Paul's puckering up
for a last romp around another fine antiques establishment.
This time he's heading for Romiley.
But can this small suburb of nearby Stockport throw up something irresistible?
Here we go, yeah.
The last throw of the dice is in Romiley Antiques And Jewellery.
Peter, it is great to see you. I like the feel of this.
This seems like my kind of shock. And you like your glass, like me.
Well, leave me to it. I'll nuzzle about and see what I turn up.
This is already more positive
than his opponent's last punt for a purchase.
Now, that would be different if you bought that, Paul.
-If I have the budget for that, it would definitely be brilliant.
-That's a really jazzy coffee set, isn't it?
-There's a bit of damage on it, unfortunately.
I think one cup is cracked
and I think the lid of the coffee pot is also cracked.
Cor, he's an honest fellow!
That's quite clever work.
You know, even within the field, to have a solid colour
and then a marbled...
Oh, they've thrown everything into that, haven't they?
He's sounding excited about this Gray's coffee set.
Although small, the Gray's company
was renowned for its hand-painted patterns,
particularly those by prolific ceramic designer Susie Cooper
and, do you know, if this set was by her, it could be worth hundreds.
It's only got £90 on it. But I'll do it for...
60. How's that?
My opening offer - in fact, it's not even an opening offer.
-My offer's 20 quid.
-Make it 30 and you can have them.
It's obvious, isn't it? Am I saying it or are you?
Shall we say it together? £25.
Like your style, Peter. You got yourself a deal.
In the end, he just couldn't argue with
the £65 reduction for the 15-piece coffee service.
I think he's stumbled onto a gold mine with this last purchase
but how does it stack up against rival Thomas's antique offerings?
-I don't know.
That was very expensive.
You're setting me up now, aren't you? So expensive!
Oh, but I hate a conundrum. It's not...ancient.
-Is it a facing from something larger?
-It would have been.
But it's great for your garden. It's a decorative piece.
-That was a fiver - or it was £10?
-How much was it?
-I've called it 19th-century.
Now, these used to make big bucks.
Yeah, but not any more.
And that's still a belting big specimen.
-Have you seen that?
-Over a hundredweight.
Have you seen that? That's half a ton. That's half a ton.
-I'm surprised if you got that cheap, then.
-30 quid paid.
Bang on the money, isn't it? You can't lose on that.
But how does it weigh up against your lots, Paul?
Oh, look at that!
-Get in there!
-Love the Susie Cooper!
-I didn't attribute it.
-Do you think... Did Susie Cooper design for Gray's?
-I'm quite proud of that.
-Oh, it's lovely!
-So rare to see.
How much was that?
-Yeah, it's going to do well.
-No, it was 25 quid.
-No, it wasn't!
HE CHUCKLES It's so nice. Anyway, the telescope.
-You really have gone old school, haven't you?
-That's lovely, isn't it?
-Are you not sure?
They're always awkward, aren't they? But in the right sale...
-No, that's... I think that - stick my neck out here...
-250 quid, yeah.
-I hope so.
-Do you know what I think your best buy is? Is the...
-You love that!
Yeah. That is magic. You don't see enough.
-No, don't hug me! Don't hug me!
Do you know, I'm with Thomas. That coffee set could be a real winner.
I love his tea set.
He didn't know it was Susie Cooper but it definitely is Susie Cooper.
Cubist design. You don't see enough of it.
It's so rare, so that's going to do really, really well.
Hats off to Tom - he attributes my Gray's Pottery
modern or Deco coffee set to Susie Cooper.
Well, on that basis, that does look like a good buy.
I will make money and Paul will make money
and he will still be ahead of me but he better watch out,
because delicate flower the Plant is coming behind him.
So, onward it is, suited and booted to auction.
I've gone from shorts...
-You looked like a layabout previously, Plant.
Oh, magical, magical pins supporting this Adonis torso.
You've got to get over believing what your mother told you as a boy.
These boisterous boys are en route to Nantwich in Cheshire,
a town packed with history and evidence of its riches
brought in by centuries in the salt and tanning trades.
But can today's auction at Peter Wilson Fine Art Auctioneers
hold such fortune for these two foes?
Here we are, Laidlaw.
-It's going to be a good one.
For you it's going to be marvellous.
For me, impending doom. Impending doom!
As our experts get in amongst the competition,
auctioneer Peter Stones gives us his thoughts on their lots.
I was a bit nervous about the stone garden ornament because actually,
to me, it looked like a headstone from an animal grave.
Doom! What's exciting me are the Gray's coffee set.
That is going to absolutely march out.
Thomas spent £84 on four lots - the stone garden ornament,
the mini mosaic, the large spring-balance scales
and the pair of Canton plates.
Paul spent a considerably larger £230
and is offering up five lots - the 19th-century telescope,
the 18th-century wine bottle, the Portland stone magazine rack,
the carved wall bracket and the Susie Cooper coffee service.
As the anticipation grows, the auction begins - in the room,
online and with some commission bids, allowing the auctioneer
to bid on behalf of buyers who can't be here in person.
First up is Paul's piece of brass.
He's eyeing up big profits for this one.
I've got £70 bid for it straightaway. At £70. 75?
At £70 only. At 70. Thought it would have made more. At £70 only.
Going to be sold, make no mistake. At £70 only.
All done, at £75, on one bid alone. At 70, then, being sold now.
That £55 loss is going to hurt.
Oh, I'm feeling that. I'm feeling that! Oh! Oh!
You're going to make up with it, though, with your tea set.
I'm sorry about that, Paul.
Until then, maybe the wine bottle can help profits flow.
I've got £60 bid for it straightaway.
At £60 with me, at £60. That's on commission at 60.
-And 5 do I hear? At £60...
-A good lot, well done.
-You made back your money.
-75 is the now. At 70, the bid's here with me.
At £70. £75, fresh bidder. Any further bidding? At 75, then...
He's clawing it back - a solid £40 in the bank.
-You've made your money back.
-Sweet as a nut, that. Yeah.
Over to Thomas now, for his garden ornament,
or headstone for a pet, apparently.
At £20 I'm bid straightaway. £20.
25? £20 is with me. One commission at 20. 25 on the internet.
At £25 only. At 25. 30.
-35 on the net. 35.
£35, do I hear? 30, it's with you. £30.
35 on the net. 40 bidding? 40 bid.
At £40 only, and going to be sold at 40...
Look at that! With a £2 piece of stone,
Thomas has recouped his loss from the entire last auction.
Get in, man!
Now for Paul's stone offering. Can it rack up more cash?
We both went to that market, which was magic,
and came away with a boulder!
£20 anywhere for this one, please? At 20 I'm bid straightaway. At 20.
Your bid at £20. At 20 I'm bid, at 20. Five anywhere now?
Trying my hardest. At £20, then? All done at 20? Extra 5 anywhere?
-At 20. Sold at 20.
-£15 profit but Paul wanted considerably more.
I thought that was...
45, 80 quid if you wanted it.
I think that's flat as a pancake.
Back to Thomas.
Anita got £50 for one Canton plate so how will he fare today?
-Immediately I've got £30 bid for it.
-No, I'm not.
Five anywhere now? The £30 bid's here with me.
At 35? 40? 35.
-On commission with me at 40. All quiet and done?
At £40 only, then. At 40...
They've broken even - but will make a loss after costs.
What a disappointment! Now for Paul's wall bracket.
Not sure if that angle shows it off to its best advantage.
A bit of interest in this. £40 bid straightaway. At £40 I have. At 40.
Very nicely carved. £40, I'm bid.
I need a bit of running out to get me out of the commission.
At 60, the bid's here. On commission.
You're all out in front of me at £60. The bid's here with me.
At £60, and going to be sold at 60.
Another £20 profit. A bit slow but it's getting there.
I've probably broken even at this stage. No, I've not.
-I bet you I'm still down a tenner.
-No, no, no.
And then you've got the tea set.
But first we're looking to your next offering
to help balance the books, Thomas.
£30 to start it off, surely. At £30, I'm bid.
£30 I have straightaway, no hesitation.
-The crazy fool's not mentioned the...
-They weigh half a ton!
-£30 with the auctioneer on commission.
-One more! More!
-At £35 only. At 35. Going to be sold. At £35, last chance.
At 35, then.
They may be able to weigh a ton but after auction costs,
they won't make any money.
I'm so glad that didn't make money!
Those scales were doing my head in, Thomas!
Up next, it's Thomas's smallest lot. But he's looking for a big return.
£20 anywhere now? At £20 bid on the net straightaway. £20 bid.
-It's cos they haven't talked to you.
-At 25. 25, Sir.
Lovely little thing, this. At 25. 30 on the internet. 30 bid. 35 now.
40 now, are you going to bid on the net?
At £40? £40 bid. 45. 45.
-It's going to make the money.
Surely they won't pay £50 for it.
At £45. 45. 50 anywhere now?
At £45. All quiet and done? £45.
It will be sold. At £45, then...
£33 profit. It's a mini marvel!
You are rocking, man! This is the man where the glass was half-empty.
It's half-full now.
Last but not least, the highly anticipated Susie Cooper coffee set.
But will the cracks hurt its chances?
I've got several commissions left on this
so just to speed things along a little bit, £150 bid straightaway.
-150 I have, at 150 I'm bid.
And at 160, 170, 180, 190.
200, 220, 240.
Your bid at 240. 240.
260. 240, the bid's there. 260.
280. 320. Don't shake your head like that.
It's going to the biggest regret of your day when you go home.
At £300, the bid is there. I've seen these make 600 quid.
At £300, the bid is there. At 300. At 300, the bid's there. At £300.
At £300. Going to be sold, then, at 300.
Gavel's going up, gavel's going down. At £300, then...
-Yes. Well done, you! That's fabulous.
Damage? What damage?
Paul - king of the auction with £275 profit.
You had some killer margins there, man.
-We both come out of this making some money.
-Have I made money?
-You have, haven't you?
-I've got to.
-You've made money.
He has indeed.
Starting with £180.54, he's made £47.20
after auction-house costs,
so ends today with a respectable £227.74.
But thanks to that coffee set, Paul has pulled even further ahead,
notching up a huge £200.50 profit after costs,
giving him £501.64 to spend on the next leg. Well done, boy.
I want to drive you,
cos soon you could be paying a driver with all this money.
I wouldn't want a driver. I want to find an investment bank!
Next time on the Antiques Road Trip, Paul is set on making a killing...
If it was Professor Plum in the library, these would do the trick.
-..but rival Thomas is ready for the fight.
-I'll be back!
Antiques experts travel the UK searching for treasures.
On the second day of the road trip Paul Laidlaw and Thomas Plant start in Preston, Lancashire, then make their way towards an auction in the Cheshire town of Nantwich.