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The Roadshow has enjoyed some very rewarding visits north of the border
but amazingly it's been nearly 20 years since we came to Edinburgh,
Scotland's capital city, and a very fine place indeed.
It didn't always look so good.
Conditions in medieval Edinburgh were so cramped and unhygienic that it was known as "Auld Reekie".
Something had to be done, and in 1766, architect James Craig,
just 22 years old, won a competition to create a master plan for a new town.
Work started the following year and the result
still stands as the largest area of Georgian architecture in Europe.
You won't find a more handsome place than Charlotte Square, designed by Robert Adam,
integrating individual houses into one elegant facade.
You can see how the folks at number seven Charlotte Square lived at the end of the 18th century.
As a fan of Western movies, I was always told that the ranch-house doors were made small
to make the actors look bigger.
Here the doors are made extra wide so that sedan chairs could pass through.
Some extremely bigwigs have lived in Charlotte Square over the past 200 years -
Surgeon Joseph Lister, founder of antiseptic surgery lived at number nine...
Field Marshal Douglas Haig, commander of British forces in World War I, was born at number 34.
And on the 3rd March 1847, Alexander Graham Bell was born here at number 16 South Charlotte Street.
Bell might have invented the telephone but he didn't like it.
He said, "I never use the beast".
And it was only a short way from here that Edinburgh's most prolific writer,
Sir Walter Scott, chose to unmask himself as the author of the hugely successful Waverley novels
at the Assembly Rooms in George Street.
It also happens to be our venue for this week's Roadshow,
so let's see what treasures the modern-day Edinburghers will reveal to us today.
I've not actually seen in it, or taken the top off since we got married about 17 years ago, so...
That is just spectacular, isn't it?
Yes, and all the little figurines and the little pussy cats
and the dogs and everything that goes with it, it's...
So throughout your childhood you remember it in this glass case?
Yes, it was in my Mum and Dad's sitting room and we were never actually allowed to play with it,
but if my friends came in, we could take the glass case off and look in the back and it was lovely.
Under supervision probably. Oh, definitely.
And what was in the back? Can you remember anything?
Whatt I remember, there were little lights and there's little
bits of furniture, the pots and pans and things.
Well, all I can hope is that there hasn't been a burglary. I hope not.
Let's see what's there...
Oh... Gosh, well it's topsy-turvy.
It looks as though they've certainly had some, something in there.
Some of this looks bought, some of it looks home-made, beautifully home-made.
You said you remember it as a child, but do you think it was there for many generations beforehand?
I think it goes back two generations. Yes.
And it was in my grandparents' home prior to my Mum and Dad. Yes.
I was always led to believe that it was a replica of an actual existing house.
It's nicely fitted out with mostly home-made things.
The only thing that looks commercially made is...
I don't know if we can get in there.
..is the fireplace in there.
But it's what I like about it is that it's this marvellous sort of snapshot
of life at a certain point, and it's that point that I'm trying to work out the actual date of it.
There are these lovely scenes going on here. I like...
on this side we've got a little cat jumping over the fence, a scene of devastation in the garden, rollers
and hoes and so on left standing and then at the front here we've got lots of little people
doing various activities.
The one down here I like, reading "Lloyd's Weekly News"
sitting at her table and I would have said that we're talking about late 19th century...
The one little thing that interests me here is that you've got the Union Flag stuck in there with a hat pin.
One wonders if perhaps that might have been put up for Queen Victoria's
Jubilee in 1897 or one of the earlier jubilees.
Seeing it now with fresh eyes, is it as you remember it?
Oh, definitely. Has it brought back...
Can you see yourself sort of that high playing with it?
Yes. What about its value?
Oh, I don't know, but the value is really immaterial, but I love it dearly. Oh...shall I not tell you?
No, no, no, go on.
I think that it's the sort of thing that would appeal to two different types of buyer.
On the one hand you'll have somebody interested in doll's houses, but the other client
would be somebody who's interested in decorative antiques because it is...
with the light shining on it...
and I could easily see this in auction fetching perhaps £800.
This is near to every Scotsman's heart, isn't it?
The designs for the Forth Bridge and you tell me I mustn't call it the Forth Railway Bridge. Why is that?
Mainly because it was the first...
the first Forth crossing.
It's rather like the Leith Police isn't it?
I mean it's one of those sort of...
the first Forth Bridge so this is the only Forth Bridge,
it's not the Forth road bridge which is the second one of course.
But here are all the designs. At the top here we've got the early designs.
Now why didn't they use these?
These were designed by Sir Thomas Bouch. Bouch.
So why didn't they use those designs?
Well, they had actually started work on this.
They started work on the foundations. Yes.
And then the Tay Bridge collapsed.
And... And he was sacked. Bouch was the designer?
Yes. Yes. Yes, he was sacked, so they called for new designs to be put forward.
And so these are the new designs down here at the bottom.
And they look very similar, or at least this one looks very similar
to what we have today and that's it, and it's got
what, four piers. Four piers
on each cantilever.
On each cantilever, that's absolutely extraordinary, isn't it?
That's absolutely beautiful. Why are you interested in the Forth Bridge?
Ever since I was a youth, I've always liked the bridge.
It's a sort of... The style and design.
Yes, yes, yes, it is the most extraordinary design, isn't it?
It's beautiful. But there are other lovely bits and pieces in here
as well, if we just turn to this page here, this wonderful picture here
of it going...
not even halfway I think...
It's sort of
It's a massive construction, isn't it?
Oh, yes. Look at all these lovely old cottages, bits and
pieces down here, fishing cottages, it sort of completely dwarfs them, it's a new age really isn't it?
And here too, this particular picture I rather like, I mean that shows
the interior of the construction there, but look at this, this is...
a couple of men sitting on the edge here,
I mean, there's no protection, absolutely nothing.
Health and Safety would have something to say about it.
Did anybody die in the construction of this bridge?
I think there was 57 men died.
There was no steel helmets in those days and things like that.
This is the Forth Bridge reprinted from The Engineer,
28th February 1890. 1890 - that was when the bridge opened wasn't it?
And then you've got this other rather nice thing here, this is probably quite a limited edition
from the time that the bridge was opened. Let's just pull this open.
That shows the cantilevers completed and presumably obviously, well obviously they've got to put the
other bits in between, but that looks quite magnificent there, doesn't it?
Oh, yes. The photography in here I think is better than the photography in there, what do you think?
Much better, much better. Yes, yes, yes, the reproduction here is I think extremely good
and here's another rather exciting one there.
So, tell me, you bought these back in the '50s. What did you pay for them?
I paid £1 for this book and I think 16 shillings for the other one.
Well, that is remarkable, but I think if you had put this on the market today
certainly here in Edinburgh, you'd be paying the best part of £1,000 for this particular one.
It's very nicely bound, it's got a leather spine
and the most famous bridge in the world, and this one here, this reprint from
"The Engineer" the Forth Bridge, I suppose somewhere in the region of £150...
£200 and I believe that Eiffel of the tower fame, came to the dinner to celebrate the bridge.
Well, it's great to see them, and very Scottish, I think very flavourful, and thank you.
Well, I have to say as tea cosies go, I haven't seen one as good as this before.
And it's the sort of thing...
because I love tea, I actually do like to have my tea hot
so it would be perfect for me. I'd love to have it.
I might lend it to you.
Oh, that's very kind. What I love about it, as you said...
when you were children, that you stroked the little velvet pieces.
And they're very soft velvet. Very.
And then it's got all these lovely little bits.
There's birds and a cat somewhere.
And sequins and beads.
Must have taken a very long time to make this.
Yes, and with such love as well. In fact, she's put a date on it which is...
I wonder why she's done it like that, like a crown, almost.
I think, yes, it's a crown shape.
I think it's enchanting.
If I saw it in an auction,
I would bid up to probably as much as £300 for it.
Ooh, would you really?
Yes. We're keeping it in the family.
What do you know about the picture?
Well, it belonged to my father and he gave it me several years ago
and we did believe it to be a Stanley Cursiter
but we don't really know very much about it.
Ah yes, well I can tell you that it definitely is by Stanley Cursiter.
I am helped by the evidence of the signature,
so it's not rocket science. Yes.
But it's his hand as well. You don't know who the sitter was, do you?
I actually don't.
No. But my father believed his mother was a friend of the sitter.
Yes, yes, could have been someone known to him. Yes.
But I mean whoever he is...
this is done with the most incredible speed and economy it seems to me and little dabs of paint
just to suggest the ear, and, er the little, little dabs of other paint just to suggest the lapel.
The, um, the shading on it and the way he's built the face up with just
blocks and dabs of paint, and to suggest a pair of spectacles...
actually they're pince-nez. You can tell because of the strap to the side. Yes.
Um, just to suggest those by two little flecks of white, top and bottom where the light
catches the glass of them, and you can understand the shape of the lens perfectly just from that,
so it's the minimum of effort and the maximum of information.
My father acquired it when he was 17 and he died three years ago at the age of 87, so I know it's old.
It's certainly old. You can tell
it's Edwardian you know, no question of that.
Um, £800 to £1,200.
Oh, very good, yes. Yes? Mm.
Josiah Spode, my hero. Do you like Josiah Spode?
Yes, very much.
The great man who invented bone china, and this is made of bone china, an exquisite toy candlestick.
Tell me about it. We bought it at an antique fair about 15 years ago and it cost about £60.
Well, let's stick a nought on the end, shall we?
You are joking?
My goodness gracious, that's wonderful, thank you very much.
Well, this is an absolutely remarkable tea and coffee set made in 1864/5
by J Muirhead & Sons of Glasgow. Of course Glasgow was a very important port
and very many of the Glasgow families set off to the Far East
and all parts of the world and founded huge trading companies, and what's particularly nice about this,
apart from its absolutely wonderful quality... It's as heavy as lead...
..are the scenes on it. Is this a family piece?
It was bought by my father in 1948 at an auction sale.
He gave it then to my mother for a silver wedding present
and since then it has been in our family but I don't really know anything about its history before.
I wondered who the monogram
might have been but it probably was one of the big shipping families.
Each piece has
chase scenes appropriate to the function. The teapot for example has got
Chinese gathering tea with pagodas in the background and then on the other side,
it's all been packed up to ship, be shipped no doubt back to Glasgow.
The coffee pot, similarly,
has probably Jamaican scenes of gathering the coffee beans
and quite possibly with the famous Jamaican Blue Mountain in the background.
Oh, yes, I hadn't thought of that.
Yes. I think that's the loveliest piece.
Yes, it is wonderful, and then this again, somewhere in the West Indies
gathering sugar cane and I don't know whether
it's ever occurred to you to wonder why these sugar basins are always so huge in comparison to the rest of it.
I think it's because the sugar was no tas refined as it is now,
and they must have had very sweet teeth because the size of it
is enormous, but of course I think it still came in those days in sugar cones and you broke bits off.
And there we are, back in...
in Scotland with the cows on the cream jug.
As I said, the quality is outstanding, one of the nicest things I've seen.
So this sits on the sideboard, does it? No, I'm afraid not.
It's in the bank.
Well, in that case you won't be too worried about the sort of figure I'm going to put on it.
Do you have it insured at all? No.
Well, I would say for insurance in the...
somewhere between £6,000 and £8,000.
Oh, my goodness. Because it is so outstanding.
Well, we're very lucky to have it, and thank you very much.
I wondered if they were going to be menu holders, but they're just little decorative ornaments.
They probably are, yes. I think possibly the obsession
with the natural world in the 19th century. Mid-19th?
Mid-19th, yeah absolutely. Great.
And ask her not to clean them, must be done professionally and they'll come up quite right...
I think he's terribly funny though because he's a sort of drunk kiwi,
He's had a hell of a knock from behind and his beak is down here. A lot of those around.
Yeah, I know, drunk Kiwis!
I think they're really good fun and they just need a face lift.
So they've both got some damage to them. What value do you think?
Well, what did you think about that?
Well, I mean I can certainly see them fetching £500 to £700, but more than that?
Less than that? No, I think £500 to £700 is bang on.
Well, here we are in the New Town of Edinburgh
and we'd sort of rather hoped during the course of today that something
local might come to us and I think what we have here is a piece of Scottish furniture.
And if you think of the New Town developing from the 1760s through
to the end of the 18th century then into the early 19th century,
one of the things that new houses needed was a lot of new furniture
and the Edinburgh cabinet-making industry grew and prospered very much during that period.
So I think what we're looking at here is a piece of furniture that may have
been created within a few miles of where we're standing, perhaps for a house that had been newly built.
But do you know anything of the history of the table yourself?
My mother, who is 85, remembers taking tea round this table
at the house of her maiden aunts, but they were a west-coast family so it might have been...
I always assumed it was a Glasgow piece, I must admit. Absolutely.
But certainly as a table, it has features which strike me as being particularly Scottish. Yes.
One of the things that I immediately notice is that is has a drawer in the frieze.
Now on a tea table like this, made in England, normally
you just have a solid frieze that goes all the way round. Oh, really?
Whereas with this you've got a beautifully made drawer, oak-lined
with neat dove-tailing, but that's very much a feature on Scottish furniture.
And then it develops and goes to America as well because a lot of Scottish cabinet makers migrated.
Yes. And so if you look at furniture made on the East Coast of America,
you'll find some of these features.
Another thing that I noticed on this is you've got this shell at the top here. Yes.
You get that on English furniture but somehow the way this is done, again strikes me as being characteristic of
other documented Scottish furniture I've seen, but when we open it, I think one of the nicest features
is this gorgeous flame mahogany veneer on the inside.
And what makes this a tea table as opposed to a card table is that it's veneered with mahogany.
And on a card table it would be lined with baize.
Now, it's a wonderful form, it's very characteristic of
furniture made in the 1780s, there is a problem with it.
I think that
over time it's been perhaps lovingly restored, but rather aggressively restored and this very highly
polished surface is really something which spoils the appearance of it.
Right, I think I'm responsible for that, or at least the bath that leaked above it
is responsible for the damage. I see, so it's been flooded with water.
It has had a ceiling come down on top of it. Right.
Which was quite a heart-breaking moment. Yeah.
And I was actually very happy with how brightly it came up again.
I dare say with a bit of care, one could remove this...
it's almost like a polyurethane finish. Yes.
And find something underneath which could then be built up with wax and if it were possible
to at least investigate in a corner and perhaps do that, it would be very worth while.
And the other thing, which actually doesn't belong, is this handle...
I did wonder, I wondered.
It's a slightly earlier Georgian handle and I suspect it just had a key in the front, I don't know...
let's pull this out again... Yes, it's got a lock
but no keyhole. Really? So you would have just simply had a key.
But the handle is earlier than the table?
It's an earlier style handle. It's just been put on.
But the condition is certainly a problem. Right.
But I think once it's been restored, you've got probably got a table that
ought to be insured for £2,000.
And it's a lovely bit of local furniture and it's quite a thrill to see it.
So have you got any more of these vases at home?
No, they're all just in the bottom of a cupboard.
When you say the bottom of a cupboard, have they been relegated to the bottom?
Yes, relegated, they were brought out, I mean through the years they were brought out if we had a
bunch of flowers to sort of fit, say well that one fits or that one fits,
but we never thought they were very valuable or anything.
Who owns these of you two? Joint.
Yes, well I'm the elder.
Oh, you are the elder are you? By how many minutes? Ten minutes. Ten minutes, oh,
that's very important, isn't it?
So I think I'm... The senior? Yes.
OK, well we won't go down that route yet, OK. I mean...
you obviously don't really care for these vases, is that right? Sentimental because our father...
Yes, I mean from a decorative point of view.
Oh, no, they're very beautiful.
Well, yes, we simply thought that a few years ago that they might
be iridescent glass of value. We put them in a showcase.
We haven't, we haven't used them for flowers, but before that, we used them just as ordinary vases.
Yeah, well when you see iridescent glass of this type, there are two names that usually spring to mind.
The first one of course is Louis Comfort Tiffany, in America, and the other is Loetz...
and Loetz working in Austria.
And poor old Loetz has for years has been sort of denigrated as being, you know, poor man's Tiffany and
the fact is, I think that Loetz was producing interesting glass before Tiffany really got going
with his experiments in New York and Tiffany had been travelling in Europe and almost certainly had seen
Loetz glass and I think it was Loetz influencing Tiffany, so let's try and redress the balance here.
But the actual decoration itself is best seen on this one because the decoration is
referred to as Papillion glass or butterfly glass, in other words
it emulates the iridescence that you would get on an exotic butterfly.
But they couldn't be more different in shape, could they? No.
And I think that's probably due to the fact that the designer of this piece and this piece
is attributed to a man called Michael Powolny and Powolny is using
you know this, this very simple type of handle, very simple form.
To be frank with you, the idea of putting flowers in these vases is a
total anathema to me, I mean how can you?
Because they're art objects you know.
But we didn't think of them as art objects.
Were they not made for holding flowers?
Well, I suppose they may have been that...
you know you pays your money and you stick what you like in there...
but for me it's a distraction because I like the shapes and I like the colours and I've been fascinated with
iridescence since I was a small boy who came across spots of petrol in a puddle, it's always fascinated me.
This fellow, I think if you wanted to replace him, you would probably have to go into your joint account and
you'd probably have to withdraw somewhere in the region of around about £600 to £800 for that one.
This one you'd probably have to take out about again
about £600 to £800 for this fellow, but the larger of the two, I think, if you were to try and replace it,
you wouldn't get any change out of £1,000.
So whether you put flowers in there it's up to you. No. No.
The words "Scotland" and "pottery"
don't automatically spring to mind, but believe me, we're about to realise that they do belong
together, a very strong Scottish pottery industry collected by...
more than anyone else... this week's contender for collector of the year...
Harry Kelly. Tell us about Scottish pottery.
we can give a definite date to it starting which is 1748 and
it's gone on until really the last big pottery closed in the 1970s.
And you had to dig deep I believe, to start your collection.
Yes, yes, well it started, I was on an archaeological dig in
the Highlands and bored on Sunday we dug a black house and found shards,
and I took them to the local museum, they said probably Glasgow, probably 19th century.
I'd never heard of a pottery industry in Scotland at all.
And when was this? '66.
I wasn't the only one investigating, there must have been about seven or
eight people got interested all at the same time, and eventually formed the Scottish Pottery Society.
It seems an interesting variety of styles and types. Yes.
I mean what is that, for example?
This is just for ordinary people, made in Pollokshaws, just outside Glasgow.
It's lovely. And how do you differentiate Scottish pottery from other...?
Well, the style is a lot homelier than most English potteries,
things like that, fishwives here and you know, the jugs were very important
to working-class Scots. They were their art gallery, in fact.
You could find anything on a Scottish jug, generals,
opera singers, you name it, you'll find a Scottish jug with that on it.
So how many pieces do you have altogether?
Well, I've got 500 jugs,
um, not counting plates, punchbowls, mugs, tea sets.
And is there a lot more still out there, do you think?
Yes, yes, I had a phone call last...
a couple of nights ago, someone who's got three more jugs for me that I don't have.
Ah, so the search continues.
That's a lovely photograph you've brought of just one display.
Oh, that's just the living room cabinet, yes.
Your house is full of this? Our house is like a badly run museum.
Henry Sandon, who's been looking at this,
Henry, this is Scottish pottery...
a revelation I suppose.
It's a complete revelation. I'd no idea they made so many different things because 40 years ago,
we just had no idea about Scottish pottery, of course it was Wemyss or Wally Dogs but... Yes.
Now all this has been discovered.
Yes. But the quality varies from, I mean, the pure ridiculous up to the sublime. Oh, yes, yes.
That plate is gorgeous.
This? With the botanical painting. Well, yes, I've got the whole set.
Have you really? And there's another plate here and a stand here.
Well, that's as good as anything made in Stoke on Trent. Yes.
At their very finest. Yes, it's extraordinary.
Well, you certainly qualify as collector of this week.
Well, the colours on this hat are absolutely fantastic, they're so bright, it must have been hidden away
from the light of day for a while. I also love the fact that there are initials across the front.
Yes, that's right.
Henry Wilson Hogg, my great-great uncle,
who was a sea captain and lived in Grangemouth and he was a sea captain for 30 years in the China Seas
and I think this is one of the things he brought home with him.
So this is a photograph of him. Yes, that, that's a photo of him.
And this is a really charming photograph I think. Lovely with the little dog.
It's him is it, feeding the begging dog?
Yes, and I presume that's on one of his ships.
What was he carrying on board the steamer?
Well, I think it was passengers but also goods as well.
Yes. I think it was a river steamer.
Well, as well as being a good sort of seaman in charge of the ship,
Ithink he had a very good eye for what he was buying when he was there.
I absolutely adore this table cover.
So often the table covers that we see are red, because red is a very auspicious colour in China. Yes.
And a lot of them as well are very black which means that they can look quite sort of dowdy with these bright
colours on them, but I think this is the prettiest shade of blue and
I think that lifts it above many of the others that we generally see.
How would the embroidery have been done, would it be machine, or would it have been hand?
Most of it would have been done by hand. Yes.
And I think whoever had a shot at this one incorporated the standard symbols of the Chinese dragon.
Yes, yes. Along with these slightly more unusual, sort of almost acanthus style leaves in really very light
patterned colours and with the metallic thread
woven into it as well, it really is electric, isn't it?
Wonderful, yes, I love it.
It's extraordinary that he had this hat made,
but he obviously didn't ever get round to wearing it. No!
I think that if this were to appear at auction it would probably
fetch something in the region of £250 to £350...the cloth.
As far as his hat, well we normally say anything with initials on, you know, rather
undervalues it, but in this sense, it just ties the goods that he's brought back from China
together with him and the story of his life. The smoking hat would fetch something in the region
of £150 to £200. But they're in such pristine condition, they're really wonderful things to see.
I bought them in the 1970s.
What triggered you off?
My father, when I was a child, frequently told the story of how when
he had volunteered for the Ayrshire Yeomanry, before the Second World War, he'd been riding on horseback
in the Carrick Hills practising sabre drill, arm outstretched,
aim for the enemy's throat and I thought it would be...
The first sword that I bought was this sabre just because of him.
And another one came up in auction
shortly after that and I bought that and I bought some more to decorate. So that enthused you.
Now this one, I do like because it's an infantry officer's sword, now very
unusual because infantry officers usually have a straight sword
but the flank companies of a regiment have the curved sword because they're either grenadier companies
or light infantry companies, or light companies.
And this one has a grenade in the top so of course that tells me that he was a grenadier. Fascinating.
If he was a light company then it would be a bugle on the top,
so that sword is known as the 1803 pattern and that went right through the Peninsular War,
right through to Waterloo and beyond, so you can imagine scarcity-wise, there are fewer swords of that type,
as opposed to the normal infantry officer's of the regiment.
That sword, in that condition, should fetch something between £600 and £800.
Very nice. Now being in Scotland, what better to have than a Scottish sword.
Now first and foremost it's a half basket, it's not the full basket
Scottish type of sword, half basket, and you'll see these little holes.
There's three there and there's three there.
This would be so that they could sew a piece of cloth inside to protect the hand further.
Now looking at it very carefully,
I realise that the blade is a lot older than the hilt. Is it?
And the blade is probably German, of German manufacture, because a lot of German blades were imported
to Scotland, but the hilts are Scottish made, but this is a fine sword.
And today in auction this sword would fetch
something in-between about £1,500 possibly £2,000.
So do you like these two plates?
Yeah, I quite like them. I like them sort of because they were my grandmother's,
so just the fact that they've been in the family and passed down. Through three generations.
Yes, that's right. How did she get them?
Well, she was from Switzerland and she came over to England
to work as a housekeeper in a manor house in Gloucestershire. Yes.
And the colonel whose house it was, was quite fond of my grandmother and gave her these as a present so...
Oh, jolly nice. But looking at it first, these are lovely Chinese ladies.
They're called Longey-Lizas. These lovely long strung-up Chinese ladies.
And the crest, this is the crest of the family which is a mermaid.
Oh, right. Combing her tresses.
She's looking in a little mirror, but she can see her little face in the mirror. I never noticed that.
Really clever and the coat of arms is this here, with three Maltese crosses
and we've been able to find out whose family it was actually made for. Oh, right.
The coat of arms and the crest is that of Captain Samuel Bonham.
Right. Of Orsett House in Essex.
And he was the master of one of the trading ships with China called the "Norfolk",
and it was in Canton, which is where these come from, between 1757 and a subsequent journey in 1761. Really?
It took about a couple of years to go backwards and forwards from China
to England, bringing the goods from China and taking goods back to China. Yes.
And that was his job, the master of the ship and he must have ordered this service
for himself, or possibly for his brother who had the same crest,
about 1760, but I think it's lovely to have this detail afterwards.
We come to the nitty gritty and how much they're worth.
Have you any idea?
No. Because they're two rather fine plates.
They're going to be at least £1,000 each.
My God! Possibly more. I think you should insure them for something like about £2,000 each.
Two thousand each? £2,000 each yes. Oh, my God!
So you'll look after them won't you?
Yes, I will, all right, I won't use them in my student house!
Guard them with your life.
How long have you been playing the pipes?
On and off, more off than on, for 50 years.
Right. That explains a lot. Now tell me about the bagpipes that you have here today.
Well, these are not a full set of pipes, they're what is known as the small pipes or the parlour pipes
which is why I'm playing sitting down because they're
designed to be played indoors. They're not the sort of great Highland bagpipe of outdoors.
When did you buy these?
I was over here in Edinburgh for some reason or other and happened to see a music shop
and saw these and fell in love with them because they're the same maker
as my big pipes, Robertson of Edinburgh.
James Robertson, yes, and he took over an existing firm.
Oh, I didn't realise that. That sold pipes, in 1908 based in Edinburgh.
And I understand that there are two quite distinct kinds of bagpipes, there's one kind
that has distinctive features from Glasgow and another kind from Edinburgh.
What James Robertson did was sort of take features from both to make his unique bagpipes.
You're ahead of me in that case. But they're made with African timber.
Yeah, African black wood. African black wood, and then the mounts are nickel silver.
Well, you can get a variety of different sorts of mount, nickel silver, silver,
full ivory mounts, but the amount of decoration is no guarantee as to how good the pipes are going to sound.
Well, you play them extremely well and thank you so much for coming along today, bringing them with you,
and being daring enough to have a play too. Thank you. Thank you.
Well, this is quite a remarkable thing, I don't think I've ever come across anything
quite so curious I suppose you would call it, as this.
It appears to be a lock of Beethoven's hair,
or at least a piece of Beethoven's hair, and a ticket to his funeral. Where did it come from?
Well, my parents, when they got married, their best man
had a provenance into the publisher, Beethoven's publisher which must have been two generations back. Yes.
And these things passed down to him. He wasn't a musician
and my father was a professional musician and so they handed them to him.
I mean it's just the tiniest piece of hair, but it seems to have impeccable provenance
and that's absolutely lovely. I don't suppose you insure it?
Any collector of Beethoven would want this wonderful piece.
I think it's absolutely tremendous and I would value it at £5,000.
Oh, well, I'm very pleased that I didn't accept the £25 I was offered at the end of the '60s.
I feel I'm holding a fairy tale in my hand. Where did you get this fabulous cigarette case?
It's my husband's grandmother's. She always said that she got it from a Russian prince
when she lived in Palestine. That's all we know about it.
Gosh, what a lovely story.
We don't know why she got it?
No, no, she did travel around a fair bit in Palestine.
We just don't know.
Well if this box could speak, it would speak with a Russian accent
and I know that because it's signed by quite an important...
worker - Ivan Kojevnikov - who, believe it or not, was a competitor and contemporary of Faberge.
I also know it's Russian because it has a stamp of an imperial warrant,
which means that Kojevnikov was the court furnisher and thus supplying goods to Tsar Nicholas and Alexandra.
It's getting exciting, isn't it? Yes.
But the iconography is gorgeous. It's lovely.
And I think because this piece dates to about 1900,
that the Russian designer is looking back to the 17th century, the sort of golden age of Russian history
and the beginning of the Romanov dynasty and taking little sort of
fairy tales and themes from folklore and this beautiful swan with a crown,
in the background a castle and you can see all these little onion domes
and they glitter because this is made of enamel, silver,
and it's been given a layer of foil at the back of the enamel to give it a lovely sort of luminous glow.
The fairy turns into a swan, the prince can turn into a swan or a swan turns into a prince...
there's all these different methods of looking at this. And on the back
I notice this lovely little bird.
Oh, yes. A long sort of feathery tail. It looks like something from a Caucasian rug, a lovely sort of...
I hadn't noticed. Yeah, beautiful. It's covered in gorgeous things and if I press this garnet,
little thumb press there, inside, silver gilt for the cigarettes.
Anyone smoke in the family? Not now, no.
No, no, so it remains a beautiful ornament.
It's very pretty.
Yes, I think if you wanted to own this...
and you are aware there's a lot of new Russian money around chasing good Russian objects...
you might need up to £5,000 to replace it.
Ah, thank you very much. Thank you for bringing it.
Well, I've been fitted with varifocal glasses and it makes me think that I'm seeing double because you're
identical twins, but you're the second pair of identical twins who've visited us on
the Antiques Roadshow today and, and that's a very rare event indeed, and identical twins with only one brooch.
That's right. Tell me about this lovely brooch.
Well, it belonged to our sister, our older sister. It was given to her by her husband.
Have you any idea when he bought it? It would be in the late '20s,
or early '30s.
Well, I think it was probably new at that time because all the craftsmanship points towards that.
And she died six years ago aged 92 and that was bequeathed to us
and as we are twins
we share everything, we are one.
We are one.
We don't have very much that belongs to one rather than the other.
No, no, well, that's completely marvellous and so in theory one might wear it one day, and one another.
Oh, yes, yes. Yes. Oh, isn't that marvellous. There's a little family of owls. Yes. Yes.
Made of two colours of gold with full emerald eyes, tiny emerald eyes which just glint in the light there.
Yes, you can hardly see them.
They are there. That's right, they are.
We think they're all there.
They are all there. It's in perfect condition and beautifully looked after and it's actually retailed by
Hamilton and Inches who are the great Edinburgh jewellers and so in a way it's an Edinburgh jewel,
a Scottish jewel and full of Scottish charm, and are you Edinburgh ladies?
Yes, we are, born and bred. Yes.
Born and bred, my goodness how fabulous, such a desirable thing...
maybe £600 today might get you one.
In all probability it won't because I don't think there's one to be had, so I do thank you. Oh, wonderful.
Thank you both for bringing it.
Utterly delightful jewel and utterly delightful ladies and made my day, thank you very much.
Thank you... Thank you for making our day.
And right next door to the Roadshow, the ballroom,
deserted now but it's seen quite a few functions in its day.
The Assembly Rooms are very well patronised here, way back
in Dickens' time he used to come for his public readings and they were hugely popular, massive crowds.
Back in 1861, tickets were oversold to such a degree that several people very nearly suffocated.
I've known a few Roadshows like that, but for now, from Edinburgh, until the next time, goodbye.
Subtitles by BBC Broadcast