Blackpool 1 Antiques Roadshow


Blackpool 1

Fiona Bruce takes the team to the Lancashire coast for a busy day in the magnificent Blackpool Tower Ballroom.


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Transcript


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During the 1930s, when this seaside resort was at its peak,

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half the country's population came to sample the air.

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That was a whopping 19 million visitors a year.

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No prizes for guessing today's destination - Blackpool.

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Let's take a bird's-eye view of our venue today. And what a vantage point!

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Blackpool has always thought big.

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Within 40 years, from 1890 to 1930,

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it built this, the country's tallest tower,

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the world's biggest Ferris wheel,

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three piers, the Winter Gardens,

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and the Blackpool illuminations were fired up.

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At 518 feet, it's the best place to see everything Blackpool has to offer

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and it's an imposing symbol for the home of the British summer holiday.

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When it was built in 1894,

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Blackpool Tower became the ultimate upmarket Victorian theme park,

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with its ballroom, aquarium, circus and museum.

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There was a zoo, too.

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The Tower Circus is famously entertaining,

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and they're just getting ready for the new season here behind me.

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But did you know, the show has never closed,

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not even for war, and that's because three quarters of a million service personnel

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did their basic training close by, during the 1940s.

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And this is the jewel in the Tower's crown,

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the ballroom, where we're just setting up for today.

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And its flamboyance is down to a design dreamed up by top theatre architect Frank Matcham,

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who let his imagination run wild.

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The ballroom's no stranger to hosting glamorous events.

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For years it was home to TV's Come Dancing.

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But time now for us to cue the specialists as they take the floor.

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Now to quote a very famous poem about Blackpool, it is noted for fresh air and fun, is that right?

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-That's correct.

-And I have to say that these two ladies are definitely, they're having fun, aren't they?

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I would hope so, yes, I would hope so.

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But the big question is,

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how long have they been having fun in Blackpool,

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and where have they been having fun?

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Well, for many, many years they were in a basement below this very room.

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Below the Tower Ballroom along with a few other bronze trophies.

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I think about ten years ago they were rediscovered,

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put into a local auction house and,

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-because we are interested in all things Blackpool...

-Yes?

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..had to have one.

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Right, before we get onto that side of life,

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-let's have a look at the girls themselves, because this is a dancing trophy.

-It is.

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And it's very appropriate that we're in this amazing temple of Baroque extravagance,

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this is Frank Matcham at his best, the great theatre designer, isn't it?

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And this is the sort of - if I can use the word out of context -

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-the epicentre of ballroom dancing in the North West of England.

-Absolutely.

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They don't look like ballroom dancers, do they?

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-No, they don't, no.

-No, I think the inference here is all in the fact that they're...

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well, the inferences can be found on the corners,

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because you've got bunches of grapes. These are Bacchanalian revellers and,

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er, we're going back to Classical Greece, really. So in other words, they're intoxicated.

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Right.

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Um, but the lady responsible for...

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-and this is a lady sculptor.

-Yes.

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This is a lady called, Claire Jeanne Roberte Colinet

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and there is a signature at the back C-O-L-I-N-E-T,

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but I've learned enough French to say Colinet and not Colinette.

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This is quite typical of Colinet's work,

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because there's an exuberance in her work and her girls are...

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They're quite... They're not quite as skinny as some Art Deco girls.

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-No.

-She gives them sort of slightly more ample proportions. But these girls, they don't...

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Obviously they're dating from the 1920s, maybe the early '30s, but you know,

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you've got the movement there, you've got this fantastic base.

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It's so graceful.

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Dare I ask, when it came to that auction... Your heart must have been in your mouth.

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Auctions are wonderful places to get the adrenaline pumping, aren't they?

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-Oh, yes.

-They really are. So the hammer came down...

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The hammer came down and...

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And my husband and I were thinking about this, and I think it was 2,000.

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£2,000, and how long ago was that?

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Might have been ten years, or...

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-Ten years ago.

-My memory isn't what it was.

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All right, well, um, if you were to go out and try and replace...

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This is a very rare group.

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You're not going to find these girls for less than £6,000.

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-Good heavens!

-So, um...

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Wow, well, they won't be going anywhere, they're staying in Blackpool, at home.

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Which, let's remind everybody, is noted for fresh air and fun.

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Fresh air and fun.

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I'm used to Delft vases in the traditional colouring of blue and white,

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but this one is extraordinary - yellow on blue. Most unusual colour. Is it a family piece?

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No, it isn't, no, I bought it in a charity shop about two years ago.

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-A charity shop, this one?

-Yeah, yeah.

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-What did you have to pay?

-About 50p.

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-50p?

-Yes, yes.

-Well, what did you think you bought?

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I thought it was Chinese at first,

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because of the shape, but I'm not sure now, really.

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Understandable, because, I mean, the whole design looks Chinese, but that was the intention.

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This was made in Holland as a copy of a Chinese vase.

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You've got a figure of a boy there, I think he's meant to be a Chinese boy. What is he holding there?

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Looks like a guitar, is it? A musical instrument or knapsack?

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-I think that's meant to be a fan.

-Oh.

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One of those very elaborate, almost butterfly-like fans, um,

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and he's standing in a landscape, here we've got...

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There's a little pavilion in the background, rocks in front,

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there's a pine tree...

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here, further rocks, these are very typical Chinese rocks

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with the strata divided in a very Chinese manner.

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But adapted by someone I don't think had really looked closely

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at real Chinese art and was trying to imagine what it would be like,

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this strange world at the other side of the world, at the time,

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because this was made in Holland at a time

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when the Dutch were keenly collecting old Chinese porcelain

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and they've made an imitation of a classic Chinese shape,

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but done in very strange colours.

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They tried out different colours in Holland, and that was in the...

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-They were still experimenting because this is the end of the 17th century.

-Oh, right.

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-We're looking at about 1680, 1690.

-Good grief!

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-So I mean, that really is quite early.

-Yes.

-Not bad condition either, is it?

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And rare. So your 50p has become about £2,000.

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-That'll do very nicely.

-Very nice.

-That'll do me very nicely.

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This is such an an intriguing item,

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I've just conducted a small crowd survey

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because I was interested to see if anyone in the queue behind would have any idea what it is.

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Now, I've had a few suggestions.

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We've had medieval torture instrument, we've had bent door, Maori shield,

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although I think it would be a little bit hefty on that one, and we've had surfboard.

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All very interesting suggestions in their own way.

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Now, do you have any idea what this is?

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-No idea whatsoever.

-So you haven't tried to feed it into the internet?

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Oh, yes, yes, but when you don't know what it is, how can you do a search?

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Good point. Without that inkling, you've made no progress

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and I'm really pleased about that, because for once, I've got a decent job to do.

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Now, it's called a tribulum.

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Does that get you any closer?

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-No, no.

-It's a threshing sledge.

-Threshing sledge?

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And do you know, this is perhaps one of one of the most archaic

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-and historic farm implements that there is.

-Oh, right.

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Because this piece of equipment has its origins in the bronze age.

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-And there are still parts of the world, essentially, where things like this are still used.

-Right.

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And in its construction we can see that it has many things in it that are ancient to us.

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Flints, knapped flints, and of course these knapped flints are embedded into this sledge.

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Here you've got some additional re-utilised saw blades,

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-and those point to its age, which I'll come back to in a minute.

-Right.

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Now the fact is, what would happen was that a big surface,

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or an area, was prepared for the cut crop to be laid onto.

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This was then put down flat on top of the crop.

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It could then either be hauled by an animal or by people

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and it could be weighted down, perhaps with rocks, even,

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or quite often with an animal, it would have someone standing on top of it.

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And now that's a pretty skilled thing,

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-so the person who said surfboard wasn't a million miles away, in many respects.

-Yes.

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And it separates the grain from the ear and then cuts the chaff,

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and it does that by, essentially, dragging it across and breaking it down.

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-Now, this one is a 19th century example.

-Right.

-It's a 19th century example.

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-What's happened to this is, it's become a decorative item.

-Yeah.

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You can see all this fabulous wear in the grain,

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it's been now cleaned up and I suspect it hangs on your wall, doesn't it?

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-Well, in my hallway, yes, yes.

-In your hallway, OK.

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-Value as a decorative item it's £200 or £300.

-Yeah.

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But it embodies so much.

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-Yeah, thank you very much.

-Pleasure.

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Well, we know now.

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Well, my heart sank when you brought this in to me, I thought, "Oh, my goodness,

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"not another Bible in a terrible state," and all that sort of thing.

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-This one is.

-But here it is, it's lacking the title page

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and quite a few pages, preliminary leaves, but the most exciting thing are these notes all the way through.

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And it's a particularly good set of notes here for the New Testament,

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which is full of little notes. Tell me about it.

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Well, I don't know a great deal. It has been in the family quite a few years, I believe,

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50 or 60 years, and it's just been passed down through, through three generations, really.

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-So why have they got it?

-I was led to believe, my mother's father, er, bought it.

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-So where did your grandfather get it from?

-Well, he got it from a reputable dealer, um,

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around about the late '40s, early '50s.

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And what did they say about the notes?

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That it was Charlotte Bronte's Sunday school Bible.

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Those are apparently her notes.

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-And they go throughout the book?

-Yes, absolutely, yes, yes.

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How much did it cost when it was bought originally?

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-£50.

-£50?

-£50, yes.

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My goodness, that was an awful lot of money in those days.

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-Yes.

-You could have probably bought a house.

-It's quite a bit now.

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Well, I think it is Charlotte Bronte, I seem to recognise the handwriting. She is very rare, autographically.

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And of course, obviously, with a parson for a father, she was obviously quite devout and religious.

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-Right.

-The date of the Bible about 1835-1840,

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it seems absolutely consistent with all of this. So tell me, what do you think it's worth now?

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-I've no idea.

-It is a fantastic find for the Roadshow,

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-and really, Bronte scholars would very much like to look through this.

-Right.

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I would say we're talking about between £15,000 and £20,000.

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Really?

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-Really?!

-Yes.

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I think I'll be sitting down shortly. Good heavens. Really?!

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Yes, many Bronte collectors would love to have this

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and to see what she was thinking and see what notes she was making.

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-And the whole Bible is just absolutely full of notes. It is remarkable.

-Right.

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Now that is quite something, isn't it?

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It is beautiful, yes.

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-Is this how you have it displayed?

-We usually have it displayed like this.

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I think one of the great things about these tilt top tables is their flexibility.

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They allow people to have them as a card table, a breakfast table,

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but I think this was always intended as a show piece, don't you?

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Is this something you've bought, or something that's inherited...?

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We've inherited it from an aunt. We think of her when it's on display sometimes.

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I mean, it's not something you can get away from very easily, is it?

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-No.

-How do you use it? I mean, in a big room, small room?

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We keep it in a big room, at the side of the room, hopefully safe from heat and light and moisture.

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Well, that's very, very evident because it has wonderful colours,

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it really clearly has been away from the light,

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it has possibly been re-polished at some stage because the colours are so bright.

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-Yes.

-And I have a feeling that perhaps once upon a time

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there would have been more decoration in the middle there.

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Do you ever remember anything?

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We hear that there was a plant pot put on there as a centrepiece

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in the middle of the table, which caused damage.

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-The dreaded plant pot, yes.

-Yes, afraid so, yes.

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And the decoration around the edge is such fun, I think, you have a tremendous jolly lion,

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you've got garlands with this little fawn-like creature

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sort of spitting out a garland which is threaded through.

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-Yes.

-And beautifully done, and little tiny pieces of mother of pearl, as well.

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-Yes, wonderful, yes.

-It really is spectacular.

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Kingwood round the edge, birdseye maple in the middle,

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-dating to that very flamboyant period of around 1860, I think, so middle, middle Victorian period.

-Yes.

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It's quite interesting because in fact the base is very Rococo in style,

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like here, whereas the decorations around the table top is more a Renaissance revival.

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-Yes.

-So there's lots of things going on here, it's quite an exciting period for design.

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The disappointing thing perhaps is to put a value on it.

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Yes.

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In the current market, I would say that £2,000 to £3,000 is about right.

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-Five years ago you could have doubled that easily.

-Yes.

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So in another five years, you never know what might happen.

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Yes, right, thank you. Yes, very nice, thank you.

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It is a very strange fact that these birds are built on a pile of Pyrex.

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Now, you've got no idea what I'm talking about, have you?

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-No.

-In 1907, Corning, American glassworks,

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came over to Britain trying to sell the UK and Empire patents for a brand new type of glass,

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and they went round all the glassworks in Britain saying, "Do you want to take these rights?"

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"Do you want to take these rights?" "No, no, no."

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Nobody wanted it. Till they went up to Sunderland

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and they ran into a funny little rinkydink glassworks up in Sunderland called Jobling's

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and said, "Do you want to take this patent?"

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and they said, "We'll give it a go - what is it?"

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And they said, "It's called Pyrex."

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And within 20 years they had three-and-a-half thousand people producing Pyrex in Sunderland.

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It was the most democratic glass there has ever been.

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Every home from Buckingham Palace to 23 Railway Cuttings owned Pyrex.

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And they were making so much money that the governor, Ernest Proctor, began to get delusions of grandeur.

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As well as pots and pans, he wanted to make art glass.

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Lalique told him to go away.

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Sabino, a Laliquesque glass maker, told him to go away,

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so he decided to make it himself. And this is precisely what they made, Opalique made by Jobling.

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And it's quite collected, it's got the patent number, the design patent number there.

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So do you like it? I mean, is it a thing you like?

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Yes, I do quite like it, yes.

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And you came across it, how?

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It was my mother-in-law's, and when she died my husband inherited it.

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It's obviously not in the same realms as Sabino or Lalique,

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but it has a certain home-spun charm, which puts its price at about £150 to £200.

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-Oh!

-Not bad for a pair of old birds, is it?

-It's not, no.

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Now, even as a Southerner, which I'm afraid I am, I have seen the Blackpool illuminations.

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You know there can be very few people in Britain

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who haven't at some point, been taken to see this great spectacle.

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-Yes.

-And of course, even on my one or two visits,

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I was very much aware, as you go through that great procession of lights and ornamentation,

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it's all going to go.

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You know, it's a one-time exercise.

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And it seems an awful lot of effort just to make that spectacle.

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Why did it all come about?

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It originated as a way of extending the season.

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-Blackpool wanted to do something different.

-Ah.

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It's always been an innovative town.

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The illuminations started with eight arc lamps

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and at the time that was seen as unbelievable new science, and it's grown from there. Now...

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-New electricity.

-New electricity.

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And today we run a season when other resorts are closed for the winter, so that's what it's for.

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Right. So hang on a minute, "We". Who are you?

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I'm Richard Ryan, I'm Illuminations Manager, and part of a team that creates this spectacle every year.

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So you have this dream job of actually inventing all this.

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It's absolutely brilliant.

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-We create this every year, and yes, it's brilliant.

-Year after year after year.

-Every year.

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So you come up with an idea, build around it, and then it's all gone.

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Every year it's re-invented, but we do save everything and that's what the archive is about.

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How did you get a job like that? Is it something you've always wanted to do?

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I started off making illuminations when I was seven.

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I was born and bred in Sheffield, where they used to have fantastic Christmas lights back then,

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-and I applied to Blackpool for a job, was turned down.

-What, aged seven?

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-No, no, no, fourteen.

-Fourteen.

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What do I need to do? What qualifications, and all of that.

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I applied to the Council and they said, "Go and get an engineering degree, electrical engineering."

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I did that, I applied again and I got in. So persistence pays off, I suppose.

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But it's also a fulfilment of a dream.

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How many people know what they want to do at seven, and do it?

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-I'm very lucky.

-You're so lucky.

-I'm lucky and obsessed.

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When did it first begin?

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Oh, 1879 was the initial time.

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-Right.

-And then...

-And then it goes on.

0:19:400:19:42

And of course, obviously, what these reflect are cultural change, they're events of that moment.

0:19:420:19:48

I mean, this is a great early drawing about the Imperial Power and its links to trade.

0:19:480:19:53

-On the other hand, here we have something which is a wonderful 1930s period piece.

-Beautiful, aren't they?

0:19:530:19:59

Just fantastic, the people, the dress, the cars...

0:19:590:20:03

It's of its time. And I just love the way that things we've got here pick up those themes,

0:20:030:20:09

those moments in history. You know, things like that, to me, have a wonderful period charm now,

0:20:090:20:16

as indeed does the sort of Beatles association.

0:20:160:20:19

-It's brilliant, yes.

-But there is that great moment of the switch-on, isn't there?

0:20:190:20:23

-Now, here is Jayne Mansfield about to do it.

-That's right, 1959.

0:20:230:20:29

Now, what is she actually doing?

0:20:290:20:31

Does she actually switch them on?

0:20:310:20:34

Yes, and no.

0:20:340:20:36

She throws a switch, which switches some of them on.

0:20:360:20:39

-Yeah.

-And from that moment it's switched on in sections.

0:20:390:20:42

Back in the day, there was a telephony system, and in the later '70s there was a radio system.

0:20:420:20:48

-Is that what those are?

-That's what those are.

0:20:480:20:50

So somebody... she pulls a lever and somebody dials a number and says, "Turn it on Fred."

0:20:500:20:55

"Turn it on," absolutely.

0:20:550:20:57

All the secrets given away.

0:20:570:20:59

So we've got Jayne Mansfield, we've got Ken Dodd,

0:20:590:21:04

Gordon Banks, 1973, redoing his save.

0:21:040:21:08

-Yes.

-You know, it's a great history.

0:21:080:21:10

Collectively this is an immensely valuable archive. It is the history of Blackpool.

0:21:100:21:16

So, individually they're worth £100, couple hundred, as wonderful decorative things.

0:21:160:21:21

There are 26,000 pieces in the archive.

0:21:210:21:23

We're talking of tens of thousands of pounds for the collection as a whole

0:21:230:21:28

and, of course, the value to the town is greater than that in both financial terms and cultural terms.

0:21:280:21:34

I'm so glad we kept it, and we'll develop it in future.

0:21:340:21:37

-You must. It must always be there for us, for us all, thank you.

-Thank you.

0:21:370:21:42

Looking at this, I would guess that this is some kind of Chinese dresser, is it?

0:21:420:21:48

Well, it's got a Chinese finish to it, hasn't it?

0:21:480:21:51

But it's actually a wind-up gramophone or record player.

0:21:510:21:55

When I was a young boy away at school,

0:21:550:21:58

my father send me a portable gramophone.

0:21:580:22:00

And I used to play it every day and had a great collection of rock 'n' roll records,

0:22:000:22:04

and then I lost interest.

0:22:040:22:06

But about 20 years ago I was given a stack of 78s,

0:22:060:22:10

-you know, the speed at which...

-Yeah, I remember 78s.

0:22:100:22:13

And I was given a great stack of these, many by local artists, George Formby, Josef Locke,

0:22:130:22:19

Gracie Fields used to play here, Lonnie Donegan even played here.

0:22:190:22:23

But I had this great pile of records and I needed something to play them on.

0:22:230:22:27

So I asked a friend of mine to find me a gramophone

0:22:270:22:30

that was a nice piece of furniture

0:22:300:22:31

and something that my wife would accept in the house, so we found this.

0:22:310:22:35

-So where is the gramophone player in here then?

-It all starts when you open the lid.

0:22:350:22:40

-Ah-ha.

-Made by Edison-Bell.

0:22:400:22:43

Has a nice gold finish to the fittings.

0:22:430:22:46

The important part, of course, is the starting handle, or the winding handle on the right here.

0:22:460:22:51

And the volume control are these doors as you open the door.

0:22:510:22:56

Oh, right.

0:22:560:22:58

One of the most famous people in Blackpool, and our hero,

0:22:580:23:02

was Reginald Dixon who played the Wurlitzer organ here in Blackpool Tower, and that was of course...

0:23:020:23:07

-He used to play here in the ballroom?

-In this very ballroom.

0:23:070:23:10

And that used to be broadcast on Radio 2, didn't it?

0:23:100:23:14

Yeah, all over the world, and I have here, unusually,

0:23:140:23:17

a three-and-a-half inch diameter 78 of Reginald Dixon playing his theme tune,

0:23:170:23:22

I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside.

0:23:220:23:24

-Well, how appropriate, and can we hear it?

-You can, indeed.

0:23:240:23:29

Normally, when we look at Armada chests on the Roadshow,

0:23:560:24:00

we're not standing holding it with one hand.

0:24:000:24:03

And it's not because I am so strong, it is clearly a very tiny one, so tell me about it.

0:24:030:24:08

I think it's probably late 17th, early 18th century,

0:24:080:24:12

it's been in my family since then.

0:24:120:24:15

My family is basically Norwegian.

0:24:150:24:17

-Right.

-It would have belonged to my great-great-grandfather, maybe even earlier.

0:24:170:24:22

I think a few more greats than that, because I think your dating is actually fairly correct,

0:24:220:24:27

it is going to be late 17th century.

0:24:270:24:29

Whether it comes from Norway or not, I don't know.

0:24:290:24:31

-I would have said Northern European, possibly German, but you know we're in the right territory.

-Yes.

0:24:310:24:37

But it is the most charming example of an object we see on a large scale,

0:24:370:24:42

not frequently, but on occasion on the Roadshow.

0:24:420:24:46

-Yes.

-With these wonderful wrought-iron locks, blacksmith-made.

0:24:460:24:50

They look enormously complicated, in this instance, and also when you see the real thing,

0:24:500:24:56

but actually they're much more simple than one thinks.

0:24:560:24:59

Um, there are one or two condition issues - it's the wrong key,

0:24:590:25:04

and obviously it's missing that handle, it should have that,

0:25:040:25:08

-which is delightful, original wrought-iron handles.

-Right, yes.

0:25:080:25:12

-Curiously enough, not that relevant to its value.

-Right.

0:25:120:25:17

What do you think its value is?

0:25:170:25:21

I thought it would be no more than about £50.

0:25:210:25:23

Miniature versions and small versions of big things always have a premium.

0:25:230:25:29

-Right.

-And in this instance, it is so charming and in such wonderful condition,

0:25:290:25:35

with all its original painting and decorating, that this is probably worth as much as the real thing.

0:25:350:25:41

And those things, in slightly poor condition,

0:25:410:25:45

tend to be somewhere around about £1,000 to £1,200, and this is very close approaching it.

0:25:450:25:51

Well, I think that's...

0:25:510:25:53

that's incredible, absolutely incredible.

0:25:530:25:55

So how did you end up with these compelling pieces of paper?

0:25:580:26:02

They were amongst items left by my husband when he passed away.

0:26:020:26:06

I understand they were from my father-in-law, who was in special forces during the Second World War.

0:26:060:26:11

Special forces, what did they get up to?

0:26:110:26:13

As I understand it, he went behind enemy lines in Albania,

0:26:130:26:16

but other than that, I don't know anything about it.

0:26:160:26:19

So he was a mystery man in your life.

0:26:190:26:21

Yes, yes, he is. And these are mystery objects.

0:26:210:26:24

-They are, yes.

-But I have to say I think they're utterly compelling.

0:26:240:26:28

And so here you have in this picture, the quality,

0:26:280:26:32

the hideousness, of the real-life battle experience.

0:26:320:26:38

You've got, throughout, water, smoke, flame.

0:26:380:26:43

You can almost hear the battle, you can smell it.

0:26:430:26:48

In my view, there are occasions when art can do it better than film or photography.

0:26:480:26:52

Remember, an artist is there to record, not just the moment

0:26:520:26:57

at times like this, but also feelings, feelings in a way that celluloid can never impart.

0:26:570:27:02

This top image here of two firemen,

0:27:020:27:07

in what looks like the Blitz, has all the drama of film

0:27:070:27:10

and yet it has a sort of, clarity and an energy which moves it on.

0:27:100:27:15

-And do you know anything about this one?

-Not at all.

-Nothing at all?

-No, nothing.

0:27:150:27:19

So all these things are all just totally unknown to you.

0:27:190:27:22

Yes, I found them three weeks ago.

0:27:220:27:24

Well, let's go, let's go below.

0:27:250:27:27

There you have a German plane crashed...

0:27:270:27:31

and I have to say it takes me a moment or two to realise what's going on,

0:27:310:27:35

but in the middle ground is a corpse.

0:27:350:27:37

Do you see it?

0:27:370:27:40

So this, particularly the way the raggedy clouds or done,

0:27:400:27:44

or rather the raggedy smoke and fire, the jagged edge feel of this watercolour

0:27:440:27:51

imparts to me one thing.

0:27:510:27:53

Whoever painted it was there and he's hurrying to get it down.

0:27:530:27:58

You can feel the energy, the smoke, the fire, the threat of where he is.

0:27:580:28:05

And the one at the bottom there,

0:28:050:28:08

of a battleship in the sea,

0:28:080:28:12

I've seen the sea painted thousands of times,

0:28:120:28:15

and yet somehow this sea does it for me.

0:28:150:28:17

I feel its choppiness, you can feel the metal of the ship from,

0:28:170:28:22

from which he must have been looking.

0:28:220:28:24

I mean, these really are portals into the Second World War.

0:28:240:28:29

Now the question is, who painted them?

0:28:290:28:32

Who did them? Have you any idea?

0:28:320:28:34

Not at all. I couldn't read the signature.

0:28:340:28:36

Well, I can see a signature here in the bottom right,

0:28:360:28:39

and to me this is immensely frustrating.

0:28:390:28:44

Why? Because I can't quite read what it says, and after the name

0:28:440:28:49

are the initials RA - Royal Academy.

0:28:490:28:53

So here is someone who has got real form, as we say in the art world,

0:28:530:28:57

and yet I can't tell you who it's by.

0:28:570:29:00

You see, I think these are by an artist

0:29:000:29:02

who's intending to impart information.

0:29:020:29:05

I suspect they may well be designs for posters or for illustrations,

0:29:050:29:10

but what's so different from the posters and illustrations that I know

0:29:100:29:14

is that there is this feeling of actuality.

0:29:140:29:17

You can smell the war in these things.

0:29:170:29:20

As to their value, well, we need to get an artist in order to be able to establish a proper value,

0:29:200:29:26

but I'm delighted to say they're worth at least £500 each,

0:29:260:29:29

and if we can get an artist, possibly considerably more.

0:29:290:29:33

-So, with five or six you're talking about £3,000, perhaps a little bit more.

-Gosh.

0:29:330:29:40

A lot of people who know me, know that I'm a dog lover, in fact

0:29:420:29:46

my dog used to come to Roadshows, and here is a really fantastic hound. Do you have a dog yourself?

0:29:460:29:52

-Are you a dog...

-We do actually, we have a Border Lakeland cross...

-Yes.

0:29:520:29:57

..terrier, which is quite a character.

0:29:570:29:59

And a hunting dog, like this? Or...

0:29:590:30:02

Well, he is a hunting dog, he was bred as a hunting dog, but never has.

0:30:020:30:07

Right, this is very much a hunting dog.

0:30:070:30:10

-It is, yes.

-And, um you can see that it's on a chase.

0:30:100:30:14

Those eyes have something about the Gothic horror movie about them, it's certainly after something.

0:30:140:30:21

-It used to keep us away from the fireplace.

-Did it?

0:30:210:30:25

Well, I can imagine that, it's so lifelike, it really is fantastic.

0:30:250:30:30

-And if you wanted confirmation of hunting, there is the hunting crop in bronze to back it.

-Yeah.

0:30:300:30:37

And if you look at the back, first of all there's an inscription,

0:30:370:30:40

which I must ask you about, but it was clearly fitted to slot onto a wall.

0:30:400:30:45

-Yes.

-And it's got a date which I would have thought is 1964,

0:30:450:30:51

rather than 1864 when it would have been made in the Black Forest,

0:30:510:30:56

it probably is pine and stained to look like walnut or a more precious wood,

0:30:560:31:03

but what about this date?

0:31:030:31:05

Well, the date on the back came from my father who wrote it on the back of it in order to...

0:31:050:31:10

in case it was stolen because it was up on the wall of a pub,

0:31:100:31:14

-and actually it was stolen.

-Was it?

0:31:140:31:17

A rugby team, who was trophy hunting,

0:31:170:31:20

took it away and because of the address on the back, it actually came back.

0:31:200:31:26

-This is really quite a valuable item.

-Right.

0:31:260:31:29

I think it fits a lot of factors which people are looking for in the market today.

0:31:290:31:36

If you're an interior decorator, what a piece of interior decoration.

0:31:360:31:41

A dog lover, you don't need to be just a dog lover to want something like this.

0:31:410:31:46

-Because of all those factors I think it would make between £1,500 and £2,000 at auction.

-Phew. Very good..

0:31:460:31:53

-A very much sought-after piece and very lovely piece to have.

-Right.

0:31:530:31:57

-Thank you very much for bringing it.

-Thank you.

0:31:570:32:00

Well, they do say that you can find a better dressed type of woman in Blackpool, would you agree with that?

0:32:030:32:08

-Totally.

-OK, so you're obviously from Blackpool.

0:32:080:32:11

But I have to tell you that I describe myself

0:32:110:32:14

as a potaholic, that's...

0:32:140:32:16

I think it applies to both male and female, but the owner of this pair of shoes

0:32:160:32:22

and this handbag, I think was a kindred spirit. I think she could only have been a potaholic.

0:32:220:32:27

Now, just tell me a little bit about the lady owner.

0:32:270:32:30

Um, she was my aunt and she was wonderful, she treasured these,

0:32:300:32:34

and she gave them to me and I've cherished them ever since, really.

0:32:340:32:38

So did she wear these on a regular basis?

0:32:380:32:40

Er, no, I think only once and that was for, she'd been invited in the '60s,

0:32:400:32:45

early '60s, I think it was, to the Queen's garden party.

0:32:450:32:49

-At Buckingham Palace.

-Yes, yes, absolutely.

0:32:490:32:52

Fantastic. Well, let, let's have a look in detail at a pair of shoes

0:32:520:32:56

that say more about you than money ever can,

0:32:560:32:58

-although I think it's fair to say, these would have been expensive.

-Oh, yes, I would think so.

0:32:580:33:03

I have never met a woman yet wearing Wedgewood shoes,

0:33:030:33:07

but I think these are absolutely wonderful.

0:33:070:33:11

Let's just turn around, because it's not just these buckles is it?

0:33:110:33:15

-No, no.

-It's the heels themselves, these are just breathtaking, absolutely breathtaking.

0:33:150:33:21

She's actually got a matching bag as well.

0:33:210:33:25

And, er, dare I ask, have you ever worn these?

0:33:250:33:29

-Yes, I have once.

-Have you?

-Yes.

-And they are your size, are they?

0:33:290:33:33

Yeah... Don't, please. I thought you were going to ask me try them on.

0:33:330:33:36

No, no, no, all I'm interested in knowing

0:33:360:33:39

is whether or not it's the sort of thing that are being used today, I...

0:33:390:33:44

You see, for me, it's like having a car in the garage and not taking it out for a spin.

0:33:440:33:48

-I've worn them once, but I thought that was quite cavalier, really.

-I think it probably was, wasn't it?

0:33:480:33:53

-Yeah, yeah. But it was good.

-It was good?

0:33:530:33:56

-It was good, yeah.

-Obviously you've got no idea what she had to pay for these way back when,

0:33:560:34:00

-and to be honest with you, I haven't got much of a precedent because this is a first for me.

-Right, oh, good.

0:34:000:34:05

-A first for... I've come across a Wedgewood pram before today.

-Right.

0:34:050:34:09

But Wedgewood shoes and matching bag, it's all new.

0:34:090:34:12

-Any thoughts.

-No ideas, it wouldn't matter, I just think they're precious.

0:34:120:34:16

No, so if I offered you £500 would that be...?

0:34:160:34:19

-No, no.

-If I offered you £800?

-I'm sure they're not worth that,

0:34:190:34:22

-but to me they're worth everything.

-Exactly.

0:34:220:34:24

Ignore the man behind you who said, "Take the money", ignore him, OK?

0:34:240:34:28

Well, I mean I think the proof of the pudding would always be in the selling.

0:34:280:34:33

But if I had to go out and... Let's put an insurance valuation on, um,

0:34:330:34:36

I wouldn't hesitate on this little group, to put the best part of £800.

0:34:360:34:41

-No! Oh, right.

-Well, hey, listen, find me another pair.

0:34:410:34:45

I mean, they would have been worth more

0:34:450:34:47

if I could get my feet into them, but I just...

0:34:470:34:49

they're just not my size.

0:34:490:34:51

This is certainly the lightest piece of jewellery I've ever seen on the Antiques Roadshow,

0:34:520:34:57

but it also happens to be possibly one of the rarest pieces of jewellery

0:34:570:35:00

-I've ever seen on the Antiques Roadshow.

-Oh.

0:35:000:35:02

-Is that what you thought when you brought it?

-No.

0:35:020:35:05

-It's like a whisper, you can hardly feel it on your hand. What did you think it was made of?

-I had...

0:35:050:35:10

I think my mother said it might have been bone.

0:35:100:35:14

I thought it was old, that's the only thing I knew about it.

0:35:140:35:18

Well, it is seriously old

0:35:180:35:20

and it's not made of bone, it's made of horse hair.

0:35:200:35:23

-Oh.

-And I think that it might well be 17th century,

0:35:230:35:27

that it could be 400 years old.

0:35:270:35:29

-Wow!

-And I think it's part of the kit and caboodle

0:35:290:35:32

of somebody who's been widowed,

0:35:320:35:34

and she's sort of shunned her real jewellery

0:35:340:35:37

and traded it in for black and white jewellery, which is highly appropriate for a widow.

0:35:370:35:41

I've talked to our picture people here who recognise it as a type from the 17th century.

0:35:410:35:46

You see it in portraits, and that's desperately important for us in dating these things.

0:35:460:35:50

It's black and white, which is the colours of Jacobean England,

0:35:500:35:54

it's the colours of Jacobean mourning,

0:35:540:35:56

the colour of Jacobean death, it has to be said,

0:35:560:35:58

but I'm completely besotted with it.

0:35:580:36:00

I don't know how it's survived and how it's not been torn to shreds.

0:36:000:36:04

It's very fragile, very light, very papery,

0:36:040:36:07

it's just like a spider's web, or a whisper in your hand.

0:36:070:36:11

And, and is that all startling to you?

0:36:110:36:14

Yes, it's just been kept in a jewellery box

0:36:140:36:17

with a load of other silver jewellery,

0:36:170:36:19

so I'm surprised it's that fragile.

0:36:190:36:22

Well, it's probably been in a jewellery box for 400 years.

0:36:220:36:25

-Wow.

-And, and quite why it's survived, I'll never know.

0:36:250:36:28

And, and, and, and I'm very, very excited by it.

0:36:280:36:31

And I don't know how to transfer that excitement to everybody.

0:36:310:36:34

I'm hoping to do it, and it's certainly not about money.

0:36:340:36:38

Money's a completely false barometer.

0:36:380:36:40

If I tell you that it was very valuable, I'd be wrong, I think it isn't.

0:36:400:36:43

I think it's really worth only low hundreds of pounds,

0:36:430:36:47

-maybe no more than £200 or £300.

-Oh.

0:36:470:36:50

But as a survival I think it's an astonishingly valuable object

0:36:500:36:53

and I've loved every minute of it, and what will you do now?

0:36:530:36:56

I don't know, go and put it somewhere safe, I think.

0:36:560:37:00

Very good, it's been safe for four centuries,

0:37:000:37:03

and it's your job to keep it safe as long as you can.

0:37:030:37:06

Put your hand out and have a whisper in your hand, a tiny,

0:37:060:37:09

-tiny butterfly on your hand that's four hundred years old.

-Thank you very much.

0:37:090:37:13

What more magic could you ask?

0:37:130:37:14

Well, I think every cricketing enthusiast recognises that

0:37:140:37:17

-Don Bradman was the greatest batsman in the history of the game.

-Yes.

0:37:170:37:21

And on the Roadshow we see quite a lot of autographs and occasionally his signature comes along.

0:37:210:37:26

But I've never seen 92 Bradman signatures before.

0:37:260:37:29

-They're all there.

-How did it all start?

0:37:290:37:31

It started many years ago, 1948, which was Bradman's last tour,

0:37:310:37:38

and a gentleman, who was an old gentleman - I was only five then -

0:37:380:37:43

said he had a Don Bradman autograph and I really wanted to see it

0:37:430:37:46

because I was interested in cricket from a very early age.

0:37:460:37:49

He showed it me and then I always wanted one. And then in the 1970s I wrote a letter to Don Bradman,

0:37:490:37:55

they printed his actual address in the Radio Times, believe it or not,

0:37:550:37:59

and I got a reply and he signed it, Don Bradman, and I thought I must get some more.

0:37:590:38:04

And then he became an obsession, really,

0:38:040:38:06

and I found cuttings and old things to send to him, and photographs,

0:38:060:38:11

the only colour photograph from his last tour, 1948, and he signed every one,

0:38:110:38:16

and always a reply within a week. Wonderful!

0:38:160:38:19

-What a gentleman!

-What a gentleman, a true gent!

0:38:190:38:22

Well, if we look here we can see some of the signatures

0:38:220:38:26

on Christmas cards and cigarette cards and indeed that's a match...

0:38:260:38:30

-That's the last match he ever played.

-Oh, is it?

0:38:300:38:32

-Is that when he was out for four?

-He was out...

-No, nought...

0:38:320:38:35

If he'd have got four he'd have had a hundred average.

0:38:350:38:39

I think it was 99.99 his test average, wasn't it?

0:38:390:38:42

-Exactly, yes.

-But he did in, what? 35 year career,

0:38:420:38:44

scored a century every three innings he came to the wicket.

0:38:440:38:47

-That's right.

-Quite astonishing.

-Marvellous.

-So how many years have we... Lots of photographs here.

0:38:470:38:53

We're talking 25 years to get all these,

0:38:530:38:55

and he even sent me an actual birthday card on me 40th birthday,

0:38:550:38:59

which was magic, I didn't expect it.

0:38:590:39:01

And I think I can guess, but why 92 Bradman signatures?

0:39:010:39:05

92, well, when I got to about 70, I thought, "This is round about the same age as Don,"

0:39:050:39:09

and I thought "I'll try and get one for every year of his age."

0:39:090:39:12

And when he'd reached 92 I'd only 91, and I sent one last one off and he just signed it,

0:39:120:39:18

-just before he died, sadly died.

-Oh, how very poignant.

0:39:180:39:21

So I just, just managed it.

0:39:210:39:23

And his signature's never changed over the years. Wonderful!

0:39:230:39:26

Fantastic! Well, let's talk about values.

0:39:260:39:29

The Bradman album, very difficult to value but I think if that came up at auction,

0:39:290:39:33

a cricket enthusiast would pay maybe £2,000 or £3,000 for it, possibly more, yes.

0:39:330:39:38

-Excellent, right.

-Wonderful collection.

0:39:380:39:41

Thank you, Paul, thank you.

0:39:410:39:43

Now, our experts know a thing or two about collecting and they have some wonderful collections,

0:39:490:39:54

but even they have been known to pick a dud.

0:39:540:39:56

Now, Bill Harriman, you know everything there is to know about arms and militaria.

0:39:560:40:00

You've been an expert in criminal cases, but I was astonished to learn that you even bought a fake.

0:40:000:40:06

Well, I'm afraid that I did, even us who are learned in such matters,

0:40:060:40:10

we still very occasionally get stitched up.

0:40:100:40:13

So this, this is the fake, is it?

0:40:130:40:15

-This is a fake, yes.

-So tell me the story behind it.

0:40:150:40:18

I, for many years, always wanted one of these, it's an 1862 Colt revolver.

0:40:180:40:23

-I wanted one from the era of the American Civil War.

-Can I hold it?

0:40:230:40:26

-Yes.

-I've never actually held a gun, or anything like it, so...

0:40:260:40:30

I was desperate to get one from the period of the American Civil War,

0:40:300:40:33

and you can tell their date from the serial numbers, and I saw that.

0:40:330:40:36

It was for sale with a dealer, and I bought it and I was very pleased with it and I got it home,

0:40:360:40:42

had a look at it, I was still very pleased with it.

0:40:420:40:45

I showed it to various other people and, er,

0:40:450:40:48

there was that horrid little seed of doubt planted by a friend of mine who said,

0:40:480:40:54

"Oh, I'm not sure about that", so we took it to bits and did a full forensic examination

0:40:540:40:59

and my heart started to sink through the bottom of my boots,

0:40:590:41:03

as it was very clear that it's a modern-made Italian replica

0:41:030:41:07

-that somebody has aged to make it look like it was from about 1864.

-So it could take in even you?

0:41:070:41:13

It did take me in. I paid good money for it.

0:41:130:41:16

So what did you do then?

0:41:160:41:17

Well, I went back to the dealer who'd sold it to me

0:41:170:41:21

and I'd taken the precaution of obtaining an expert report

0:41:210:41:25

and I showed him this and eventually, with bad grace, I have to say, he gave me my money back.

0:41:250:41:30

He said "I'll have the pistol back". I said, "Well, have you got authority to possess it?"

0:41:300:41:34

He said, "No," and I've had it ever since.

0:41:340:41:37

-I suppose it's a salutary lesson.

-It is a salutary lesson.

0:41:370:41:40

I pick that up occasionally and it tells me that I'm as fallible as the next man,

0:41:400:41:45

and it tells me to use your eyes and use your brains and connect the two, and don't take anything for granted.

0:41:450:41:53

And what about your best, your best buy, or the thing you love best in your collection?

0:41:530:41:57

It's this. It's that...piece of...

0:41:570:42:02

shattered bone and metal. Do you know what it is?

0:42:020:42:04

-Can you guess what it is?

-This was a penknife was it?

0:42:040:42:07

Yes, yeah, cheap old penknife, sort of clasped knife that was carried by all kinds of people,

0:42:070:42:12

farmers, workers, you name it. And it's very special to me because...

0:42:120:42:17

-Why is this so special to you?

-It's my grandfather's.

0:42:170:42:20

My maternal grandfather who was Corporal Samuel Robinson

0:42:200:42:23

of the 7th Battalion of the Royal West Kent Regiment,

0:42:230:42:27

and that was about Sam Robinson's person

0:42:270:42:30

when it was hit by either a machine gun bullet,

0:42:300:42:33

or a piece of shell fragment,

0:42:330:42:35

and it clearly took most of the force of the impact and he survived the First World War.

0:42:350:42:40

Oh, so if this had been a little bit to the left, a little bit to the right.

0:42:400:42:45

You and I would not be speaking today.

0:42:450:42:46

-Gosh, that's a slightly sobering thought, isn't it?

-It is a very sobering thought.

0:42:460:42:50

-And this is him, is it?

-Yes, there he is in his uniform taken in about...

0:42:500:42:54

I'm guessing about 1916.

0:42:540:42:57

That to me, I think, is one of the dearest things that I own.

0:42:570:43:01

I get very emotional about it, as you probably see.

0:43:010:43:04

-It's wonderful to see it Bill, thanks very much.

-Thank you.

0:43:040:43:07

This is obviously only the tip of the iceberg. You've got press cuttings, letters from the Prime Minister,

0:43:100:43:15

Lloyd George, and pictures of the great man himself,

0:43:150:43:20

the counsellor, "To Mr H Veno".

0:43:200:43:23

Now tell me, what's it all about?

0:43:230:43:25

I'm related, I'm the great grandson of Sir William Henry Veno.

0:43:250:43:30

Yes.

0:43:300:43:32

Who was born William Reynard Varney.

0:43:320:43:34

-Right.

-Moved to America and acquired the formula for Veno's Cough Cure.

0:43:340:43:40

-And this is the patent here?

-Yes.

-This is the thing.

0:43:400:43:43

He decided to patent the company in 1894, and he patented it Veno's Drugs Company.

0:43:430:43:49

He moved back to Manchester, and started a company in Chester Road, Manchester.

0:43:490:43:53

-And here are all the products here.

-They are the products, yes, yes.

-But tell me about his life.

0:43:530:43:58

When he moved back to Manchester,

0:43:580:44:01

he carried on with the company, he built the company up, he became Mayor of Altrincham, um...

0:44:010:44:08

And knighted, there's a letter from the Prime Minister.

0:44:080:44:11

There's two letters there, one from Lloyd George, one from Percy Shaw,

0:44:110:44:14

inviting him to Buckingham Palace to be knighted,

0:44:140:44:18

and from thereon the war broke out, the First World War, which is the letter there.

0:44:180:44:24

Yes, let me just read this letter because it's rather sad.

0:44:240:44:28

"My dearest Mary, I arrived here last night and am returning to Manchester

0:44:280:44:32

"tomorrow night and will be with you Friday evening, usual train.

0:44:320:44:37

"Things are looking very black. England has declared war against Germany,"

0:44:370:44:41

-that must be the First World War, "and everybody is upset and business is at a standstill".

-Yes.

0:44:410:44:47

Rather sad.

0:44:470:44:48

And I believe after that he did have problems with a bottle making company

0:44:480:44:52

-which made bottles too brittle and he had to pull them all back because of fear of people getting hurt.

-Yes.

0:44:520:44:58

So that was another thing that... Probably the demise of the company.

0:44:580:45:02

And in 1925 he then sold the company to Beechams.

0:45:020:45:04

But I mean surely, I mean he would have sold it for an awful lot of money?

0:45:040:45:08

He would have been, he would have been a millionaire.

0:45:080:45:11

-He was, he was.

-He was a millionaire.

0:45:110:45:13

-He was a millionaire.

-And does any of these riches descend to you?

0:45:130:45:17

Unfortunately not. Only the collection from the family.

0:45:170:45:21

Well, individually these items don't add up to much but when you actually have a whole archive like this,

0:45:210:45:27

and this is only the tip of the archive,

0:45:270:45:30

I would say that it's going to be in excess of £1,000 and you're still collecting.

0:45:300:45:37

I am, I am, yes, it's growing.

0:45:370:45:39

That's tremendous, thanks.

0:45:390:45:41

Thank you very much.

0:45:410:45:42

Now this is what I call a dead swanky cocktail set.

0:45:420:45:49

Wow this is really nice.

0:45:490:45:51

It says 1938 all over it, and that's what it says

0:45:510:45:55

on the silver cocktail shaker

0:45:550:45:57

that forms the centre of this really nice thing.

0:45:570:46:02

The glass is by Walsh, they're cut and engraved.

0:46:020:46:06

The silver is by Boynton who is an extremely nobby silver maker,

0:46:060:46:10

one of the best English silver makers of the period.

0:46:100:46:13

The cocktail sticks are in solid mother of pearl, capped with solid silver cocks,

0:46:130:46:19

and I love it, I think it's a hot thing. Where did you find it?

0:46:190:46:23

Well, basically my dad was doing some work in the loft and he found this...

0:46:230:46:27

Apparently the story goes that my great uncle Billy was an accountant

0:46:270:46:31

and he was doing some accountancy work for somebody.

0:46:310:46:34

Literally rather than getting paid in money, he was paid in lieu.

0:46:340:46:37

Well, I mean, because it's such good quality and it's in very good condition,

0:46:370:46:41

-there are people who would love to have this, cocktails are fashionable again.

-Yes, sure.

0:46:410:46:45

So I think for something that stands you in at nothing,

0:46:450:46:48

the four hundred quid at auction that it's worth is quite nice,

0:46:480:46:52

and if you wanted to buy it again then you're in to £500, £600.

0:46:520:46:56

Right, cool.

0:46:560:46:57

Once an antique becomes valuable,

0:46:570:47:02

it becomes copyable.

0:47:020:47:05

And Toby jugs became very, very collectable in the late 19th century.

0:47:050:47:12

How old is this one, do you think?

0:47:120:47:14

Well, I'm not sure. I was hoping it was very old, but...

0:47:150:47:20

What's "very old"?

0:47:200:47:22

-Well, 1785?

-That's a very specific date.

-Yeah.

0:47:220:47:27

So have you done any research on it?

0:47:270:47:29

I've done a little bit,

0:47:290:47:31

I've tried the internet and I've seen pictures of very similar ones,

0:47:310:47:38

associated with...

0:47:380:47:41

-the Wood family.

-The Wood family of Staffordshire?

0:47:410:47:43

-Of Staffordshire, yeah.

-Ralph Wood, Enoch Wood, a famous family of potters.

0:47:430:47:48

-Yeah.

-Well, those are just the sort of Toby jugs

0:47:480:47:50

-that people were very keen to get their hands on in the late 19th century.

-Yeah.

0:47:500:47:55

When there was this great wave of china-mania and for that reason,

0:47:550:47:58

the Staffordshire factories at that time started producing

0:47:580:48:04

very good copies of things that then were 100 years old or so.

0:48:040:48:08

The earliest one I saw that looked like this one was 1785.

0:48:080:48:12

Right, but in view of what I've said about these being essentially copied in the late 19th century...

0:48:120:48:17

-Yeah, yeah.

-..are you sure?

0:48:170:48:20

Not now, no.

0:48:200:48:22

Now, I'm going to look at it in detail.

0:48:220:48:25

Let's look at this fellow, he's beautifully modelled face,

0:48:250:48:29

he's got a wart on the cheek, he's got a gap in his teeth,

0:48:290:48:33

he's holding a foaming jug and then he's sitting on this barrel.

0:48:330:48:38

Let's just actually look at the shirt with those buttons and the creases,

0:48:380:48:44

the creases in his britches, and then at his feet, a dog, a spaniel, I think.

0:48:440:48:49

The colours are what we call onglaze colours,

0:48:490:48:53

-these are metallic oxides that are put onto the piece and actually are sealed into the glaze.

-Right.

0:48:530:49:00

And you get this incredibly lustrous glaze.

0:49:000:49:04

Very, very bright green with this lovely bunch of reeds forming the handle.

0:49:040:49:09

And it's only when we actually look underneath,

0:49:090:49:13

we can see the colour of the clay,

0:49:130:49:15

it's a very white clay, the clay has come from materials quarried down in,

0:49:150:49:20

in Cornwall and shipped all the way up to Staffordshire,

0:49:200:49:24

and then it's covered in this glaze which has a bluey tinge to it, which we therefore call pearlware.

0:49:240:49:30

In other words, there's a lot of work has gone into this,

0:49:300:49:34

and that's the clue as to whether it's right or wrong.

0:49:340:49:38

Which way are you inclining yourself?

0:49:380:49:40

Er, I think he's right.

0:49:420:49:44

You're right, he is right.

0:49:440:49:46

He is known as the Lord Howe Sailor.

0:49:460:49:49

Many of these Toby jugs take names from famous Admirals...

0:49:490:49:54

there's a Rodney Sailor as well, but this is known as the Howe Sailor.

0:49:540:50:00

And it does date exactly to the 1780s

0:50:000:50:02

and it is almost certainly from the stable of Ralph Wood.

0:50:020:50:05

Well, a 19th century copy would probably be worth

0:50:050:50:11

somewhere in the region of £50.

0:50:110:50:15

A 1785-1790 piece like this

0:50:150:50:20

is worth £5,000.

0:50:200:50:23

5,000?

0:50:230:50:25

Very good, must get him insured.

0:50:250:50:30

I owe you a very big thank you.

0:50:300:50:32

The Beatles played eight times here in Blackpool

0:50:320:50:35

so I was expecting to see programmes, tickets, signatures all day.

0:50:350:50:38

It's nearly the end of the day

0:50:380:50:40

and you're my first person to come in with some Beatles memorabilia.

0:50:400:50:44

Did you get these yourself?

0:50:440:50:45

I did. I was a very young girl, I lived in Middlesex,

0:50:450:50:49

my Dad was the PRO at Heathrow Airport and it was my hobby,

0:50:490:50:54

I was mad on collecting autographs of famous people.

0:50:540:50:57

-How old were you then?

-About 12, it was early '60s,

0:50:570:51:00

so that's given me age away but, er, yeah,

0:51:000:51:03

I actually got these myself.

0:51:030:51:05

So he worked in Heathrow and obviously had access to all the VIPs going backwards and forwards.

0:51:050:51:10

He did, yeah, yes, yes.

0:51:100:51:11

And he would go along and just ask for their autographs and say, "It's for my daughter"?

0:51:110:51:16

-Well, for the Beatles he actually took me with him, he said, "Come on, you can..."

-You met them?

0:51:160:51:21

Yes, I sat on Paul McCartney's knee.

0:51:210:51:23

-Wow!

-I was very embarrassed. I had very sensible sandals on

0:51:230:51:26

and I was trying to hide my feet, but it was, it was wonderful, it was wonderful.

0:51:260:51:30

And apart from the Beatles, who else did he meet, or did you meet?

0:51:330:51:37

The Rolling Stones, I got their autographs as well.

0:51:370:51:40

-You said that they terrified you.

-They did terrify me, yeah. They were very...

0:51:400:51:44

heavy-looking, even then. Although when you look back on photographs they look quite sweet now,

0:51:440:51:49

but at the time they looked quite heavy to me.

0:51:490:51:51

And you kept these and then you stopped collecting...

0:51:510:51:54

Well, there's loads in there, loads and loads and loads, Margot Fonteyn

0:51:540:51:58

and Muhammad Ali and absolutely loads. But, yeah, for the last few years they've been in a drawer,

0:51:580:52:04

won't tell you what drawer,

0:52:040:52:06

-been in a drawer.

-I can guess, I can guess.

0:52:060:52:09

Yes, yes.

0:52:090:52:11

And as far as value's concerned, the Beatles,

0:52:110:52:14

the Rolling Stones with Brian Jones, Muhammad Ali, they go on and on and I start adding it all up.

0:52:140:52:19

Barbara Streisand, Lisa Minnelli.

0:52:190:52:21

There's about 80 in total in the books.

0:52:210:52:24

-So, exceptional books. Have you thought about value?

-No, no, we've never...

0:52:240:52:30

Because today this represents,

0:52:300:52:32

you know, an important autograph collection.

0:52:320:52:36

They are worth in the region of £3,000 to £4,000 each album.

0:52:360:52:42

-So we're talking about £6,000 to £8,000 for the collection.

-Wow.

0:52:420:52:47

-Wow! Ooh!

-How many children are they going to be shared between?

-Well, maybe I won't now!

0:52:470:52:53

So a ballroom jewel in a ballroom,

0:52:530:52:56

tell me about it, come on, where did you find it?

0:52:560:53:00

At a car boot sale.

0:53:000:53:02

-And?

-And, with some other bits and bobs,

0:53:020:53:05

so I gave about £5 for that with a few other little trinket things.

0:53:050:53:10

Obviously I didn't know until a later time it was diamonds,

0:53:100:53:14

but it's different, unusual, and things like that, I thought, you know...

0:53:140:53:18

Why not? And so you were attracted to the way it returned the light,

0:53:180:53:22

it sort of scintillated away there. Goodness me.

0:53:220:53:24

It is the most remarkable thing and it's one of the most glamorous pieces of jewellery

0:53:240:53:29

-I've seen for a long time, actually.

-Really?

0:53:290:53:31

Yeah, definitely. Because it's not a brooch at all.

0:53:310:53:34

-It's not?

-No.

0:53:340:53:35

-I thought it was a brooch.

-I thought it was a brooch for a while.

0:53:350:53:39

-Oh, really?

-But actually it's half a tiara.

0:53:390:53:41

-Tiara?

-Yes, and it would have sat opposite another wing

0:53:410:53:44

of exactly the same form on the forehead of a girl, who would have come to a ballroom like this,

0:53:440:53:49

dressed to the nines, dressed to the highest possible level that she could afford, wearing her diamonds

0:53:490:53:55

and wearing that on the front of her forehead that turned her into a Greek goddess, frankly.

0:53:550:54:00

Really? I'm amazed.

0:54:000:54:01

Yeah, and, and I'm amazed too, because I love it and I think it's highly figurative.

0:54:010:54:06

And I think the anatomy of the bird's wing is beautifully suggested by the undulation of the metalwork

0:54:060:54:12

and it's set in silver and gold, which is perfect for the period.

0:54:120:54:16

Every setting has been pierced out by hand from the gold sheet and you can see the engraver's mark.

0:54:160:54:22

-Yeah.

-And, and then he pierces it with a file

0:54:220:54:24

and then builds up the settings beyond that

0:54:240:54:27

to make what is one of the most poetic forms of jewellery I've ever seen.

0:54:270:54:31

In a way we're slightly out of tune with it,

0:54:310:54:34

because we do see it as a bird's wing,

0:54:340:54:36

but it's not a bird's wing, it's the wings of a God.

0:54:360:54:39

I mean, it's a sort of Hermes wing,

0:54:390:54:42

it's an Amorini's wing and it stands for eternal love.

0:54:420:54:46

And it does evoke a period long gone.

0:54:460:54:49

It evokes a time when entertainments were hard to find,

0:54:490:54:53

there was no television, no radio, no cinema, no telephone, no computer and what do you do?

0:54:530:55:00

You go out to what was called an entertainment.

0:55:000:55:02

You'd have an invitation, a very smart invitation

0:55:020:55:05

lined with gold, and it would say somebody would receive you for a dance, even a small dance, sometimes,

0:55:050:55:11

which would be a clue to you as to how to dress, but whatever happened,

0:55:110:55:15

you were dressed to the highest possible pitch that you could afford,

0:55:150:55:18

and the highest that this woman could afford was quite high indeed,

0:55:180:55:22

because as you now know, they are diamonds, and they're not marcasites, are they?

0:55:220:55:26

And we have to understand what the other parts of her arrangements would have been,

0:55:260:55:30

if she was wearing diamond feathers in her hair,

0:55:300:55:32

what her dress would have been like, what her carriage would have been like.

0:55:320:55:36

It could have been in this ballroom, it is of the same period as this ballroom.

0:55:360:55:40

-Really?

-It dates from about 1900 and she's dressing as a Greek goddess.

0:55:400:55:45

Heaven only knows, I don't think one could find a more exciting thing.

0:55:450:55:49

What do you feel about all of that?

0:55:490:55:50

Speechless.

0:55:500:55:53

Good.

0:55:530:55:55

Marvellous, I almost am. I've sort of run out now, I've hit home.

0:55:550:55:58

I think it's fantastic...

0:55:580:56:00

I'm like, "How does he do this?"

0:56:000:56:02

Well, I've seen them before and they were made by the greatest jewellers, by Boucheron and Cartier, Guiliano...

0:56:020:56:09

superb names involved themselves in this style and it's not a unique thing.

0:56:090:56:13

What we do slightly ache to see is the other brooch,

0:56:130:56:16

maybe it will come forward somehow or another.

0:56:160:56:18

But they do exist in pairs, they were mounted on a tiara frame

0:56:180:56:22

and they could be taken on and off and worn as brooches

0:56:220:56:24

and they're very desirable and they're still very poetic.

0:56:240:56:28

And with, with all of that comes some high value, so £5 investment from you...

0:56:280:56:34

If it were a tiara with both wings it would return £12,000 to £15,000.

0:56:340:56:40

Oh, my God. Are you serious?

0:56:400:56:42

Oh, my God, oh, I nearly screamed then, I'm not going to scream.

0:56:420:56:46

Why wouldn't you scream?

0:56:460:56:49

Oh, my God! Really?

0:56:490:56:51

And half of it is worth less than half,

0:56:510:56:54

but it's still worth £5,000 or £6,000 of anybody's money.

0:56:540:56:59

Oh, my God,

0:56:590:57:00

I can't... I'm so giddy!

0:57:000:57:04

-Fantastic.

-Oh, that is amazing.

0:57:040:57:06

No, I'm thrilled, I love it.

0:57:060:57:09

In this splendid ballroom it's easy to imagine the dances that have taken place here,

0:57:090:57:15

the bands that have played on this stage and of course the organists,

0:57:150:57:19

I mentioned Reginald Dixon earlier on and this organ, he designed it himself and played on it.

0:57:190:57:24

And Phil, our organist for the day, is going to play us out

0:57:240:57:27

with a little number you might just recognise. But first,

0:57:270:57:30

thank you to the people of Blackpool for bringing along such a wonderful array and variety of objects.

0:57:300:57:36

And Phil, now, over to you, would you kindly take it away.

0:57:360:57:38

MUSIC: Antiques Roadshow Theme

0:57:380:57:41

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:58:280:58:31

E-mail [email protected]

0:58:310:58:35

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