Fiona Bruce and the team visit the University of Birmingham's Great Hall. Finds include a bronze lion given as a gift by MGM Studios in the 1950s.
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Our location this week is right in the heart of the country,
in Britain's second most populated city.
Today's venue has been a seat of learning for over 100 years.
It opened in 1909 with 678 students.
Today it has 30,000.
So, your starter for ten - I'll have to hurry you -
welcome to the Antiques Roadshow from - come on, yes -
from the University of Birmingham.
These figures show us the range of subjects
being studied at the University of Birmingham in 1909,
from art and philosophy to science and industry.
So we've got Darwin, Plato, Michelangelo, Faraday,
and Midlanders like Shakespeare,
all important influences on the Edwardian curriculum.
The then-mayor of Birmingham - Joseph Chamberlain,
father of the Prime Minister, Neville - wanted to create
a different kind of university, that would educate a generation
that would serve the city, which was growing faster than any other.
It was known as "the workshop of the world"
and its industrial output was massive,
ranging from huge anchors to tiny pins.
The Great Hall, with its magnificent stained-glass window,
is a celebration of the city's success.
It's adorned with images that reflect, not only academia,
but also the industries the students then went on to work in
once they'd finished their degrees.
Our visitors today will get to see more than just a traditional campus.
The university also boasts the Barber Institute,
which contains some of the greatest names in the history of art.
The Lapworth - an Edwardian museum full of fascinating fossils -
including the Dudley Bug, which was found just down the road,
and is 425 million years old.
And then there's the university's very own Botanical Gardens.
So, fingers on buzzers, everyone, it's time for the team from the Antiques Roadshow
to take on the visitors from the University of Birmingham.
-Can you tell me if you're a duchess?
-No, I'm not.
Why on earth would I ask you such a weird question?
Well, it's obviously something to do with that, isn't it?
Yeah, because you know what? That's a ducal crown.
This form is what a duke would wear - royal wedding, for instance -
dukes and duchesses present,
you look at what the dukes wear. That's a ducal crown.
And how do we know it's a ducal crown?
Because when duchesses are around, being informal,
and they don't want to wear their formal crown,
-they wear strawberry leaves in their hair.
It is a wonderful piece of Victorian deliciousness.
It's strawberries and cream, it really is.
Basically, what we have is a cast brass,
then you engrave the details,
such as the strawberry leaves, into here with an engraving tool.
Scratch it, then you file all these shapes and polish them,
and then you gold-plate it.
And this is called ormolu, gold-plated brass.
Big money to buy this, so where'd you find it?
My mother saw it in an antique shop, when I was about eight,
and my father bought it for her,
and she used to have it on the grand piano with daffodils in.
Well, it's a grand thing that was on a grand piano, that's for sure.
Matthew Boulton, that kind of quality.
Museum quality, sort of thing, 1860,
engraved glass, probably made either in Birmingham or Stourbridge.
And ferns are archetypal Victorian engraved motif,
but we have a bit of an issue here, don't we?
If we look at it from here, all is peachy, or rosy, or strawberry.
But if we turn it round here, we have catastrophe.
-The cat knocked it over.
How much was your cat worth?
To me, everything.
Well, it's made a difference of a thousand to a hundred.
That cat cost you £900 on the value of this otherwise peachy thing.
-Can we ever get these replaced?
-Yeah, if you want, you could do.
Cost you a few hundred. But I think it would be worth it.
That was a pretty pathetic attempt to imitate a lion.
In particular, the lion that you see - the head -
in the MGM logo.
I understand that this was given by MGM to NATO.
Can you tell me more about that?
That's the story in the family.
My aunt worked at NATO, through the '50s, '60s and '70s
and, when they were in London, this was presented to NATO,
because NATO had organised the use of a submarine for a film,
but because of a disaster at sea,
they weren't able to present the lion to the submarine,
so instead it was presented to NATO.
And, through NATO, it came into your family?
When NATO moved from London to Maastricht,
this was given to my aunt.
So she took it home, and then it was passed on to me.
And what sort of date are we talking about here?
It came into the family's possession in the late '60s, '70s,
and it would've come into my aunt's possession at NATO in the 1950s.
Right. If we look at the mark at the bottom, you can just see,
that is the mark of Seiya,
who's a Japanese bronze artist from about 1900,
so we've travelled around the world a bit
to get to this particular point, with this particular maker.
Erm, this is as good as you get from Seiya.
He was a very great Japanese bronze sculptor.
He did elephants, he did lions, and he did other animals,
but animals, particularly, were his favourite subject.
I think if this went to auction,
you'd get somewhere between £1,500 and £2,000
so it was a very generous gift by MGM all that time ago,
but having said that, in the 1950s, it wouldn't have been perhaps
so much appreciated as it is now.
-Glorious thing. Thank you very much, though, for bringing him.
People often have to wait for hours, I'm afraid, to see our experts at the Roadshow.
At least you're all queuing today here in the sunshine.
People resort to all sorts of things in order to pass the time,
like this chap here. Hello!
-Are you just trying to pass the time, then?
-How you doing?
-I'm doing fine.
Are you just playing to pass the time,
or have you brought this along to be valued?
A bit of both. Playing to pass the time and entertain the crowd.
-You're doing a fine job.
-And hopefully catch Fiona's attention.
Oh, yeah, you charmer! Is this what you've brought to be valued?
This is the beautiful violin I've brought along to value, yeah.
-And how long have you had it?
-It's been on the top of my mother's wardrobe for about ten years now,
ten, 20 years, and I've been playing it for six months. So I'm not doing too bad, right?
That's pretty good, I must say. Keep up the good work.
-You're entertaining everyone marvellously.
-Not long now.
-Take it easy.
HE PLAYS FOLKSY TUNE, OFF-KEY
Now, you obviously love gold, you're all wearing it.
Look at this - rings, bracelets, pendants.
and it seems chance has given you another one. Tell me about that.
Well, it was, uh...
seven years ago now?
Wet Sunday morning, out metal-detecting as usual,
hadn't found nothing for two to three hours, and then got a signal.
As soon as I put the shovel in and turned over,
-I just saw the glint of gold.
-Glint of gold, yeah.
And that was it, and picked it up, and as soon as I picked it up,
I tried it on, it went halfway down me little finger
and as soon as it went there, I thought, that's it,
I've lost it, because I know it would fit the wife, perfect.
"Fit the wife perfect". Well, that's fantastic, isn't it?
But you didn't let her keep it, did you?
Er, no, I, er,
it just got the better of me,
I couldn't decipher what it was meself.
Um, I actually went to Worcester Museum, and Andrew Bolton at the Worcester Museum
took one look at it and said, "I'm afraid I've got some bad news.
"We're having to take that for Treasure Trove."
Doesn't sound that bad to me, but anyway, as bad news goes...
-And then gave me the good news and told me roughly what it was.
-That it was a 15th century gold posy ring.
And three years later, after backwards and forwards,
got a letter saying that the museum no longer wished to acquire it
-and then Anne...
-Got it back.
-Anne got it back.
I think it's an absolutely wonderful ring, from my point of view.
I, too, have the luck of the devil. I'm not out with my metal detector,
I actually don't have one, but I share in all the excitement
because people bring these medieval rings to the Antiques Roadshow when I'm here.
So I am terribly excited by this.
The inscription is "I E Adore",
from the French "j'adore" - I love you.
If you look closely, it's entwined with two meeting of hearts.
Yes, absolutely. And it is a love ring from the 15th century.
In a way, a museum report will tell you all of that,
but perhaps what they don't tell you
is that this is possibly the only souvenir
of a relationship long gone, 600 years ago.
Their lives were actually lacking
in small, gleaming, intensely beautiful objects,
so gold had an enormous magnetism to them,
and it's always associated with the enduring relationships,
because, not only is the ring the eternally renewing circle,
it has no end and no beginning, but the gold itself is an emblem
of what we want our relationships to be, and that's enduring for ever.
And so here's a little message - I'm afraid, from the grave -
but from the heart through the grave, to you,
so, in a way, this is a most marvellous tribute, isn't it?
And what is interesting about the ring
is the calligraphy is very redolent of the 15th century
and it's that that, frankly, dates the ring for us today.
If this were offered for sale, someone would have exactly the same idea as you had,
which was to give it to your wife here,
and I would have thought a value of £5,000 or £6,000
would not be inappropriate today.
Very nice, but it's still the wife's.
I think it is. Talk to her a bit - talk to her!
She's got a lot of gold, look! It's everywhere!
But that's the best one, isn't it, though?
Brilliant, thank you so much.
In this series of the Antiques Roadshow
we're setting ourselves - and you - a bit of a challenge,
to tell the difference between three antiques that look very similar.
Now, this week, John Sandon, our ceramics specialist, has set out
these three, rather scary, frankly - to my eyes anyway - monkey figures.
One of them is a basic model, cheap and cheerful.
One is rather better,
probably worth about £1,000,
and one is the best example, worth £10,000.
Shortly, he'll be putting me out of my misery and telling me which is which, because, to be honest,
they all look pretty similar to me. But first I'm going to go
and talk to our visitors, see if they can spot which one is the best.
Well, Miss Clara is actually owned by the Barber Institute Of Fine Arts
at the University Of Birmingham and the Henry Barber Trust
and she is really a star.
We recently re-displayed this wonderful bronze
and we found the postcards sold out. She's got quite a following.
Well, it's no surprise, because you mentioned
she's called Miss Clara.
Why was she called Miss Clara, then?
She was given that name at the end of the 1740s
because, actually, she was - she's an Indian rhinoceros -
and she was captured when she was quite young and brought to Europe
by an enterprising Dutch sea captain,
and he brought her in to Rotterdam in 1741,
feeding her orange peel and hay
and apparently some beer on the way over, on the boat.
And we also know - rather strangely - that he was told
it was good for her to inhale smoke,
so he puffed smoke into her face and she inhaled it.
Was that to calm her down?
Because tobacco is a sort of mild narcotic, and it would have been...
We understand she was very docile and very friendly to her keepers and to the public
and she started off being exhibited in Holland,
and then, gradually, she was shown all over Europe
from Warsaw to Naples, and when she was in Venice
she was painted by the Italian painter, Longhi.
And there's a great picture of her surrounded by people with masks.
That's right, and even some dung and things, it's quite extraordinary.
Yes. It's difficult for us today to understand how weird she was,
because we've got the television,
we can turn on and we can watch wildlife channels all day.
And we can see rhinos, and we're aware
of the sad fate of the rhino today.
But to them, this was... What was she?
Absolutely, and she came to England on a number of occasions.
She came in the 1750s three times,
and, very sadly, she was here in 1758 when she actually died.
So, 20 years in captivity.
So, I think people were absolutely fascinated.
When she went to towns, there were announcements about her arriving
-and how to buy tickets to go and view her.
-I gather he was a bit of a showman in the sense that,
if tickets were flagging, he'd say that she was very ill
-and shortly to die, so now's your chance to get to see her.
-I didn't know that, gosh!
Clara, well, as I say, she lasted 20 years.
Yes, she appears in all forms of art, in porcelain,
obviously on paintings, drawings, engravings, bronzes and clocks.
I'm pretty sure, because she was such a hot subject of the day,
I think it's contemporary with her.
Now, whether it's at the end of her life,
or it's based on the painting by Oudry - which was done in 1749 -
-so, if it's based on that painting, he was a Frenchman.
I think it's very likely to be, probably, '49-'50, that sort of era.
Well, we put 1750 on the label, so that's reassuring to know.
Excellent. When she was bought by the Barber, what was she bought as?
Well, she was bought by our first director, Thomas Bodkin,
and he is the one who put together our fantastic sculpture collection,
and he bought her, actually, during World War II from Alfred Spero,
who was the main sculpture dealer of the time,
and he bought her in 1942 for £575.
I mean, I think £575 equates today to roughly £18,000.
So that's, you know, it's not a hugely expensive bronze,
that, actually, particularly one of this stature.
Where does she come from?
In Germany, there are porcelain rhinos.
The French fashion for animal bronzes,
and the clocks are French,
lead me to think that it's more likely to be French.
The quality of the bronze is absolutely fabulous. I'd err on the French side rather than the German.
Interesting, we label her saying, "French-German, we're not quite sure, circa 1750,"
so that's very interesting to know.
I think, bearing in mind that clock groups with Clara on,
can make several hundred thousand pounds,
um, I think she's probably worth
maybe as much as £200,000.
-I think it's a really exceptional...
Do you think it's the novelty value, the fact that it's Clara?
Absolutely. It's a fabulous bronze, I think it's a fantastic story.
She's as much a draw today as she was in the 18th century.
We may have to go back and change our insurance valuations anyway.
-I think it's a wonderful thing.
-Thank you very much indeed.
-One is basic, one is better, one is best.
Put them in the right order. Have a go.
-One of them's worth 10,000, so be careful!
It's sort of matte in colour, it looks older.
-This one's very detailed.
-It's got very sharp teeth.
I think I'll go with that.
That is the best.
God, this is tough.
That's the basic, that's the better and that's the best.
Best, better, basic.
Yeah, why not?
Best, basic, better.
Well, John Sandon will tell you later on.
-Some jewels scream "wear me".
And this screams out to me, "I want to be worn".
Yeah, I know, I haven't worn them... Once or twice.
-You have only once or twice?
-Once or twice, yes.
-I don't know, maybe I didn't have the right occasion or whatever,
was scared or...
Well, it's definitely your colour.
So tell me, how did you get this then?
I got it from my mother, who got it from her mother.
My mother was Italian, like me. Her mother was English.
I never knew whether it was something English, French or whatever,
-that's what was my curiosity.
Well, the jewel is quintessentially 1905 Edwardian,
we call it the garland style, these festoons of wreaths
and laurel wreaths that the designs were taken from.
Look how it moves, and it is so light.
I mean, it is absolutely adorable.
Now, this would be worn - we would call this a "devant de corsage"
-which means it would be worn at the front of the bodice.
So then you still had a little bit of a drop here
for these beautiful drops here to move.
-Because it's all about this movement, isn't it?
-So, English... It was definitely then your...grandmother?
Well, that would absolutely fit.
Made of platinum and this emerald...
and it could possibly have come from Colombia
which is where the best emeralds come from.
Platinum was when you could really make jewellery come alive,
because it is very strong and it doesn't tarnish like silver
and 1900 was really when you were starting to see
platinum being used because they were able
to get the melting point as high as required to work with it.
And you've got here the milgrain setting,
all the tiny details of the little balls of the milgrains
going around the diamonds, so these are all diamonds here,
which are cushion-shaped diamonds,
and that again is indicative of the period.
You have the two emeralds on either side which are set in yellow,
so that is very good
because emeralds need sometimes that warmth of the yellow around.
I just think, if it went to an auction today,
I think you would be looking in the region of about
£15,000 to £20,000.
Oh, well, I won't wear it!
You won't wear it? You should wear it even more!
It's a joy, absolute joy for me to see this, really,
-thank you very much.
-Thank you, thank you.
Enjoy it, wear it.
-All right. She will, she will.
-OK, thank you.
Well, they say you can't judge a book by its cover,
and this is actually a rather splendid cover,
this lovely marbled card cover but you peel back
this piece of tissue paper
and there's this absolutely glorious painting of a little cottage.
Now, what's your relationship with this little painting?
Well, it's a family item. It came from my parents.
Beyond that, I don't know.
I'm hoping to find out
whether it's a commercial item or a one-off or what.
Well, it's got tiny, tiny writing round here,
that looks as if it's been written by a little mouse.
And I'm going to...
I can't really read it very clearly with that, but fortunately
you have made a translation, so what it says is, "Beneath is a residence,
"cheerful though small. Give it what name you please except Liberty Hall.
"Tis wire fenced and airy and some people say
"The guest who once enters can ne'er get away.
"Pray, lift the latch gently and peep in with care,
"Lest the tenants you fright and their premises tear."
Well, shall we do what it says? It says "lift the latch gently".
I can see there's a little tiny bit of cord here
and I'm going to lift the latch gently...and what have we caught?
We've caught two mice.
We've caught two mice, two country mice.
But it also gives us an idea of the intricacy
of this extraordinary bit of scissor work.
So here we have something that I'm sure was made by hand.
I would imagine that it was done by a lady of leisure,
and she created this, what we call a "peep".
And I would've thought that it was done in the early part
of the 19th century sometime,
the 1830s, 1840s.
Absolutely charming, incredibly commercial.
And I would say today it's worth between £300 and £500.
My word, that does surprise me.
What a wonderful thing you've brought us here today.
-This is quite amazing.
-You're very welcome.
It's things like this that I absolutely love.
What do you know about it, and where's it from?
Well, it's been in the family for quite some time.
I believe that it was either bought for, or by, my great grandmother.
-We had some relatives go over to Chicago, Boston area, around there.
But that would be sort of the late 1790s, maybe early 1800s.
Whether they sent it across or not, I have no idea.
But it's been in the family for quite a long time.
-So they sent it across the sea?
-I think so,
or maybe when it was fashionable in London,
-it was bought in London.
That fits in more with what I think that this is.
I mean, people think that these are tribal things,
maybe Indians of the Great Lakes or something like that.
I think they could've been made by those people,
-but I think they were made for Western fashion.
Because, you see, in 1824 I think it is,
the Hawaiian king and queen visited England
and their attendants wore feathered robes
-for part of their cultural heritage.
-Oh, right, yeah.
-And that started the fashion for people wearing these pelerines, as they're called.
Feathered capes. And as you can see,
it's got pieces down the front, but it's a cape at the back
with lovely feathers there, which are from the peacock.
-And there are no peacocks in America.
So there is a conundrum deciding where these were made,
and some were made, I believe, in South Africa
-by Indian or Chinese craftspeople.
Some believe that the people from the Great Lakes
and the Iroquois made them for the Boston ladies,
New England and so on, to wear in the evening.
You've got feathers from a variety of birds, but often these feathers
-were traded and so on, like they traded beads.
You know, they were like jewels to certain people.
-In fact, they've got four of these in the Smithsonian.
-You know, the Smithsonian?
-I've heard of it, yes.
Which is a big American institute,
-a wonderful museum of ethnographical and American social history.
-And two of them in that collection are in the Ethnographic Department.
And two are in the Department of Social History and Fashion,
-so even they're not sure exactly where to place them in a category.
But I think it's the most spectacular thing.
It's lined with goose or duck down,
it's a very hard thing to value because they're so rare.
They don't survive. Feathers get eaten and destroyed,
they fall apart, but this is in amazing condition.
I love it and it's difficult to value
because it's very hard to be specific about where it was made.
But I would value that at about £1,000
and if one could be more specific
as to where it was made, it could be even higher.
-What do you intend to do with it?
Well, stay in the family, see if I can do a bit more research on it, but eventually it's going
to go somewhere, some museum or wherever,
-if we can find out where...
-Well, the Smithsonian have got four, so maybe...
-I don't think the British Museum have got any.
-They would love a donation!
-We'll see what we can do at some time in the future.
-Thank you very much.
So what super pots, aren't they?
They scream Winchcombe Pottery to me, but of course they're not
made in Winchcombe but they're made out in Africa, in Nigeria.
-Yes, that's correct.
-How did you come by them?
I bought them in 1966.
What were you doing in Nigeria?
I was working, I was working for rug designers
and I was travelling extensively.
-I saw these pots and I just thought they were lovely.
And I was told that there was a famous lady potter,
she was the first lady Nigerian potter, and I noticed that
I particularly liked her work, so I just bought a few.
-And you went and saw her potting?
-Yes, I've seen her at the wheel.
-Good Lord. This is Ladi Kwali.
-These are marked, are they, Ladi Kwali?
-Yes, that's right.
-Yes, you've got "LK" for Ladi Kwali and the Abuja mark.
They're lovely pots. It's a super mug, isn't it?
And it's inspired by Winchcombe,
-where Michael Cardew was originally the potter.
-And he went over to Nigeria to train potters over there.
And one of his great pupils was Ladi Kwali.
Now this has got an inscription on it, "Hassan"...
and "Katsina Governor".
Now, he was the Governor of Nigeria.
I was told that it was made for him,
but he hadn't turned up to buy it, so I bought it.
-I just liked it, it's just beautiful.
How much did you pay for it?
I can't really remember,
but it would've been a nominal amount, probably £10.
-For each of these items, really.
Well, now, Ladi Kwali's pots are very collectable.
She's one of the great world potters,
and a mug like that I suppose is going to be
a couple of hundred pounds.
A mug like this, especially made for the Governor,
is going to be probably double that,
and the coffee pot probably the same.
The total value of all this must be, I suppose, £1,000.
Gosh, that's much more than I expected, but they're lovely.
-And they will become family heirlooms.
-Oh, yes, of course.
Do you remember earlier on,
our ceramics specialist John Sandon set us a challenge to work out
which of these three monkey figurines is the basic model,
the better model worth about £1,000
and the best model worth...say, £10,000?
Now, I had a bit of a go,
our visitors here have had a bit of a go.
John, I have set these in the order in which I think they are,
so basic, better, best.
But they all look very similar to me.
First, what are these all about? They're rather strange, aren't they?
Yes. This is the conductor from the monkey band.
The first monkey band was made for the King of Saxony.
Augustus III was famous for his lavish banquets.
One story goes that a guest made fun of his prized orchestra.
They said they played like performing monkeys.
The King laughed at that and someone thought it would be a nice idea
to make a full orchestra, as monkeys, out of porcelain
to set out on his table at the banquet.
And these were created at Meissen in 1753.
Of course, Meissen, the finest porcelain.
-Did these become fashionable, then?
Madame de Pompadour bought a set of 18 monkey bands from Meissen in 1753
and that set the whole fashion.
Every palace in Europe wanted a set.
It seems a very odd thing to collect.
To be honest, I don't think they're particularly attractive,
but presumably there were many made, and that's why we've got these three models here.
Yes. These are the conductors. Singers and musicians would form the set
and they were copied everywhere.
In England, they were copied at Chelsea and Derby. They were copied in France,
and especially in Dresden, where many little factories all made copies.
That's why there are so many about.
The only way I could judge them was trying to look at the fineness of the painting
and of the detail of the faces.
To begin with, you need to literally weigh the evidence,
and I'd like to hold them and feel the weight.
Oh, I see. I didn't do that.
-But try these two, that one there...
-And this one.
-Little bit heavier.
Indeed. Meissen is heavier porcelain,
so that tells us this is more dense, so Meissen is going to be heavier.
That's the heaviest. OK. Keep me in suspense, right.
You did the right thing, looking at the detail,
how carefully they're modelled and painted.
Here, his face is quite fierce and he has
details in the teeth.
But when you look at these teeth and the modelling there, there's more to it.
Every little streak of the hair is carefully painted.
That is a sign of quality, so one can distinguish there is a difference here.
This actually is the basic one because this is the copy.
This one is too light, it isn't the quality of Meissen.
This was made by a notorious faker in France, called Samson.
And they copied all the things that Meissen made,
and made different versions of it. So this Samson copy
has on the back of it Samson's mark.
Meissen used a crossed swords as a mark.
That's Samson's version, which is a cross
with a little line through the middle, it's not a crossed swords at all.
-OK, so this is the basic one.
-So that's the basic one.
-So let's put him here, right.
-He's worth £100 as a jolly good fake from 100 years ago.
-OK, got that wrong!
These two are both from the Meissen factory
and, in the 18th century, when Meissen first made it,
they were very proud of their porcelain.
They left quite a bit of white showing.
What I like about this one here is the base is left fairly plain and white.
This one has got more colouring there.
The colouring came in in the 19th century, so these are both made at Meissen.
This one was made in about 1830 or 1840,
but this one is the early example, so this is the best one.
-You got it right.
-Hurrah! Sheer luck.
-Slipped up on those.
But this is the best one.
This was made in the 1750s. The quality for the King's own banqueting table,
and it really jumps out, the quality, and these are jolly rare.
Are they? At least one out of three's not too bad, John.
And you did get the best one right, which is this one,
and today this is worth £10,000.
Goodness me! Well, there you are. If you happen to have
one of these characters from a monkey orchestra at home, now, having listened to John,
you'll know what to look for, and you can work out if yours is basic, better or best.
When we think of Brazil, we think of beautiful women,
we think of sunny beaches and the carnival,
but rarely do we think about pocket watches.
But we have here a lovely pocket watch that's been bought in Brazil.
Yes. My grandfather.
-He was the buyer?
And do you remember your grandfather?
I do, actually, yes. He died when he was 102.
-And do you know when your grandfather bought the watch?
I think he bought it when he was about 40 years old.
OK, so that would place it in around the 1920s.
Yeah, that makes perfect sense because Gondolo and Labouriau were
Patek's agents from the latter part of the 19th century through to 1927.
What do you know about Patek Philippe?
We know it's a Swiss brand, very famous for watches.
-They are the MOST famous company for watches.
In the 20th century, they brought watchmaking to a level
that no-one else has achieved,
and they are still the greatest watchmaker in the world today.
And Patek Philippe made a small number of pocket watches
and wrist watches for the South American market.
And they were only retailed by a company called
-Gondolo and Labouriau in Rio.
And they were very exclusive. And when they made them,
they had to fulfil four criteria,
and that was all to do with the movement.
And within the movement...
..is a series of wheels
in the train of wheels, and the wheel train has to be solid gold.
And the way that you regulate the watch has to be done
in a very special way, using a special micron adjuster.
And it had to fulfil all those criteria before it could be
retailed by Gondolo and Labouriau, who were very pernickety
about the fact that they would only sell Patek's best quality watches.
So your grandfather had fantastic taste.
What's nice about this watch is that it comes with its original
travelling box as well, and it's in super condition.
The dial isn't in particularly good condition, but it can be cleaned up.
It's something that I think that, if a collector were ever to
acquire it, that's something that he could do.
We should talk about value.
Highly desirable, but what's really special is the size.
It's just that step up from a normal Gondolo pocket watch
and it makes all the difference when it comes to collectors.
So, today a collector would have to pay
between £6,000 and £7,000 for it.
-You're lucky ladies.
-Yes, very nice.
This is almost a first for me.
-I don't do paintings. In fact, I'm pleased to call them flatware.
But this thing is something else. It's a very interesting
and appealing gouache painting.
It's by Bernard Leach, who is credited as being
the father of English studio pottery.
He was not just a great potter, but he was a great philosopher.
And I think, most important of all, teacher.
He was born in Hong Kong, he went to Japan and he met a young
potter called Shoji Hamada, and they set up a pottery
in St Ives in Cornwall in 1920.
This is dated 1921,
so this is a very early bit of Leach.
And then we've got his monogram, "BL", in the middle there.
Where did you get it from?
-We won it in a raffle.
-Oh, come on!
In St Ives.
It was 1977, we were on holiday, we went into one of the local
art galleries, they had a raffle with 100 tickets at £25 each.
-Oh, serious money.
-Serious money, so we thought, "£25 is worth a gamble."
-"We'll get something."
And then we went home at the end of the holiday
and then a couple of months later they wrote and said,
"You've won this painting by Bernard Leach."
I think what he's looking at here is a bit of folk pottery.
And I guess he probably brought this thing back with him from Japan.
And he's actually given an amazingly good interpretation
of the pot, I think.
You didn't keep any of the paperwork, did you, that went with it,
-We got a letter from the art gallery.
-You've got that?
-In this envelope? OK.
We have the raffle ticket and the letters.
-OK. Ah, "Grand Draw".
"Penwith Special Draw. This ticket entitles the holder to one
"work from the draw, order of selection to be decided by lot.
"£25. Work on view in the Penwith Gallery..."
Well, I've got £25 in my pocket, actually.
Leach is greatly revered. You know, he's mega,
and you're not going to find another one of those.
Where are you going to go and find another Bernard Leach painting?
You're just not.
I think if you were to sell that today - I know you're not going to
but were you to - one would think in the order of £6,000 to £9,000.
-It wasn't bad for 25 quid.
-No, not at all.
I think we'd agree that the British summer can be just truly glorious,
and this oil painting of two bathers by the sea,
bright summer's day, is just such a splendid image.
Tell me where you got it from?
Well, it's quite a simple story, really.
My wife and I were in a second hand shop about ten years ago
and my wife spotted it first and she just immediately fell in love
with it and had to have it, basically.
We just immediately... There was no decision to be made,
it was there to be had, so... And the rest is history.
Was it sold to you as by anyone, of any date?
Yeah, it was in amongst several other pictures at the time.
There was nothing there to sell itself so, no, we just sorted it out
-and bought it.
-And how much did it cost?
-So you're enjoying it now?
Obviously, it's a wonderful subject, but tell me,
have you done any further research on the picture?
I know my wife's looked on the internet
and she'd noticed that the artist in question had exhibited
at The Academy, but that's about all we know.
The writing at the bottom, "R Wheelwright", gives it away.
Roland Wheelwright, who was born in Queensland, Australia, in 1870.
But actually, he's much better known for his British pictures,
and so he arrives in England
and starts painting up at the British School of Art
under Hubert von Herkomer, and he paints very commercial pictures.
This dates to about 1920, maybe 1923.
Throughout his career, he exhibits almost 41 pictures
at the Royal Academy, so he was a very, very commercial artist.
I think such a wonderful summer image like this is probably inspired
by the great pictures of Dame Laura Knight from the Newlyn School.
Great colour, great light, super subject.
Now, this painting was probably painted in situ.
We call it "en plein air", i.e. the artist literally painting
outside and fresh, free paint straight onto the canvas.
You almost feel they're about to jump in, but is it too cold?
I think it would be, yes.
There was a picture exhibited at the Royal Academy called
"The Bathing Pool", 1923,
and I suspect, with a little bit more work, we might be able
to pin this picture down as that Royal Academy exhibit.
Really wonderful picture and such a commercial painting.
Just the sort of picture that we would all see prints on cards,
greetings cards, and pictures don't get much more commercial than this
for specialists like me. And your £20 has gone up hugely.
This picture would certainly make £10,000 to £15,000 at auction.
She's got a good eye!
Wow, that's amazing.
Well, thank you. Thank you very much.
All day while we've been at the University of Birmingham,
we've been looked on by the great heroes of literature, art,
philosophy and science.
You know, I think, with the objects that have been brought in today,
we've done them proud.
We've had a wonderful day here at the university.
From the whole Roadshow team, until next time, bye-bye.
Fiona Bruce and the team of experts visit the University of Birmingham's Great Hall. The finds they uncover include a bronze lion given as a gift by MGM Studios in the 1950s, a 15th-century ring found with a metal detector and a valuable painting of bathing beauties from the 1920s, bought for just £20.