Series looking at the value of household junk. The team are in Milton Keynes visiting retired builder Keith Harris and his wife Christine, who are planning a move to Spain.
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Welcome to Cash In The Attic.
This thing, believe it or not, is the world's largest steam tramcar.
And I'm in Milton Keynes, a place not known for its history, but this is its museum.
Everything in here has been contributed by the local community
and what strikes you is that, for a modern town, this place has a lovely old-fashioned feel.
Now, Milton Keynes may have only just celebrated its 40th birthday,
but this museum revels in the rich history of the region.
Romans and Vikings had settlements nearby, battles were fought here during the Civil War
and some of Britain's busiest railways, roads and canals still criss-cross the area.
Now, Milton Keynes today sits on the site of three towns and 13 villages.
Many of their original shop fronts have been brought here to the museum and lovingly reconstructed
to form this fantastic Edwardian street,
so there is every chance that we should find plenty of antiques and collectables to take to auction.
Coming up on today's Cash In The Attic, our expert's being a bit of a magpie.
-Oh! You've got a box full of spingly spanglies, there!
I'm a little confused by one of his finds...
James! What are you doing with pigs on the landing? Look at this!
But he's ready to take on the sale room come auction day.
Bring on those Doulton collectors, that's what I say!
So, will we have reached our target when the final hammer falls?
Now, like many a modern town,
Milton Keynes is famous for its roundabouts,
so just a couple of twists and turns away from the museum,
I've come here to meet today's couple, Keith and Christine Harris.
They've called in Cash In The Attic to help them raise funds
for an all important plan to help them get away from it all.
This modern detached house on the outskirts of Milton Keynes
is home to retired builder Keith and his wife, Christine, who's a local councillor.
Their home may look clutter-free,
but there are antiques and collectables tucked all around the house,
and the garage is positively overflowing.
But with an international move on the cards,
the couple want to de-clutter and have called daughter Stephanie and the Cash team in to help.
-Jules, how are you?
Very well. Ready for a bit of antique hunting?
With you, Jules, anything is possible, but why are we here?
We've got a fantastic couple, Keith and Christine,
who are looking for some funds to put the finishing touches to a move to Spain.
You're not trying to say they want to leave the sun drenched shores of England?
I can't blame them for that,
but we're not going anywhere unless we find some stuff, and that's your job, matey.
Off you go.
Well, hello, there.
-Hello, sir! How are you?
You must be Keith, Steph, Christine.
-Nice to see you, guys.
-And you, too.
Now then, why have you brought us in?
Well, we would like a nice water feature for the wife. She wants...
She's seen this water feature in our place in Spain.
-So, you've got a house in Spain already?
-Yes, we have.
-And you want a water feature?
I do indeed. It would look absolutely gorgeous on the terrace area.
-How much do you think you're going to need for that?
Whatever we can, you know, raise.
-Is that going to be enough?
-I would think so, yes.
Now, I get the feeling this is the kind of permanent move to Spain.
-Are you going, Steph?
-I'm not going.
-Why aren't you going?
To pursue my modelling career.
-You're a model? Fantastic. I can see why you're a model.
Good luck with that. I suppose at least you've got somewhere to go on holiday when you want one.
Yeah, if they'll have me.
-James is already looking around, so shall we go and have a rummage, as well?
-Yes, why not?
A stylish water feature sounds like the icing on the cake for this family's new home in the sun,
so I hope their collectables prove to be worth their weight in gold.
One man who can always weigh up a quality antique is our expert, James Rylands.
He's an old hand in the antiques trade and it seems he's already got money on his mind.
What are you doing with pigs on the landing? Look at this!
-This is where he's been. What have we got there? Whose are these? Are these yours?
-Yes, they're mine, yeah.
-How long have you had them for?
Since I opened an account with NatWest.
That's actually what happened with these - NatWest gave them away to young savers like you
to encourage you to put money in the piggy bank and basically we've got more or less the entire set here.
They first came out in the early 1980s,
and depending how much money you saved depended which one you actually got.
The two little Woodys here,
one's got the Wade mark, Wade Ceramics, very, very well-known firm,
and the other one hasn't got a mark on it because, when they first started producing these in 1982,
they were made by a company called Sunshine Ceramics and they were a small company and
the demand was so great that they just couldn't cope any more. So a year later, in 1983, Wade took over.
And, obviously, everyone has heard of Wade,
they're probably one of the leading makers of sort of small collectable ceramics.
OK, so, what do we think for this set of Wade pigs,
including the rare one, the Sunshine Ceramics Woody, as well?
Oh, probably... I don't know.
150, something like that.
-She gets the job. Christine, you get the job! You get the job.
Well, we'll err on the mean side and go £100 to £150.
Well, James, there's plenty to be hunting through here, isn't there?
-Shall we split up our separate ways and see what else we can find?
Well, the pigs banked our first cash of the day, but with our £500 target we need to rack up a lot more yet.
Keith started his search in the garage
and comes up trumps with this large oval mirror.
James thinks it could make us £30 to £50.
Meanwhile, back in the house, Stephanie's dug out a family heirloom
that she wants James's opinion on.
-Where did they come from originally?
-They're my grandmother's.
-So you can remember these when you were a kid?
I'll tell you what I think these are. I mean, they're...
Basically, they're copies of original ones that would have been produced in the 18th century.
-And these are sort of in the style of probably an 18th century
French artist called Fragonard and he, sort of, did a well-known oil painting
of a girl on a swing being pushed by a chap standing behind, and that's what these are based on.
Now, the bad news is that they're probably...
They're probably not more than about 20 or 30 years old and they're very much in that style.
Where were they made? Probably in France or Germany, but do you like them?
-I'm glad you said that, because I don't either.
The bottom line with things like this is that they're just not very fashionable any more.
But, in fairness, all of the decoration is done by hand,
so although the model itself is mass produced in a mould,
all of the painting on this and the gilding has all been put on by hand,
and then all of these little flowers and things, what we call bocage,
has actually been modelled by hand and put on.
-So I would think they're probably worth £20 or £30 each, so £40 to £60 for the two?
Which actually isn't a lot of money, you know, for what they are and the effort that's gone into them,
-but how does that sound?
-Yeah, it sounds great.
OK, now find me something that's trendy and young, like you, yeah?
-Right, off we go.
Well, they may not be Stephanie or James's cup of tea, but with another £40 in the kitty, I'm a fan.
We're making steady progress towards our water feature fund, so I leave James in charge of the rummaging
and take our soon to be Spanish couple aside for a few minutes.
The place you've got in Spain, looking at the pictures, seems enormous.
I mean, did you buy it as it is or did you build it?
No, I've done a bit of work on it myself.
We've added on it, improved on it and made it a bit bigger.
-A bit bigger.
-A bit bigger, yes.
-Quite a bit bigger.
-So, now it's pretty much all done.
-With the exception of your water feature.
Oh, yes. The little doll feature, yes.
Well, I have to say, the garden does look pretty nice.
How much more do you really need to do to it?
Well, it does look nice at the moment out there, but there's nothing ornamental
at the moment and I just think this water feature will just be beautiful.
Well, what are you planning to do when you get there?
Spain is a very big place, get in a vehicle and just drive.
Yeah, that's what we were saying, weren't we, recently? We would like to get a mobile home and just tour.
-Use that as a base and... Down to Portugal.
-It would be wonderful.
So, you're really going to explore and take on board the whole cultural and emotional side to Spanish life?
-I mean, maybe we should be raising money for Spanish lessons!
-Ah, si! Si, senor!
It sounds like they're on their way already
and at the thought of all that sunshine I have to say I'm pretty jealous.
Stephanie's rummaging upstairs and she's proving to have quite a knack,
as she finds this porcelain doll
which James values at a very playful £20 to £40.
And on the landing,
something else catches our expert's eye
-which he thinks might add even more to the Spanish garden fund.
Is this an old family thing?
-It is indeed, yes.
-Where did it come from?
-From my mother.
-It's your mum's?
-OK, big question.
-Was there a twin brother to it?
-Not to my knowledge.
-OK, because quite often they were actually made in pairs.
-Do you know who made it?
-I believe it was Doulton.
Absolutely right. Doulton, Doulton, Doulton.
Household name in the ceramics world.
-And it's actually made of earthenware. It's not porcelain, you know, high fired?
It's earthenware. Now, this one is actually quite interesting,
because on the bottom here you can see Doulton, Lambeth, England, and that means I can date this
quite precisely, because in 1901, Edward VII granted them a Royal Warrant
and after that they became Royal Doulton as opposed to just Doulton, which is what's written on here.
And what they used to do to get this texturing is, by laying a muslin cloth, like a cotton cloth,
onto the clay when it's still in a wet state,
then you take it off and it leaves the imprint of the cloth in the clay,
and that's what gives it's really nice sort of texture, if you like.
So, value wise, I think with a single vase,
-we're probably looking at the good end of between £60 and £100.
-But I wish you had his twin brother!
-So do I!
-All right, well, come on, let's go have a look.
-Very good, thank you.
Well, £60 is still a cracking price for just the one vase. Great work, chaps!
Our fund gets another addition when Christine finds this collection of pillboxes.
James hopes they'll make £50 to £100 when they go under the hammer.
And our expert himself has headed out to the garage
and his rummaging unearths a couple of pretty tea sets,
which he packs off to auction with a £20 to £40 price tag.
Whilst Keith and Steph carry on the search inside,
Christine and I have joined James in the garage,
and the lady of the house has made a rather collectable find.
James, what do you think of this?
Oh! You've got a box full of spingly spanglies there.
-What are they?
These are English miniatures, which I've had from maybe 15, 20 years, now.
They're very much in the sort of style of things like sort of limited editions.
I mean, obviously, no great age. You know, '80s, 1980s.
-No. 1980s, perhaps a bit later.
-I can't actually see an English hallmark on these.
I can see there is a little mark here, but I just wonder whether they're silver plate or...
Actually, some of them they also produced in pewter,
which they then sort of buffed up
to actually look like silver, but I think at the end of the day, it's of decorative value,
-rather than a sort of rarity or antique value.
-Oh, I'd agree, yes.
-I mean, what do we think they're worth?
-Well, how many have we got? We've got about 12 here.
-I think... I mean, if we put an estimate of sort of 50 to 100 quid on them,
you know, then that sort of, you know... It's a fiver each.
How does that compare with what you bought them for?
I did pay a lot more.
-I thought you might say that!
-Yes, I did.
But I've enjoyed them, so it's time for somebody else to.
That's the spirit, Christine. I leave that pair to the rummaging and head back inside the house.
My eyes light up straightaway when I find this oil lamp,
which James hopes could bag us £20 to £30.
We're almost out of time for our rummage today,
but our expert has one last lot that could drive us over the finish line.
-So, did you buy all of these?
-Yeah, yeah. Way back in the early '90s.
-God, you have got all sorts here.
-Yeah, they're lovely.
-A big collection.
-And I love the fact they're still in their original boxes.
Well, you certainly went for one of the mainstream names,
because Corgi is just right up there with the best of the manufacturers and,
as you probably know, they've been going for over 50 years.
Now, tell me, you're not a child anymore, so why did you buy them?
Well, I'd already been into collecting model cars.
So, it really was you trying to revisit your youth, a bit of nostalgia?
Well, I suppose so, in that sense, if you look at it that way, yes.
I've got you marked down on that. Look at this, though. What is this?
Limited edition Greene King, We've got the sort of delivery lorry here with all the barrels on the back.
Beautiful attention to detail. You, in a way...
This is what Corgi really tapped into because by the early '80s, the kids weren't buying them anymore.
The early days of computer games and things like that.
So they had the bright idea of actually going into classic cars so,
in other words, reproducing the old vans and cars from the '30s, '40s, '50s and '60s.
And, in a way, you were their prime customer, someone who loved them, appreciated the history,
liked the detail and actually wanted to sort of just recapture a little bit of your youth.
So, value on all of this? Well, I'm going to give quite a sort of broad value, I think.
If we say somewhere between £100 and £200.
-That's excellent. Very good, indeed.
-And let's hope they go on and make a bit more.
This all sounds very exciting. So, between 100 and 200. It's a great figure because we were chasing 500.
The grand total, with these included, is around about £490.
-So, a tenner short of 500 quid.
Who knows, it might go up and if it does then I'm sure we'll find a tenner between us, James.
-So, all we've got to do now is pack it all up and go to an auction.
We've had a great day here with our Spanish couple to be,
and have an impressive selection of items to take to auction.
We're hoping the bidders will see the moneymaking potential
of our NatWest pigs,
which James valued at between £100 and £150.
I've got high hopes for the nostalgic Corgi trucks,
valued at £100 to £200.
And will the bidders prove that size doesn't matter
when it comes to our miniature silver sculptures
and their £50 to £100 price tag?
Still to come on Cash In The Attic, our family are trying to see the funny side of things.
But you've got to laugh, haven't you?
And they won't be sad to see the back of some lots.
-Will you be happy to see these go?
But will we still be smiling when the final hammer falls?
It's been a few weeks since we helped Keith and Christine rummage through their home in Milton Keynes,
where we found a host of mainly modern collectables.
We've brought them here for auction to the West London Auction Rooms in Chiswick.
They're hoping to raise about 500 quid or so for something of a makeover on their Spanish villa,
so let's hope their items attract the eye of the bidders as they go under the hammer.
It may be early, but there are plenty of keen looking bidders arriving already,
so I hope they'll take a shine to our family's lots when they look around the sale room.
Our very own James Rylands certainly seems to have money on his mind today. Morning, James.
-How are you?
Banking my assets.
-I see the piggy has made it to market!
-They have made it to market, yes!
Fantastic. Now, they're chasing 500 quid for this villa makeover.
We are a bit under that estimate, aren't we?
We are a bit under that, but what we've really got to hope is going back to the Corgis, toys for boys...
-You never know.
-You never know.
-It can always go up.
-It can only go up.
-Well, the piggies have made it to market, let's see if Keith and Christine did.
I certainly hope they have as it won't be long before the auction gets going.
Luckily, we spot our family in the middle of the sale room.
-How are we?
-Good morning, sir!
You're not allowed to buy them because, remember, you own them.
-Oh, why not?
-So, Keith, put it down.
Now, we've got high hopes for today.
-Yes, very high.
-500 quid or so for this Spanish project.
What's it like seeing all this stuff here out of context?
-You just want to get rid?
-Time to go.
Well, the auction is about to start so, James, lead on. Let's see how we do.
If, like Keith and Christine you're heading to auction,
then be aware that charges such as commission will be added to your bill
whether you are buying or selling.
Your local auction house will be able to give you all the details.
With the auctioneer in position,
we take our places just as our first lot of the day goes under the hammer.
OK, so, first one up is the modern brass oil lamp,
so decorative value only, £20 to £30, let's see how we get on.
-Here we go, is it worth £10 for the oil lamp?
£10 I'm bid. A maiden bid of £10.
At £10. I'm selling it for £10.
A maiden bid of £10. It's going, then.
Half the estimate. Well, that's ten quid in the pot.
It's our first money in the bank,
but we'll need the bidders to dig a bit deeper on the rest of our items
if we're going to get that £500 for a Spanish garden makeover.
Hopefully our next lot will prove popular with the sale room,
if not with Keith and Christine.
Next up, these Italian pottery figurines
which you can't wait to see the back of.
Let's just hope somebody else in here does want them.
What are they worth? £20 for them? £10 to go? 10. 12.
14. £14 for those two figures.
At £14. At £14. Does anybody want them for £14?
-Still with me then at 14.
You've got to take them with you.
Oh, dear. I think our family would have been happy
with any amount for the figurines,
but the auctioneer clearly thought
they were worth more, even if no-one else did.
-And it looks like the porcelain doll might struggle to get any bid at all.
-There we go. Is it worth £10?
£10, surely, for the little doll. For a tenner? Anybody want it for £10?
I need £10 for it to sell it. Surely, for a tenner?
-Nobody want it for £10?
-Oh, come on.
Sorry, past the lot.
That's the second lot winging its way home with Keith and Christine.
Definitely not the result we wanted.
Surely Christine's silver miniatures will find a new home today?
Now, £50 to £100. Let's hope we get the top end.
We're chasing 100 quid on these.
Would you be happy to see these go?
There we go, are they worth £20? Are they worth £10? Start me for a £10 note.
For ten. 12. 14. For £14.
Are they only worth £14, surely?
-You're having a laugh!
20. 22. 24. 26.
£26, then. At £26 is all I'm bid.
At £26. Not enough. £26.
You've got to laugh, haven't you?
Well, at least our family are putting a brave face on things.
With four lots sold and only £10 in the bank, it's been a rather disastrous start to the day.
We're hoping it's onwards and upwards, though,
as the green Doulton vase inherited from Keith's mum
takes to the rostrum.
James is sounding cautiously optimistic.
It's quite a tough room here today, so...
But there are specific collectors of Doulton, so we've just got to hope they're here today.
£60 to £80, bring on those Doulton collectors, that's what I say!
Is it worth £30? Start me for 30, somebody? It must be worth £30?
30 I'm bid, thank you. 35. 40.
40 I'm bid there in the red. At £40.
At £40. It's still cheap at 40.
At £40. It can be sold for 40, then.
For £40. It's going at £40.
All done for 40.
-Happy with that?
-Yes, very well...
-Yeah, I'm happy.
My mum's vase didn't sell at a very good price,
but she's looking down at us and laughing her head off anyway.
But on the day, in the situation we are at the moment, I'm pleased with what we got.
I think Keith's relieved to have another few pounds
in the makeover fund at last, even if it is 20 below estimate.
And when the pretty tea sets go under the hammer
it looks to be another step towards our target, albeit a small one.
At £10, it's going, then.
That's only half James's estimate, but with such a difficult sale room,
it really is a case of every pound counts today.
Hopefully, the oval mirror will add at least another £30 to the fund.
210A is an oval mirror with a bevelled plate. Start me for ten.
£10 for it. 10. 12. 14.
For the oval mirror for £14.
At £14. That mirror for £14. Anybody?
£14. Still with me at £14.
Not sold, I'm afraid.
Still, at least you can...
At least you can keep looking at your wonderful youthful looks for many more years to come.
You know, I'm not sure Keith's convinced,
but at least we're still all smiling,
despite yet another item going unsold.
Surely our next lot will finally bring in the bucks though, today.
The Corgi toys. A collector's favourite, James.
No, it is absolutely and it's in such good condition, so, Keith, this is the big one, here we go.
-Up it comes now.
-What's it worth? Start me for £60.
60. 5. 70. 5.
£75 for that lot. At £75. That's £75.
80 I need. At £75 for all the Corgi.
£75, then. 75.
To be honest, you're as well keeping hold of those because I suspect they will never really go out of fashion.
No, they won't. It just didn't happen today.
I'm very pleased that didn't go, because I've been quite attached to them for a long time
and I might even take them to Spain with me and put them in display cases, who knows?
But that's life.
Well, Keith seems pleased to be taking the Corgi toys home,
but it is a massive blow to our target.
With only two lots left to sell and just £60 in the bank so far, our £500 target is a long way off.
But, hopefully, our next lot will be just what the doctor ordered.
It's the collection of pillboxes.
Thank you. Are they worth £20?
£20 for them. For 20, surely.
20 I'm bid. 22. 24. 26.
£26. At £26. 28, there. 30. 32. £32.
I'm going to sell them for £32.
At £32. They're going for £32. At £32.
£32. They're selling for £32.
It's under estimate,
but the auctioneer felt there was enough interest in the room
and a fair price had been reached.
Although a relief to have another sale,
our auction day is nearly over,
so everything is riding on the NatWest pigs.
Can they bank us some much needed cash?
What are they worth? Start me at £50 for them? 55. 60.
5. £65 for the piggybanks.
At 65. 70 there, madam. 75. 80. 85.
£90. At £90. Going for 90.
If that's what the market decides they're worth at the moment, then that's what they're worth.
-Did you ever have 90 quid in them?
Just as well they've gone, then!
Well, it's the closest thing we've had to an on estimate sale today, and not a moment too soon.
With that vital addition to the garden makeover fund, it's time to see how we've done.
Well, James, to say it's been a disappointing day is probably something of an understatement.
We were chasing 500 quid for you to give your Spanish villa something of a makeover in the garden.
How do you think we've done?
You look heartbroken, mate!
OK, here's the news.
We were chasing 500 quid.
-We're coming away with £182.
-That is disappointing.
-It is disappointing.
You know what it means, Keith, don't you? It means you're going to have to do all the renovations yourself.
So much for retirement!
Well, they may not have had the most successful day at auction,
but our couple are enjoying some time in Spain and trying to look on the bright side.
The auction was pretty bad, but then, mind you, it was a good day, wasn't it? Thoroughly enjoyed it.
-What a bit of fun we had, didn't we?
-Oh, yes, sure. Very unusual.
Yeah. I mean, at least we raised some money.
Without the cash to buy a brand new fountain, Keith's been set to work repairing the old one.
Meanwhile, Christine heads off to spend the money they did make on some new pots for the garden.
Good job, Keith, although your work isn't done yet,
as it looks like Christine's new purchases have just arrived.
I thought the big round pot could go in the front.
In the front and then you've got the two yellow ones.
Our couple have clearly enjoyed spending the bit of cash they did make at auction
and are ready for their life in the sunshine.
The patio is all near enough done and the fountain is fantastic.
And living out in Spain, what more do you want? Brilliant.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
The team are in Milton Keynes visiting retired builder Keith Harris and his wife Christine. The couple are planning a move to Spain, and want to turn their unwanted clutter into cash for their new villa.