Series looking at the value of household junk. Chris Hollins meets retired insurance salesman John Manton, who hopes to raise enough cash from his antiques for a new set of wheels.
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Welcome to Cash In The Attic, the show that helps you find hidden treasures in your home,
and then helps you sell them at auction.
Today, we are in Epsom, famous for three things -
the Downs, the salts and horse racing.
And this is South Hatch, stables with a sporting history spanning hundreds of years.
Winners of the Derby and Grand National have spent time here,
and it was where Winston Churchill kept his racehorses.
Since 1984, the racing club has had a restaurant
and a conference facility on site, with plenty of racing history proudly on display
throughout the building.
This place is packed full of wonderful memorabilia of Epsom's thoroughbred racing heritage.
Let's hope the going is just as good where we're heading next,
as we begin our hunt for collectibles and antiques to go to auction.
Coming up on today's Cash In The Attic, a family with a lifelong passion for collecting...
You must have been a rag-and-bone man
-in your time. Is that right?
-I think they called me a few names.
..an expert who's hoping not to make any enemies.
He's harsh but fair, aren't you, Jonty?
Well, I would like to be everybody's friend in the auction room.
But it looks like we're in the good books come auction day.
I always said you two were good eggs.
So let's hope we're still smiling when the final hammer falls.
Well, I've come to Surrey to meet a man who hopes
the Cash In The Attic team will help him take to the road
in a new set of wheels.
This cosy bungalow in the heart of Surrey is home to retired insurance salesman John Manton.
Now, John's a real antiques addict and has been collecting all kinds of treasures since he was just 28.
His house is an Aladdin's cave.
But he wants to raise some cash for an important new purchase
so has decided to trade in some of his antiques, and daughter Angela is on hand to help.
-Chris, how are you doing?
Great to see you. Very well. I've been horsing around a bit.
Ah, well, I thought you might be, as we are in Epsom.
-Yes, the home of the Derby. Are you a betting man?
I don't really do flutters on the horses, I have to admit.
Well, I'm going fancy your chances today,
because the man in here, the star of the show, has been collecting antiques for over 40 years.
Really? Sounds like my kind of guy.
-He certainly is. Want to go and meet him?
-I'll race you in.
-OK, first one in gets tea.
Hello, guys. Thanks for letting us into your home.
Now, OK, own up, who called Cash In The Attic team?
-Why is that?
Because every time I come round and see my dad, he's sitting here
every single day watching the TV, and this programme's on.
-Are you a fan?
I'm afraid I am. I'm afraid I am.
Don't be afraid. We love fans.
I'm pleased to say I am. I'm not afraid I am, no.
Well, I've had a good look around. You've got plenty to look at for us.
-What are we likely to find?
Writing boxes, other little boxes, snuff boxes,
pill boxes, watches, coins.
All bits and pieces. Well, Jonty's got his work cut out, obviously.
Now, we want to raise some money.
What do we want to raise some money for?
We do, we do, because it's about time Dad changed his car.
That's what we're going to do, try and raise some money towards him exchanging his car.
-What sort of car are we looking at? Ferrari, or...?
-Oh, no. No, no, not exactly that, no, no.
Just a small car. The car I've got is too big now.
I've had it over ten years.
So I think it's been of good service to me.
And, John, how much money do we want to us raise?
500-plus, just towards helping, you know?
-Well, that sounds gettable. Do you reckon we've got enough in the house to get up there?
-I should say so.
Right, well, there's only one way of finding out, you know.
-Let's go and look.
-Follow me and have a rummage. Come on.
Getting John on the road in style is certainly a great incentive
for us all to roll up our sleeves and get rummaging.
Driving the search in the right direction is our expert, Jonty Hearnden.
With such a wealth of treasures to choose from, he's in his element today,
and he finds John and I with the day's first discovery.
Ah, Jonty, just the man.
This is incredible. There are so many!
Which was your first one?
Some of them I must have had for 40 years.
And they range... Some of these are wristwatches, but the vast majority are pocket watches.
The one for me that really stands out is this gold half-hunter.
-That is lovely.
-This looks really very nice.
Look at that. Isn't that lovely?
Now, this is known as a half-hunter.
A full hunter doesn't have the piercing in the middle.
And probably known as a hunter,
simply because when you are out hunting,
you need to protect the hands and the glass.
So if you had a fall, for instance,
this is a protected layer to save your beautiful pocket watch.
Let's get down to the dirty business, Jonty.
How much is the collection worth?
-Value, £150 upwards.
-That sounds good.
Obviously, they've got to work, so you'd better carry on looking around the house
while we work out which ones are actually going.
-You start winding that end, John, I'll start winding these.
-I'm running out of time.
You're running out of time.
I'll do the jokes around here, Jonty.
But with £150 in the car fund, I'll let you off for now.
It's onwards and upwards, though, with our search, as that £500 target is a way off yet.
Angela's been tacking one of the bedrooms and she banks us another
few pounds with these boxes of silver and copper coins.
They're mainly British in origin, and Jonty values them at £40 to £60.
Meanwhile, in the hallway, our avid antiques collector
has decided to send this Victorian silver christening tankard to auction as well.
It tops up our fund by another £30 to £50.
And next door, Angela's been looking high and low.
-What have we got there?
-Do you think this would be worth anything?
So, we've got loads of these similar kinds of figures.
-It's a connection from my grandmother.
Right. So, she had a penchant for what looked like 18th-century romantic figures, really. Yeah.
If you look at all the figures, all the designs, they all have
this 18th-century look, but they're not 18th century.
In fact, if I were to turn this figure upside down, can you see here it says, "Made in GDR"?
That's the German Democratic Republic, formed after the Second World War.
So, by definition, all these figures would have been made post the Second World War.
-We will all these in as one collection.
Let the dealers buy them.
They can split up the collection as they see fit.
-But we're really looking at between £100 and £200 for the whole collection.
-All right? Are you happy about that?
Well, they might not be genuine 18th century, but the figures still bank us another £100.
So they're definitely a good find.
After a successful start to the day, I leave Mr Hearnden to carry on
the search and catch up with John and Angela in the living room.
I see it's tea time.
Just about, having a well-earned rest.
-No wonder you are having a rest.
There is so much stuff in the house.
Where has it all come from, John?
Here, there and everywhere.
All four corners.
Yeah, but what did you do to come across all of this stuff? You must have been emptying people's houses.
Well, I have emptied some people's houses, people that I knew.
And I've collected quite a bit on my own various places.
I've bought it from different people. All over the place.
I've always had an interest, and whatever I've liked...
Well, Angela, we've all been working hard. Does he deserve us?
I should think he does! He's spent a lot of years collecting it for us
to be able to be here today to even have the enjoyment of it.
There's so many very old items all under one roof.
Have you got more surprises for us?
Who knows? Who knows?
What is hiding up there?
-Well, shall we have a look?
-Come on, then. Let's go and have a look.
Well, it sounds as if we've only scratched the surface of John's collection so far.
So it's back to work to get him that £500.
Our Jonty's still hard at work next door, and he's found a set of six small clocks
which he hopes could top up our coffers by £40 to £60.
And there's another good addition to our auction haul when Angela finds
this Imperial Service Medal with certificate, and a Victory Medal, which Jonty values at £20 to £30.
Our search is galloping along.
And in the living room, it's time for John's collection of boxes to come under our expert's scrutiny.
Jonty, you look as if you've found a trunk of treasure there, or three trunks.
Three trunks of treasure.
Not so much buried treasure, but hoarded treasure.
-What have we got in here, John, just bits and pieces?
You must have been a rag-and-bone man in your time. Is that right?
They've called me a few names!
And look at this, Chris.
It goes on and on and on.
All sorts of goodies.
-The boxes themselves have got to be worth some value, as well.
If you look at the exterior of that box, particularly, the exterior's better than the interior.
Can you see you've got this lovely rosewood exterior to this box
and all these lovely brass corners and bands?
But if you can see on the inside here, the leather is all damaged.
And it's a wee bit difficult to get a good price
for these sorts of boxes now, simply because they do need a repair.
Possibly somebody might take the whole innards out and just still use the outer casing.
So these are still very nice. So that's about 1860 in date.
My ballpark is around the £100 mark.
So we're looking at £80 to £120, that sort of figure, for this little collection here.
-But you never know, there could be a surprise in there.
-I hope so.
I really do hope that somebody's going to pluck out something from this.
But I have had a jolly good look, I promise.
Fingers crossed the bidders find some hidden gems in those boxes, even if Jonty didn't spot any.
And as I carry on the search in the living room, I spot this 1920s carriage clock
which tops up our fund by another £30 to £50.
Meanwhile, Jonty and Angela are tackling one of the bedrooms.
I've got a little collection here. Come and have a look at these.
We've got four little cases. Have you ever seen these before?
Yes, I have, I have.
Didn't know what they were until Dad explained they're old-fashioned matchboxes or something like that.
That's right. They're vesta cases.
So in its day, a fashionable piece of almost jewellery, or something to have on you.
Yes. More often than not... I don't know if we've got one here... Yes, this is really good.
They've got a little eye there, because this would be on a chain,
and it would allow you to literally wear it round your neck, if necessary.
-So we can sell these?
So, we've got four in all, two here and two with us.
Put those in as one lot. Presumably they're all silver.
Yes, they're all solid silver. I've checked them.
-£30 to £50.
-Jolly good. Excellent!
-A bit more.
-Leave those there. More to find.
More to find. Let's go.
Well done, Mr Hearnden. That's another step towards our £500 for John's new-car fund.
And I've got another item to add to our kitty when I find this Meerschaum pipe.
It gets packed off to auction with a £20 to £25 price tag.
John unearths these miniature boxes, including a gilded vinaigrette and papier-mache pillbox.
Jonty values the collection at £100 to £150.
The sun's almost set on our day's rummage here in Surrey, but not before Angela spots one final lot.
That's interesting. What have you got there, Angela?
-I've just pulled it from the side of the cupboard, tucked away.
-Isn't that pretty?
Now, we're looking at a watercolour here, and we've got a signature down at the bottom. It says is A Hulk.
That is Abraham Hulk, and he was very well known around the 1880s...
-..because he actually exhibited at the Royal Academy.
Oh! So that's quite an interesting piece, then.
Yeah. Yeah, so this is not done by an amateur hand at all.
Now, the problem you get with watercolours is that
the pigment itself starts to fade if you expose it to too much light.
-And if you look at that, you have a sense that we're looking at a faded picture.
Can you see how the blues in the water have gone more sort of...?
The definition is lost quite a lot.
So we're looking at £30, £50, that sort of ballpark.
-Not a lot for an artist from the Royal Academy.
-No, not really.
-But it's is all down to the fact that the picture is faded.
If the colours were stronger, then yes, a lot more money.
So it's a picture definitely worth putting into the auction sale.
Is it a picture that your father would be happy to sell?
Why don't you ask him? He's here!
-Chris, this is an amazing picture, value £30 to £50.
Oh, now, he's been harsh all day, hasn't he?
He has. I think he came here, "I don't like the look of this place."
He's harsh but fair, aren't you, Jonty?
Well, I would like to be everybody's friend in the auction room.
I mean, that's the way it's all meant to be.
We might get a pleasant surprise. Now, that's it.
We've had a good rummage around. We've got all the items in.
You wanted to raise £500 towards a new car.
Well, if we take these items to auction and if it all goes well,
we reckon we can come up with a grand total of £670.
-Really? As much as that?
-Well, I think it's quite good.
And that's with Jonty being usually harsh.
I think he's being very harsh.
Well, it could be even more than that. Are you happy with that?
I just want to find out which car it is now.
John's home really did prove to be a treasure trove today,
and we're all impressed with the selection of items that'll be winging their way to auction.
We've got the wonderful collection of pocket watches,
which Jonty hopes could bag us a very tidy £150 to £200,
the set of continental porcelain figurines,
which Jonty valued at £100 to £200...
..and who could forget John's collection of writing boxes
and all their contents?
We're hoping the bidders spot some hidden treasure inside
and might pay even more than Jonty's £80 to £100 valuation.
Still to come on Cash In The Attic, some of our lots don't bank us as many pounds as expected.
That was cheap! That was cheap.
-And when things take a turn for the better, our family keep their excitement under control.
He doesn't change expression, does he?
But will they have good reason to smile when the final hammer falls?
Now, a few weeks ago, we met John Manton and his daughter Angela in Surrey.
Now, John has been a huge hoarder for years, so we had plenty of stuff
to uncover and bring here to the auctioneers Jacobs & Hunt in Hampshire.
Now, John wants to raise around £500 to put towards a brand-new car,
so let's hope we've got some big hitters up there as our items go under the hammer.
It's a sunny day and there are plenty of bidders arriving for the sale.
It takes an early bird, though, to beat our Jonty,
and he's already poring over the items on display on the saleroom.
-Ah, Jonty. Are you checking out what's on offer today?
-I certainly am.
I know something for sure - we've got plenty on offer from John and Angela,
-because John was a magpie, wasn't he?
-Amazing. What an amazing collection.
-We've got so much. We've got those boxes. What's your favourite?
-It's got to be the pocket watches,
-and I hope we get the full price for them, because I love those. Shall we go and meet them?
-The auction's under way, isn't it? Come on.
As the sale's already started, we do need to find our father-and-daughter duo pretty quickly.
Luckily, it's not long before we spot them,
giving one of John's much-loved collections a final farewell.
-Hello, Jonty. Hello, Chris.
Are there tears in the eyes?
-Yes. Are there tears in the eyes that you're having to say goodbye to this?
Yes and no, really, but no.
-I was collecting them for years.
I hung on to them and hung on to them, done nothing with them.
Have you kept anything at all?
-Yes, I've kept back six miniature clocks.
-Oh, have you? OK.
-Are those the ones I put £40 to £60 on?
-I decided to keep those, yeah.
-We want £500 towards the brum-brum...
..the motorcar. "At least." See, she's already said "at least".
-Don't give an inch!
-OK. Let's get going. Come on.
-Come on, then.
If you're planning on buying or selling at auction, remember that charges such as commission
will be added onto your bill, so check the details with your local saleroom to avoid any surprises.
Well, the lots are selling thick and fast, so we find a spot to watch the action unfold.
Before long, our first item goes under the hammer,
although not literally, thank goodness,
as this collection is definitely breakable.
OK, we've got a group of nine porcelain figures. What's this one, Jonty?
Those were all the figures dotted around the drawing room.
They're very good quality, but the problem with them is that the subject matter
is a wee bit old-fashioned at the moment.
So I'm not sure where the market's going to fall, where the hammer's going to fall.
With me at £60. 65.
80. 85. 90. 95.
100. And 10.
Front row at 130.
We're selling at 130. All done?
-Yeah, very pleased with that.
-That's not too bad.
That's the way we like to start our day -
selling for £30 over Jonty's low-end estimate.
The figurines give us our first step towards John's new car.
We have similarly high hopes
for this 19th-century river scene
painted by the rather incredible artist Abraham Hulk.
£30 for it?
20 I'm bid. here at 20. 2 anywhere?
22. 25. 28.
At the front now, at 32.
Selling at 32. All done?
I really thought that would go for more.
We've got it away, though.
We got it away.
-What do you reckon?
You win some, you lose some.
Well, John might have been hoping for a bit more,
but that's another sale just above Jonty's low estimate,
so it's not too bad.
We're hoping the saleroom, though, will shift up a gear as the day goes on.
Maybe our next lot will get the bidders to dig even deeper.
It's the silver tankard, which Jonty valued at £30 to £50.
30 I'm bid here. At 30. 32. 35.
42. 45. 48. 50.
55. 60. 65.
In the centre at 65.
Selling at 65. All done.
-That was worth cleaning!
£30 to £50 estimate, reached £65.
Well, I don't know if it was the polish that did it,
but that's a fantastic result
and our first lot to exceed Jonty's highest estimate.
Hopefully, the bidders will take a shine to John's collection
of vesta cases as well.
-Are these vesta cases still fashionable?
-Yes, of course they are. Of course.
There's nothing extraordinary about our collection.
They're quite plain as far as vesta cases are concerned.
But the detail is still exquisite. Someone's going to love them.
I've put £30 to £50, and they should sell.
Showing there. £30 start me for them. 30 I'm bid. Here at 30. 32. 35. 38.
42. 45. 48. 50.
65. 70. 75.
In the centre now at 75.
All done at 75?
-That was good.
Well, John seems pleased with that result,
giving us another great addition into the new-car kitty.
We're making solid progress towards our £500 target.
It's our most highly valued lot of the day up next,
and I, for one, am a big fan.
There is a large collection there, including some gold-cased gentlemen's wristwatches.
Start me at £100 for them.
100 anywhere? I'm bid £80.
Here at 80. 5 anywhere? 85. 90.
95. 100. And 10. 120. 130. 140. 150.
Selling at 150. Back of the room at 150. All done?
-That was cheap.
We'd all hoped that the bidders might dig even deeper on that lot,
but with another £150 in the kitty, it's a big step towards our target, so we need to focus on that, really.
We're almost halfway through the sale already, but not before John's collection of miniature boxes
takes centre stage.
Are we all done at 110?
That's gone for £10 over Jonty's lowest estimate.
That's another of John's collections winging its way to a new home.
The first half of the sale has flown by, and we're making cracking progress towards the new-car fund.
Our next lot is the Meerschaum pipe,
which Jonty valued at a very affordable £20 to £25.
The front row at 35. All done?
Fantastic. That's £10 over Jonty's top estimate.
Hopefully, our next lot will have a similarly victorious result.
It's the collection of medals which we're hoping will make us £20 to £30.
Start me at £30 for them? 32. 35. 38.
At 40. £40. Standing at 40. All done?
Well, doubling Jonty's lowest estimate, it's another good sale.
I have a feeling our £500 target may be pretty safe by now,
but with three lots left to sell, we're still keeping everything crossed for good results.
So, will our next lot provide another timely addition
to our coffers?
It's the 1920s carriage clock, which Jonty valued at £30 to £50.
£50. Back of the room at 50.
Bang on Jonty's highest estimate.
The bidders just can't get enough of our lots today.
Well, next to try its luck on the rostrum is John's collection of copper and silver coins.
We're hoping to turn these into at least £40 worth of cold hard cash.
Start me at £50 for it?
50 I'm bid. At 50. 55. 60. 65. 70.
75. 80. 85. 90.
And 10. 120. On my right at 120.
Selling at 120. All done?
Wow! How about that?
It's certainly fantastic to see John's collections coming up trumps for him today.
After that sale, I have a feeling he's going to be able to buy himself a new set of wheels to be proud of.
But we need to get our feet back on the ground, as our last lot of the day is to go under the hammer.
70. 75. 80.
110. 120. 130.
Different place. At 170. 180. 190.
In the centre now at 190.
Are we all done at 190?
-That was very good.
-He doesn't change expression, does he?
Well done, Jonty.
Well, they really did prove to be treasure chests for us, selling for £70 over Jonty's highest estimate.
It was certainly a grand finale to a wonderful day at auction,
and with all our lots sold, it's time to add up the pounds.
It's the moment of truth.
You wanted £500, at least £500, towards the car.
I'm really glad Jonty remembered that "at least".
So is it a Reliant or a Roller?
Well, I think more like a Roller,
because the grand total of our rummaging and the auction is £997.
-I can't believe that.
-That's not bad, is it?
-I'd never have guessed that.
And guess what, Jonty and I will come up with £3 and add it up to £1,000. How about that?
I always said you two were good eggs.
Well, a couple of weeks after nearly doubling their target at auction,
John and daughter Angela can finally hit the road for a spot of car shopping.
The auction went very well, really.
-It raised more than expected.
Well, we've got two satisfied customers so far,
and it looks like they've got their eye on the new car already.
The best thing is that you test-drive one first before we go further. Don't you?
John wastes no time settling into the driving seat and heads off for a quick spin around the block.
Yeah, I really like this.
I think this would be ideal for you.
Yeah, it feels nice, I must say, yeah.
And as they head back to the showroom, it seems the decision is made.
The auction money will go towards it, which will help a great deal.
So that was well done, that auction, for getting that money.
What a result, and good luck to John as he takes to the road in style.
Now, if you want to raise money and you think you've got some hidden treasures in your home,
then why don't you contact us? All the details are online at...
Good luck with that, and we'll see you next time on Cash In The Attic.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
Chris Hollins meets retired insurance salesman John Manton, who has been collecting antiques all of his adult life but has decided it is time to let some of them go in the hope of raising enough cash for a new set of wheels.