Osborne Cash in the Attic


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Osborne

Antiques series. Lorne Spicer and Jonty Hearnden help Olive, who has lived in her family's home for 40 years but is now looking to downsize.


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Welcome to Cash in the Attic. There comes a time for most people

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when the children have flown the nest and it's time to downsize.

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That's the dilemma facing the lady we're meeting today.

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We hope to help her have a clear out

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and find plenty of treasures to take to auction too.

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Coming up on Cash in the Attic...

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Jonty makes me a promise after I reveal a childhood secret.

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I had this one. Sea and Seashore.

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I could never find a starfish.

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Lorne, I'll find you a starfish!

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And he's presented with something that touches his heart.

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-How romantic!

-Yes, wasn't it?

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We came home with a boot full of fossils!

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When it comes to the auction,

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I offer some sound philosophical advice.

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-I think what happens is what should happen.

-Yes.

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So, find out what does happen later.

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Today I've come to this really pretty Suffolk village

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to meet a lady who's lived here a very long time.

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Before she moves on, she's enlisted

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the help of her daughter-in-law and us

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to raise some much-needed funds.

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Olive Osborne has lived in this

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chalet bungalow for over 40 years, bringing up her four sons here.

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Her husband John passed away 12 years ago.

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During their time together, he ran a car dealership

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and Olive had the bed and breakfast next door.

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Olive is now planning to move and she'll be downsizing too.

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So she needs a clear-out, which is why she's called us in.

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With her today to help make those

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tough decisions of what should go, is daughter-in-law Helen.

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I'm confident our expert Jonty Hearnden

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will be able to spot some valuables

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to make some money for Olive too.

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While he starts his search, I go off to find our hosts.

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-Ah, good morning!

-Ah, hello!

-You must be Olive. This is your house.

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-Yes.

-And you are daughter-in-law Helen?

-Yes.

-Right. OK.

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-This is a lovely village. Really pretty.

-It is.

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-I understand you're thinking of moving?

-I need to downsize.

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I would like to be nearer... Have some neighbours, and nearer shops.

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So the money we're looking to raise. Is that towards the move?

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Specifically for the move in that

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I've got two very nice Parker Knoll chairs that the cats have shredded.

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They need to be re-upholstered and recovered.

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So that's what I'd like to raise the money for.

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Do you know how much that's likely to cost?

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-Between 700 and £800.

-Crikey, that's expensive for upholstery.

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-So we need to raise £800.

-Yes.

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Our expert today is Jonty Hearnden.

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He's having a look around.

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Helen, if you could have a look in here.

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We'll cover as much ground as possible.

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-Let's find Jonty.

-Lovely.

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It looks like Jonty's many years

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in the antiques business means he's done a quick scan

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and decided a piece of bedroom furniture

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should receive a closer look.

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-Ah, there you are, Jonty.

-Hi, guys.

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The highest point of the house.

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I started at the top and I'll work my way down.

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I've found something we could put in the auction.

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Olive, is this an object we can now sell?

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Yes, I'm happy for this to go.

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This piece is an Edwardian dressing table.

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And it wouldn't have been this colour originally.

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-It would have been darker, stained to look like a mahogany.

-Right.

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The timber is beech, and just on the side here is pine.

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So that's another indicator to show

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you it was always designed to be stained and never this colour.

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We're looking at auction, 30, 40, £50.

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If we put that sort of price on it, it should walk out the door.

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-Lovely.

-What do you think of that valuation?

-I'm happy with that.

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OK. That's a good start, then.

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Daughter-in-law Helen has been hard at work, too.

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She's found something else from

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the bed and breakfast Olive ran in the cottage next door.

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It's a mid-20th-century mahogany

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chest of drawers with shell-shaped handles.

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Jonty reckons it should certainly draw attention

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with a guide price of 30 to £50.

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Jonty spots a Swiss clock which Olive's mother bought in the 1950s.

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Swiss clocks are among the most famous in the world.

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But unfortunately this one is not a particularly good make

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and so only gets a 20 to £30 estimate.

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I'm going to guess that these are the chairs you want reupholstered.

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-How did you know?

-Well, that's a giveaway.

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Definitely signs of cat or dog, isn't it?

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How long have they been mullering your chairs?

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Only recently. The two cats I've got now

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are quite new. And they did this. The others never did.

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So when you do move, what are you hoping to achieve from that?

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The principle difference is being able to go to the shops on foot

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and not have to get the car out.

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And another big difference will be having neighbours.

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Because now my neighbours, they're lovely people,

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but they are weekenders.

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I'm surrounded by them. So I am, in fact, very isolated here.

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And I'd like to be among people. So those are the two big differences.

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Then being in a town, you change your wants, your aspirations.

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I always used to say I love

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being solitary and I do love being solitary.

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But now as I'm getting older, I want to be among people more.

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I really hope it goes well for you.

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And I hope we make the money for you.

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So it's back to the search for us.

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Daughter-in-law Helen has been very productive.

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She's come across a ring that was

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given to Olive's mother on her silver wedding anniversary.

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It's made of nine-carat gold

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and has a large peridot and two small diamonds.

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Unfortunately, the peridot stone

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has a crack in it which affects its valuation.

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It only gets 50 to £70.

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So, when it comes up at auction, will that damage lower its appeal?

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Two bids I have. I'm clearing the book at £50.

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Will it exceed Jonty's estimate?

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50. 5. 60.

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5. 70.

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Back at Olive's house, she still has lots of things here

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which she needs to get rid of before she moves.

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So she makes good use of our expert today.

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Jonty, look what I've found.

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Wow. Yet more stones. Are those fossils in there?

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-Yes. Fossils and pieces of rock.

-So whose were these?

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This was my husband's.

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He collected this over the years. Even on our honeymoon.

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-On your honeymoon?

-As we were driving along,

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if we came across some roadworks,

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he would screech to a halt, jump out, go in the great pile,

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and nine times out of ten, he would come out with a fossil!

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-Really?

-Amazing, yes.

-How romantic!

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Yes, wasn't it? We came home with a boot full of fossils!

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-As I'm sure you're aware, I'm used to handling antiques.

-Right.

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But this is the extreme, of course!

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These items here are literally millions of years old.

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There are all sorts of goodies. There's a beautiful ammonite there.

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Ammonites became extinct 65 million years ago.

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The oldest ammonites were around 240 million years ago.

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You can see why people like

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your husband get very excited about these.

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With selling a collection like this,

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there will be amateur palaeontologists who want these.

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They have to be worth 40 to £60.

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-Oh, that's lovely.

-Why not?

-Good.

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Olive's husband John was obviously a keen collector.

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In one of the bedrooms, I come across another of his compilations.

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It's a stamp and coin collection that he started as a child,

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but Jonty reckons there's nothing exceptional here,

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so his valuation is 40 to £60.

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Helen digs out two Polaroid instamatic cameras which Olive

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had found in her shed.

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Olive's late husband was into photography and

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these cameras are in great condition and in their original boxes.

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Jonty hopes they'll make £20-30.

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Jonty, have a look. What do you think of this?

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That looks rather grand.

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How long have you had this?

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-About seven years.

-And why did you buy it?

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I bought it as an investment.

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But in all those years, I've only worn it three times.

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-OK.

-It is so lovely and I'm into horses and gardening

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and you don't wear that sort of

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thing riding horses and digging in the garden!

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Absolutely. If we look closely,

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the ring band is 18-carat gold, which is very good.

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We've got three rubies and two diamonds inset into the ring.

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A very clever design.

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Having looked closely at these stones,

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the diamonds are roughly about a third of a carat.

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You can't tell exactly because you

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can't weigh them as they're inset into the ring itself.

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The rubies look slightly bigger.

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So we're looking about half a carat each for those rubies.

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The band itself is very good

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and it's a ring that a dealer could easily buy and just sell on.

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It's very contemporary looking.

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The value at auction for this ring

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at the moment would be roughly between 300 and £500.

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-Right.

-How do you feel about that?

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-That's fine.

-Yeah?

-I'd like it to go at that, please.

-A great find.

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Well done. That is halfway onto our target already.

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So really very good news indeed.

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I've noticed the paintings dotted around Olive's house.

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But Jonty's drawn to a pine Welsh dresser,

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that Olive bought 25 years ago.

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The most sought-after Welsh dressers

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hail from the early part of the 18th century

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and are usually made of oak.

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This one is made of reclaimed pine,

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so gets a lower valuation of 60 to £80.

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Olive is wondering whether this crystal necklace might be valuable.

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It was given to Olive's mother

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as a 21st birthday present from her own mother, back in 1928.

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It's a pretty piece of costume jewellery

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and hopefully it will sparkle in the auction at 20 to £40.

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Then I noticed something that takes me back to my childhood.

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Jonty? I've found the Observer books.

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-Did you have these as a child?

-This takes me back!

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-They were great, weren't they?

-Wonderful.

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We've got all sorts of different genres,

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-which is what the Observer books were all about.

-Yes.

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They first started in 1937.

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If we open up, we can see the publishers, Frederick Warne & Co.

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They published Beatrix Potter books as well.

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If you've got a rare one, in good condition,

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if not mint condition, a first edition,

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you're looking in excess of £100 for one book.

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How do you spot whether they're first editions?

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It's a bit of a mystery, the old first edition scenario.

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-Look inside.

-Right.

-If it doesn't say "reprinted", it just has a date,

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then you know that it's a first edition.

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On this one here, it was originally printed in 1971,

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reprinted and reprinted.

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We also have the added information down here on this one,

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here we have 75 and the six in front.

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That means this book was printed in June 1975.

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Because of the condition of them,

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you could let the children use them and enjoy them

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without worrying about them being kept perfect.

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I had this one, Sea And Seashore,

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and I could never find a starfish.

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So what sort of value, do you think?

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We won't get a vast sum of money for them

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because we haven't got one gem here. But they will sell.

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-20 to 30 quid at auction sale.

-Lovely.

-Somebody will buy these.

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-Pleased with that?

-That's great.

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-It all helps. It all adds up.

-Absolutely.

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Tell you what, Lorne, I'm off to find you a starfish!

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You may find that hard in Suffolk, but good luck!

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I love these. They're great.

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I won't hold my breath for that, Jonty.

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You've got more pressing business to get on with,

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like finding out if there's anything else here worth taking to auction.

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We've managed to find three pictures.

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Are there more around the house?

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-One more little one.

-Do you know the ladies in these?

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-Yes, that's my sister, and that's me.

-Wow, how lovely.

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They were painted by my brother-in-law.

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Colin Orchard, we have his signature here.

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-Yes, that's Colin Orchard.

-And we can see that...

-CO.

-Absolutely.

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So which of these do you think you'd be willing to part with?

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-Certainly not these, two, no.

-Right.

-But I'd consider selling that one.

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Obviously because this has the family connection

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-and that's more abstract.

-Yes.

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-That's a Barbara Hepworth sculpture from the garden in St Ives.

-Right.

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-In the museum grounds?

-Yes, that's right.

-OK.

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Well, he really is a very famous artist.

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He's a member of the Royal Society of British Artists

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and you don't get much bigger than that!

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He regularly exhibits at the summer exhibition at the Royal Academy.

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-So when you bought this painting, how long ago was that?

-Um...

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A long time.

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Well, on the back here we have the date of December '89.

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But in red there's a price of £330.

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-I paid 300 for it.

-Ooh, you got £30 off!

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-Family discount!

-I'd say not long after it was painted.

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Right. £300, 20 years ago.

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If we take this to auction, you've got to remember

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that a dealer will need to buy it, make a profit,

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and also pay the auctioneer a premium as well.

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So an auction estimate for this picture

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is now going to be 300 to £400.

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How do you feel about that?

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I'll have to give it a bit of thought. Yes.

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I know you're not decided at

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the moment what you're going to do with the painting.

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But for the sake of argument, if I include it at this point,

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the value of everything going to auction comes to £930.

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-Wow!

-Lovely.

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-The next time we see you will be at auction.

-Lovely.

-Thank you.

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Well, after a slow start, I'm so pleased

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we managed to exceed Olive's target.

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I'm looking forward to seeing how well she does come auction day.

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My favourites are the 20 Observer books collected by her husband John.

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At 20 to £30, they're definitely one to watch

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when they go before the bidders.

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There's the 18-carat gold ring with rubies and diamonds

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that Olive bought as an investment seven years ago.

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Jonty gives it a glittering 300 to £500 valuation.

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And will Olive part with a painting

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by her brother-in-law, Colin Orchard,

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a member of the Royal Society of British Artists?

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With a price tag of 300 to £400,

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it could pay for the re-upholstering of one chair on its own!

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Still to come on Cash in the Attic...

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Olive lets slip her trust in what we've chosen for auction.

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-I didn't think it would sell.

-Really?

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-You of little confidence!

-I know!

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And I'm impressed by the sale price of our most unusual lot.

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-Wow!

-What a good price!

-Fantastic!

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We should auction each other, next time!

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There's a lot of money in old fossils!

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Find out how all our lots do when the final hammer falls.

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It's been a few weeks since we met Olive at her home in Suffolk.

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She's planning to move and wanted to get rid of a few bits and pieces.

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We've found some lovely items that

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we've brought to Stacey's Auction House in Essex.

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She's looking to raise funds to rescue two of her favourite chairs

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that have been demolished by the cats,

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so she wants to re-upholster them.

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Let's hope we make the money she wants and a bit more.

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This family-run firm are based in Rayleigh, not far from Southend.

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Their auctions are always packed.

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The auction house is filling up with bidders now.

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But as soon as we spot Olive and Helen,

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their decision regarding the painting is obvious.

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-Good morning.

-Hi, guys.

-Hi!

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How do you feel about it being here?

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I've put a good reserve on it, so if it doesn't go, I won't mind.

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-What figure have you put on it?

-I've put 400 on it.

-OK.

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As you can tell, the auction's started.

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Let's get in position. Come on.

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There are over 1,200 lots in today's auction

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so Olive's heirlooms and collectibles face stiff competition.

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First up is the oval bedside Swiss clock.

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It's up for a very reasonable price of 20 to £30.

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£10 straight in for this lot? £10 I'm bid. Thank you, at ten.

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12. 15. 18.

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-At £18.

-Come on.

-Lovely.

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At the back at £18.

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-Just under.

-£18. Slightly under.

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I think, we talk about £18 to us, cos we're selling the items.

0:17:350:17:40

But the person buying has commission.

0:17:400:17:42

-So it's going to cost them more than £20.

-Right.

0:17:420:17:46

You have to bear that in mind.

0:17:460:17:48

It was only £2 below Jonty's lower estimate,

0:17:480:17:51

so we can't be too disappointed with that sale.

0:17:510:17:54

Let's hope she does better with the crystal necklace

0:17:540:17:57

up for 20 to £40.

0:17:570:17:59

£10 in for it. Ten I'm bid now.

0:17:590:18:01

12. At £12. Any advance on 12? Are we all done?

0:18:010:18:04

£12. 15. 18.

0:18:040:18:06

Against you. At £20 bid.

0:18:060:18:08

On my left at £20. Any advance? Last time. I'm selling at £20 only.

0:18:080:18:14

-Not bad!

-Oh, great!

-That is good. Somebody will wear it now.

0:18:140:18:18

-I didn't think it would sell.

-Really? You of little confidence!

0:18:180:18:23

Hopefully, that sale, bang on

0:18:230:18:25

Jonty's lower estimate will be the start of a good run for us now.

0:18:250:18:28

Olive's next lot is unusual for an auction house.

0:18:280:18:31

It's the interesting collection of fossils.

0:18:310:18:34

And it has a price tag of 40-£60.

0:18:340:18:37

-You've put a reserve on this as well?

-I put 50 on it, yes.

0:18:390:18:43

-So if we don't get £50 for it, it's going back.

-Yes.

-Fine.

0:18:430:18:47

One bid I have. I'm clearing the book at £40.

0:18:470:18:50

Ooh, lovely!

0:18:500:18:52

45. 50.

0:18:520:18:54

Five. 60.

0:18:540:18:55

65. 70.

0:18:550:18:58

Can't see you. £70. The bid's here with me at 70. Any advance on £70?

0:18:580:19:01

New bidder. Against you. And five. 90. Five.

0:19:010:19:05

The specialists are here!

0:19:050:19:07

At £100. £100. Any advance on 100?

0:19:070:19:10

Are you done? Last time. Selling at £100.

0:19:100:19:14

-Wow!

-Fantastic!

0:19:140:19:16

We should auction each other next time. There's money in old fossils!

0:19:160:19:21

That was more than double Jonty's lower estimate.

0:19:210:19:24

I think Olive is quite happy not to be taking them back home.

0:19:240:19:28

The bidders are keen on her husband's

0:19:280:19:30

coin and stamp collection, too.

0:19:300:19:32

An advance on £40?

0:19:330:19:34

Hammer going down at 40.

0:19:340:19:37

Bang on Jonty's lower estimate. We're doing pretty well so far.

0:19:370:19:41

Now it's the turn of some of

0:19:410:19:43

Olive's furniture that she bought when she ran a bed and breakfast.

0:19:430:19:47

It's the mahogany chest of drawers with shell handles.

0:19:470:19:50

-Jonty, what do we want for this?

-I put 30 to £50 on it.

0:19:510:19:55

But there is a big split in the top, so I would have put more.

0:19:550:19:58

But I hope the dealers are here to buy it because it is a dealer's lot.

0:19:580:20:02

£20 straight in for this one?

0:20:020:20:04

£20. 20 I'm bid, thank you.

0:20:040:20:07

And two. 25. 28. £28 now.

0:20:070:20:10

In the room at £28. Are we all done?

0:20:100:20:13

-A little bit short again.

-No, that's OK. Yes, I'm fine with that.

0:20:130:20:19

Just missed our lowest estimate by two pounds.

0:20:190:20:22

But there are furniture buyers in the room.

0:20:220:20:25

Yet when Olive's pine dresser goes before the bidders at 60 to £80...

0:20:250:20:30

Failed to sell, I'm afraid.

0:20:300:20:32

Oh, shame!

0:20:320:20:34

It went to £40 but the auctioneer used his discretion

0:20:340:20:38

and decided it was worth more.

0:20:380:20:40

With half our lots sold, we've banked £206 towards the £800 target.

0:20:400:20:46

Not bad going, as there are still some great items yet to come.

0:20:460:20:50

Now, if, like Olive, you have a special reason to raise some cash

0:20:500:20:54

and are thinking of heading to auction,

0:20:540:20:56

remember, commission and other charges may apply.

0:20:560:20:59

Check the details with the auction house.

0:20:590:21:01

Next is the Edwardian dressing table.

0:21:010:21:04

I bought that at a sale room when

0:21:040:21:06

I was doing bed and breakfast in the cottage.

0:21:060:21:09

It's been much loved and much used. What's its value, Jonty?

0:21:090:21:13

30 to £50 on this one.

0:21:130:21:15

Start the bidding at £20. Straight in? 20, anywhere?

0:21:150:21:19

20 I'm bid.

0:21:190:21:20

At £20. Any advance on 20?

0:21:200:21:22

Are we all done, then, at £20?

0:21:220:21:26

-£20 is not going to...

-It's not sold.

-Really?

-Not sold.

0:21:260:21:30

Once again, the auctioneer used his discretion

0:21:300:21:33

and decided £20 was not enough for that piece.

0:21:330:21:36

The next lot is Olive's star lot,

0:21:360:21:38

the painting by her brother-in-law, Colin Orchard.

0:21:380:21:41

Jonty valued this at £300-400,

0:21:410:21:44

and Olive's decided on a £400 reserve.

0:21:440:21:48

Let's not waste time. Start the bidding at £300. £300 in.

0:21:490:21:53

£300 for it. No-one want it for 300?

0:21:530:21:54

300. 320. £320.

0:21:540:21:57

330. 340.

0:21:570:21:59

At £340. Are we all done at 340?

0:21:590:22:02

Last time, then, at £340.

0:22:020:22:06

340. Sorry, that failed to sell.

0:22:060:22:08

-So it goes.

-You know what the answer is. It's staying in the family.

0:22:080:22:12

Look at the smile on this girl's face!

0:22:120:22:14

I have to say, I think what happens is what should happen.

0:22:140:22:18

-Yes.

-So had it reached that money and gone, fine.

0:22:180:22:21

But it hasn't and you'll enjoy it and love it.

0:22:210:22:24

-And there were bids for it.

-Yes.

-Absolutely. Yes.

0:22:240:22:28

It didn't sell, but Olive and Helen

0:22:280:22:30

are delighted it's staying with them.

0:22:300:22:33

I've got some of these myself. I love these Observer books.

0:22:330:22:37

They're fantastic. So much information in a tiny book.

0:22:370:22:40

What do we want for these, Jonty?

0:22:400:22:42

I put £20 as the lower end of the estimate.

0:22:420:22:44

You have to let the room decide. 20 to £30 would be great.

0:22:440:22:48

Start me off at £20. £20 for this lot? £20 I'm bid. 22.

0:22:480:22:53

25. £25 front row bid at £25. 28 against you.

0:22:530:22:58

-At £28 on my left. £28. Are we all done?

-That's fine.

0:22:580:23:02

-Lovely.

-That's all right.

-£28.

0:23:020:23:04

-£28.

-That's good, isn't it?

0:23:040:23:07

Excellent.

0:23:070:23:08

Just two pounds under the top estimate.

0:23:080:23:12

A very good result for those lovely little books.

0:23:120:23:14

They're quickly followed by the pair of Polaroid cameras...

0:23:140:23:17

£10 I'm bid. All done, then?

0:23:180:23:20

On my right at £10. Are we all done? I'm selling

0:23:200:23:22

at £10 only.

0:23:220:23:26

..which add another £10 to the pot.

0:23:260:23:30

We have just two more lots to go, both gold rings.

0:23:300:23:32

First up is the nine-carat gold cocktail ring

0:23:320:23:35

with a peridot and two diamonds.

0:23:350:23:37

It has a value of 50 to £70.

0:23:370:23:40

Two bids I have. I'm clearing the book. At £50.

0:23:410:23:45

Here at £50. Any advance on 50?

0:23:450:23:47

Five. 60. Five. 70.

0:23:470:23:50

Five. 80.

0:23:500:23:52

- Five. 90. - Wow!

0:23:520:23:55

At £95 on my left. At £95. Are we all done?

0:23:550:23:59

Hammer going down. £95.

0:23:590:24:01

-Lovely.

-Are you happy with that?

-Lovely, yes.

0:24:010:24:04

-Fantastic.

-That makes up for the others not selling.

0:24:040:24:07

You've got to take an overview of all these things.

0:24:070:24:10

It's not over till the fat lady sings.

0:24:100:24:13

The ring went for almost double Jonty's lower estimate.

0:24:130:24:18

That's a great result,

0:24:180:24:19

and Olive looks thrilled. How will the other ring do?

0:24:190:24:23

Now, we really do hope this one sells.

0:24:230:24:26

It's the ring with three rubies, two diamonds and it's 18-carat gold.

0:24:260:24:31

So a higher quality of gold.

0:24:310:24:33

I put 300 to £500 on it.

0:24:330:24:35

OK? That's what I've done.

0:24:350:24:37

I've also had a chat with the auctioneer.

0:24:370:24:39

-One of his concerns is that the actual ring is quite small.

-Yes.

0:24:390:24:43

That is a bit of a problem

0:24:430:24:45

because it'll be difficult to put the ring on many ladies' fingers.

0:24:450:24:50

So could be a problem.

0:24:500:24:52

-I hadn't thought of that.

-Yes. Let's see how we go.

0:24:520:24:56

One commission bid I have. I'm clearing at £150.

0:24:560:24:59

-The bid's at 150. Any advance on that?

-We need more than that.

0:24:590:25:03

155. 160. 165. 170. 175.

0:25:030:25:07

180. 185. 190.

0:25:070:25:10

195. At £195 now with the lady.

0:25:100:25:13

-Are we all done?

-I think it's going.

-195.

0:25:130:25:15

-Right, it's sold.

-Yes.

0:25:170:25:19

Oh, dear. That ring didn't even reach Jonty's lower estimate,

0:25:190:25:23

so we have quite a few unsold items,

0:25:230:25:25

but we did rather well on other lots.

0:25:250:25:28

So have much have we made overall?

0:25:280:25:30

Now, you wanted £800 to get these chairs reupholstered.

0:25:300:25:34

I haven't got that, have I?

0:25:340:25:36

No, I'm afraid not!

0:25:360:25:39

I was trying to think of a way to break it to you,

0:25:390:25:42

but you've gone straight in.

0:25:420:25:43

You've actually made £534.

0:25:430:25:47

That's £534 more than I had when I arrived.

0:25:470:25:51

Very true. Is that enough to get the chair project under way?

0:25:510:25:55

Certainly well on its way, yes.

0:25:550:25:57

Don't forget you're taking that fantastic painting back with you.

0:25:570:26:01

-Enjoy it.

-Will do, definitely.

-There's still a smile on her face.

0:26:010:26:06

Olive is keen to get the work on her two chairs started.

0:26:120:26:15

She heads over to the local upholsterers.

0:26:150:26:17

-Hello!

-Nice to see you, Olive. Nice to see you again.

0:26:170:26:21

-You liked the look of that one.

-I liked the floral.

-Yeah.

0:26:210:26:25

When they're finished, I think her

0:26:250:26:27

chairs will take pride of place in her new, less cluttered home.

0:26:270:26:30

Olive Osborne has lived in her family's home for 40 years, but the time has come to downsize. She is also keen to have her favourite old chairs re-covered. Lorne Spicer and Jonty Hearnden lend a hand.