Series looking at the value of household junk. Jennie Bond and Jonty Hearnden help two women at the home of their late mother in east London raise £1,000.
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Hello and welcome to Cash In The Attic,
the show that hunts out hidden treasures and helps you sell them at auction.
Today, I'm in all the hubbub of east London and I'm on my way to a house that I think is full of promise.
I'm told there are all sorts of collectables in there, including this, an ostrich egg!
What do you reckon it's worth? Well, I couldn't possibly tell you,
but I know a man who can and all will be revealed before the final hammer falls.
Coming up on Cash In The Attic, one of our items is music to Jonty's ears.
-I really do like that sound.
-That is beautiful.
-It's the ring of confidence.
-There's excitement at a rare and valuable find.
I knew that that was a loved piece, but now my heart's racing!
And at the auction, is satisfaction ever guaranteed?
-She says it's not enough.
-It's not enough. Come on, more!
Find out when the final hammer falls.
I'm in Bethnal Green and I'm on my way to meet the daughters
of a truly remarkable woman who is sadly no longer with us.
But she's left behind a rich legacy from a lifetime of collecting.
The question, though, is are there any real riches there?
The Cash In The Attic team have been called in to find out.
Until just a few weeks ago, this house in London's Bethnal Green was home to Doreen Perry.
She was a remarkable woman whose achievements in life included the creation of a highly successful
record label and saving a school from certain closure.
Her passion for collecting has left this three-bedroomed home full of antiques
and their destiny now lies in the hands of her two daughters,
Louise, a website designer, and Nicki, who has her own restaurant in New York.
Jonty Hearnden is our expert today and he's looking forward to finding
an array of antique furniture and, hopefully, some quality collectables.
-Who's who here, then?
-Thank you so much for inviting us here
-because I know that your mother passed away very recently, didn't she?
-What kind of woman was she?
-Unbelievably enthusiastic about the things that she loved.
Very black and white person, she either loved it or hated it,
and when she loved it, she was really passionate.
So she loved china, she loved doll's houses.
This is one of her beautiful doll's houses, collected over many years.
-Are you going to sell these?
But obviously, there's quite a lot you do want to sell here.
-So how much money do you want to raise today?
-We think £1,000.
-As much as possible.
-Yes, as much...
-Yes, as much as possible.
-And what's it going to go towards?
She was the chair of governors at the Sir John Cass Foundation Redcoat School here in Bethnal Green,
-which is why she moved here.
-It's for the school that your mother helped so much?
-Brilliant. All right, so £1,000 for the school.
-We'd better get rummaging.
Doreen's antiques took pride of place in her home.
The display is remarkable and, with any luck,
we should be able to find enough items to raise that £1,000 at the auction.
Jonty, of course, has spent his life immersed in the world of antiques
and he's always the first to get started on our rummaging.
Today, it looks as if he's going to have
some excellent support from Nicki and Louise, who've already found something to show him.
-There's a few more as well.
Yeah. Look at that one.
It looks rather fun, yeah. That's Cripplegate.
-That's good. What else have you got?
-Where is this?
-There's one more.
-Maps of London, is that right?
We've got another one down here.
Wow, look at that, that's beautiful.
-Aren't they lovely? Old coloured maps.
-Three maps of old London.
Wonderful. These are originals.
-We should have a date here at the bottom.
Can you see down at the bottom here, it says 1755?
That's from 1755?
That's very old, isn't it?
-Yeah, that is amazing.
And they really are a snapshot in time.
This is obviously what the north of the old city of London looked like in 1755. Now completely different.
So this is of Cripplegate.
Cripplegate was a gate in the old wall in the City of London
-and it's the Barbican now.
-My mother lived in the Barbican.
-Yeah, she did.
-Oh, that's where she had this.
-That's why she's got that, yeah.
That's why maps are interesting, how the world changed.
Often you see little maps of London and then, voom, it's a whole metropolis.
These maps would have been printed, of course, in black and white
and hand-coloured later and often a lot later.
Often coloured in the 20th century and somehow dealers, collectors don't seem to mind that.
A lot of people do like to have maps with a bit of colour on them. So, can we sell these?
Yes, absolutely. What do you think we'd get for those?
We're looking at, what?
-For three, £100 to £150.
-Yeah, why not.
-A good little find.
-Not bad. Excellent, I'll put those there.
-And we'll carry on.
I like those.
That's a good valuation to kick off our day here in Bethnal Green,
and we have our first contribution towards that target of £1,000.
As we split up to cover all corners, it's becoming clear just how keen a collector Doreen was.
There's more than enough here to keep Jonty busy.
-No, nothing, really.
-What have you found?
-Have a look at this.
This is a really decorative jardiniere. Porcelain jardiniere.
It's a plant stand, a plant pot.
-Well, it's a holder to put your plant pot into.
But it really is very good quality.
I don't think this is 19th century, I think it's 20th century.
-But the decoration is really top quality, it's very, very beautiful,
and all of that is hand-decorated with this lovely gilded decoration round the outside.
Now, in the 19th century, particularly the late 19th century, all Victorian houses needed a plant
known as an aspidistra in the corner of their...certainly their drawing rooms, in many rooms of their house,
and you would put your aspidistra in a plant pot holder like this, known as a jardiniere.
So it has all the hallmarks of being 18th century in style, 19th century in style, but I believe it to be...
It's a modern version of.
The mark is Copeland. Now, that's a good sign because Copeland started life in Staffordshire in the 1770s,
but this is a jardiniere.
Again, people obviously have pot plants, they like to display them, still, in bowls like this.
-You can hear it ting.
-Yes, it's perfect.
You see, it's got a very nice ring to it. I like the sound.
-That's a good sound for me.
And I think this jardiniere is so attractive, so decorative,
that it's got to be worth around about £100.
Oh, I'm happy. I really do like that sound.
-That is beautiful.
-It's nice, isn't it?
-It's the ring of confidence.
What a great price for a modern piece with no antique value,
but will Jonty be as confident about the next item?
I can't imagine he's come across too many giant ornamental eggs in his time!
-Look what I've found here.
-I've already seen one.
-Yes, I want you to tell us all about them.
-Well, they're quite...
Of course, they're ostrich eggs, but we have a pair here, but we've also got
this lovely decorated ostrich egg here, covered in butterflies.
There's a theme here. Did your mother like butterflies?
-My mother was obsessed with anything with butterflies on it.
-Oh, how lovely!
It was really easy to buy presents for her, to send cards, you know?
Anything with a butterfly on it!
But ostrich eggs, you can see just how decorative they are.
Well, let's take a look at the pair in more detail.
If I pick this one up here, we can see that we have a crack in the top.
This is where the innards have been taken out, but to cover that crack up
they have placed this decorative finial on the top,
but the stands themselves are extraordinary.
They are gilded bronze, very heavy, and I believe these to be stands
for oriental vases, so the vases have been taken away
and the stands have been almost like recycled to place the pair of eggs on the top,
but they make just a great pair of decorative objects and that is what the market demands.
These don't fit in any genre, they're not ceramics, they're not metal ware,
-they're not jewellery, they are just decorative objects.
So, as far as value is concerned, you just go on your hunch.
I suspect that we're looking at
between £80 and £120 there.
What do you think of that valuation?
I just hope those eggs get to auction in one piece!
While Jonty, Nicki and Louise are still hunting around the house,
I'm reminded that Doreen's passion for collecting encompassed both old and new.
In her old bedroom, there's more evidence of her love of the contemporary.
These two blown glass bowls are really rather stylish
and Jonty packs them off to auction
with a £50 to £70 price tag.
On the landing, he spots a pair of pictures of Doreen's favourite subject matter, the butterfly.
They're Oriental silk and date from the 19th century.
Jonty thinks they should fetch £40 to £60 at auction.
The butterfly motif appears in almost every room of Doreen's house.
She was clearly quite a character and I want to learn more about her.
So this is your mother, Doreen.
My goodness me!
What a stylish, incredible lady. Are these quite recent, these pictures?
-They are recent. I think they're within the last six months.
-Yeah, they are.
And even when she was very, very ill, she still had the full face of make-up, the shoes, the outfit
-when she could barely walk.
-She was clearly a most extraordinary woman, but what was her upbringing like?
We didn't know who her real parents were. She wouldn't discuss it.
Had she not told you about her upbringing, then?
She refused to talk about it and she was very distressed by it.
In actual fact, when she was 18 months old,
her parents separated and they dumped her in a children's home.
-And then, the people that fostered her
tried desperately to have her legally adopted
and kept going round to the real mother's house and she kept...
All she would do is open the window and tell them to naff off
and she wasn't signing anything, so she was never legally adopted
and she was a foster child her whole life.
Which is why I think she's always been for the underdog.
She was very tough.
Yeah, she was very tough. I think she was old school,
you know? She had...
Was really into manners and etiquette and being on time
and just decorum, wasn't she?
Passionate about the opera and classical music.
We were not allowed to play pop music in the house.
She loved it. It was her passion.
And I don't know that she knew as much as my dad, but she absolutely loved it.
And the two of them started Hyperion Records,
which is the most prestigious small classical record label in the world
and has won all sorts of awards, and they started that company together.
-And your mother was honoured as well, wasn't she? Was she made a Freeman of London?
And she is a Freeman of the City of London, but quite recently... In fact, that's the last outing
I had with her and my daughter, was that she walked a sheep across London Bridge,
which you're allowed to do.
-As a Freeman?
-As a Freeman, yeah.
With the Lord Mayor, all dressed to the nines!
And she was very, very ill but she made the long walk
from Liverpool Street to London Bridge, insisted on walking.
Got dressed up to the nines in black and red and walked the sheep across.
-I tell you, you two have got something to live up to, haven't you?
I don't think we'll ever make it! Not even combined!
What a lady!
And that's not to mention the school she saved from closure.
More about her proudest achievement later
because we're here to raise that £1,000 so we need to get back to work.
As we continue to search every inch of this property, Nicki concentrates
her efforts in the garden room, home to her mum's favourite pieces of china.
She picks out this porcelain cow, which is, in fact, a novelty creamer.
It's based on a design that originated in Holland
and was later produced in the UK from the mid-18th century.
It's in great condition and heads off to auction
with a very respectable £80 to £120 estimate.
And in the dining room,
something rather special has caught Jonty's eye.
Louise, are you through there?
-Yeah, I'm here.
-Take a look at this.
-Gosh, that's beautiful.
-This fan is stunning, really stunning.
This whole scene here is hand-painted,
so this is a paper fan suspended on mother-of-pearl.
That's what gives it the lovely glistening effect. It's gorgeous.
Amazing, isn't it? Yes, can you imagine in subdued light,
under candlelight or under oil light, the shimmer of mother-of-pearl?
-That's why it was so popular when this fan was made.
-Is it old, then?
Very old. Date-wise, we're looking between 210,
maybe 240 years old and it's not English, it's French.
Oh, my word, that's incredible!
Yeah. It's very interesting, that, because the closer you look,
the more restoration you see, which makes sense because this is paper, just how fragile it would be.
-It's been restored?
-Have a look here.
-Can you see...
-..that there is extra layers of paper that have been laid upon...?
And therefore hand-painted in to restore it.
-It all makes sense.
-So it's been loved, then.
Absolutely. And it's been worth one's while restoring this
because you're looking not at just a fan, you're looking at a work of art.
I was going to say that. It is a work of art.
-It really is.
-It's very beautiful.
-Hence the reason why it's framed.
And why people collect these - they're so beautiful.
But with a fan like this,
there's something else to be looked at, so let me show you.
Now, can you notice that this has no back to it at all?
-That was an optical illusion. I thought there was a backing.
So let me take this off. What can we see?
-Oh, my goodness!
-What do I see?
-It's painted on the back.
-Yeah, we've got...
-Look at that!
-Seaside, mountains, a sort of beach.
So it's totally different. It's unique.
It is beautiful, but I think it should go to someone who'll love it.
But interestingly, the market has risen quite substantially,
not for European fans, but for more Chinese fans.
The Chinese are buying them back.
I don't want to put an exact figure on it because of the restoration,
but we're looking at between £200 and £400.
-Wow, that's incredible.
That really is an amazing object and so delicate.
Will that count on sale day?
And for this sale lot, I'm already bid £65. I'll take 70 in the room.
At £65. I'm bid 70. 75. 80.
Find out later whether this gilt-framed work of art reaches its top estimate at auction.
The fan has spurred us all on to keep looking and Nicki has spotted a pair of framed prints of London.
It's fascinating that none of these London landmarks has survived.
Jonty thinks the prints could appeal to history-lovers and values the pair at £80 to £120.
And the finds just keep on coming.
-Hey, Jonty, look what I've found.
-That looks fun.
-It's sweet, isn't it?
-Isn't that nice? A little tray. Nice handles.
-It's got little notes in it that she always loved.
That's really interesting.
If we look at the inside here, I can see probably the reason why your mum either bought this
or acquired this tray, because of this inside decoration here.
This is inlay work and if you look closely, this is a stylised lyre
and other woodwind instruments that sort of knotted in between.
-Is that like a kind of old oboe or something?
-Yes, it does, doesn't it?
It does. I didn't notice those, actually, when I first found it.
And threaded through that is a sheet of music. Rather cleverly done.
Now, this tray would have been made about 100 years ago, but the style is 18th century.
-In the 18th century, all the inlay work would be hand done...
..whereas here, the vast majority of the work that you see here, it looks like inlay, but it's painted
or penned on, so all these little notes, that's brushwork rather than inlay,
so this oval tray, the shape of it,
the banding around the side is very typical, again,
of furniture of the 18th century, but it's all a revival.
-So this is an Edwardian tray.
The other giveaway is that 18th-century trays tend to be bigger.
So something that we can put into the auction sale, obviously?
-Happy for that.
Will we're not looking at a vast fortune, but it's still lovely,
decorative. The trade always wants something like this.
We're looking at £30 to maybe £50.
£30 sounds rather cheap for such a beautifully crafted item.
I hope the bidders like it as much as Doreen once did and we can reach the upper end of its estimate.
Louise is upstairs, searching through her mum's old cupboards and discovers an impressive collection
of hats, some of them by milliner, Stephen Jones.
I've heard how particular Doreen was about her appearance and Jonty thinks
this rather splendid collection could fetch upwards of £80.
We're making good progress towards the £1,000 that the sisters plan to donate to the school.
While Nicki leafs through her mum's book collection and Louise and Jonty
continue their search, I want to find out more about Doreen's legacy to the local community.
I wanted to ask you more about your mother's involvement with this school.
How did that come about?
I believe a clergyman friend of hers introduced the idea to her. I think he sort of talked her into it.
I'm not quite sure how long she was a governor for
before she became chair of governors, but boy, oh, boy, when she took over...
She basically got rid of the headmaster that was there at the time and hired the new headmaster.
So just what kind of school was it?
It was a terrible failing school when she took over and she whipped that school right into shape.
So she got an enormous amount of personal satisfaction from it?
Oh, she absolutely loved that job. That's all she talked about.
She was passionate about that school and when she took over,
3% pass rate GCSEs, this year, 100% pass rate,
plus every sixth-former got a place at university and one actually got a place in Oxford.
That's the first time that's ever happened.
OK, that's all very well, but we're never going to get this job finished
if we don't go do some more rummaging, so come on!
I get the feeling
Doreen wasn't the only one who could be described as determined!
Upstairs, Louise is refusing to give up on the search for valuables.
She decides to send her mum's old chair off to auction.
Its ornate tapestry covering is in superb condition,
but it's a modern reproduction of a French-style chair
so Jonty values it accordingly at £60 to £80.
And, lurking amongst the mass of china,
he makes a discovery that could be the one we've all been hoping for.
-Guys, you have to stop what you're doing here because I have found a really rare item.
Look at this beautiful bowl. This is quite...
You know, I'm gobsmacked, I really am! I really am gobsmacked.
-This is a rare bowl that I'm looking at here.
-Did you know this was special?
-I knew that that was a loved piece, but now my heart's racing!
-Well, it is very exciting.
This is a bowl that was made in Worcester,
but made a long time ago in the Worcester factory. About 1770.
And we have the mark on the underside here.
-Do you see this square under-glaze blue mark?
-This under-glaze blue mark was used by the factory all the way up until 1785.
But it's distinctively Worcester.
If you see the blue, particularly, that is in the style of fish scales
which was very typical, a decorative mark that they used.
They were copying factories like Sevres and Chelsea,
but at the time, at the time when this bowl was made,
they were producing the finest porcelain the country was producing
and that's why so many people collect Worcester of this period.
But there's a little bit of a problem that we have on the other side.
It looks perfect,
but there's a slightly different colour.
There's a bit of a shadow there.
-Now, I think that that's restoration.
-If you turn it on the other side too, can you see a slightly different colour...
-Oh, yes, yes.
..to the inside there? Now, if this was in good condition, and I don't
believe that it is in perfect condition, at auction, this should sell for in excess of £1,000.
But with restoration,
I believe this to be more like the £500 mark.
-That's not too bad, is it?
-No, it's fantastic.
-Yeah? You'd better tell Louise about it.
-Go and tell her that we've made a very interesting find.
Hi! I think you can stop rummaging now, my dear.
-Ah, the bowl.
I got very, very excited, but I think I've spotted a bit of restoration,
so we are still, hopefully, looking around £500 at the moment.
Wow, that's fantastic.
It's a very positive way to end the day, actually, and what a day it's been!
Honestly, I think we've heard more interesting stories
about a more colourful character than I've ever heard before! It's been fascinating.
-At the start of the day, we were saying that you wanted to raise £1,000...
..to help the school that your mother did so much for and that meant so much to her.
Well, even with the damaged bowl, we reckon that you will, in fact,
at the auction make £1,380.
-Yeah? Is that OK?
-The school will be thrilled with that.
We've had a fascinating day in Bethnal Green hearing all about a quite remarkable woman.
And didn't she have an eye for collectables!
Heading off to auction, we have the highly unusual collection
of decorative ostrich eggs.
Who knows what someone might pay for this quirky lot,
but we're hoping it'll be at least £80.
The beautiful hand-painted fan that survived intact
for over two centuries.
It's a work of art and deserves to reach its £200 estimate.
And, of course, the incredible 18th-century Worcester plate.
Jonty was rendered almost speechless by its rarity
and there's every chance
his estimate could be blown clean out of the water.
Still to come on Cash In The Attic, there's division in the ranks.
I'm going to feel positive. I'm going to send out positive vibes.
I don't know, I'm feeling sort of either way on this one.
It's a rollercoaster ride, but all is not lost.
And does Doreen's spirit live on?
-She is here.
-She's definitely here.
And she's cross!
Find out when the final hammer falls.
It's a couple of weeks since we were with Nicki and Louise at their mother's home
in Bethnal Green, and I have to say it was one of the most fascinating days of rummaging I've ever had.
Now, remember they want to raise £1,000 for the school
that meant so much to their mother,
so let's hope the bidders here at Chiswick Auction Rooms
in west London really are going to do her memory proud when her items go under the hammer.
Now, Jonty always has an eye
for the out-of-the-ordinary and he's headed straight for our star item.
Since the rummage, he's had time to do a bit more research about it.
-Oh, there you are.
-Still admiring my lovely bowl.
-Oh, the bowl. Oh.
This bowl is exquisite.
-We were worried about the damage.
-Did you get a second opinion?
Well, I've had a second opinion, yes, and I've talked to the guys here and they think
that my initial gut reaction of £500 might even be too high, so we're looking at more like £300 to £500.
It's simply because, who wants a damaged bowl?
Oh, well, hopefully, somebody does!
-Well, I do, too.
-Because we've got other items.
The ostrich eggs have been split up. They're not in one lot.
-Do you remember that lovely painted ostrich egg?
So they're being sold individually?
-So many great items.
-Yeah. Let's go and see if the girls have arrived.
-I am. No more damage!
No. OK, here we go.
It's disappointing that the Worcester bowl
hasn't turned out to be worth more,
so let's hope Nicki and Louise aren't too deflated before we even start the day.
-Hi! How are you?
-Good. How you're you doing?
-Nice to see you again.
-We had such fun!
-It was fun.
-Yeah, a really good day.
And you've got the lovely egg.
-The auctioneer's split up the ostrich collection.
Now, that lovely one you've got in your hand will be sold separately
and all the others will be in a different lot.
They'll get more money that way, so that's good news for us.
OK. Good, wonderful.
Is there any item that's really tugging at your heartstrings a bit?
I'm fine, but you're a little bit unsure about the hats, aren't you?
I'm never going to wear the hats. I don't really want to drag
the hats halfway across the world to put in a cupboard.
I'd rather somebody else had them and loved them,
but it's still quite an emotional thing, watching the hats go.
My mother loved the hats. My mother wore the hats.
This is always the dilemma people have.
They might love the object and it has so much association,
but what are you going to do with it?
I think your mother would prefer that the school benefit.
-Shall we get a place? The auction's about to start.
-Put it down carefully!
-Yes, don't break the egg!
Go and get a spot.
So high hopes for the bowl despite the damage.
It's understandable that Nicki and Louise are sad
to part with their mother's designer hats, they are spectacular,
but if the sisters are going to reach that target of £1,000,
they'll just have to let those hats go to a new home.
If, like Nicki and Louise, you're thinking of heading to auction, remember that commission
and other charges may be added to your bill, so do check the details with your auction house.
The sale is about to start and we all get into position for the opening lot of the day.
There's nothing like the excitement of your first time at an auction.
One of the three eggs, the magnificent hand-painted example gets us started.
Let's hope this sets the bar high for the rest of the day.
This is my favourite of your ostrich eggs, actually.
This lovely painted one. I think it's gorgeous, I really do.
-So, we want 80 to 120.
-£80 to £120.
-I've got to start this no less than £60. £60, start me.
Bid me £60. No bids of 60, I'll move on.
-No interest at £60.
-That's bad news.
-That's not a good start.
Well, there just wasn't a market for our decorated egg.
The other eggs will be coming up later.
Maybe the engravings of these London landmarks
that Jonty valued at £80 to £120 will ignite some interest.
£70, start me.
£60 then, let's see where it goes.
No bids of £60. I'm forced to pass it. No interest at £60.
This is not on, is it?
-She's in the room.
-She's in the room.
-She's here, she's mad!
-She's cross with you! Oh, girls, you look really shocked!
I am! I'm a bit freaked out.
-She is here.
-She's definitely here.
And she's cross!
With such a slow start to the day, it's no surprise that the sisters
are wondering whether they should be selling
their mother's belongings at all,
but Nicki and Louise are sure that it's all for a cause their mother was passionate about,
so let's hope the Staffordshire cow creamer stirs up some interest.
It's a lovely object. I put £80 to £120 on it.
-Let's hope we can sell it.
-Somebody wants it!
£60. No bids at £60.
Am I going to pass this lot, then with no interest at £60?
£40. Am I to take it that I can record a bit of £40?
I don't know if I can sell it. £40, I'm bid. 45, there. 50. Five.
60. Five. 70.
You know you want it.
£70, I'm bid, to my left. At £70. That's more like it.
I'll take five elsewhere.
Is that the money, then? At £70 and selling.
We got that away. Sold.
Sold. We've started!
Thank goodness, a sale at last! But just under Jonty's lowest estimate.
It seems the bidders here only have eyes for our quirkier items.
Next up is the exquisite hand-painted fan.
It's in absolutely perfect condition and might just be the piece to get hearts racing.
I've got a good feeling about this and Jonty thinks we can get £200
to £400 for it, but has he got the measure of the crowd here today?
And for this little lot, I'm already bid at £65.
I'll take 70 in the room. At £65. I'm bid 70. 75. 80.
-95. 100. 110. 120? At £110.
Need 120, now.
At £110. Commission bidder at £110 and selling. Are we all done?
-Oh, I was hoping for so much more than that, but it's sold.
It's a sale, but well below Jonty's lowest estimate.
We really do need to drum up some interest to get
anywhere near our target of £1,000 and help Doreen's school.
Let's hope that there are some ceramics lovers hiding in the woodwork here today
and that Jonty's instincts are spot on with the next lot, the lovely hand-painted jardiniere.
OK, so you want quite a large sum, 80 to 120.
-Well, it's very decorative. I just hope somebody else will appreciate it in the auction room.
£50 and see where it goes. £50 to start me.
No bids at £50.
There's no bidders.
No interest at 50? Well below estimate.
-No bidders at all.
-What's going on?
They've got no taste whatsoever!
Well, I think even Jonty's finding it hard to hide his frustration.
It's beginning to look
as if Nicki and Louise will be taking more of their mum's collectables home
than they'd thought, but soldier on they must,
and next is the contemporary glass bowls that Jonty priced at £50 to £70.
Let's hope these colourful pieces will raise a few hands.
£30, to start me. £30, I'm bid.
-Thank God for that.
At 32. 35. 38. At £35, then.
At £35. I'll take 38 now. All done at £35 and selling?
-We got a sale.
'Well, it's a result,'
but well under Jonty's lowest estimate.
We've had a shocking start to the auction
in spite of Doreen's unusual and fascinating art pieces.
With so many items not selling at all,
it's not hard for me to do the sums and work out how we've done so far.
I hope this isn't an omen for the rest of the day.
-We're halfway through. It's been a bit of a rocky ride, hasn't it?
-I would say so, yeah.
-I haven't kept a tally. Has anyone kept a tally of what we've done?
-I have, yes.
-So, we wanted £1,000 so you can give it to the school that your mother did so much for.
Obviously, we'd hoped to be at £500 by now. I'm afraid we're not.
-I think we're about £25 at this point, aren't we?
-That's better than I thought, actually.
That's better than I thought.
But there are some big items to come. We've got the Worcester bowl, which might sell.
We've got the other ostrich eggs. All right, I think we deserve a break, don't you?
A breather and I want to have a look around the auction room.
Oh, he always does this. Come on.
A general auction like this is an ideal place
to find valuable antiques on sale for reasonable prices.
And Jonty comes across a collection that we have, shall we say, mixed feelings about?
Hiya. What've you found?
I have found a whole sea of ceramics here.
This is a massive set, but I want your honest opinion
about what you think about the colour and the design.
I tell you, I think it's hideous.
I do! It's just not my colour, it really isn't. Do you like it?
I have to say that I'm not sure whether I do or I don't, but I tell you why I find it fascinating.
This whole set here was made in 1952 by the fabulous Wedgwood company.
Now, before the Second World War, certainly in the 1930s,
you had two different designs going on in the ceramics world in the UK.
-There was the Art-Deco line, which was the new, fashionable...
You had the Clarice Cliff look.
-But also running parallel, at the same time, was a very chintzy look, lots of flowers...
..which were a continuation of the Victorian era, the Edwardian period.
But this is a completely different look again.
This is the ceramics world reinventing itself after the Second World War.
OK. So what do you reckon it might sell for?
It's still a bargain. This whole collection here is estimated at around £100 in the auction sale,
but the great thing for me is that it's now being appreciated.
The auction catalogue estimated the set at £80 to £120.
They sold later for £85, so someone likes them.
We retake our positions for the next sale of the day -
these wonderful original framed maps of east London which date back to the 18th century.
Jonty valued them at £100 to £150.
I've got two bids on this. I'll start it with me at £130.
I'll take 140 in the room.
As £150 with me, then. I'll take 160 now.
-At £150 on commissions.
Are we all done? Last chance of selling at £150, then.
Fantastic, and a much-needed boost to our funds.
Let's see if we can keep up the momentum with the next piece,
the reproduction tapestry chair.
Jonty thinks we could get £60 to £80 for it.
Well, I'm starting here with a bid of £65. I'll take 70 in the room for the smart chair.
At £65. 70. 75. 80. £80 I've got. At £80.
85 beats the... Beats at 85. 90.
All commissions meeting at £80, to my left.
I'll take... Sorry, £85 to my left. I'll take 90 now.
-£85, that's great!
-Are we all done? And selling them, 173, £85.
-Well done. Yes!
-How does that feel?
£5 over Jonty's top estimate.
At last, things seem to be picking up in the saleroom.
And next under the hammer is the item we're all counting on.
With any luck, the distinctive 18th-century Worcester bowl
will turn everybody's heads.
Jonty's certain that somebody will be happy
to part with £300 to £500 for it.
I'm feeling nervous because we really need this to sell.
It's your star item. It's the bowl, the Worcester bowl.
-But it is damaged.
Still, £300 would be very handy, wouldn't it?
It would buy a lot of exercise books,
-How are the vibes, girls?
I'm going to feel positive. I'm going to send out positive vibes.
I don't know, I'm feeling sort of either way on this one.
OK. Let's see if we can sell it. Fingers crossed.
Start me at £300, please. £300 to start me.
-It's not going to go, is it?
-No interest at £300.
We'll pass the lot. No interest at 300.
No bids at £300, then.
So, we won't be giving the school £1,000, then.
-Silence has fallen over the room.
-Yes, there is a silence.
-It's all gone deadly quiet. Unsold.
Well, there are stunned faces all round.
That really is a huge disappointment for us all.
We're going to need
a dramatic turn in Nicki and Louise's fortunes
if they're to donate £1,000 to the school now.
Can those ostrich eggs possibly do it for them?
£30 to start me. £30 I'm bid.
Take two. At £30. A maiden bid at £30, then.
I'm selling at £30. All done.
You don't have egg on your face.
Not bad, but it hasn't done enough to rescue us.
We have to make more sales, and quick!
We still have the Edwardian inlaid tray that Louise considered keeping.
No chance of that at this stage. We have to sell everything we can.
It's up next, and Jonty thinks we can get £30 to £50 for it.
Every little bit helps.
-How do you feel about selling this?
-I quite like the tray.
I thought I might keep it, so I just hope it sells well.
-What about you, Nicki?
-I'm happy for her to take it home.
She can serve tea on it and think of me and my mother!
Well, I priced it to sell, so it may not be coming back with you.
-Here it comes.
£40 start for the tray. At £30, then.
-At £30 I'm bid. Take two. At £30 in front of me I'm bid.
Take two now. Still ridiculously cheap. At £30.
No competition, though. 32. 35. 38.
And 40. 42.
At £40, then. In front of me at £40.
-All done, then, at £40. 377, £40.
-Well, that was cheap.
-It's on the nose, but, yeah...
-Are you happy?
A great result, bang in the middle of Jonty's estimate,
but we need some even better sales if we're to get anywhere near
supporting their mother's cherished cause.
Maybe the silk butterfly pictures will get a bidding war going.
£50 to start me for the butterflies. £40. £40 I'm bid.
Take five now. 45. 50.
-Five. 60. Five. At £60.
-That's good, that's fine.
-I'll take five now.
Is that enough at £60? Are we all done?
Selling at £60, then. 589.
-She says it's not enough.
-It's not enough, come on, more!
We have just one more lot to sell in the quest to help Doreen's school.
Let's hope that this amazing collection of designer hats
leave the saleroom in style.
Well, we're hoping now to sell your mother's hats.
-I know you feel quite strongly about these, don't you, Nicki?
I do love the hats, I have to say.
It was quite difficult for me to give them up, but they don't suit me. I'm never going to wear them.
I can't drag them half the way across the world, so it's best that we let them go together, really.
-Are you all right about selling these?
-Yeah, I think so.
It's a splendid collection. We're hoping for how much?
-£80 to £120.
-Hard to value, really.
They are, but they've got great designer names
-and very good quality, so...
-Let's see what happens.
-Here we go.
And for the ladies, dress hats. I've got four commission bids.
-Listen to this!
-Four commission bids.
And at for 549 here, starting with at £125. I'll take 130 in the room.
-I'm bid 130. 135. 140.
145. 150. 155. 160.
£155 with me, then. I'll take 160 now. 160 there.
It beats commissions. I'll take 170. £160 in the room. It beats commissions by a fiver.
£160. All done...
170 there. 180. £170. The backroom bidder at 170, in time.
All done and selling. 180 back in.
-They are amazing hats.
Says no at £200. At £190, then.
Are we all done and selling at 190 and done?
-That was important to you, wasn't it?
A well-deserved outcome, way over Jonty's top estimate.
It was a tough start and an emotional day for everyone,
but what a great end to the auction.
The hats really were the main attraction, but how far off our target are we?
Well, we've come to the end of what's been a really very difficult day, hasn't it?
-Much more difficult than I anticipated.
-It's been a real sweat.
I thought this was going to be a very fun, successful day.
Instead, I'm dripping with sweat and I'm exhausted.
-Yeah. I'm exhausted, as well.
-It's quite draining.
-Tense and dramatic.
-OK, we were hoping for £1,000 for your school.
-You won't be surprised to know we haven't quite made £1,000 but you have made £770.
-That's pretty good!
-Not bad at all!
-That is amazing, actually. It's a lot more than I thought.
-Fantastic. Thank you so much.
-Not at all.
It's just a few weeks after the auction.
Today, Louise has come to the Sir John Cass Red Coat School in Stepney, east London.
Their mother devoted so much of her time and energy to ensuring its future.
I'm here today, unfortunately by myself, because my sister's back in New York, but she is here in spirit,
but I'm here to give the money that we raised at the auction.
The headmaster, Haydn Evans, is very happy with the donation
and a Doreen Perry prize for literacy is being set up.
It will help secure Doreen's memory at the school and should inspire many pupils for years to come.
Both me and my sister were just thrilled that my mum's stuff
made some money and that we can give it to the school. That's what she would have wanted.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
Jennie Bond and Jonty Hearnden meet two women at the home of their late mother in east London. They want to honour her work as a governor at a local school, by establishing a prize fund in her memory. Will they find sufficient items to sell in order to raise the target of £1,000?