Antiques series. Joan Cook and her daughter Gemma are raising funds for the London children's hospital that treated one of the girls in Joan's Brownie pack.
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Welcome to the show that gives people a helping hand by rooting out their unwanted antiques
and collectables and taking them to auction.
Today we're going to meet a mother and daughter
who want their cash in the attic to make a real difference.
Coming up on Cash In The Attic... we're impressed by a gorgeous gown.
-Look, doesn't she look great?!
-Like some Hollywood film star there.
-You really do.
-That's amazing, look at that.
Our expert makes me an offer I CAN refuse.
I have a nice little engagement ring there.
Oh, Paul, I couldn't, I'm married!
And at the auction, could the excitement prove too much?
I thought you were going to go right through the ceiling! You were going up and up and up!
I got really excited, I'm afraid.
Find out when the hammer falls.
We're in Essex to meet a family who want the money
they raise at auction to fund a really special cause.
Joan Cook has lived in this impressive
and very comfortable home with her husband, Paul, for over 20 years.
It's where she can regularly be found enjoying a relaxing spot of yoga with her daughter, Gemma.
Now retired, Joan is a very active lady who also invests
a lot of time with her local Brownie pack.
It's because of one of her beloved Brownies that we're here today.
So while our expert, Paul, heads off to start the hunt for collectables,
I'm meeting the ladies of the house.
Hello. I'm interrupting your breakfast.
-I was just going to have a slice of toast.
-Good for you. Joan?
Often I find it's the daughter or the son of the house who's called us in.
-Am I right, or whose idea was it?
-You are right.
-Am I? Am I honestly?
That is so common! Yeah.
I decided - and Mum had wanted to do it,
but I just had to set the wheels in motion.
-So how did you feel when you knew we were coming?
-Oh, good. That's all right.
Because obviously we want the money to go towards
the Great Ormond Street Hospital.
Oh, I was told there was a very worthwhile cause but I didn't know what.
-One of our Brownies, she was diagnosed with a brain tumour,
so she is in there at the moment, and we were hoping that the money
could help that particular ward, which is Parrot Ward,
do something or buy something for the kids, maybe, you know.
How much money do you think we might be able to raise?
About £400. If we got anywhere near there we would be really pleased.
As much as possible, really, would be fantastic.
-Got some good pieces?
-I hope so.
I think Paul has already made a start so shall we go and find him?
-Gemma, would you start rummaging elsewhere?
This sizeable property doesn't appear to be overflowing with pieces,
but if there's one man who can sniff out the finest auction-friendly items,
it's our expert, Paul Hayes.
-I said he would make a start. Here's Joan.
I found a fantastic pair of vases. I love these.
-Do you like those?
-I find the colour a bit subdued for me.
-You'd never guess!
-I quite like subdued colours.
Hence I like them.
The Victorians were all for subdued colours,
they had very dark parlours and rooms, so this would fit in,
add a bit of colour to it, and what I love is it's very clever.
While the clay was in its biscuit form,
they'd wrap around lace doilies or tablecloths
and that would leave this impression in the surface.
Isn't that fantastic? Very clever.
The artist would come and incisely decorate it so it was all done by hand.
If you looked at the pair, would there be individual differences?
Sometimes. They do tend to follow a rigid pattern.
-They'll have almost identical patterns.
-Where do they come from?
These come from my husband's grandmother. So when were they dated?
-They're dated back...
-You're looking at 1880, 1900, dead on the turn of the century.
-Nine times out of ten you find these with chips and damage.
-No, they are in excellent condition.
So what we've got are two very attractive vases,
a popular style at the moment, they are by a very good factory
and potentially they could be by a very good artist.
So value-wise, I'd like to say a couple of hundred.
If I said £150 to £250 as an auction estimate, they could do very well.
Let's get them there in one piece.
That is a big chunk towards a very worthwhile cause.
And a great start to our rummage.
It's not long before Joan manages to unearth our next likely lot
in the shape of this 1950s tea set which was a gift from a neighbour.
It hails from the German state of Bavaria, which has produced
quality porcelain for hundreds of years.
Gilt examples like these can attract attention at auction
and while it's rather an acquired taste, it's in reasonable condition.
So Paul values it at a modest £20 to £30.
Meanwhile, Joan's daughter Gemma
is dressed to impress.
-What do we think about this little number?
-Look at you! Wow! Look.
-Doesn't she look great?
-Like some Hollywood film star.
That is amazing. Look at that.
Thank you. This is a dress that belonged to my great-aunt
and she was very glam and into things like this, going to casinos
and used to give certain gifts to my nan so we've got this.
-Was it made by her, do you think?
-She used to have it made by special tailors and apparently
-she had a fabulous wardrobe and this is one of the relics.
I don't know if it's worth anything.
I must say it looks fantastic on you. You look a million dollars.
But trying to put a value on that is very difficult.
-You can't allow for the amount of hours that's gone into making that.
And also fashion is extremely fickle -
what is in fashion at one moment is out of fashion.
You said it might be sort of handmade.
-You wouldn't know who made it? It wasn't like a couture?
Jacques Heim, Paris and London.
To me that looks like the 1950s, 1960s, very Audrey Hepburn,
that's very much of the moment.
You could be looking at £50 to £100 there.
We could certainly put it into the auction for that
if you decide you want to sell it.
-That would be a great contribution so...possibly.
Have a think about it. It's a fantastic thing. You look beautiful in it.
Well, she looks beautiful in anything, let's face it! OK.
-Go and get that dress off and we'll carry on rummaging.
So while Gemma gets changed, we get back to work.
Before long, Paul spots this brass barley twist lantern.
It's dated around 1920 and it belonged to Joan's aunt.
Lamps like these aren't uncommon, but this is a hefty piece
and we hope it'll catch a bidder's eye at £20 to £30.
While Paul continues his search for collectables,
I'm keen to hear a little more about Grace the Brownie
and about Joan and Gemma's fascinating family history.
-This one's Auntie Wyn, is it?
-That's Auntie Wyn.
This is the glamorous lady who had the glamorous gold frock?
The infamous gold frock, yes. She is the one.
She really was a party person.
I would love to know a little bit more about Grace.
It's one of our little Brownies, she's nine years of age,
an adorable little character, really a sweetie,
who's been diagnosed with a brain tumour,
and hopefully she is on the road to recovery,
and she's in a ward, the Parrot Ward, which is in
Great Ormond Street Hospital.
-What is little Grace like as a little girl?
-She's a bundle of fun.
Her mum will say this - she's a cheeky little pickle, you know.
She's a real sweetie, yeah.
It's good to know we can contribute in some small way
towards the wonderful work at Great Ormond Street.
Luckily, it's not long before I unearth yet another glamorous find.
This collection of costume jewellery was handed down
to Joan's husband, Paul, from his grandmother.
It's a varied lot with pieces dating from throughout the 20th century.
There's always interest in jewellery -
not only from specialised dealers,
but from bidders who just fancy jazzing up an outfit -
so Paul estimates the collection at £30 to £40.
Now, here we are. There's a nice old watch here.
So is that one of yours?
-No, this is actually my husband's auntie's.
-Perhaps you can tell me more.
-I shall look at it. First thing is
this was retailed by Garrard's,
the Queen's jewellers, so that is quite a high-end jewellery.
Let's have a look here.
It looks like a lady's gold cocktail watch.
These were very popular in the 1950s, '50s and '60s...
so would that fit in?
Yes, it would.
You've got a very good maker -
-have you heard of Longines?
They're a fantastic Swiss manufacturer,
still making watches today, and they're on a par with Rolex, Omega.
Very good quality. So that's in its favour.
-Gold is doing extremely well.
People are taking their money out of banks and putting it into gold and silver.
-If I said £100, maybe £150...?
-Oh, yeah! Excellent.
I think if someone takes a shine to it, if you find a lady that
goes out enjoying a few cocktails, you might get a few more.
OK, so that's £100. That's great.
Let's have a look at what else we can find.
A decent estimate for an elegant timepiece.
I wonder if the bidders will find it attractive when it goes under the hammer?
80 for the gold watch, £90, £100. 10, I'm bid for it - at 20, 30...
Before we know it,
we're almost halfway through today's rummage with Joan and Gemma.
But there is still plenty of work to do if we are to hit that target of £400.
Luckily, Gemma seems to have quite a knack for spotting antiques and collectables.
She's drawn to this 1920s oak arch-top mantel clock, which
was a wedding present for Joan's mother-in-law almost 80 years ago.
First developed in France in the 1750s
when they were often highly ornate,
mantel clocks became popular during the 19th century
and can still be found in countless homes throughout Britain.
We're hoping someone will give this simple
but attractive example a good home, with an estimate of £20 to £30.
And Gemma's found another fascinating family heirloom.
Paul, what do you think of this?
I spotted that. What a fantastic thing! Look at that.
-Do you know what it is?
-Possibly for displaying cakes and things.
You're almost exactly right. It's called a biscuit box,
and the idea is that in here would be your biscuits.
When you go back to the 19th century and before, lots of the biscuits
and cakes were individually made. People used to sell one chocolate
in a box, it was a very expensive and romantic thing to have.
So to have a large biscuit box on your sideboard
was a sign of real quality.
They are quite rare things. It should open almost like a butterfly.
Does it open up? Look at that! Isn't that absolutely beautiful?
It's very pretty.
The idea is that this would display your cakes,
if you like, but your biscuits - and your biscuits would sit
in the bottom here, you'd take one out,
put it on the top, all the crumbs
would drop through the grille, and you would have a crumb-free biscuit.
-Have you ever used this? You don't remember it as a child?
It's my great-great-grandmother's,
and everyone in the family hated it so it was left as purely ornamental.
Don't forget, this would be very highly polished - people would say,
"Look at the size of that biscuit box!
"They can afford biscuits." Is it sentimental at all to you?
Well, everyone in my dad's family hated it.
-They hated it?
-Absolutely hated it.
-Why did they hate it?
-I've no idea. It looks like doily-esque inside.
Well, it's for show, it's a showy thing,
-and perhaps you're not a showy...
-We're not very showy.
So value-wise - it wants
a little bit of work, it wants to be re-silvered.
I mean, if I was to say...
-sort of £80 to £150?
-How does that sound?
-It's a deal.
Well, that's a good result.
But time is moving on and there's still rummaging to do.
Gemma's eye for an investment is as keen as ever, as she spots
this brooch which belonged to her grandmother.
Dating from the 19th century, it's made of 15 carat gold
and is set with a single semi-precious garnet stone.
With an estimate of £30 to £50,
it should attract quite a bit of interest when it gets to auction.
Paul, I've just come across this very pretty little ring.
Isn't that beautiful? Was that something you've bought?
No, this is from a relative, this is from an old auntie.
Well, I can tell it's diamonds straight away.
-They're called a cluster ring.
A cluster of diamonds in the shape of a daisy.
If that WAS one big diamond,
you'd be talking quite a lot of money, a couple of carat in weight.
This is quite an unusual one. It's 20 carat, can you see that?
Yeah, so that means it's possibly been made as a designer piece.
Sometimes people would bring in bits of gold that they no longer need,
-and had the shank made from that.
Well, wedding and engagement rings
are worn on the third finger of the left hand,
and that goes back to the Roman times.
This is called the "venus amoris" - they reckon there was a vein that
ran from this finger directly to the heart.
-Isn't that lovely? Well, it's a perfect start -
-it's very Art Deco, 1920, 1930. Would that fit in?
-Yes, it would.
If I said at least £100, maybe £150, how does that sound?
Fantastic. Absolutely brilliant.
Great stuff. Jennie, Gemma -
we have found a lovely engagement ring here.
I couldn't, I'm married!
-It's lovely, isn't it?
-Isn't it beautiful?
-Is it real diamond?
-Real diamonds, 20 carat and it could do quite well.
-At least £100.
-Have you enjoyed yourself?
-Yeah, it's been fantastic. Thank you both.
Based on Paul's lowest estimates,
I'm going to tell you how much we think we might make.
£400 is what you're looking for for your charity, Great Ormond Street.
We reckon - with that ring, and any luck -
That would be fantastic.
Well, I've enjoyed spending time with Joan and Gemma,
and I've a good feeling about some of the pieces we've unearthed today.
I'm sure that pair of subtly decorated Victorian Doulton vases
will appeal to the bidders at £150 to £250.
Gemma modelled that elegant 1950s dress,
which belonged to her great-aunt.
At £50 to £100, we think it will bring some glamour to the saleroom.
And at £80 to £150, let's hope that Victorian shell-shaped biscuit box
will prove very tempting for someone on the day.
Still to come on Cash in the Attic - Joan's eager to get a sale...
You're getting very excited, standing on tiptoes.
I can't help it! I can't help it.
..and there's some really good news for the girls.
Hooray! Well done!
Oh crikey, that's fantastic!
Be there when the hammer falls.
Well, it's been just over a month now since we were with Joan and Gemma in Essex,
and today we've brought everything we found here to Tring Market Auctions in Hertfordshire.
There seem to be plenty of people gathering here, so we're hoping they've all got deep pockets
when Joan's items go under the hammer, so we can spread a little sunshine.
Any money we make today is of course going to Great Ormond Street Hospital,
where one of Joan's Brownie pack recently underwent treatment.
Fingers crossed our pieces get plenty of interest.
And Joan's already here with Gemma.
We've got some great selling items -
I love the biscuit box, your little diamond ring -
but just for my own satisfaction really
I'd like to put a reserve on your Longines watch.
Because we've got such a good cause here today I wouldn't like to
see that go for any less than £100. Is that all right?
-We go with you, you're the expert.
As the auction gets started, first under the hammer
is that rather striking mid-20th- century Bavarian gilt tea set.
Tell me a bit about it. I don't remember where it's from.
This is from my grandmother, and I think it's been around
since pre-'60s, I think.
A very ornate and attractive piece. We're keeping our fingers crossed.
-She's a good saleswoman!
-"Neat and attractive piece."
Am I on the shopping channel(?)
What about £30 for that? £20 bid,
-20 I'm bid for it...
If there's no further bid, I'm going to have to sell it for £20.
Well, not quite what the glittering start we would have liked.
I wonder if our next lot
will have the bidders as full of admiration as Paul was on the rummage.
OK, one of my favourite items out of all your bits
and pieces was that fantastic dress! Which was well modelled, wasn't it?
Somebody was asking me about it before,
and I said it was a "Jackie Hames" - it's not, it's a Jacques Heim.
She corrected me on the pronunciation.
-It was a woman?
-This is good.
The cocktail dress, what about that one?
-I think possibly £50 for that one? £30, £20...
Come along, girls, you must have got SOMEWHERE to go in this...?
-Ohhh, it's going to be sold!
At £20 and 5. 20, it's going to be sold...
That's it, I'm afraid, for £20.
-Maybe you should have worn it here.
-Would have made all the difference.
A disappointing result for the dress.
It just goes to show if the right bidder isn't in the room,
you won't get the price you want.
Next up is that 1920s brass lantern lamp, which was
handed down by Joan's husband's grandmother.
With such a modest start to the auction,
let's hope it brightens things up a little.
What about £30 for that one? Anybody got £20 for the lantern?
A tenner for it, then? We will have to sell it.
Tenner, 12, 15, 18, £20 now.
-That's more like it.
-Up, up, up.
30 for the lantern and I shall sell it for £30. Thank you very much.
-You're getting very excited. You keep standing on tiptoes.
-I can't help it!
First time I've been. I find it more exciting.
-I love it.
A pleasing result.
But we're going to have to do better
if we're to reach that target of £400.
Fingers crossed that silver Victorian biscuit box
will serve us well.
Are we going to start at 50? We are. 60, 70, I'm bid. 80 I'm bid.
100 in the middle, £100 and 10...
110. 120 at the very back, 130, 140.
150, sir. 150...
160 at the back. 70? 170.
180 at the back. 190?
No? 180 then I sell...
I thought you were going to go through the ceiling -
-you were going up and up and up...
-I would. Got really excited.
It just goes to show - rarity and quality, that's the thing.
That's more like it.
A terrific £30 over our upper estimate
puts us well on the road to our target.
The gold brooch belonged to Joan's mother-in-law.
It's set with a garnet, the birthstone of January,
which was her birthday.
I wonder if it will give US cause for celebration.
I think nowadays people tend to be more for the white gold or the silver colours...
-Yes, I think you're right.
-But we're looking for £30 upwards.
What about £40 for that one, 30, £20 I'm bid for it then...
20 I'm bid for it.
22, 5, 8, at £30 now, in the middle for £30...
£30. That is the bottom of the estimate.
-Is that all right with you?
-Oh, yeah, yeah.
It's all about fashion, apparently. I'll get there one day!
Perhaps brooches just aren't in vogue at the moment.
Hopefully, the jewellery collection coming up later will do better.
-You're enjoying it.
-Really am. First time, so it's great.
Your target's £400 - at the halfway point, you've made £280.
-You're ahead of the game.
-That is brilliant.
If YOU want to have a go at selling some unwanted belongings,
remember auction houses do charge various fees such as commission.
Your local saleroom will advise you on any extra costs.
As the auction continues, it's time for that
Art Deco diamond cluster ring.
Could this be the piece that really sparkles for us today?
It's very traditional. The Art Deco style's quite pleasing.
It's called a daisy ring in the way that the jewels are set out.
-It's very pretty.
-And it's 20 carat, which is unusual.
50 I'm bid, 60 I'm bid, 70, 80, 90,
-100 I'm bid.
-There you go.
-110 I'm bid, 110...
20, sir? 120 I'm bid.
40 he says - 140, and 50 I'm bid. Madam...?
Sir has it, then, I'm selling to Sir for £150, then... Thank you.
Hooray! Well done!
-Oh crikey, that's fantastic!
-Would it be right to say you're pleased?
Well, that really is a fabulous result.
And it is so great to see Joan and Gemma enjoying themselves.
But will they still be smiling
after their collection of costume jewellery has gone under the hammer?
30 to 40 quid, and it's a good selection, a good job lot.
What shall we say...? £30, 20 I'm bid, 20 - and 5 anywhere?
£20 and 5, the whole boxful?
At £20, you've got them... 25 - you haven't any more.
30 I'm bid, and 5 now. I sell, at the very back, for £30.
Thank you very much.
Another lot to reach its bottom estimate,
and some more cash for Joan - which has to be a good thing.
OK, a real Art Deco clock now.
The golden age of clockwork clocks, 1920s, 1930s.
-We're looking between £20 and £30, it's a nice example.
What about £40 for it, 30? 20 I'm bid for it, am I?
20 I'm bid, and 2, 5, 8... 30.
-30, there you go.
£32 on my left, then - Sir in front has it for £32.
-It was the right TIME to sell it.
-He couldn't resist it!
Well, we'll have to forgive him
because £2 over his top estimate is a good result.
Hopefully there'll be no more puns with this gold Longines watch,
which Paul has suggested putting a reserve of £100 on.
I put this reserve on because I think it's worth every penny of £100
and it's such a good cause I want it to fetch that sort of price.
So if it doesn't sell here today
-you could sell it for the charity another time.
What about 80 for it? 80 I'm bid for that one...
£80 for the gold watch. £90, £100.
10 I'm bid for it, at 20 I'm bid, and 30?
£120 for the watch then, at £120...
-There you go.
-Is that all right?
A wonderful result.
And a reminder that a reserve price is always
worth considering for your more valuable items.
Now, Joan is very fond of our final lot.
I wonder if some healthy bidding will help us finish with a flourish.
Two lovely vases, your Doulton vases.
I rather rudely said they weren't my sort of bag,
they weren't my colour scheme... but they're worth a lot of money.
-You like them, don't you?
-I do. I think they are very attractive.
In the right place, I think they would look really good.
-I am sure you're right!
-I hope so.
-Looking at 150, around that sort of price.
-What about £150 for them?
£150 for them? 100 bid, then.
100 I'm bid for them, and 10, I have it.
120 I'm bid - are you 30, sir?
£130 we're bid now. £140...
-We're here. 140, we're there.
£150, £160. At £170 on the left...
-How much did you set it for?
They go on the left there for £170...
That was a bit scary, wasn't it?
Well, there we are.
Someone obviously agreed with you that they are beautiful pieces
and the colour scheme is just perfect.
And I'm more than happy to be proved wrong about those vases,
because that's a great amount to end with.
The big question now is how much have we made?
OK... Well, it went very well, didn't it?
Just the one mishap was the dress. Everything else went fine.
That was a bit of a disappointment.
We started out saying we would like £400, and it's all for the very good
cause of your charity, all for the Parrot Ward at Great Ormond Street.
It is, yeah.
Well, you HAVE made your target.
You've very nearly doubled it -
-you've got £782!
-Oh, that's brilliant! How much was that?
-782! Oh, well done, Paul.
-Well done to you.
Be careful with your arms - I think you've just bought something(!)
Joan's back with her Brownie pack in Essex,
and she knows that the £782 she made at auction will help
Great Ormond Street continue to make a big difference to children's lives.
The money's going to the Parrot Ward, where one of our Brownies had a stay
for quite a while, little Gracie, and now she's out and we thought
it would be rather a nice gesture if the money went towards that.
At the moment everything is absolutely brilliant for her -
she went to Great Ormond Street last Wednesday,
and I gather from the scan, things are all looking very good for her.
So it's fantastic news.
-Well done, well done, well done!
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
Joan Cook and her daughter Gemma are raising funds for the London children's hospital that treated one of the girls in Joan's Brownie pack. Jennie Bond and expert Paul Hayes are on hand to help search for collectibles to sell at auction.