Godfrey Cash in the Attic


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Godfrey

Antiques series. Solicitor Gwen Godfrey and her daughters Emma and Sara want to raise £1,000 towards their favourite charities and a family spa treat.


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Welcome to the show that finds those hidden antiques and collectables around your home,

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and then we take them to auction to sell.

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Now, the dilemma facing many families today

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is that a lot of these items are inherited.

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But the new generation, they're really not interested.

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They don't want them, they'd rather see them sold

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and the money spent on something else.

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And that's exactly what our family want to do today.

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Coming up today on Cash In The Attic,

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an engagement ring with a stunning set of diamonds.

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Look at the size of those stones! They're rocks, not stones!

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Could this dainty dish bring out Jonty's feminine side?

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-Is that sweet enough?

-Yeah!

-I think that really is sweet, don't you?

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And at the auction, we must try to keep our wits about us.

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-He missed one, I think.

-No, that was the buyer.

-Oh, it was?

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So stay alert until the final hammer falls.

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Today I've come to London

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to meet Gwen Godfrey and her two daughters.

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They're all looking forward to a day at the spa.

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Gwen's lived with her family

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in this elegant town house for 30 years.

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An Oxford-educated solicitor who specialises in business law,

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she grew up at a small village in South Wales.

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She met her husband Cliff at the law firm many years ago,

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but they've only been married for the last three.

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She has three stepchildren

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and two daughters from a previous marriage.

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Emma and Sara will be helping their mum

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sort through the family heirlooms here today as we raise funds

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for charity and their annual girls' day out.

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Of course, we need an antiques expert to help.

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But never mind, Jonty Hearnden will have to do.

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He can't wait to make a start in the lounge.

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-Ah, good morning!

-Morning!

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I always arrive at the right time,

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which is obviously time for tea, by the looks of it.

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Why have you decided to have a clear-out at this particular moment?

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Well, my parents died, and we had to clear their house,

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so we ended up finding lots of very interesting things.

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But our house is now

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full of a lot of things we can't realistically keep,

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so I thought it would be good to see if there were some things to sell.

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Right, OK. I've left Jonty upstairs. He's already having a look around.

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If there's anything you don't want to sell, just say. We're not here to clear the house!

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-So, what do you think of this idea?

-I thought she was slightly mad!

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But I was also quite excited,

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because we've got rather a lot of stuff in our house.

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Yeah, definitely. It definitely needs clearing out.

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So you'd like to clear a bit of a space.

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Now, have you any idea in your mind, Gwen,

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what money you want to raise and what to spend that on?

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-Well, it would be good to get about £1,000.

-Right.

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And I'd like to give some money to a charity for MS,

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because my father had MS.

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And my mother had postnatal depression,

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and I'd like to give something to a charity

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to look into helping people with depression.

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That's all wonderful, but are you keeping anything for yourself?

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Every year, we go off for a spa day,

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Emma, Sara, my stepdaughter Charlotte and I,

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so we'd like to put money towards a spa day.

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Normally it's Mum paying the balance,

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so I can't see this year being any different,

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unless you find us something really valuable,

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-which would be jolly good.

-That's where Jonty comes in!

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-So shall we go and find him? Come on!

-Yeah, OK.

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Jonty doesn't mess around.

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He's already on the scent of a good auction possibility.

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Ah, there you are, Jonty.

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-Oh, hi!

-I thought you were taking the place apart for a moment then.

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How about this? Isn't he lovely? Where was this from?

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It's from my great-uncle's farm in South Wales.

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And he used to do a bit of hunting

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with something called the Gelligaer hunt.

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But I think that would have been in the '20s and '30s,

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and I think that might be older, because there might be a date

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-somewhere at the bottom.

-Yes, there is.

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Yeah, the artist's initials are down at the bottom there.

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Can you see it, right the way down there?

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-Uh-huh.

-It's SJC, '99.

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-Yeah.

-So that's 1899, of course.

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What I find so intriguing about this

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is it's a rather odd shape for a picture,

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because paintings don't really come

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in this rather sort of elongated rectangular form.

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But I would have a hunch that this might be somebody's favourite hound.

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-Oh, right, yeah.

-So what about selling it now?

-Well, we could do.

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I've got other paintings which my great-grandmother painted herself,

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so I wouldn't part with them,

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-but this has no particular sentimental value.

-OK.

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At the moment, it's quite interesting,

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because a lot of Victorian art's not so popular,

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but anything with dogs and animals seems to do quite well.

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Yes, yes, there's a lot of Victorian paintings

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that have really sort of fallen foul of the market.

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A bit chocolate-boxy, anything like that,

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the market is really very weak at the moment.

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But if you've got an attentive hound

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staring at you, saying, "Please buy me"...

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We'll have to hope for the best, then, won't we?

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I think there will be markets for him.

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Value-wise, simply because of the shape of the actual picture,

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I'm going to be a little bit conservative.

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If it had been a squarer picture, maybe better executed...

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There's a lot of darkness going on here.

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If the hound had been sitting outside somewhere,

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possibly a lot more money,

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but I would say anything between £100 and £200 at auction.

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-That's not bad.

-Should we leave it back on the wall for now,

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just so we know where it is and that it's safe?

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Yes, I'll put that back up there.

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-OK, let's go and see what else we can find.

-Right.

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'A good start to our fund,

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'but I guess we'll never know who owned that foxhound

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'or who SJC may be or was.

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'Sara's been sorting through her belongings

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'and discovers this powder compact of her grandmother's.

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'It's sterling silver,

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'which means it's an alloy with a small amount of copper.

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'The Taj Mahal design is odd, because as far as Sara knows,

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'her grandmother never went to India.

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'Nonetheless, it could add another £20-£40 to our fund.

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'It's not the only silver heirloom tucked away around here.'

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Ah, I'm just admiring some of these

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really gorgeous little trinkety bits we've got.

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-And a lot of them are silver, as well.

-Yeah.

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But I've had a close examination of them,

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but they're not British at all.

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No, they're actually Chinese export silver, I believe.

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My mum and I used to live in Singapore,

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and she bought them back with her.

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OK. Well, let's have a look at the design of this little vase here,

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this tiny vase.

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There should be markings on the underside, but there aren't any.

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So if I get my glass out and let's have a look,

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see if I can see anything... There's a mark on the base here.

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But it's quite indistinguishable,

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so I can't tell whether that's Chinese.

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So the only way that one can really tell

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is just by looking at the decoration on the outside.

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All of this will be hand-chased,

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and it's very similar to designs

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on the outside of Chinese ceramics, for instance, and paintings.

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I think that's really very, very charming.

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That's one of the pieces that she was willing to sell, actually.

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-She's interested in selling that?

-Yeah.

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Well, a little vase like that might well have come in pairs, as well.

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It's rather odd just to have one item like that.

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So if you had a pair of those on your mantel shelf,

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a little vase there with just have a few posies of flowers,

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it was very fashionable but solid silver

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and made probably between the wars, so 1920, 1930.

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-I think that's lovely, that.

-Great.

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Is there anything else up here?

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Yeah, I think my mum's thinking about selling

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the bowl on the right-hand side.

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-This basket here?

-Yeah.

-OK. Well, let's have a look at that.

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Now, look how delicate that is. Isn't that lovely?

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This is a little sweet dish,

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to be placed on a table maybe after a dinner, for instance.

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And if you look at the pierced decoration in it,

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and if I rotate that somewhat,

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-can you see that those are bamboo leaves?

-Yeah.

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Coming from - or living in - that part of the world,

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you're familiar with the bamboo leaf.

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And then you've got these Chinese emblems

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running round all the side of the basket, as well.

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Now, Chinese silver, I'm convinced,

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will probably increase in price drastically over the next few years

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-simply because of the growth of the Chinese economy.

-That's true.

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And anything that's quality, like this,

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will be actually purchased ultimately by the Chinese

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and taken back to that part of the world.

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But a conservative estimate for these items

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would be £40-£60 for this and £60-£80 for this.

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-Just in our hands here, it's £100- £150.

-OK!

-OK? Is that all right?

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-Is that sweet enough?

-Yeah!

-I think that really is sweet, don't you?

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Lovely! Great.

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Let's hold on to these and leave the rest there,

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-and we'll carry on.

-Brilliant, OK.

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Chinese export silver items were all the rage in Victorian England,

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but Gwen bought these examples in Singapore,

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where she lived for two years.

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She had a dealer friend

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who imported antiques from England to the expatriate community there.

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This was when we were in Singapore.

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Actually, Sara wasn't born then, but Emma lived out there with me,

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and this is some friends of ours there and Emma by the swimming pool.

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So, what made you go to Singapore?

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Well, I'm a solicitor and I went out to work there for two years.

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-A really interesting place to be.

-So the whole family went over?

-Yeah.

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So how old were you at the time? Can you remember it?

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How old was I? Two?

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-Yeah.

-Two till four. And then some of my best friends stayed out there,

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so I used to go back and visit them occasionally,

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summer holidays and stuff. So yeah, it was really fun.

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Do you think you might settle there or are you a home bird?

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I think I'm a bit of a home bird. I like London.

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I'm enjoying that, so I think I'll stay for the long term.

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So, you're obviously all quite close, aren't you?

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You're all doing different things now.

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Tell me a little bit about your career.

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I work in communications

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and I'm basically a senior media officer at a charity called Mellon.

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They do emergency relief in countries like Pakistan

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at the minute. It's quite fast-paced.

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-It's good fun.

-And what about you, my dear? What are you up to?

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I'm still a student. I'm studying medicine in Oxford.

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-Is it quite hard work?

-Yeah, it's a lot of working and not getting paid!

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But it's good fun.

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I have a lot of friends there... and still having the student life.

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-What do you think you might want to do long-term?

-I don't know yet!

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-I've got a few years to decide.

-You must be very proud of them.

-Yes.

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Yeah, they're great. And I also have three stepchildren,

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so quite a big family.

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And do you all have family events together? Do you get on well or...?

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Yeah, we're all kind of similar ages.

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SARA: We went on holiday in the summer.

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Charlotte will be coming on the spa day with us,

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assuming we raise enough money.

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You should have insisted she was here!

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"You want the spa day? You do the rummage!" Absolutely!

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Talking of which, should we go and see

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-whether Jonty's found anything else for us?

-Yeah.

-Great!

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'He's been quite busy and found a stamp collection.

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'Gwen's father inherited his first album in 1940

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'from a man who began collecting as a boy in the 1890s.

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'Gwen's parents added to them over the years -

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'for example, these Royal Mail sets from the mid 1980s.

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'Jonty prices them all together at £40-£60.

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'In the dining room, I've found this elegant young lady

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'accompanied by a gallant young man.'

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-Wow!

-I didn't know whether it was something you did want to sell,

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but they're a nice pair.

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They're lovely, aren't they?

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They were my great-grandparents' wedding present, supposedly.

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-Right, OK!

-The family story is

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they were actually from Paris,

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and I think that would have been around about the 1880s.

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-Well, they're in good condition.

-Well, I think they were cherished.

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-So there's no chips, damage on the restoration?

-No.

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I can't see any at all. Now, have we got any markings on there?

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Looking on the underside here, there's no particular factory marks.

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But looking at the style and the fact that they're made of bisque,

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which means they've only been fired once in the kiln,

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and the way they are dressed,

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-the style of them, yes, they will be from France.

-Oh, right!

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So they might well have been purchased in Paris

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but not necessarily made there.

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But this was very, very typical

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of the end of the 19th century to the beginning of the 20th.

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If you look at the way they're dressed,

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they're not dressed in contemporary late 19th-century dress,

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they are going back in time,

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maybe another 100 years, 150 years, maybe 200 years.

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There was a romantic notion, often, of times gone by.

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So, when do you think they got married?

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Well, I would think it was about the 1880s, 1890s, in South Wales,

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in the little town called Pontypool.

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Wow. Can you imagine receiving those on your wedding day?

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-It would have been a very special present.

-All the way from Paris!

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Yeah. And they were apparently always on the mantelpiece.

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That was their sort of family treasures.

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And can you see the way they're glancing at one another?

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In fact, Lorne, you've got them round the right way.

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Somehow there's a left and a right or a right and a left to them,

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so they complement one another sitting on a mantel shelf.

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-What do the girls make of them?

-Well, my daughters don't like them.

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They're a bit too fussy and they don't really fit in with our house.

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So it would be good for someone to have them

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who'd really appreciate them.

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There's a lot going for these figures.

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Not only are they in very good order,

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but also the size - they're substantial,

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much bigger than we normally see.

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But prices for these sorts of figures have waned.

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They're just a little bit OTT for the market at the moment.

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So valuation, at auction, we're looking, on a bad day,

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£100.

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But on a good day, it may well be in excess of £200.

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Oh, right! That's not too bad.

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I'm happy to see the back of those statues!

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Let's hope they get bought. We haven't got rid of them yet!

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You're right to be cautious, girls, as we'll discover on auction day,

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when those Parisians go under the hammer.

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£100 for the pair. £100. £50. Start me at £50. £50. 55 there. 55 there.

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Do you want 60? 5. 70. 5.

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Ooh, dear, looks like it's going to be a struggle.

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Our treasure hunt rolls on in London,

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and Emma has found a silver hip flask of her grandfather's.

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He bought it 30 years ago in an antiques shop

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so he could enjoy a warming tot of whisky when at the rugby.

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The hallmark suggests it was made in 1926,

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and it's engraved with the initials of the original owner.

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Jonty values it at £40-£60.

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Sara's gone back to her studies, so I hope Jonty's got a very good reason for interrupting her.

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-Ah, Sara, there you are.

-Hi.

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I thought you might be working hard there at your desk.

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Look what I've found in this box. Have you ever seen this?

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-Yeah, I have. My mum's shown it to me before.

-Yeah?

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So you know it's a little pen on the inside there. So whose pen was this?

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It was my great-grandfather's pen. He bought it when he visited my grandma

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when she was working in London.

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What did your great-grandfather do as his profession?

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-He was a schoolmaster, so he must have used it in school.

-Oh, right.

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-Writing all those bad reports?

-Yeah!

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I wonder how many children have had their livelihoods

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-condemned or promoted by this pen!

-Yeah.

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It's absolutely wonderful, because...

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not only do we have a pen in very good condition...

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If I could give you that for a second, cos it's actually

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the paper inside which I find very interesting.

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Because there's an original receipt. Look at that.

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With the cost of two shillings and threepence

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and the purchase date was 1938 and the new owner was Mr W Lewis.

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Yeah, that was my great-grandfather's name.

0:16:130:16:15

OK, and the other items we've got in here are the original instructions as well.

0:16:150:16:21

But having a look at the bottom of the box, what I find so interesting

0:16:210:16:25

is that Parker Pens invented Quink ink,

0:16:250:16:28

which is the quick-drying ink in 1931, and look...

0:16:280:16:32

they're promoting it at the bottom.

0:16:320:16:34

-Let's have a quick look at the pen.

-OK.

-Can you unscrew the top?

0:16:340:16:37

And see what's what. There we go,

0:16:370:16:39

that's a regular gold nib there, and the pen itself,

0:16:390:16:43

-there's nothing remarkable about the pen.

-OK.

0:16:430:16:45

But what I find remarkable is the fact it's all together.

0:16:450:16:48

Because if you think about it, as soon as a pen like that

0:16:480:16:51

was purchased, more often than not, everything else in my hand

0:16:510:16:55

could've been discarded very quickly.

0:16:550:16:56

So value-wise, we're not talking about a vast sum of money.

0:16:560:17:01

-Maybe £20. On a good day, £40.

-OK.

0:17:010:17:04

-But that's a lot more than two shillings.

-It is indeed.

0:17:040:17:07

I'll leave you, but don't study for too long,

0:17:070:17:09

-cos we have work to do.

-I'll come back.

0:17:090:17:11

-That's brilliant, OK.

-Thank you.

0:17:110:17:13

'Let's hope that schoolmaster's pen scores an A+ at the auction.

0:17:130:17:16

'Another heirloom now as I find this beautiful Welsh corgi in Emma's room.

0:17:160:17:21

'It's hand-painted,

0:17:210:17:23

'issued by Royal Doulton in the mid 20th century and worth £15-£20.

0:17:230:17:26

'It belongs to an extraordinary man who bred corgis in later life -

0:17:260:17:31

'Gwen's great uncle, Ivor.

0:17:310:17:33

'He started out as a Welsh farm boy who once ran away to war.'

0:17:330:17:37

-Ah, that's him.

-Yeah.

-Ah, right.

-And there's another one of him.

0:17:400:17:45

-He's in uniform here. Have you any idea how old he would've been there?

-About 17, I think.

0:17:450:17:51

-Which is frightening, really.

-It is, isn't it?

0:17:510:17:53

Do you know what happened to him, then?

0:17:530:17:56

Well, I went to the museum of his regiment in Caernarfon -

0:17:560:17:59

the Royal Welch Fusiliers - and they found out for me

0:17:590:18:02

a bit about his war record.

0:18:020:18:04

And he'd initially been sent to Gallipoli,

0:18:040:18:08

survived that and then been sent to the Somme

0:18:080:18:12

and he was shot and captured and then sent to a prisoner of war camp.

0:18:120:18:15

-Somewhere here, there's probably...

-Wow!

0:18:150:18:19

That says Limburg and that's the prisoner of war camp he was in.

0:18:190:18:23

This is incredible, isn't it?

0:18:230:18:26

And then this is his proper dog tag. Um...

0:18:260:18:29

-It's amazing you've got all this.

-I know.

-Did you inherit it together like this?

-Yes, from my father.

0:18:290:18:34

In fact, I knew - as I called him - Uncle Ivor very well when I was a kid,

0:18:340:18:38

because he died when he was 77.

0:18:380:18:41

But he never would talk about it.

0:18:410:18:43

The only thing he did say was that he would never drink rum,

0:18:430:18:47

because they gave the lads rum

0:18:470:18:49

before they went over the top in the trenches.

0:18:490:18:52

-Right, right.

-Very frightening, really.

0:18:520:18:54

Anyway, when he got back to the village after all this adventure,

0:18:540:18:57

the local chapel collected and gave him this watch,

0:18:570:19:00

and it's got, in the back, a sort of inscription about the fact

0:19:000:19:04

that it was presented to Ivor Davies on his return from Germany in 1918.

0:19:040:19:11

I should imagine, for a small community, it would've been extraordinary

0:19:110:19:15

-to have anybody coming back.

-Yeah.

-Wouldn't it?

-Yes. I think most of them were killed.

0:19:150:19:19

There's a huge war memorial there with all the names on it.

0:19:190:19:23

And his family were obviously writing to him in the camp.

0:19:230:19:27

So they're all... They've got German stamps on them.

0:19:270:19:31

-As a mother, you can't imagine that, can you?

-No.

0:19:310:19:34

-How traumatic it must've been.

-Yeah.

0:19:340:19:36

-They wouldn't have known where he was for a long time.

-No.

0:19:360:19:39

He was just reported missing.

0:19:390:19:40

I think the letters are really fascinating as well,

0:19:400:19:43

because obviously you've got almost two extremes.

0:19:430:19:46

He's in a prison camp, and their letters are obviously showing that

0:19:460:19:49

they're trying hard to continue as normal at home.

0:19:490:19:52

Some things don't change. It says here, "You should've heard Harry shouting at the children,

0:19:520:19:56

"they were driving him crazy."

0:19:560:19:58

So, some things go through generations, don't they?

0:19:580:20:01

So, it wasn't actually him who kept all this. It was your...

0:20:010:20:05

I think they were, sort of, put away in the farmhouse, and he never got married or had children,

0:20:050:20:11

and when he died, he left the farm to my father.

0:20:110:20:14

And I didn't know anything about them and found them

0:20:140:20:17

until he'd died, actually.

0:20:170:20:18

And then I just discovered it all. So, quite extraordinary, really.

0:20:180:20:22

'What a privilege to see such priceless documents, and it's kind

0:20:220:20:26

'of Gwen to let me have an insight into the family history.

0:20:260:20:30

'It's great they're keeping it in the family, but it means

0:20:300:20:33

'we need to find other things that can be sold.

0:20:330:20:35

'The next item which Sara's found in her mum's room

0:20:350:20:39

'is a Victorian lady's fob watch, made of nine-carat gold.

0:20:390:20:42

'It's French but was actually bought by Gwen's great-grandmother

0:20:420:20:46

'in Pontypool. It could raise £200-£300 at auction.

0:20:460:20:50

'Downstairs, Gwen has remembered this Japanese tea service

0:20:500:20:54

'which has saucers big enough to put your cake on.

0:20:540:20:56

'It's highly decorative and is known as eggshell porcelain

0:20:560:20:59

'for its delicate see-through quality.

0:20:590:21:01

'A few pieces are missing,

0:21:010:21:03

'so the valuation is a more modest £20-£40, but next up,

0:21:030:21:06

'Sara's found something beautiful

0:21:060:21:08

'tucked away in her mum's room.'

0:21:080:21:11

-What have you got there?

-Found a ring.

-Ooh, hello!

0:21:130:21:16

Pop that down for now. Let's have a look at this.

0:21:190:21:21

Goodness! That's very bling.

0:21:210:21:24

They're very big diamonds. Whose is it?

0:21:240:21:27

-I think it was my grandmother's ring.

-Right. OK.

0:21:270:21:30

-So are either of you two in line to get this?

-I don't think so.

0:21:300:21:33

-No?

-My mum offered it to us, but I think

0:21:330:21:36

we foolishly said it was too much.

0:21:360:21:40

Yes, that was rather foolish, wasn't it?

0:21:400:21:43

But no, that looks to me... You should always check

0:21:430:21:46

a diamond for four things, which are known as the four Cs -

0:21:460:21:51

cut, clarity,

0:21:510:21:53

colour, because diamonds come in all different colours,

0:21:530:21:57

and carat. Carat is the measurement of a diamond.

0:21:570:22:01

On a scale of 1 to 10, this is the sort of ring

0:22:010:22:04

you should be impressed about if you get presented with at some point.

0:22:040:22:09

Let's see whether we can sell it. Jonty? Gwen, are you there?

0:22:090:22:12

Hello! Come in! Now...

0:22:120:22:15

I don't know what you've been teaching your daughters. Really!

0:22:150:22:19

They tell me this is too big and too blingy.

0:22:190:22:22

-I agree with them, actually.

-Why say that? What's so bling?

0:22:220:22:25

I just couldn't imagine it on my hand, it's massive.

0:22:250:22:28

Get used to the idea! That's what I say.

0:22:280:22:31

Now, I understand this was your mother's,

0:22:310:22:33

so how do you feel about selling it?

0:22:330:22:36

Well, I think we could do.

0:22:360:22:39

My father bought it to replace her original engagement ring,

0:22:390:22:42

and the original engagement ring was a similar style

0:22:420:22:45

but very tiny diamonds, because before they got married,

0:22:450:22:48

they didn't have much money.

0:22:480:22:50

I still have the original ring and I remember her wearing the original ring

0:22:500:22:54

and I don't remember her wearing that one very often.

0:22:540:22:57

So I don't have the sentimental attachment to it

0:22:570:23:00

and I think it would be good to use it for something else.

0:23:000:23:04

It is lovely. Jonty? I haven't looked through a glass,

0:23:040:23:07

but the diamonds look pretty good.

0:23:070:23:09

Look at the size of those stones! They're rocks, not stones!

0:23:090:23:12

Wow!

0:23:120:23:13

I would suggest that those are well in excess of a carat...

0:23:130:23:17

each...

0:23:170:23:20

and what's so attractive about this ring is that it's so simple,

0:23:200:23:24

it's the sort of ring that could easily be sold on, as is.

0:23:240:23:27

Of course, a jeweller could

0:23:270:23:29

make up their mind if buying these, to use the stones independently.

0:23:290:23:33

-Yeah.

-I see there are not many inclusions in there, at all.

0:23:330:23:37

I think that's pretty good. They are very, very good stones.

0:23:370:23:41

Let's get it properly assessed.

0:23:410:23:43

But my guestimation, right now, is that we're looking

0:23:430:23:46

in excess of £1,000 here.

0:23:460:23:48

Really? Gosh, I had no idea!

0:23:480:23:52

-Are you going to change your mind now, girls?

-Backtrack, backtrack!

-Absolutely!

0:23:520:23:56

So, I expect you'd like to know how we're standing,

0:23:560:24:00

in terms of the value of things going to auction?

0:24:000:24:03

-Right.

-Well, the grand total of everything going to auction

0:24:030:24:06

comes to...

0:24:060:24:08

£1,655.

0:24:080:24:11

Gosh, that's amazing! That's great.

0:24:110:24:13

-And that's the lower end estimate, as well.

-Really? Is it?

0:24:130:24:16

-That's really great.

-So, are you pleased with that?

0:24:160:24:20

I'm a bit relieved I won't have to pay for those treatments, will I?

0:24:200:24:23

A spectacular result, which means that a special day at the spa

0:24:230:24:27

could soon be within Gwen's reach.

0:24:270:24:29

Let's hope she really cleans up at the auction.

0:24:290:24:32

We'll be selling the dainty Chinese silverware

0:24:320:24:35

which Gwen bought in Singapore. It might now fetch

0:24:350:24:38

£100-£150 on sale in London.

0:24:380:24:41

Then there's the black leather-bound Parker pen,

0:24:410:24:45

with all its original paperwork,

0:24:450:24:47

as bought by Gwen's grandfather for two bob in 1938.

0:24:470:24:50

The estimate today is £20-£40.

0:24:500:24:53

And finally, that painting of a foxhound from 1899.

0:24:530:24:59

Will it get a sniff from the bidders at around £100-£200?

0:24:590:25:02

We'll have to see.

0:25:020:25:04

'Still to come on Cash In The Attic...

0:25:080:25:11

'Emma might regret selling her grandmother's ring...'

0:25:110:25:14

-I had that on my hand at one point.

-I know you did.

0:25:140:25:16

And I said, "Do you want to keep it?" You said, "No."

0:25:160:25:20

'And we all do our best to keep up with the auctioneer...'

0:25:200:25:24

HE SPEAKS RAPIDLY

0:25:240:25:28

I can't understand a word he's saying, can you?

0:25:280:25:31

'Pay attention to the final crack of the gavel.'

0:25:310:25:34

Well, we had a lovely time at Gwen's beautiful home

0:25:370:25:41

and, not surprisingly, we found some delicious items to bring here

0:25:410:25:44

to Chiswick auction house in West London.

0:25:440:25:47

Of course, she's hoping to raise enough money

0:25:470:25:49

so she and the girls can enjoy a fantastic spa day,

0:25:490:25:52

so let's just hope everyone here today is feeling

0:25:520:25:54

a little indulgent when our items go under the hammer.

0:25:540:25:58

'Gwen's already here with eldest daughter, Emma.

0:25:580:26:01

'Unfortunately, Sara's gone back to uni and can't make it.

0:26:010:26:04

'It's encouraging to see the bidders

0:26:040:26:06

'paying close attention to the lots.

0:26:060:26:08

'Hopefully, that will bode well for success today.'

0:26:080:26:12

-Is everything here, though?

-Yeah.

0:26:120:26:15

We checked it through. Looks good. Lots of people.

0:26:150:26:18

What about the reserves?

0:26:180:26:20

I think we put a reserve on two pieces -

0:26:200:26:23

the Victorian pocket watch and the diamond ring.

0:26:230:26:27

-Surprise, surprise!

-You haven't put a reserve on the doggy?

0:26:270:26:30

-No. Sadly not.

-The little doggy in the window can go?

-Yes!

0:26:300:26:34

-You looking forward to today?

-Yeah, it should be fun.

0:26:340:26:37

My first auction. I hope you guys can teach me some tips.

0:26:370:26:41

Right, let's see if we can make some money, shall we? Come on, then.

0:26:410:26:46

'It's time for the auction to get under way.

0:26:460:26:49

'As we take our places, the first of Gwen's lots goes under the hammer.

0:26:490:26:52

'It's the black, leather-clad Parker pen,

0:26:520:26:55

'which her grandfather bought in 1938 on a visit to London.

0:26:550:26:59

'The receipt for two-and-threepence is still in the box.

0:26:590:27:02

'I wonder how it'll fare today.'

0:27:020:27:03

And you have no use for it?

0:27:070:27:09

-No, I'm more of a biro girl.

-Jonty, what do we want for this?

0:27:090:27:13

I put £20-£40 on it. It's just a great thing.

0:27:130:27:17

I put a wide estimate, because without the box, 20 quid,

0:27:170:27:21

but with the box and all the instructions, it's in such

0:27:210:27:25

perfect condition, I hope we do a little bit more than that.

0:27:250:27:28

£40 for it. £20 for it. Bid at £20, £20. 22...

0:27:280:27:31

22 and £20. 22, there.

0:27:310:27:34

22, 25, 25? 28.

0:27:340:27:38

-Thank you. 30? 32.

-That's good.

-32 over there.

0:27:380:27:42

30 to the bidder. At £30 and going, all done.

0:27:420:27:45

£30, all done.

0:27:450:27:47

-That's fine!

-Can't understand a word he's saying, can you?

0:27:470:27:51

It sounds as if the auctioneer's in a hurry.

0:27:510:27:54

£30 sit very nicely in the middle of our estimate

0:27:540:27:57

and brings us a reasonable start.

0:27:570:27:59

Our second item today is the little Welsh corgi,

0:27:590:28:03

issued by Dalton between 1941 and 1968.

0:28:030:28:06

At five inches tall, he's the largest of the three sizes produced.

0:28:060:28:09

His name's Spring Robin, and his estimated value is £15-£20.

0:28:090:28:14

£20 for it. £10 for it. Dalton collectors...

0:28:160:28:20

£10 for it. Thank you.

0:28:200:28:22

Give me 12? At £10. Bid here so far at 10. Give me 12.

0:28:220:28:25

Bid at 12, 14? 16?

0:28:250:28:30

£14. Are you bidding, or waving?

0:28:310:28:33

The bidder at £14, £14, selling, all done at £14.

0:28:330:28:37

£14. I tell you what, it'd cost you a lot more

0:28:370:28:41

than that to buy a pedigree.

0:28:410:28:44

Great Uncle Ivor used to have pedigree corgis

0:28:440:28:46

on his farm near Abergavenny.

0:28:460:28:49

This one is bone china and is off to a new home for a modest £14.

0:28:490:28:53

Next up, a collection that was started in the late

0:28:530:28:56

19th century by a family friend, including stamps from countries

0:28:560:29:00

which no longer exist. Added to over the years by Gwen's parents,

0:29:000:29:04

the estimated value today is £40-£60.

0:29:040:29:07

£30 for it? Bid at £30.

0:29:100:29:12

32, 35, 35, 38, 40,

0:29:120:29:16

42, 45, 48, 50,

0:29:160:29:19

5, bid at £50. You want 5? At £50, take 5 for it?

0:29:190:29:25

At £50, selling, all done. £50.

0:29:250:29:27

£50 - that's pretty good, isn't it?

0:29:270:29:30

Smack in the middle of the estimate and another £50 for the spa fund.

0:29:300:29:35

Now, take a dash of greyhound, a bit of fox terrier,

0:29:350:29:39

a hint of bulldog, and you end up with the English foxhound.

0:29:390:29:42

This portrait is signed by the little-known artist SJC

0:29:430:29:47

and is an affectionate portrait of a much-loved pet.

0:29:470:29:50

We're looking for £100-£200.

0:29:500:29:53

Now, I have to say, I really do like this.

0:29:560:29:58

I know it's not by a very famous artist or anything like that,

0:29:580:30:01

but this dog in the tack room I think is charming.

0:30:010:30:04

-So have you missed that spot on the wall?

-A little bit.

-Yeah?

0:30:040:30:08

I'm hoping it will find a lovely owner and a good home.

0:30:080:30:11

It'll be cheap to run, I can tell you that much. No vet fees!

0:30:110:30:14

Because it's an odd shape, it might be an odd figure

0:30:140:30:17

that we come up with, because he's not conventional,

0:30:170:30:20

but it's going to be exciting to see what happens.

0:30:200:30:22

We'll say £100 for it.

0:30:220:30:24

£100 for it. £50 for it.

0:30:240:30:26

£50 and 2, 55 and 60, 5, 70, 5, 80, 5.

0:30:260:30:31

That's good that this is coming back up.

0:30:310:30:34

Valued at £85. £80 the bid, take 5. 85, all done. 5. 90.

0:30:340:30:39

-Ooh!

-Late bidder.

0:30:390:30:41

100. By the table at 95. Are you in or out, please?

0:30:410:30:45

At £95, we are going. All done at 95 and gone. At £95, then.

0:30:450:30:50

-Just £5 under the bottom estimate.

-Not bad.

0:30:500:30:52

-Are you pleased with that?

-Yes.

-Good.

0:30:520:30:54

-I'm a bit disappointed, I have to say.

-Me too.

0:30:540:30:57

-The dealers weren't prepared to go above the £100.

-No.

0:30:570:31:00

But I suppose a foxhound is not everybody's taste, is it?

0:31:000:31:03

And I'm sure it's gone to a good home somewhere, even though

0:31:030:31:07

not for quite so much as we hoped.

0:31:070:31:10

Well said, Gwen. We're glad of the £95.

0:31:100:31:13

Next it's the sterling silver powder compact with the Taj Mahal design,

0:31:130:31:18

still in its presentation box.

0:31:180:31:20

Will it find any eager bidders here today?

0:31:200:31:24

There are compact collectors, regardless of whether people still use them for compacts.

0:31:240:31:28

People do like these.

0:31:280:31:29

So, Jonty, what do we want for this?

0:31:290:31:32

I put £20-£40 on this one

0:31:320:31:33

and I've seen whole boxes of compacts sell for £20-£40.

0:31:330:31:37

So this is special.

0:31:370:31:38

And sterling silver. Must be £20. £20 for it?

0:31:380:31:42

Bid at £20. 21, 22, 25.

0:31:420:31:45

28, 30, 32.

0:31:450:31:47

At 30, £30, 32. 35.

0:31:470:31:50

I'll come back to you. 35. 38.

0:31:500:31:53

They're fighting for it.

0:31:530:31:55

-It's good, isn't it?

-It's a bidding war.

-50.

0:31:550:31:58

£48. Anyone 50? 50. 52 now. 52. 55.

0:31:580:32:03

58, 60. At £58. I see it at £58. Selling for 58.

0:32:030:32:08

£58, are we done? Last chance. All done.

0:32:080:32:11

-£58.

-That's good.

-Brilliant.

-It is, isn't it?

0:32:110:32:15

And the classic thing that always makes the price move upwards, three people bidding.

0:32:150:32:20

An excellent result there, thanks to a small bidding war.

0:32:200:32:24

So how are we doing now at the midway point in our auction?

0:32:240:32:27

We're halfway through your lots. Still got quite a few to come,

0:32:280:32:31

-including the lady's fob watch.

-Yeah.

0:32:310:32:34

-Well, so far, we've banked £247.

-That's great.

0:32:340:32:37

That's a nice number of hot stone massages.

0:32:370:32:40

Just reminded myself I must book myself in for one.

0:32:400:32:43

We've got a bit of a break until your next lot,

0:32:430:32:45

-so do you want to follow me?

-Yeah.

-Will do.

0:32:450:32:49

As we take a short break, a word of advice

0:32:490:32:52

if you've been inspired to try buying or selling your items in this way.

0:32:520:32:55

It's worth noting auction houses charge fees such as commission,

0:32:550:32:59

but your local sale room will advise you on these extra costs.

0:32:590:33:03

As ever, Jonty is looking over the lots on display in search

0:33:030:33:07

of good deals to share with us.

0:33:070:33:08

He's never given up hope of finding a missing old master, bless him!

0:33:080:33:13

Now, that's what I call a bottle of champagne, Jonty!

0:33:130:33:16

And thank you so much. It was so generous of you to get this for me.

0:33:160:33:19

-I think it works out about 12 bottles in all, doesn't it?

-Yes.

0:33:190:33:22

There's 12 bottles in there, and it really has to be one of the biggest bottles of champagne

0:33:220:33:26

I've ever seen. It's got a name. It's a Salmanazar,

0:33:260:33:30

named after an Assyrian leader from 1250 BC, but a great name as well.

0:33:300:33:35

Of course, absolutely.

0:33:350:33:37

It's a vineyard that you really can go back all the way to the beginning of the 18th century.

0:33:370:33:42

-Still family-owned.

-And is it signed there?

-Yes. Igor Judge.

0:33:420:33:47

Great name, because he is the Lord Chief Justice.

0:33:470:33:50

Was this a presentation piece?

0:33:500:33:52

It...well, not necessarily a presentation.

0:33:520:33:55

-These are sold...these are sold on the open market.

-Right.

0:33:550:33:58

I have no idea what the open market price is, but in the catalogue,

0:33:580:34:01

it's £200-£300,

0:34:010:34:03

which I think is reasonable,

0:34:030:34:04

because, as you pointed out, there are 12 bottles in there as well.

0:34:040:34:08

Of course the problem is,

0:34:080:34:09

once you have opened it, you have got to drink it all.

0:34:090:34:12

-Is that a problem?

-No!

0:34:120:34:14

THEY LAUGH

0:34:140:34:17

Sadly, I am still as sober as the judge who signed it,

0:34:170:34:19

because that rare bottle sold in auction for £400.

0:34:190:34:24

We've still plenty to come on Gwen's sale.

0:34:250:34:29

For instance, her father's silver hip flask dating from 1926.

0:34:290:34:34

Now, our next lot is the silver hip flask.

0:34:360:34:38

It's engraved with initials on the front.

0:34:380:34:40

-Whose initials are they?

-No-one we knew.

0:34:400:34:43

My father bought it in an antique shop to take with him

0:34:430:34:45

to the rugby matches, so, er...

0:34:450:34:48

So I won't bother asking whether it was filled or not.

0:34:480:34:51

Obviously, it must have been! Jonty, how much for this?

0:34:510:34:54

£40-£60. It's a very reasonable estimate that I've put on it,

0:34:540:34:58

so it should do much better than that.

0:34:580:35:00

Number 238. What's it worth? £40 for it?

0:35:000:35:03

-Bid at £40. 42.

-Straight in at £40.

0:35:040:35:07

45, 48, 50. 50, 55. 60. 5.

0:35:070:35:11

-Ooh, that's good.

-5.

0:35:110:35:13

65. New bidder. 70. 5. 80.

0:35:130:35:18

At £75 here. 80 over there.

0:35:190:35:20

-80 again new bidder. 85.

-Wow.

0:35:200:35:23

At £80. At £85. 80, all done? For £80 and going. You've got it.

0:35:230:35:27

£80 and gone.

0:35:270:35:29

-That's not bad, is it?

-Yeah.

-£80?

0:35:290:35:31

Double my bottom end estimate.

0:35:310:35:33

-Brilliant.

-That's good. Really good.

0:35:330:35:35

My taste isn't really for brandy or whisky from a hip flask,

0:35:350:35:38

so it seemed appropriate to sell it.

0:35:380:35:41

And we were really pleased, because it did much better than we expected.

0:35:410:35:44

£80 brings us a nice warm glow, as it probably did for Gwen's father

0:35:440:35:49

at the rugby all those years ago.

0:35:490:35:51

Next up, it's that export silverware

0:35:510:35:53

which Gwen brought back from Singapore.

0:35:530:35:56

We're hoping for £100-£150.

0:35:560:35:58

Now, of course, as we all know,

0:35:580:36:00

recently, Chinese ceramics have been doing rather well.

0:36:000:36:04

So can we expect millions for this, Jonty?

0:36:040:36:07

-Yeah, hundreds of millions, I think.

-Oh, that would be nice, wouldn't it?

-That would be very nice.

0:36:070:36:11

It's going to be so fascinating to see what's going to happen

0:36:110:36:16

with Chinese silver.

0:36:160:36:17

-It's made there and brought here, wasn't it?

-That's right.

0:36:170:36:20

Exported to this country

0:36:200:36:21

and now will it find its way back to the Far East?

0:36:210:36:24

Interesting.

0:36:240:36:25

Number 237A. £100. I'm bid £100. £100. That's the way to do it. £100.

0:36:260:36:30

We want 110. Bid at £100.

0:36:300:36:31

-Has he got £100?

-Is that the lot? £100. 110.

-Oh, no.

0:36:310:36:36

-110.

-120. 130.

0:36:360:36:39

140, 150. We'll do it 140, 150, 140. We are all out and going.

0:36:390:36:44

All done at 140.

0:36:440:36:46

-£140.

-That's not bad.

-That's good.

0:36:460:36:49

These silver mementos are so well travelled

0:36:500:36:53

I wonder where they'll go now.

0:36:530:36:55

Moving along, and we've the Japanese eggshell porcelain tea set,

0:36:550:36:58

which Jonty valued at £20-£40.

0:36:580:37:01

£20 for it?

0:37:010:37:03

£10 for it? Thank you. I'm bid £10. 12? £10.

0:37:040:37:09

So far I'm bid £10. Give me 12? At £10.

0:37:090:37:12

All done at £10? Who else wants it at £10? 11 for it?

0:37:120:37:15

At £10 and going.

0:37:150:37:16

It's gone, a tenner.

0:37:170:37:19

It might be our worst one, I reckon.

0:37:190:37:21

Well, the set was incomplete, so it's to be expected.

0:37:210:37:24

Surely these dressy Parisians can do a little better?

0:37:240:37:28

They're late 19th-century

0:37:280:37:30

bisque porcelain figurines - wedding presents, which used

0:37:300:37:33

to sit on the mantelpiece in Gwen's great-grandparents' house.

0:37:330:37:36

Now, our next lot,

0:37:360:37:38

I really like, although slightly old-fashioned, I have to say.

0:37:380:37:41

-Grimacing already.

-They're a bit chintzy.

-It's very interesting.

0:37:410:37:45

Everyone's picked up on them being not so fashionable right now.

0:37:450:37:48

Times have changed, times have moved on.

0:37:480:37:50

Having said that, they're in perfect condition.

0:37:500:37:53

They're a good size, so they are still worth the money.

0:37:530:37:56

I put £100-£200 on them.

0:37:560:37:58

What's it worth for the pair? £100?

0:37:580:38:00

£100 for the pair? £100?

0:38:000:38:02

£50?

0:38:020:38:03

-Jonty...

-Nobody wants them.

-..you've seriously undervalued us!

0:38:030:38:08

60, 5, 70, 5, 70. Bid at £70.

0:38:080:38:12

Are we done? At £70. That's the bid, are you out?

0:38:120:38:15

At £70, you out? Saying all done. For £70, sir, you got them.

0:38:150:38:20

-£70.

-He missed one, I think.

-No, that was the buyer.

0:38:200:38:23

-Oh, it was.

-Yes.

0:38:230:38:25

Stay with it, Emma!

0:38:250:38:27

£70 was a bit lower than we wanted,

0:38:270:38:30

but Gwen is happy to see them go.

0:38:300:38:33

Gwen's great-grandmother was a well-to-do shopkeeper in Pontypool, South Wales,

0:38:330:38:38

where she purchased this nine-carat gold French fob watch.

0:38:380:38:40

We're hoping it could be £200-£300.

0:38:400:38:43

I know you're quite fond of this watch, aren't you?

0:38:450:38:48

Why is this piece so special to you?

0:38:480:38:51

It was my great-grandmother's, and I think it's actually quite pretty,

0:38:510:38:54

although I've never worn it myself. But I think it looks lovely

0:38:540:38:58

in its little case with the key.

0:38:580:39:00

Just a nice little piece.

0:39:000:39:03

What are we doing about this in terms of price, Jonty?

0:39:030:39:05

We've got our reserve of £200, and it is worth the £200.

0:39:050:39:10

I think you're correct to leave that figure on it. If we don't get there,

0:39:100:39:15

-you take it back. You haven't lost anything.

-No.

0:39:150:39:18

The fob watch, £200 for it.

0:39:180:39:20

£150, going for 150.

0:39:220:39:24

150 for it, I'll pass it up. Nobody at 150?

0:39:250:39:28

Ooh, dearie me. Carry on.

0:39:280:39:30

-Right.

-How about that, no bids?

0:39:300:39:32

-It's not meant to be.

-Maybe I'll get a chain and wear it now instead.

0:39:320:39:36

-That'll be nice.

-Yes.

0:39:360:39:38

It's also nice if it does stay in the family, given that long connection with it.

0:39:380:39:42

So, the watch gets a new lease of life,

0:39:440:39:46

but how does that affect our grand total, I wonder?

0:39:460:39:49

There's just one more item to go,

0:39:490:39:51

so let's keep our fingers crossed that it attracts top bidding.

0:39:510:39:55

The next lot is this lovely ring,

0:39:560:39:58

which, I have to say, you weren't very impressed with, were you?

0:39:580:40:01

I wasn't until you explained how amazing it was,

0:40:010:40:03

and then I suddenly thought, "Gosh! Maybe we should keep it!"

0:40:030:40:07

Well, I've had a check with the auctioneer,

0:40:070:40:10

and he's rather confident that we should be fine with the estimate.

0:40:100:40:15

Telephone bid as well, commission interest

0:40:150:40:18

and a few people waiting in the room, I'm sure. £1,000 for it.

0:40:180:40:21

Bid £1,000 for it. You're looking at £1,000.

0:40:210:40:24

£1,000 in the chair.

0:40:240:40:26

1,100, 1,200.

0:40:260:40:29

1,300.

0:40:290:40:30

1,400.

0:40:300:40:31

1,500.

0:40:310:40:33

1,600. 1,700.

0:40:330:40:35

-This makes me want to keep it more.

-Shall I get it out?

0:40:350:40:39

1,800.

0:40:390:40:42

1,900. 2,000.

0:40:420:40:44

£1,900. 2,000 there. 2,100.

0:40:450:40:47

Told you I had expensive taste! Cor!

0:40:470:40:49

At £2,000.

0:40:490:40:51

-That's unbelievable.

-Done? At £2,000 all out.

0:40:520:40:56

Anybody else wants to come back in at £2,000? Your bid, sir, at £2,000.

0:40:560:41:00

-Yes!

-£2,000!

0:41:000:41:03

That's really amazing, that's impressive.

0:41:030:41:05

That is just such good news, isn't it?

0:41:050:41:08

-I had that on my hand at one point!

-I know you did

0:41:080:41:11

and I said, did you want to keep it? And you said no!

0:41:110:41:15

Wasn't that exciting? We've done very well today, so let's add it up

0:41:150:41:19

and reveal the final result.

0:41:190:41:21

There we go, that brings your grand total

0:41:230:41:27

to £2,547.

0:41:270:41:31

-That's amazing.

-Brilliant. That's going to be one day out, isn't it?

0:41:310:41:35

-It's going to charity as well.

-Well, that's really generous of you.

0:41:350:41:39

-But you're still getting your spa day out.

-We still need a massage.

-Brilliant.

-You've got to do that.

0:41:390:41:43

I'm so pleased you said that,

0:41:430:41:45

because I was going to suggest you took Lorne and I out as well!

0:41:450:41:48

Gwen and Sara have come to Fawsley Hall in Northamptonshire for their luxury spa break.

0:41:520:41:57

Emma and her stepsister Charlotte will join them

0:41:570:42:01

for more indulgence tomorrow.

0:42:010:42:03

I'm pleased that we did so well at the auction - the main reason

0:42:030:42:06

for doing it was to raise money for charity.

0:42:060:42:09

We were able to give quite a bit of money to four charities -

0:42:090:42:13

Mind, Multiple Sclerosis, Merlin and The Octavia Foundation.

0:42:130:42:19

And we had enough money over to enjoy ourselves as well.

0:42:190:42:22

It's nice to get a weekend away, just to relax and have some nice pampering.

0:42:260:42:31

Looks like these ladies will be getting all the treats they deserve.

0:42:310:42:36

We've had pedicures, and I had a facial, and Sara had a manicure,

0:42:360:42:40

so we're very elegant and relaxed now.

0:42:400:42:43

Solicitor Gwen Godfrey and her daughters Emma and Sara want to raise £1,000 towards their favourite charities and a family spa treat. Gwen invites Lorne Spicer and expert Jonty Hearnden into her London home to help value the porcelain, silverware and jewellery that she is thinking of sending to auction.