The team are at Wellington College, Berkshire, looking to separate the trash from the treasure. Paul also sets off on a trip to nearby Highclere Castle.
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Wellington College was set up by Royal Charter in the reign of Queen Victoria
to educate the orphans of army officers.
Today, we're here to see if our experts can educate us
with a little antiques knowledge. Welcome to Flog It!
Wellington College is now one of our great boarding schools,
and past pupils include TV presenter Peter Snow,
Formula One racing car driver James Hunt,
and the comedian Rory Bremner, so this place has something for everybody.
Judging by the size of this queue, I think there's something for everybody here.
Let's hope we have a brilliant show. These people have come to ask that all-important question,
which is "What's it worth?" and when they've found out,
-what are you going to do?
We have our team of experts here to spot all the most saleable items to take off to auction.
What do you know about these?
I don't know anything at all because I picked them up in a charity shop.
And leading the way today, our long-standing Flog It favourite, Philip Serrell.
Flog It's like Christmas Day.
You never know what's going to come out of the wrappings.
That's just beautiful.
And Elizabeth Talbot, who was considered
the youngest female auctioneer in the country in the late 1980s.
-And is still a total enthusiast.
-Ooh, look at that, Coleman's mustard. That is lovely.
A spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down for Elizabeth.
The bowl is pierced.
And do you know why that is?
-To put sugar.
-Sugar, absolutely. Well done.
-We did guess that.
And I meet up with an old friend
and take another look at her incredible Egyptian exhibits.
Tutankhamun is such an icon, isn't he?
We are so lucky we've got the story of the discovery.
It's the treasure trail of all treasures.
But first, it's over to Philip, who seems to have his hands full with Alan's oversized plant stand.
Alan, how are you?
I'm fine, thanks.
Is anybody there? Where have you struggled in from with this today?
We live not very far, just opposite the college.
Yeah? Have you had it a long time?
My wife bought it for ten shillings in those days.
60 years ago. Was she your wife 60 years ago?
-How old are you?
-You don't look too bad on it, do you?
-Oh, that's lovely.
So your wife, 60 years ago, gave 50 pence for this.
She fancied it.
And that's the sort of woman she is.
-We had a pram with a baby in it at the time.
I said, "How we going to get it..?" I didn't want to buy it.
I said, "How you going to get it home?"
She said, "We'll put it in the pram and you carry the baby."
And we walked two mile.
But that's been in our front garden or the back garden.
Has it been outside?
Most of the time we've had it, yes, outside. Front or back garden.
But until now, where we live, in a small courtyard, a smaller house,
because we're old, so that's stuck in our lounge, with a pot on the top.
You know this pot you've got it on at home, it's not the same thing, is it? Not the same pot?
-Oh, good heavens, no.
-Because this is what we call a jardiniere stand.
And I think it's by a factory called Burmantofts.
-But we'll have a look in a minute.
It should have... You've actually got half a lot here.
-Because this is the bottom half, the jardiniere stand.
-And on the top it should have a jardiniere.
Oh, I understand now, yes.
But what I want to ask you, how much were you earning a week then?
Yes, I come out the Navy, worked for Ford Motor Company and I got £4.
So you were earning £4 a week, and your wife spent 50 pence of that.
That's a huge sum of money.
Yes, it was. Yes. That's what I said. I was quite angry.
That's a massive sum of money. So if you put it in today's terms,
if you spent... If you earned £400 a week now, that's like £50, isn't it?
Yeah, yeah. I suppose so. Yes.
Now, let's just have a look at the bottom.
-It's got a date on it.
What does it say? Just tell me what it says.
What does it say?
Let me get these on.
Hurry up with your glasses!
-I'm stood here all day with this!
What else does it say?
-In your own time!
-Burmantofts, is it?
-Now, this is faience ware and it's quite brittle.
You can see here you've got some damage there.
-You've got some damage there.
-Three children that done that.
But the thing that amazes me is that this is just sat outside,
and it's survived all sorts of frosts.
Might have been used as a goal post at some point if you've got kids.
Wouldn't surprise me.
What's it worth?
I've no idea. I've no idea.
I think if you'd got the jardiniere on it and it was in perfect order,
I think you would have estimated at perhaps 100-150.
Because of the damage, I think you've got to pitch it
at £50-£80, which is almost, if you relate back,
the equivalent of what you would have paid for it all those years ago.
That's what I love about it, is the fact you've had it for 60 years,
and you're going to sell it and get your money back in a profit.
-It's been an absolute joy to meet you.
-Yeah. Nice to meet you.
-Hope it does well.
We'll see if anyone comes to that damaged jardiniere's rescue a little bit later on.
For now, Elizabeth needs to handle the next item that Suzanne has brought in with real care.
And who is this? May I take her out of her covering?
You certainly may.
There she is, revealed in all her glory.
Beautiful. Now, what can you tell me about your doll here?
It's been in my husband's family forever, really.
-I actually think she's very scary.
Very spooky, the way her eyes, when she opens her eyes.
She's looking at you.
Exactly. I don't find her pretty, but she has a story to tell.
Absolutely. That's right.
And in the right place. That's a good thing.
Yes, it is. She's very much a collector's piece these days.
Do you know anything about where she's from or anything?
Well, on the back there's a few letters and "Paris", so we assume she was made in Paris.
That's a good giveaway, isn't it. I like it when it's that easy to see.
We went on the internet and did some investigation, and around 1890. That's when we thought.
Well, I think so far you've got a good full picture of what she is.
Now the initials on the back, the SFBJ,
it stands for Societe Francais de Fabrication de Bebes et Jouets.
So basically it's producers of babies and dolls.
And they were one of the leading French factories,
which competed with some of the major German factories
at the same time, that specialised in the porcelain headed dolls.
And if you think about both France and Germany, they have fantastic
history for producing fine quality ceramics and porcelain and china.
So those two countries led the way, really, in china-headed dolls,
porcelain-headed dolls and what's called bisque,
which is the unglazed head. It's porcelain, but it's got this very porous finish to it.
So she's very, very charming, and the only thing that I can see which causes me slight alarm,
in terms of its value, is what looks to be a hairline crack, which runs down here.
-Oh, right. Oh, yes.
-Do you see that?
It's been there a long while.
It's an old crack, that one, but obviously they are prone to
a bit of damage because of the delicate nature of their manufacture.
Value, I would have thought 100-150 would be realistic in the current market.
I have seen similar dolls makers at just 40-60, but I think she's better than some.
And the rarer dolls that this factory made tended to be slightly larger,
and some of the rarer ones are the boy dolls, the male dolls, which are very scarce,
and they can make £2,000-£3,000.
Wow! Shame she wasn't a boy!
It is, isn't it?
However, I think if we put an estimate of £100-£150 would you require a reserve on that?
If we could do 100 simply because of the family history, that's lovely.
-We'll put 100 with discretion on it, if that's all right.
-Brilliant. That's fine.
-We'll look after her and find her a new home.
-Thank you very much.
Let's hope that doll doesn't frighten off the bidders when she goes up for auction.
My turn now, and I've hit the jackpot with Sally's exquisite Lalique bowl.
-Sally, shouldn't you be at work?
-I am at work.
Sally actually works here at Wellington College. What do you do here?
I'm PA to the bursar.
-Oh, a wonderful job. How long have you worked here?
-I've worked here for 24 years.
You must know every part of this wonderful school.
I think I probably do, but I'm retiring at Christmas.
I hope you're getting a nice watch or a clock or something. My word!
Tell me a little bit about the history of the Lalique bowl.
It belonged to my grandmother, my grandmother gave to it my mother and she gave to it me.
-So it's been in the family for three generations.
-For at least three generations.
-And now you're telling me you want to sell it.
I don't use it,
and I'm afraid I store it in the cupboard where I keep my shoes.
In the cupboard where you keep your shoes?
-So do you keep your shoes in the kitchen?
-No, I don't.
-In the bedroom.
-So what's that doing in the bedroom?
I just think it's a safe place to keep it, so it's all wrapped up.
It doesn't get much better than Rene Lalique when you talk about glass design.
Born in France in 1860, Lalique is still made,
it's all stamped Lalique, it's moulded glass and it's stamped Lalique after his death.
Pieces that were made during his lifetime were always stamped R Lalique
and you can see it moulded into the glass right in the centre. It's wonderful, opalescent glass.
It's not quite clear so you can see little flecks of blue, sometimes yellow, sometimes green.
-If I hold that up to the light, you can see what I'm going on about.
-There's the stamp in the middle. Rene Lalique. Can you see that?
Classic size, classic shape, 24 centimetres.
It's the mistletoe and berries pattern.
It's not the rarest of designs.
When you think of Lalique, you think of those sexy ladies flowing around the vase
or those gorgeous dragonflies, they're the ones that fetch the top money.
But the key to the value here is, just look at that rim,
look down there and run your finger around the edge.
-There's not one chip, is there?
We see a lot on the show and there's always one little chip of glass
that's been slightly polished out, there's a little dink.
Collectors are so fussy, it will put them off a bit.
This is in very good condition.
I think if we put this into a sale tomorrow, let's say,
it's got to have an auction price guide of £200-£300.
That way, it's bound to sell and hopefully we'll get the £300 top end.
But they have done £220. I saw one do £250.
-Let's put a fixed reserve at £200.
Don't let it go for a penny less. OK?
Three generations here you're saying goodbye to.
-No, I'm happy.
-Obviously the money will go for a pair of shoes now,
now there's space in the shoe cupboard for another pair of shoes!
After being cooped up with Sally's shoes,
I do hope that Lalique finds a more fitting home.
So far, so good, now for our first visit to the auction room. We found some real gems.
Let's find out exactly what they're worth at auction.
Stay tuned because there could be one or two surprises and here's a quick recap
to jog your memory of everything going under the hammer.
It's big, it's bold and it's brassy
but Philip reckons Alan's Burmantofts pot will beguile the bidders.
Suzanne's doll might not be the cuddliest of toys,
but what interest will she attract when she goes under the hammer?
Sally's Lalique was pure quality
and I'm hoping that someone in the saleroom will love it enough to give it a decent home.
For today's sale, we've travelled to Wokingham,
to the Martin & Pole saleroom
where they charge a seller's commission of 15% plus VAT.
Before the sale kicks off,
I want to find out if auctioneer Garth Lewis thinks Sally's Lalique can do the business.
They say quality always sells
and I think this Lalique bowl has it in abundance, don't you?
-Absolutely, the name says it all.
-It's an early one as well. Rene Lalique.
But the rim is not chipped at all.
It seems to be in pretty good order.
There are one or two slight knife marks, I fancy, in the bottom.
-Sally did that.
-We'll blame her.
But it's very nice, it's an unusual design, the mistletoe design
and it sells, absolute banker. It is in company with a couple of other Lalique lots in the sale.
-Good, I noticed them.
-Hopefully the people will be here for it.
It's a complete banker. That's what you want to hear!
-Did I just say that?
-Yes, which is good, isn't it?
That sounded positive and we'll see how it does in just a minute.
But going under the hammer first is Alan's plant stand.
I kind of like these over the top looking things.
You bought this for 10 bob?
That's correct, 10 shillings.
-Where did she buy that?
-We was in Romford, in Romford market.
We've had it... We've moved frequently.
It's been in the front garden, the back garden, the garage.
In the end, we've now moved to a very nice house and we thought,
can't we get rid of that thing?
And here it is.
I know at the valuation day, Philip fixed reserve of £40 on this,
but since the valuation day, you had a chat to the auctioneer
and because he doesn't like it so much, you've said, I don't care.
-So there's no reserve?
It's going to sell then, isn't it?
Fingers crossed it gets the top end.
It's going under the hammer right now, this is it.
The Burmantofts faience jadiniere stand, I'm sure you've had a good look.
Well marked and dated.
May I say £40 to start please. 40?
That's more than 10 bob.
30, if you will.
Nobody wants it at 30?
I'll try 20.
If there's no interest, I'll have to pass the lot.
-£20 only, surely?
-No reserve and no-one wants it.
20 is bid on the right here, thank you.
£20 - I can sell it.
If you're all done at £20. No more?
Well, he sold it at £20.
There was no reserve.
He was a bit reticent to sell it, he was going, oh, no more,
that's a bit cheap, but he did put the hammer down. There was no reserve.
-And you don't care. He doesn't care.
No, I'd give it away.
Well, it didn't make the £50 estimate that Philip gave it, but that didn't bother Alan.
He didn't have to take it home.
It's that frightening French doll up next,
so let's see if anyone here is bold enough to bid on her.
I've got a confession to make. I don't like it either. I'm not a big doll fan.
I find them quite spooky.
I know there's a lot of collectors and you love them, but...
-It's been in the family a long time.
-Had a chat to the auctioneer.
-Let's bring Elizabeth in, our expert on this.
-Did he like it?
He did, yes. He said there's been lots of interest
-and he has lots of doll collectors in the area.
-He agreed with the valuation.
-Excellent. We've got good toy sales, toy results today
-but not many dolls, so I was a bit worried about that.
-It's been viewed.
You can rest assured.
And I think that it's sort of rather petite, it's got a lot going for it
-and I bet you're pleased it doesn't live with you any more.
-Yeah? Got a few better night's sleep now.
-I have. Yes.
-Not smiling at me.
-Let's find out what the bidders think right now.
It's going under the hammer.
It's a little French doll, French bisque-headed doll,
nicely stamped SFBJ and original hair and clothing.
She looks pretty from a distance.
Yeah, not so frightening.
Can I say £80 to start, please?
-Where are the hands?
-60 anywhere? Don't mind.
Nobody want her?
A good home required, £60. Nobody want her? At £50.
She's frightening the bidders.
50 is bid at the back of the room, thank you. Any further, at 50?
£60, it's at the back of the room.
-A bit of competition now.
Against you, sir, 85 then, if you're all done?
No. He's put the hammer down on £85.
That is so disappointing.
Close, close. One bid away from getting that 10% discretion.
So you think it's worth putting in?
I think it's worth trying again. The doll market's been a bit flat.
It's picking up. I think because she's such a pretty little one
and as Paul said, unusually small, I think she's a collector's piece.
-So try again.
-Yeah, I would.
-Sorry about that.
-That's all right, thank you very much.
She may have just missed her discretionary reserve,
but I'm hoping that doll has better luck next time round.
Last but not least, its Sally's lovely Lalique.
Well, it's great to see you again, Sally.
-I love what you're wearing.
-Thank you very much.
-That colour is this year's colour, everyone's wearing that.
-Are you excited?
-It's been a long wait.
-It has been.
I had a chat to the auctioneer.
You know what he said.
He agreed with the valuation.
Everything's right about it. It's an early one, like I said, so fingers crossed.
It can either be 200, it could be 300,
it could be a bit more if we want to be greedy.
-We'll have to see.
-Because as you know, it's not an exact science.
Right, it's going under the hammer now. Good luck, Sally.
This is the mistletoe bowl, nice example, impressed mark.
I have interest on the book. I'll start...
-Here we go, interest.
-..at 150, it's against you.
£150 is bid.
Any further? At 160, thank you. 170 here.
170, 80, 190.
It's against you, 200, 220.
-Now it's gone.
-Mine at 220, then, if you're all done.
Is there any further? £220.
Come on, a bit more.
220. We didn't get the top end, but at least it went, didn't it?
-Thank you very much.
There is commission to pay. It's 15% here, but it does vary from room to room.
-Thank you very much indeed.
-Thank you. That's good fun.
It sold at the lower end of my estimate,
but Sally seemed pleased with her £220 the Lalique made.
That concludes our first visit to the auction room today.
That was fast and furious, a few highs, a few lows, but we're coming back later on
and hopefully we're going to do a lot better.
One or two surprises coming up.
While we were here in the area, I took an opportunity to explore
a wonderful house, you could say a country seat,
with some very fine antiques. Take a look at this.
Highclere Castle, built by the third Earl of Carnarvon in 1842.
It's everything a stately home should be.
It has beautiful grounds.
The house itself is splendid
and is much in demand as a setting for costume dramas.
The Herbert family have lived here for generations
and many of its members have played their part in the history of the nation.
But it was the fifth earl who had the greatest impact worldwide
because it was his friendship and belief in Egyptologist Howard Carter
that led to the discovery of the only complete royal tomb
of a Pharaoh, and it was that of Tutankhamun.
I was very lucky to meet the present Lady Carnarvon at Highclere
when I was filming here a few years ago.
She very kindly showed me her recently-opened Egyptian exhibition,
which I found absolutely fascinating.
And I'm delighted to say she's invited me back to share it with you.
Lady Carnarvon, why did the fifth Earl become interested in Egypt and Egyptology?
He went to Egypt because he was really ill.
He'd nearly killed himself several times
driving the early cars far too fast, turning them over,
and his doctor said he had to go somewhere warm for the winter
so they gave him a choice of places to go and he decided to go to Egypt.
When he got there, he was much more than a social butterfly.
He really liked doing something. He was a very clever man, pretty intellectual.
So he bought a concession to excavate
and they thought he'd be there for a season and gone,
like some sort of rich toff.
And he became completely obsessed and he sat out on his dust heap
and he discovered a mummified cat.
He dug for three months.
-He was actually mucking in as well.
-He did it.
If you didn't sit there with your team of men working,
you wouldn't come out with anything at the end.
They'd have disappeared off into the bazaars and sold it.
-Did he know Carter at this stage?
-No, never, hadn't met Carter.
He was doing it all on his own.
-Everyone thought he'd get bored and go away.
-He knew he'd been given a really dud site.
So the next year he went back and he went to Cairo
and he organised a site for himself where he thought there was a tomb.
And he found a rather fabulous tomb of a Mayor of Thebes, that of Tetiky. Fab.
Talk me through some of the things you've got in the exhibition.
I have arranged the exhibition thematically
so there's groups of pottery or groups of jewellery or groups of faces and figures.
One of the most lovely things is
an offering table from the tomb of Tetiky.
It was probably in the innermost sanctum of Tetiky's tomb after he died
and it's got inscriptions all about giving offerings to the gods in his name
and you'd have left some flowers and some oil in it and it's 3,500 years old.
And it's amazing.
And there's another wonderful 12th dynasty inscription
about the Great Chamberlain from Abydos
and the line drawings and the hieroglyphs are so clear.
You, well, actually you or I probably couldn't have done them yesterday
but they look as if they were.
It's an extraordinary piece of art which I simply love.
It's very special to have there as well.
This is wonderful, this coffin. The children who come here love it.
Oh, I bet they do. I bet they do.
You can see the goddess Nut, who caught you up in her arms
and took you on to the world of the resurrection, the next world.
Were all the royal coffins highly decorated like this?
This is a kind of lady of the house.
So it's a noblewoman, not a royal coffin,
but she could afford to be mummified.
Although Lord Carnarvon made many discoveries of his own,
it was his famous 13-year patronage of Egyptologist Howard Carter
that was destined to make ripples across the world.
So when did Carter come on the scene?
He met Howard Carter, I have now found out,
in 1909, so two or three years after he started,
and this is through some diaries of Gaston Maspero kept in Paris,
who's head of the antiquities.
And he introduced Carnarvon to Carter, thinking he needed a right-hand man out in Egypt,
someone to be there and help him.
But soon the dawn of the First World War put a stop to the pair's exploration.
When their search resumed, they continued for five long years
with little reward.
It was the last chance. Carnarvon was at this point running out of money.
This was 1922, it's post the First World War.
Just about to give up on it.
For Carnarvon, it was the last shot.
Howard Carter had gone ahead of Lord Carnarvon that season
and he discovered a few steps, cabled Lord Carnarvon,
who rushed out to be there and then they went down the steps,
cleared the passageway and they were confronted with this bricked in wall
and they chipped away at it.
And then Howard Carter held in a candle
and he saw this extraordinary range of gold.
From another culture, another world.
Lord Carnarvon was next to him, whispering in his ear, saying what can you see?
-I know, what can you see?
-Turning around and saying, with a peephole, "Treasure!"
It just sounds like a movie, like a film set.
Looking at that, it's like a film set, but that's real, that's history captured.
What happens, because I know the Earl never actually saw the inner chamber, did he?
Not at all. He got bitten by a mosquito which ultimately led to his death.
But the bizarre thing is, I find, the most bizarre thing
is that Tutankhamun's famous gold mask, which you're right,
he never saw, is made of two sheets of gold of amazingly equal thickness throughout.
And it's weaker and less thick at just one point, which is here,
exactly on the left cheek, where Lord Carnarvon was bitten by the mosquito.
And in some ways the mosquito, it seems like,
was also responsible for Tutankhamun's death.
So there is some kind of curse going on, do you think?
Well, I just think hold steady, I'm certainly careful!
What happened to all the treasure?
All the treasures from Tutankhamun's tomb went to Cairo.
What we have here is the remains of his collection pre-Tutankhamun.
The majority of his collection was sold after he died
to pay death duties.
-Tutankhamun is such an icon, isn't he?
He's an icon throughout the world and I thought we are so lucky,
we've got the story, we've got the story of the discovery.
-It's the treasure trail of all treasures.
-So this is...
-There's the mask.
The famous mask, obviously a replica of it,
but it's quite beautifully made.
It is an iconic image, isn't it?
It's an extraordinary image.
So this was found on top of the mummy,
which was then inside a gold coffin,
which was inside a rishi coffin like the one over there,
inside a gold coffin over wood, inside a sarcophagus,
inside four different shrines. Extraordinary.
Now for some excavation of our own at Wellington College
as we continue to dip into more bags and boxes
the locals have brought along for us to value.
And it looks like Philip's in a spin over Margaret's colourful plate.
What I love about you is you've bought this specifically
because it colour co-ordinates with our tablecloth!
-Well, we've got to try.
-Brilliant job. Brilliant job.
This screams at you, Poole.
It's a piece of Poole Pottery and it's Delphis ware,
which was started in... That range was started in 1963.
And I bet you'll never guess where Poole comes from.
-Do you know, you've done so well here!
It was founded on the quayside in Poole.
-Yeah, by the Carter family in mid sort of 1870s, I would think.
This is so obviously Poole Pottery
that we don't really need to turn it over but I better just had.
There they are, we've got the Poole transfer label there.
Then just impressed here we have Poole as well.
How have you come by this?
I inherited it from my mother-in-law when she died.
My husband's younger brother was one of the principal dancers with the Royal Festival Ballet.
-Yeah, and he died very young, unfortunately,
but while he was at the top with the ballet, he used to buy her things from all over the world.
Would he have bought this for his mum?
I would have thought he would have bought it because
most of the stuff that she had, nice stuff, would have come from Paul.
It looks to be in good order.
I think this does come back a little bit over the last five or six years
in terms of value and I think you've got to pitch this just at the right level
that makes it attractive to people who come to the auction.
So I'd recommend 40-60 as an estimate, £30 as a reserve.
-How does that grab you?
-That sounds fine, that sounds fine.
I'm not going to ask you what you're going to do with 30 quid.
-Why have you decided to sell it, though?
-I would love to have room to put everything on show,
but with something like this, the colour and all that,
it's just in your face and I think if it could go to someone
who would like it enough to hang it on a wall and look at it
and really enjoy it, I think let someone else get the pleasure of it.
I can maybe put the money and buy something else.
-I think that's a great sentiment and on that note we're going to leave it just at that.
Priced as a come and buy me.
We'll be back to see how that plate does at auction.
Next, it's over to Elizabeth as she feeds Sheila
the facts about her unusual silver spoon.
I love your spoon. What can you tell me about it?
Well, it has been in my husband's family as long as I can remember.
He's always had it. He is 82 now.
-Is he really?
Is it on display?
No, it's in a drawer. I don't know what to do with it really.
Do you know what it is or what it's made of?
No, I don't know what it is made of or where it's come from.
Well, it's basically a silver spoon which is made of filigree work
which is sort of a wirework frame,
very delicately worked silver frame,
-which is infilled then with glass. It's a kind of enamelling...
..which is called plique-a-jour because they drop the glass beads
between the little wirework frames,
fire it, the glass melts and it seeps out,
joins and fuses with the wirework frame to give this wonderful colour.
I think what we'll do, if we just have a look at it in the light...
You can see just how vibrant those colours are. It's stunning.
Also I notice that the bowl is pierced and do you know why that is?
Why has it got little holes in it?
to put something in it, sugar or something.
-Absolutely, well done.
-We did guess that.
It's a sugar sifter spoon.
A very elegant way of sifting it for strawberries and fruit.
Now, I cannot see a mark on this,
I can't see a factory mark, a maker's mark,
a designer's mark, a date, anything.
But I think it is probably North European in origin
and I think, stylistically, it dates from...
the first couple of decades of the 20th century,
probably 1900-1920, that sort of era.
The condition of it is stunning.
It has always been in a drawer.
Very happy in your drawer!
For a collector, that element is just superb
because it's actually a very fragile ware. How to value it is difficult.
-If it were attributable to a particular factory or maker, it would be easier.
-I think you'll be looking at around £80 to £120.
-Ooh. That much?
-Would you be happy?
£60 reserve on it, £80 to £120 estimate
and hope people bid higher.
Yes, thank you. That sounds good.
But will that sensational spoon
cause a stir in the saleroom? Stay tuned and we'll find out.
They say every picture tells a story and it looks like Gary has
a great tale to tell Philip about his stunning landscape paintings.
So we've got Gary and Martin and who's the owner?
-These are mine.
I think they are absolutely brilliant
and I don't know too much about the artist.
I've looked him up on the internet in terms of price realisations
but you know about this man, don't you?
I know enough to know... a reasonable amount to know
when he was born and what he does.
He works every day, he's a bit of a workaholic.
He's still working now. He's in his 60s.
His name is James Downie. He comes from Salford.
You can obviously see a bit of the influence of Lowry artistically.
He changed his style about 10 years ago
and started producing these very populist type of images
which I think are not only popular and appealing,
but technically quite sound as well.
-You sound like a man who knows a bit about...
You sound like a man who knows a bit about paintings.
-A little bit.
-What do you do?
-I paint as well.
-Martin, are you an art connoisseur as well?
-I am, yes.
I've become so since meeting Gary and learned an awful lot about art.
We go to galleries a lot.
Good. I love these.
-That's a Devon landscape, isn't it?
This, with St Austell Ales on the side, is clearly Cornish.
Then we've got this great scene here.
I love this, it's an old ERF or Foden lorry in a snow scene.
-Yes, that's actually called The Foden Lorry, actually.
That was a good guess. Have you bought these from James Downie?
I got them directly from the artist, yes.
Right, well I've looked his work up on the internet
and I think that canvases and boards this size
-are around about £80 to £120, if they sell.
I think this one is probably £150 to £250.
-IF it sells. We will offer them as three separate lots.
Estimate £80 to £120 and what reserve do you want on that one?
We'll put £80 on that one.
Do we want to give the auctioneers 10% discretion or not?
Not on that one.
That's £80 to £120 with a fixed reserve of £80.
And on this one here, the lorry, if we put £80-£120 on that one,
what reserve would you like on that?
You can put...probably about £70 would be all right on that one.
-We'll put a £70 reserve on this one.
And the Devon landscape, what would you want us to estimate that at?
-I'm being guided by what you've paid for these things.
I'd say £180 to £200.
Let's put an estimate £180 to £220 on it. And a reserve of 180, yeah?
-Are you happy with that?
Let's hope they go to auction and do really, really well
-because I think they're lovely. Which is your favourite?
-Probably that one.
-What about you, Martin?
-This one as well.
If I was going to take one, this would be the one. It's lovely.
Let's hope they draw a good result out of the bidders in the saleroom.
We've had a marvellous day and we've found our final item.
You've probably made your own minds up about what the items are worth,
but let's find out what the bidders think. Let me refresh your memory.
Philip reckons Margaret's Poole plate will be a smash.
Sheila hopes there will be heaps of interest
in her stunning silver sugar spoon.
And will Gary and Martin's Downie landscape paintings
find the perfect home to hang in?
It's back to the saleroom in Wokingham
where auctioneer Garth Lewis is presiding over all the action.
And it's Margaret's Poole plate first to fly.
So, are you go to downsize
or just thinking I want to be minimalist now?
I'm clearing out for the next lot.
Are you? Stacks of it, is there?
Stacks of Poole or stacks of stuff?
Stacks of stuff, boxes and boxes.
You a bit of a hoarder, are you?
Yes. I told Philip, I'm a magpie.
There's nothing wrong there because collectible add up over the years.
Here we go, it's going under the hammer now.
Poole pottery, Delphis pattern, circular charger. Nice example,
red and orange ground and that striking abstract design.
I have interest on the book here, I'll start it at £32 against you.
Is there any advance? 35, thank you. 38 here, 40, 42, 45,
Telephone is out. I'm here at £48.
It's against you in the room.
50, new place. And five here.
60, that takes me out. £60, if you're all done, I'm selling.
That's good and I'm so pleased that Poole is still desirable.
It's a good bit of 20th-century modern. They're still making it.
-You'll miss that.
A cracking top-end result
and now for Sheila's silver sugar sifter spoon.
Flog It's in town and guess what,
Sheila grabbed the first thing she could think of -
the silver spoon with decorated enamel work on it.
-Why did you go for that?
-Well, I thought it was unusual.
I honestly didn't know what it was
until Elizabeth said it was a sifter spoon.
Love the enamel work on this. It's just exquisite.
Let's find out what the bidders think, shall we? Here we go.
A pretty little thing, silver and plique-a-jour sifter spoon.
Lovely little thing.
Beaded handle, filigree and enamel flower heads.
I have interest here. We'll start it at £55.
60, thank you.
80, 85, 90, 95.
They like it too.
And 10, 120, takes me out.
120, is there any further?
Quality, quality, quality.
130, a new place. 140.
140, still here with the lady at 140.
140. The hammer has gone down.
-Happy with that.
-Top end, top end.
-You said 125.
-You've got a little bit more, so that's good.
You can go and treat yourself now.
I didn't expect that.
Well, that £140 certainly put a smile on Sheila's face.
Time to find out if those Downie paintings can hook in some bidders,
but where are the owners, Gary and Martin?
I love them, especially the Cornish ones. They're by James Downie.
They belong to Gary and Martin who cannot be with us
but we do have Philip, our expert, who put the values on.
Three going under the hammer, two at £80 to £120.
The larger one, £180 to £220.
-I love these.
-I love the Cornish bus. Going around the bend.
And I love the lorry in the snow.
I just think they're absolutely fabulous.
I'm a bit nervous as to how they are going to do. I really am.
Do you know, I think the smaller ones
could do slightly better than the larger one
because you can find a home for the smaller ones.
Well, I love all of them and they are...
I'd like to own them. I'd love them on my wall,
but I am really quite anxious about how they are going to do.
Let's hope Garth up on the rostrum can do a proper job.
-That's what they say in Cornwall.
It's going under the hammer right now
and I'm sure these will go back to Cornwall. Here we go.
The first of three by James Downie,
an artist with some following.
The Foden Lorry this.
I'm sure you've had a good look if you're interested.
I have interest here. I can start the bidding at £75. 85 bid.
Get in there. I knew it would do all right.
-Never had any doubt in my eyes.
Against you at 90.
And five. 110.
20, 30, still with me.
130. Are you done? 140.
150 then. Selling at £150.
Sold at 150.
-Well, I knew it.
-I like the bus.
-The next lot is my favourite.
-Never in doubt, was it?
Same artist, again a similar naive...
almost childish theme, the Cornish Bus this one.
Again I can start, bidding with me, 85, 90.
This should do a little better. Better subject matter.
Five is bid, 95 is bid.
100, and 10, 20, 30,
130, 140, 150.
150 then, if you're done.
The hammer has gone down on 150.
Do you know, when I looked at the larger one,
I think the larger one is much more Cornish than these two.
That first one with the lorry could almost be in the Yorkshire Dales.
You have a chance this time, no commission bids.
May I say £100?
-Not so keen on this one.
-Why? Too big?
-Yeah, too big.
-I kind of had a gut feeling about that.
Are you all done?
-He's not selling at 120, is he?
-I hope not!
I'm going to have to pass the lot, I'm afraid, at 120.
If we're all done.
That's not bad, is it? Two out of three ain't bad.
I think he'll be pleased.
£300 in total. I just hope Gary and Martin turn up today.
They're on their way but I'm afraid they just missed the moment.
They missed the bus.
They missed the bus! They may have missed the sale
but we'll make sure they don't miss out
on the £300 their paintings made.
It's all over. We found out today exactly what it's worth.
We've put those valuations to the test here in Wokingham
and we've sent quite a few people home very happy.
Some things flew out, some things struggled.
That's life in the auction room
and hopefully you'll join me soon in another one,
somewhere else around the United Kingdom.
For now, from Wokingham, it's bye-bye.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
The team are at Wellington College, Berkshire, looking to separate the trash from the treasure. With experts Philip Serrell and Elizabeth Talbot flanking Paul Martin in his quest, they manage to strike gold with some eye-catching landscape paintings as well as an exquisite Lalique bowl.
Paul also sets off on a trip to nearby Highclere Castle and explores the incredible Egyptian exhibition that hides within it.