Cheltenham Flog It!


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Cheltenham

Paul Martin and experts David Fletcher and Adam Partridge value the public's unwanted collectables and antiques at Cheltenham's Pittville Pump Room.


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Cheltenham in Gloucestershire is all about festivals,

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from horseracing, with the Cheltenham Gold Cup,

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to literature, science, and of course jazz.

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Today, though, it's all about antiques.

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Welcome to "Flog It!"

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This is the Pittville Pump Room in Cheltenham,

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an important example of the town's Regency architecture,

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and it was completed in 1830.

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Its beautiful hall is now used for performances,

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and for the Cheltenham Music Festival.

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And Cheltenham has had many famous visitors over the years,

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such as Jane Austen and Charles Dickens,

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but today I'm happy to welcome hundreds of "Flog It!" fans

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who have turned up to have their antiques valued

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by our team of experts, who are led by Mr Adam Partridge

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and David Fletcher.

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Adam Partridge's day job is as an auctioneer in Cheshire,

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but it looks like he's found some quirky items today.

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-Morning!

-THEY LAUGH

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Who's next? Ladies first.

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David Fletcher is based down south in Bedford.

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He's an auctioneer, and he's always looking for decorative items

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amongst the crowd.

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And of course they come here to ask that all-important question,

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-which is...

-What's it worth?

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HE LAUGHS

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We should get on with the show, as there's a queue of people

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waiting patiently.

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Coming up, Adam gets nosy.

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What would you do with the £100 it makes?

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-Just mind your own business!

-Thank you!

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Who do you think David's referring to?

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He's not old in the great scheme of things, but he's a period piece.

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And I learn all about the amazing life and work

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of a polar explorer from Cheltenham.

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First, in the beautiful surroundings of this pump room,

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David's at his table with Margaret and her friend.

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I saw you in the queue outside. You had a suitcase under your arm,

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-and you told me that you had a body in there.

-That's right, yes.

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I thought you'd got your mother-in-law in there,

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but it turned out to be this little chap.

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What can you tell me about him? Are you a ventriloquist yourself?

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No, I'm not a ventriloquist myself.

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We bought him in Evesham in a little antiques shop.

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-Right.

-I think they'd had him in a museum prior to that.

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-Right.

-I hadn't learnt my skills

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in being able to haggle for things back then.

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I just decided to go with the price that they said,

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-and bought it for that.

-We'll come to that later.

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My girlfriend's got a little grandson called Finley,

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and he would die for this. He's got a ventriloquist's dummy

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of his own, and it's nothing like as sophisticated as this.

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-Oh, right.

-You do that to turn his head,

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and there's a little lever in here that you pull, and he does that,

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and you can operate that arm with a little lever at the back.

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And he does open and close his hand.

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-So he might have smoked.

-We think so.

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Very politically incorrect, but people did that in those days.

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-That's it.

-Now, I think he's great.

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I love his suit. I mean, it's fantastic, isn't it?

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-There's aspirations of grandeur with this suit.

-Definitely.

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-Best Harris tweed, I'm sure.

-Yes.

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Very 1930s, and a typical collar of the period,

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lovely tie all sort of flowing from his neck,

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so I think he's got to have been made about 70 or 80 years ago.

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-Right.

-I've tried to teach Finley, with his ventriloquist dummy,

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how to say, "Bottle of beer,"

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and it always comes out as, "Gottle o' geer."

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-SHE LAUGHS

-Gottle o' geer.

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I can't say "bottle of beer" without moving my lips,

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so I'm no ventriloquist. And I've just noticed,

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he has little tear ducts beside his eyes.

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-What do they mean?

-There's a little pump at the back.

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The pump's missing and there's just a tube,

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and we think he probably cried. HE LAUGHS

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So, he cried, he smoked, he laughed, he moved his head back and forth.

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What a character, eh? Now, tell me what you paid for him.

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-I paid £300 for him.

-£300?

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Yeah. That seems a bit hot to me,

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-but you said you hadn't developed your haggling skills.

-No, I hadn't.

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You probably fell for him a bit. He's got a cheeky little face,

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-hasn't he? Will you miss him?

-We will,

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but he just comes out of the box to scare the family

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-and goes back in again.

-High days and holidays.

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-That's right.

-I think he's got to be worth £100,

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-so can I suggest £100 to £150?

-Yes, yes.

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Um...we need to put a reserve on.

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Perhaps just tuck it under the £100. £90.

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-No?

-Yeah.

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-SHE LAUGHS

-£100?

-£100.

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-OK. You're a hard bargainer.

-Oh, I've learnt something, then!

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We'll go for £100. Estimate of 100 to 150,

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-reserve of £100.

-OK. That's lovely.

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And I look forward to seeing you and him at the sale.

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I bet that dummy's got some real stories to tell!

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What a great start! Over with Adam now,

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and Molly has brought in a bit of a mystery bronze.

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So, Molly, this is a really curious thing,

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and I was really drawn to it when I saw you with it.

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I'm interested in Jewish objects anyway,

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-and it clearly has some Jewish symbolism there...

-It has.

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..with the Star of David there. What can you tell me about it?

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Well, I think it was given to Dad from his uncle -

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-his brother, rather, I think.

-Right.

-That's what I believe,

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-but whether that's...

-But how they came to own it...

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I haven't got a clue. But my uncle actually was a prisoner of war.

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-Ah!

-So whether he'd found it in Germany

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when he was over there or what happened, I don't know.

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It's not exactly a pretty thing. Just different.

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It's just unusual, you know. So it's always intrigued me.

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I think it was probably a table-top cigarette box

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or table snuff or something like that,

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but it's a curious thing indeed,

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with its symbolism, with this Star of David here,

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the number 23, and the whole thing is made to look like a packing case.

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-Yes, it is.

-With the anchor on the top.

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-It says "piano" here.

-I know!

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-Is it a packing case that's meant to contain a piano?

-Strange.

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It looks as though it's made from bronze, possibly from cast iron.

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To actually verify that we'd have to give it a bit of a scrape

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and see what it's like.

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We'll see what the auction house comes to say.

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We've got here "verlag", "produced by", EG Zimmermann

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of Hanau in Germany.

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They were a firm that produced objects in bronze and cast iron.

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My thoughts are, it's worth about £50, really.

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-Yeah.

-But it's a speculative thing,

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-and it may just go on from there a little bit.

-Oh, right!

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-How do you feel about that value?

-Oh, yes.

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It's better to get it to somebody who would actually really like it

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and want to put it in their collection.

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I think that's what will happen, and I'd be interested to see

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what level of enquiries they'll get out of it.

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-But you've got no trouble selling it?

-No, no trouble at all.

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-What about a reserve price? £50?

-50, I think, really.

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-Shall we put a £50 reserve?

-£50. Yeah, I think so.

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-Estimate 50 to 80?

-Yeah. Yeah.

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Bit of that. See what happens. It's not a lot of money,

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but if it makes £100, anything specific you'd do with that?

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-Put it towards a holiday or something like that.

-Really?

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I'm dying for the moment when I ask that question

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-and they say, "Mind your own business."

-Oh, no!

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Let me ask you again. What would you do with the £100 it makes?

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-Just mind your own business!

-Thank you!

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HE LAUGHS

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Well, that's Adam told. Back to business now,

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and I'm sweeping through the queue.

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-There's a signed one, look.

-Oh, lovely. Thank you.

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I got one from Cirencester a few years ago.

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-Did you? You were in Cirencester? Did you get on the telly?

-No.

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-Yes, in the background.

-See, this is the great thing.

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Hundreds of people turn up to our valuation days.

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This is where it starts. This is where the action happens.

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There's a lot of excitement, because everybody's hoping they'll go through to the auction.

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Sadly it wasn't you last time, but it might be you this time.

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Well, I'm quite happy to be in the background.

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-Ahh!

-I had a bright-pink jacket on.

-A bright-pink jacket!

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One more item to find, and it's a traditional and familiar collectable,

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over with David.

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-Hello, Rosemary.

-Hello.

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Now, everyone knows that this is a piece of Clarice Cliff,

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one of the most instantly recognisable of all objects,

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and I must say I like it.

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-Do you like it?

-It's very pretty. It is a nice vase.

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-And how long have you owned it?

-About five years, roughly.

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My mother-in-law gave it me.

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-The pattern is Capri.

-Right.

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A rare-ish pattern, but not the rarest,

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and to start, really, on the down side,

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I suppose the object itself is not terribly prepossessing.

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-It's smallish, isn't it?

-Yes, it is small.

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-And it's not really an eye-catcher.

-No.

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I suspect it's probably a spill vase.

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You know, you'd have used it to put cardboard spills in.

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I do remember spills being in.

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And I think you used them to light your cigarette.

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You put the spill in the fire. By the 1930s,

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they were going out of fashion, really,

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but that's how I would describe it. It has a slightly ribbed body,

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which just gives it a bit of added interest,

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but what people do look for, and this has got plenty of it,

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is colour. You've got orange and yellow,

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bit of brown as well. It's brightly decorated.

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Typical Clarice Cliff. Have you got a figure in mind?

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-Not really, no.

-OK.

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-I think that this should make three figures, certainly.

-Good.

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-So I would be inclined to go for an estimate of 100 to 150.

-Right.

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-Shall we say £90 as a reserve?

-Fine.

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-Thank you.

-What do you think you might spend the lolly on?

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Well, I might help my grandson with his driving lessons.

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-Expensive things, driving lessons.

-Oh, definitely.

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Let's hope we sell it. I'm sure we will,

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-and we'll get him driving.

-Thank you very much.

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-Thank you so much.

-Thank you very much.

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Fingers crossed for Rosemary and for Clarice at the auction.

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As you can see, it is really busy in here,

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which means hundreds of antiques to value,

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but our experts have been working flat-out

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and it's time to put our first batch of items under the hammer at Philip Serrell's saleroom in Malvern.

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Here's a quick recap of what we're taking

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and the reason why we are taking them.

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I've never valued a ventriloquist's dummy before.

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Have you ever been valued before?

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No.

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Who knows what you're worth? I hope you're worth £100.

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You should be worth more, really. And I'll be sorry to lose you.

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Well, I must admit I really didn't know what to make of this,

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but something really drew me to it, and I'm very curious

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to see what's going to happen when it comes up at the auction.

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We see an awful lot of Clarice Cliff.

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People tell me that one day the bubble's going to burst.

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I hope not, and certainly not before the auction.

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So it's judgement time for our Cheltenham items in Malvern.

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This is a good sign! The car park is absolutely jam-packed.

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Cars are parked all along the road here outside the auction room,

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which means the saleroom hopefully is full of people.

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Fingers crossed they're all here to bid on our lots.

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On the preview day, I caught up with the man himself,

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Philip Serrell, to see what he thought

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of Margaret's ventriloquist's dummy. Cue the bad cabaret!

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Well, we just have to talk about this!

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-Eerie, isn't he?

-He's from the 1930s. Yes!

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Definitely, with that top lip curling up.

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He seems to have a mind of his own, doesn't he? He just...

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-Philip, that's you doing that.

-What?

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-Where's your other hand?

-What?

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THEY LAUGH

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I think he is a bit scary, but he's absolutely brilliant.

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And I know we've only got a value of around £100 to £150.

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He's worth every penny of 200 quid, surely.

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It's articulated, but it's all papier mache,

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painted, with glass eyes with tear ducts as well.

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-Would you want to make this for £90?

-No.

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-I'd be disappointed if it didn't make close to 200.

-Yeah.

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-I bet he can tell a few stories.

-Get him on the rostrum with you.

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-No chance!

-PAUL LAUGHS

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It's sale day, and with the auction room packed,

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it's time to get cracking. Clarice Cliff is up for scrutiny

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in front of the bidders.

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-Good to see you, Rosemary.

-Thank you.

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I like the colour. That's this year's colour.

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You've even got matching eye-shadow. Oh, very, very trendy!

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-You're such a smoothie!

-And Clarice Cliff...

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This is a spill vase from the Bizarre range.

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Why are you selling this? Do you like it?

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Well, yes, but my mother-in-law gave me it a long time ago.

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I did a swap for some... I had a lot of Delft.

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-Did you?

-I gave it to her, and she insisted I have that.

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-We're looking at £100 to £150 on this. Happy with that?

-Hopefully.

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-There are plenty of collectors.

-And prices are holding up.

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694,

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the Clarice Cliff vase from the Bizarre range,

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decorated with the Capri pattern.

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100. 50 I'm bid. At 50. Five.

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60. Five. 70. Five.

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80 I've got here. At 80. Five.

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-Come on...

-At 85. £90 bid.

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At 90. 90 bid. Is there any more at all?

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At £90 only. Here's the bid.

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And done. Thank you.

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-He's sold it.

-It squeaked past.

-Just, just!

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That was close, wasn't it?

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But it's gone. Clarice has done the business once again.

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-Thank you for bringing that in.

-Thank you so much.

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Well, the vase certainly held its own,

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and that's a decent result for Rosemary.

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Molly's curiosity is up next. But is it bronze?

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We're looking for the top end because we want to send you off to Jersey,

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or the money towards the air fare. Why Jersey? Have you been before?

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-No, never.

-You'll enjoy it. You really will.

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Let's hope we get the top end for it. It's not bronze.

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No, it's cast iron, but that's what they did.

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It's a curious thing. They worked in bronze and cast iron.

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-They did both, didn't they?

-It is a strange object, isn't it?

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-Yes, yes. Why are you selling it?

-I don't really need it.

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-Here it is.

-It's going under the hammer now. Here we go.

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Lot number 429 is the Zimmermann box.

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There we are. Interesting lot, this,

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with the impress marks, and I am bid £35 only.

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At 35. 35 for the Zimmermann box.

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35. 45.

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One more. At 45.

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45. At 50. 50 bid.

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50. We're in. We're selling.

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At 50. Who's got another fiver, someone?

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-It's not expensive.

-It's not expensive,

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-but it's not for everyone, is it?

-No, it's not.

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-At £50, and done. Thank you.

-And it's sold. £50.

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-Ah, well.

-That's something towards it, isn't it?

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-It's something.

-Yeah. Thank you for bringing it in.

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That's not enough for Molly's Jersey flight,

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but maybe it'll pay for the car-parking.

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If you're buying or selling at auction, there is commission to pay.

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Here, the seller's commission is 16.5 percent plus the dreaded VAT.

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And if you're buying something, you must add 18 percent plus VAT

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to the hammer price, so do factor those costs into your sums.

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Margaret's ventriloquist's dummy is ready

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and bringing out everyone's cheeky side.

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He certainly put a smile on everybody's face at the valuation day.

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You know what we're talking about - that little chap,

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the ventriloquist's dummy. I do find them a little bit scary.

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I was a bit spooked by it to start with,

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but the better I got to know him, the more I liked him.

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He's not the great scheme of things, but he's a period piece.

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And somebody made a living from this dummy.

0:16:120:16:15

They took him around all the town halls and concert venues

0:16:150:16:18

and entertained people. Yes.

0:16:180:16:22

Wonderful, wonderful. And it's a quirky thing.

0:16:220:16:25

Lot number 326 is the ventriloquist's dummy.

0:16:260:16:30

I won't say who he looks like, but if you take some of the hair out,

0:16:300:16:34

he's got a striking resemblance to one of today's experts.

0:16:340:16:38

-Not you, David.

-Thank you very much.

-Lot number 326

0:16:400:16:43

is the vent's dummy. These things are really collectable.

0:16:430:16:46

Bid me £100 to start. I'm bid £100 on the net.

0:16:460:16:48

100. 100. You're not allowed to buy this.

0:16:480:16:50

-Straight in.

-140, I am bid on the net.

0:16:500:16:52

150 on the net. 160 on the net. 170 on the net.

0:16:520:16:55

-180 on the net.

-It's all online, isn't it?

0:16:550:16:58

They run on, these online bids. They come up very quickly.

0:16:580:17:02

That's 210. 220.

0:17:020:17:04

230. 240.

0:17:050:17:07

On the internet at £240.

0:17:070:17:09

Any more?

0:17:090:17:11

At £240 and I sell, then,

0:17:110:17:14

and done at 240. And done. Thank you.

0:17:140:17:17

There you go. £240.

0:17:170:17:19

That's kind of what we were all thinking.

0:17:190:17:22

-240. Yeah. Happy?

-Yes, I am. Better than I thought.

0:17:220:17:26

Well, I'm here in the centre of Cheltenham

0:17:350:17:37

to introduce you to the inspiring story

0:17:370:17:40

of one of its former residents. His name is Edward Wilson,

0:17:400:17:43

and he was a polar explorer who's left an indelible mark

0:17:430:17:47

on science and natural history. Now, you may not have heard of him,

0:17:470:17:51

but you would have heard of his colleagues,

0:17:510:17:53

Captain Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton.

0:17:530:17:56

But I want to tell you about what we owe to Edward Wilson's hard work

0:17:560:18:01

and his accomplishments.

0:18:010:18:03

Edward Wilson was born in 1872 and grew up here,

0:18:050:18:09

so to set off on his story, I've come to Cheltenham's art gallery

0:18:090:18:13

and museum, which Edward's father co-founded,

0:18:130:18:16

and which holds the Wilson family archives.

0:18:160:18:19

Edward achieved so much in his life.

0:18:190:18:22

I guess we should just start at the beginning, really.

0:18:220:18:25

His family lived in Cheltenham at Montpellier Terrace.

0:18:250:18:28

They also rented a nearby farm called the Crippetts,

0:18:280:18:31

where they spent a lot of time enjoying the country,

0:18:310:18:33

and whenever Edward was at home, he was always encouraged to draw and paint.

0:18:330:18:38

He loved school, as well.

0:18:380:18:40

He excelled and revelled at scientific learning.

0:18:400:18:43

He studied biology by dissecting animals,

0:18:430:18:45

drawing them and making observations.

0:18:450:18:47

He went to school at Cheltenham College,

0:18:470:18:50

and he had fond memories of his time there.

0:18:500:18:52

Whilst qualifying as a doctor, he met his future wife Oriana,

0:18:520:18:56

known as Ori. When they eventually married,

0:18:560:18:59

they only had three weeks together

0:18:590:19:02

before Wilson was to depart on his first trip to the Antarctic.

0:19:020:19:06

It was a huge honour to go on a polar expedition,

0:19:060:19:09

but also a massive commitment,

0:19:090:19:12

as the team would be away for years at a time.

0:19:120:19:15

Wilson's first polar role was as assistant surgeon,

0:19:160:19:20

artist and zoologist on the Discovery

0:19:200:19:23

from 1901 to 1904.

0:19:230:19:26

The museum has a wonderful archive collection

0:19:260:19:29

from Wilson's childhood right up until his final days,

0:19:290:19:33

and the exhibit shows equipment and possessions he would have taken

0:19:330:19:36

on his expeditions - things like this wonderful fur suit.

0:19:360:19:40

He used that on his first trip to the Antarctic in 1901.

0:19:400:19:44

'Ann-Rachel is the history curator here at the museum,

0:19:460:19:49

'and she's picked out some of the highlights

0:19:490:19:51

'of the Edward Wilson archive collection to show me.'

0:19:510:19:55

You must be delighted with the wealth of information there is here on Edward Wilson.

0:19:550:19:59

What was his job on board Captain Scott's ship, the Discovery?

0:19:590:20:03

Well, he was a scientist primarily.

0:20:030:20:05

He was there to observe weather conditions,

0:20:050:20:07

to observe the natural landscape,

0:20:070:20:09

to record fish they had not seen before,

0:20:090:20:12

birds, invertebrates... We've got 24 of his lovely sketches

0:20:120:20:15

and watercolours, and they show the enormous detail

0:20:150:20:18

of the icebergs and the shadows, the colours and the skills,

0:20:180:20:22

and the wonderful thing is, people wouldn't have known about them

0:20:220:20:26

in Britain, because no-one had ever seen these things.

0:20:260:20:30

How did he manage to achieve such high quality work

0:20:300:20:33

in such extreme conditions?

0:20:330:20:35

I understand he took the gloves off for about ten seconds,

0:20:350:20:38

did his bit of drawing, then had to put them back on. Took them off, did his bit of drawing.

0:20:380:20:44

But he also constructed a wonderful box.

0:20:440:20:46

It was on a string round his neck,

0:20:460:20:48

and it was a kind of compartment, so the wind whipped up over the top,

0:20:480:20:53

and he put his hands in and drew inside.

0:20:530:20:56

That's caught my eye. There's so much movement and passion

0:20:560:20:59

-in that pencil sketch.

-That's my absolutely favourite picture,

0:20:590:21:03

because you can just feel the wind whistling past them

0:21:030:21:06

as they had to stagger out through the blizzard

0:21:060:21:09

to take these scientific weather observations.

0:21:090:21:11

-He could have made his living as an artist.

-Oh, yes,

0:21:110:21:14

but he saw himself primarily as a scientist

0:21:140:21:17

and second, really, as an artist. Art was a means to record the science.

0:21:170:21:22

Between expeditions, he was heavily in demand.

0:21:240:21:27

Wilson illustrated books, and was celebrated for his research

0:21:270:21:30

into animals, in particular the emperor penguin.

0:21:300:21:33

His return journey to the South Pole was on the Terra Nova,

0:21:350:21:39

again under Captain Scott, which sailed out in 1910.

0:21:390:21:43

Why did he go back a second time?

0:21:430:21:45

-I think there's something about the lure of the Antarctic.

-Yes.

0:21:450:21:50

Some people have to go back. But also there was unfinished business.

0:21:500:21:54

There was so much science there waiting to be discovered.

0:21:540:21:57

He was absolutely fascinated by penguins,

0:21:570:22:00

partly because he thought there could be a link

0:22:000:22:02

between them and dinosaurs,

0:22:020:22:04

because again people hadn't seen emperor penguins

0:22:040:22:07

before these visits to the Antarctic,

0:22:070:22:09

and he went on this very special kind of sub-journey

0:22:090:22:13

off that second expedition, to find out more about penguins,

0:22:130:22:16

and it nearly was the end of them. It was terrible weather,

0:22:160:22:19

terrible blizzards, and it was known as the worst journey in the world.

0:22:190:22:23

-Really?

-Because of that and other factors,

0:22:230:22:26

they were late setting off for the journey to the South Pole

0:22:260:22:29

when Scott set off with Wilson and Bowers

0:22:290:22:32

and Oates and Evans on this trip

0:22:320:22:34

to see if they could get to the South Pole,

0:22:340:22:37

see what it was like, and hopefully beat the Norwegians,

0:22:370:22:40

though of course, when they got there,

0:22:400:22:42

the Norwegians had been there already, and there was the flag.

0:22:420:22:46

Their South Pole adventure ended tragically in 1912.

0:22:470:22:51

Beaten by the Norwegians, too late to claim the Pole as their own,

0:22:510:22:54

the return journey back to base camp was treacherous.

0:22:540:22:58

Physically unable to withstand a long blizzard,

0:22:580:23:01

the three remaining men, Wilson, Scott and Henry Bowers,

0:23:010:23:05

were eventually found frozen in their tent by a search party.

0:23:050:23:08

They were blessed and buried where they died.

0:23:080:23:12

The whole nation was fascinated by this race to the South Pole.

0:23:150:23:19

Yes. People were following it. Of course there was a huge delay.

0:23:190:23:22

It was months before they got the news, and before they heard

0:23:220:23:26

-that Wilson and Scott had perished.

-Must have been so sad. So sad!

0:23:260:23:30

I think it was very, very tragic. There was a great outpouring

0:23:300:23:33

of national and, of course, local grief.

0:23:330:23:36

Why do the people of Cheltenham hold Wilson close to their hearts?

0:23:360:23:39

Well, he was a very likeable person,

0:23:390:23:42

but they were an important local family.

0:23:420:23:44

They were involved in many community events and activities,

0:23:440:23:48

and Cheltenham, I suppose, led the mourning for Wilson himself.

0:23:480:23:53

Is that a photo of the whole team before they set off?

0:23:530:23:56

That's correct, yes. You can see Edward himself is sat on the sledge,

0:23:560:24:00

and the other members of the team and some of the backup team

0:24:000:24:04

are shown all lined up and ready to go, in front of Mount Erebus,

0:24:040:24:07

-so that's the start point.

-Once you're aware of Wilson,

0:24:070:24:10

it's impossible to forget what a brave man he was,

0:24:100:24:13

and there's a statue in the town to remind you daily, isn't there?

0:24:130:24:17

That was commissioned by the people of Cheltenham,

0:24:170:24:20

-by public subscription.

-Good.

-It was made by Lady Scott,

0:24:200:24:23

so even the artist has a connection with the expedition.

0:24:230:24:26

Thank you so much for showing me these.

0:24:260:24:29

-Anybody can come here and look at these, can't they?

-They can.

0:24:290:24:32

They're not all out all the time, but there's always a selection.

0:24:320:24:37

And this is the statue that stands proud in modern Cheltenham,

0:24:370:24:41

reminding each generation of their town's famous son, Edward Wilson.

0:24:410:24:45

And there's an inscription carved in stone on the column of the statue,

0:24:450:24:49

and it's taken from one of Captain Scott's last letters,

0:24:490:24:52

talking about Wilson. And it reads,

0:24:520:24:54

"He died as he lived, a brave true man,

0:24:540:24:57

the best of comrades and the staunchest of friends."

0:24:570:25:00

Cheltenham is "Flog It!"'s host today,

0:25:090:25:11

and the Pittville Pump Room is proving a popular venue.

0:25:110:25:15

Adam's found a really beautiful collection of miniatures, brought in by Sue.

0:25:160:25:20

I'm delighted to see these miniatures.

0:25:200:25:23

-They're quite special, aren't they?

-Really special.

0:25:230:25:26

It's so exciting when wonderful things like this

0:25:260:25:29

come into the programme.

0:25:290:25:30

Well, I was delving through a tin, large tin,

0:25:300:25:34

full of miniature paintings done by my mother,

0:25:340:25:37

and suddenly at the bottom, I came across these paintings.

0:25:370:25:41

So these were lying at the bottom of a tin

0:25:410:25:44

full of your mother's miniatures? Was she a keen painter?

0:25:440:25:47

-Just miniatures, or...

-She started off doing various things,

0:25:470:25:50

like flower painting, which is quite precise,

0:25:500:25:53

and then she did a course at West Dean College in Chichester...

0:25:530:25:57

-In Sussex, yeah.

-..on miniatures.

0:25:570:26:00

I'm not sure if she'd started collecting these before that,

0:26:000:26:04

or whether that then triggered this.

0:26:040:26:07

Yes. And this was one of your mother's own ones?

0:26:070:26:09

-That's right.

-She's lovely, isn't she?

0:26:090:26:11

Yes. That was exhibited in the Society of Miniaturists...

0:26:110:26:15

-Oh, was it?

-..in 1990.

-Gosh!

0:26:150:26:18

They're nearly, almost always, painted on ivory.

0:26:180:26:21

We'll go through them individually.

0:26:210:26:23

The one painted by your mother, of course, is going back with you,

0:26:230:26:27

-and in your eyes is priceless.

-Yes.

0:26:270:26:29

The next one here, this is a sort of early 19th-century gentleman,

0:26:290:26:33

probably the sort of chap that might have frequented a building

0:26:330:26:37

such as this, when it first opened in the early 19th century.

0:26:370:26:40

-He'd have looked in place here.

-The next one here,

0:26:400:26:43

she's dressed up in a Japanese fashion, isn't she?

0:26:430:26:46

Yes. The colours on that are so beautiful, aren't they?

0:26:460:26:49

-Really lovely.

-I think she's my favourite, to be honest.

0:26:490:26:53

She's probably my favourite. Really lovely.

0:26:530:26:56

We have got tiny evidence of a signature down there,

0:26:560:26:58

Miller, of the Miniature Society as well,

0:26:580:27:01

so I'm going to ask the saleroom to research all of these,

0:27:010:27:05

but particularly this one with the signed name,

0:27:050:27:07

-so we can publish his dates and look into him more.

-Right.

0:27:070:27:11

Then we've got these, possibly the most impressive looking

0:27:110:27:14

because they're in this substantial yellow-metal frame,

0:27:140:27:17

which is probably nine-carat gold, and it's a double-sided one -

0:27:170:27:21

Queen Anne here,

0:27:210:27:23

and on the other side, Queen Mary II here.

0:27:230:27:27

-What sort of dates are they?

-Early to mid-19th century,

0:27:280:27:31

that would have been painted.

0:27:310:27:33

They're all early, mid- to late 19th century

0:27:330:27:36

and then either side of here,

0:27:360:27:38

-they are from the same sort of school, aren't they?

-Yes.

0:27:380:27:41

They're very glamorous maidens.

0:27:410:27:44

Generally as a rule with miniatures,

0:27:440:27:47

it's said that pretty ladies are the best sellers.

0:27:470:27:50

-The way those painters did their faces, the actual complexion...

-Yes.

0:27:500:27:54

-..is just magnificent.

-And then you've got this other one here,

0:27:540:27:57

also in a pierced yellow-metal surround.

0:27:570:28:01

-That's done as a brooch, isn't it?

-That's right.

0:28:010:28:04

-And it's got a...

-It's been mounted as a brooch there.

0:28:040:28:07

-Or it could be on a chain.

-It could be a pendant or a brooch.

0:28:070:28:10

Now, down to values. I've already given you a bit of a clue

0:28:110:28:15

that they're quite valuable.

0:28:150:28:17

I would suggest they're sold separately.

0:28:170:28:19

I don't think it will do them justice

0:28:190:28:22

-to sell them as one lot.

-Mmm. No.

0:28:220:28:25

But to break them down, we've got the gentleman here.

0:28:250:28:28

-He looks like £200 to £300.

-Mm-hm.

0:28:280:28:31

-Perhaps a reserve of 150.

-Mm-hm.

0:28:310:28:34

She looks easily £200 to £300, maybe £300 to £500.

0:28:340:28:38

I would put a reserve of 200 on that one.

0:28:380:28:40

-Mm-hm.

-I would also put 200 to 300 on that one.

0:28:400:28:43

These two, they must be again 200 to 300 each,

0:28:430:28:48

perhaps with a reserve of 150 again. I would be slightly less on her.

0:28:480:28:52

I'd go 150, 200 on her, and put a reserve slightly below that as well.

0:28:520:28:57

-That's fine.

-Does that sound all right?

0:28:570:28:59

-Yes.

-You're selling them because there's no sentiment involved,

0:28:590:29:03

and because you've got plenty of miniatures.

0:29:030:29:06

Is there any plan of where the proceeds -

0:29:060:29:09

Because they're owned by my brother, my sister and myself,

0:29:090:29:12

-we'll be splitting it three ways anyway.

-Right.

0:29:120:29:14

And half of my share I will donate to the Alzheimer's Society.

0:29:140:29:20

Oh, good. That's a very worthy...

0:29:200:29:23

And the other half, my grandson will benefit from.

0:29:230:29:26

-Oh, well, that's lovely.

-He's only six months old,

0:29:260:29:28

-so that would be nice.

-Well, that's excellent reasons,

0:29:280:29:32

and I'm just so pleased you've brought them in.

0:29:320:29:34

That split lot of pretty little miniatures

0:29:340:29:37

should cause a scene at the saleroom,

0:29:370:29:39

but first it's time for a sing-along!

0:29:390:29:41

-High-five!

-High-five!

-Yeah! How about...

0:29:410:29:44

# If you're happy and you know it clap your hands...

0:29:440:29:47

-Clap your hands!

-He knows it.

0:29:470:29:50

Are you happy? Yeah! Hundreds of happy people here.

0:29:500:29:54

Jim's with David, and he's brought along a nice piece of silver.

0:29:540:29:58

You've brought this lovely little vinaigrette in.

0:29:590:30:01

-You know what it is, I'm sure.

-I do, yes.

0:30:010:30:03

-Only by watching your programme.

-By watching "Flog It!"?

0:30:030:30:06

OK. If you open the lid, you find this little grille,

0:30:060:30:11

which is hinged, and opens like that.

0:30:110:30:15

A little piece of sponge was inserted in there,

0:30:150:30:17

which was soaked in some sweet-smelling liquid,

0:30:170:30:21

and if you were walking down the high street

0:30:210:30:24

and you felt overcome by the smell of drains or whatever,

0:30:240:30:28

you would just lift it to your nose, and in theory at least,

0:30:280:30:33

it would revive you. I don't know whether that did the trick

0:30:330:30:36

or not, but... I don't have to tell you that it's silver, Jim.

0:30:360:30:39

-No.

-You know that, don't you, because it's hallmarked.

0:30:390:30:42

-Yeah.

-You've looked at the hallmark, presumably.

0:30:420:30:45

I tried to figure out... I know it's Birmingham.

0:30:450:30:48

-It is, yeah.

-I saw the J, but I couldn't make out the second letter.

0:30:480:30:51

Yeah. Well, the J, I think, is 1858.

0:30:510:30:56

That's rather confirmed by the fact that we have Queen Victoria's head,

0:30:560:31:00

which in the great scheme of things is quite late for vinaigrettes.

0:31:000:31:04

They tend to date from the early 19th century.

0:31:040:31:07

What I particularly like about this is the malachite-inset top.

0:31:070:31:13

It's got a little chip, which is a bit of a problem,

0:31:130:31:16

but malachite is a hard stone. It's not a precious stone,

0:31:160:31:20

-but it is rare, and just lifts it out of the ordinary, really.

-Yes.

0:31:200:31:24

I rather like these scrolls, which have been beautifully chased, too.

0:31:240:31:27

So all in all, a very nice little thing.

0:31:270:31:30

-How did you come by it?

-Well, I go to car-boot all the time.

0:31:300:31:33

-Oh, you're a car-booter?

-I'm a collector of everything.

0:31:330:31:36

And you're going to tell me you paid...

0:31:360:31:39

-£12.

-£12. OK.

0:31:390:31:41

Well, it never ceases to amaze me, really,

0:31:410:31:43

how many bargains we do hear of being picked up at car-boot sales.

0:31:430:31:46

I would say that this is worth about £80 or £90.

0:31:460:31:50

-Oh, nice!

-I would like to suggest an estimate

0:31:500:31:53

of, say, 60 to 80.

0:31:530:31:55

-Yes.

-And a reserve of 60.

-That's fine.

0:31:550:31:58

-And it'll go towards the grandson's trust fund.

-Oh, good. OK.

0:31:580:32:02

We started one the day he was born, and he's nine now.

0:32:020:32:04

-He can't get it till he's 18.

-Right.

0:32:040:32:07

And does he go to car-boot sales?

0:32:070:32:09

Sometimes he comes, when he's staying overnight with us.

0:32:090:32:12

OK. But when he's 18, he'll have that little bit of dosh

0:32:120:32:16

-in his back pocket.

-He certainly will.

-He'll be off.

0:32:160:32:19

Great. I hope he finds a bargain like this.

0:32:190:32:22

-I hope he does.

-OK. All the best, Jim,

0:32:220:32:24

-and I'll see you at the sale.

-See you at the show.

0:32:240:32:27

Well, Jim's off, so he must be pleased with David's valuation.

0:32:270:32:30

Adam's got an unusual patterned vase on his table

0:32:310:32:34

that's caused a difference of opinion.

0:32:340:32:36

Volkan and Cheryl, very nice to see you here at "Flog It!" today.

0:32:370:32:41

-You too.

-And you've brought along this vase.

0:32:410:32:44

Where did you get it from? Volkan, you go first.

0:32:440:32:47

We actually bought a pine cupboard from a house clearance,

0:32:470:32:50

probably about six months ago, and it was just full of plant pots

0:32:500:32:54

and just junk, and in amongst that was that, basically.

0:32:540:32:57

I wonder why it had been disregarded, Cheryl!

0:32:570:33:00

Because it's very, very ugly.

0:33:000:33:02

Do you know, it's funny - I haven't talked to you before this,

0:33:020:33:05

but I already knew you didn't like it.

0:33:050:33:08

I have a feeling that you don't mind it.

0:33:080:33:10

I actually quite like it. We don't have it out in the house.

0:33:100:33:13

-It sits covered up in a box.

-I wouldn't give it house-room.

0:33:130:33:17

-Right.

-But every time I've got it out to show friends,

0:33:170:33:19

said, "Have a look at this," I... I do like it.

0:33:190:33:24

-Do you?

-I just like its ugliness, really.

0:33:240:33:26

Well, sometimes things are so ugly, they're good.

0:33:260:33:30

I don't mind it. What do you think? Come on, Cheryl.

0:33:300:33:34

Let's hear what you really think.

0:33:340:33:36

I actually thought twice about bringing it into the house,

0:33:360:33:39

because it's that bad, and it looks like somebody's had a go at it with gold spray paint at Christmas.

0:33:390:33:44

Right. And what about the birds? Aren't they quite nice?

0:33:440:33:47

-They look like they've been done over with marker pen.

-OK.

0:33:470:33:51

-So it's got to go, has it?

-Definitely.

0:33:510:33:55

So you're selling it because you don't mind it,

0:33:550:33:58

you can't stand it. It's not going in your house, so you win.

0:33:580:34:01

-It's out of the door.

-I know that situation.

0:34:010:34:04

-HE LAUGHS

-Cheryl always wins anyway.

0:34:040:34:06

I bet you're used to that already, aren't you?

0:34:060:34:09

-Absolutely.

-It's by the Austrian firm of Amphora.

0:34:090:34:12

It's marked on the bottom. Quite a well known factory

0:34:120:34:15

of art pottery, Art Nouveau and later wares,

0:34:150:34:17

-quite distinctive. It's quite a wacky shape, isn't it?

-Yeah.

0:34:170:34:21

And it's mildly collectable. It's not going to make you a fortune.

0:34:210:34:25

-How much was the pine cupboard?

-About 50 quid.

-About 50.

0:34:250:34:28

-Yeah.

-And that was in it?

0:34:280:34:31

Well, it's going to pay for your pine cupboard.

0:34:310:34:33

-Great.

-I think it will make £50 to £80 at auction, typically,

0:34:330:34:36

for something like that. Provided we can find someone that wants it,

0:34:360:34:40

it's worth that. A reserve price we should probably consider,

0:34:400:34:44

because you don't want it under-selling, either.

0:34:440:34:47

-You don't want it coming home, but -

-No.

0:34:470:34:49

You don't want it going for 20 quid, or Volkan forever will say,

0:34:490:34:52

-"We shouldn't have sold that vase."

-I'll give you 20 quid to keep it.

0:34:520:34:56

Let's put 40 reserve, with a fixed reserve of 40.

0:34:560:34:59

If it doesn't make it, then, it does go home.

0:34:590:35:01

-You'll have to hide it in the shed or something.

-Yeah.

0:35:010:35:05

That's what I do when I buy things and I don't want to show my wife.

0:35:050:35:08

-Sounds like a good idea.

-Yeah. I'm giving him ideas here.

0:35:080:35:12

Sorry, Cheryl. Well, thanks for bringing it.

0:35:120:35:14

There's not much more to tell you about it.

0:35:140:35:16

It is what it is, and we'll see how it gets on.

0:35:160:35:19

-Let's get rid.

-Let's get rid.

-THEY LAUGH

0:35:190:35:22

Cheryl and Volkan look set to disagree,

0:35:220:35:25

so one of them will be disappointed at the auction.

0:35:250:35:28

We'll see who it is shortly.

0:35:280:35:30

That makes the final item ready for the saleroom,

0:35:300:35:33

but first let's see why they all appeal to Adam and David.

0:35:330:35:37

What a fantastic collection!

0:35:390:35:41

I'm so excited to see how these are going to sell at the auction.

0:35:410:35:45

For as long as I've been valuing antiques,

0:35:450:35:48

people have been collecting vinaigrettes -

0:35:480:35:50

in fact, for much longer. They always sell well,

0:35:500:35:53

and at £60 to £100, who's going to turn this one down?

0:35:530:35:55

Well, there's no middle ground with this vase.

0:35:550:35:58

You're either going to love it like Volkan did,

0:35:580:36:00

or hate it like Cheryl did. I'm just hoping

0:36:000:36:03

that we can find at least two people that love it enough

0:36:030:36:06

to bid for it in the auction.

0:36:060:36:08

We're at Philip Serrell's auction room in Malvern to watch how our items fare.

0:36:090:36:13

Let's see how Sue's miniatures go,

0:36:140:36:16

especially as they're all separate lots, with slightly lower reserves

0:36:160:36:20

after more research from the auction house.

0:36:200:36:22

You valued them separately. The majority are 200 to 300.

0:36:220:36:25

There's one at three to five, the lady.

0:36:250:36:28

I really like that. Quality, absolute quality.

0:36:280:36:31

The skill of the miniaturist is quite to be admired, isn't it?

0:36:310:36:34

Yes, and having seen my mother poring over miniatures

0:36:340:36:37

that she did, you realise the amount of effort and time.

0:36:370:36:41

-It's amazing.

-Incredible eyesight, and technique as well,

0:36:410:36:44

with the tiniest of brushes with about four hairs on.

0:36:440:36:47

To get the skin pigments and the eyes...

0:36:470:36:49

When you look at them under magnification, they're amazing.

0:36:490:36:52

Yeah. Let's find out what the bidders think,

0:36:520:36:55

because it is down to them. We can talk till we're blue in the face,

0:36:550:36:58

and sort of speculate about valuations,

0:36:580:37:01

but it's down to that lot. They're going under the hammer right now.

0:37:010:37:05

Let's find out what they do.

0:37:050:37:07

Now we've got a really lovely collection of miniatures on offer.

0:37:070:37:10

The first lot, number 248, the oval miniature on ivory

0:37:100:37:14

of the gentleman, and I'm bid 65 for that.

0:37:140:37:16

At 65. At 70. Five. 80. Five.

0:37:160:37:19

90. Five. 100.

0:37:190:37:21

110, 120, 130. I'll take five to help you.

0:37:210:37:25

At 130. Five?

0:37:250:37:28

Might not get the chance again. At £135.

0:37:280:37:31

Any more at all? At £135,

0:37:310:37:34

and done, then, at 135. And done.

0:37:340:37:37

-Sold. 135.

-On reserve.

0:37:370:37:40

Lot number 249 is this lovely Japanese-dressed lady.

0:37:400:37:47

I'm bid 110. 110, 110. 120. 130.

0:37:470:37:50

-140. And 50.

-Come on. Up, up, up.

0:37:500:37:53

-Is there any more? At £150.

-That's cheap, isn't it?

0:37:530:37:57

Any more? At 170. Any more? I'm sorry, I haven't done that one.

0:37:580:38:03

Didn't reach the reserve.

0:38:030:38:06

-I'm surprised.

-So am I.

0:38:060:38:08

-That was the best one.

-The double-sided miniature,

0:38:080:38:11

Queen Mary and Queen Anne. 100. 110.

0:38:110:38:14

120. 130. 140.

0:38:140:38:17

150. 160. 170.

0:38:170:38:21

180. 190.

0:38:210:38:23

-200.

-This is selling.

0:38:230:38:25

230. 240.

0:38:260:38:28

-250.

-It's the frame.

0:38:280:38:31

It's the double-sided one, isn't it?

0:38:310:38:34

300.

0:38:340:38:36

310.

0:38:360:38:37

320.

0:38:370:38:39

This is more like it.

0:38:390:38:41

Done, then. At 320 and done.

0:38:410:38:44

That's good. Here's the fourth one. We're halfway through.

0:38:440:38:47

They got about £455.

0:38:470:38:49

Lot number 251. There we are. 95.

0:38:490:38:53

At 95. 100.

0:38:530:38:55

Any more at all? At £100. Any more?

0:38:550:38:58

-No, I'm sorry. That hasn't gone.

-That one didn't sell either.

0:38:580:39:02

I don't think they should have gone for that.

0:39:020:39:04

-That would have been underselling them.

-Lot number 252

0:39:040:39:08

is the 20th-century miniature of a girl wearing a headscarf.

0:39:080:39:11

At 100. At £100.

0:39:110:39:13

She's really nice.

0:39:130:39:15

110. 120. 130.

0:39:150:39:18

140. Here's the bid. At £140 only. It's your bid.

0:39:180:39:22

-Just, isn't it?

-Yeah. Disappointed with that.

0:39:220:39:26

-Done. Thank you.

-This is the last one.

-The brooch.

0:39:260:39:30

Lot number 253 is the early bust-portrait brooch miniature.

0:39:300:39:34

I'm bid 55. At 55, 55, 55.

0:39:340:39:37

60. And five.

0:39:370:39:38

65. Any more?

0:39:380:39:40

I'm normally used to miniatures going very well!

0:39:400:39:43

Any more? No, I'm sorry. I can't do that one either.

0:39:430:39:47

That one didn't sell either. So we've sold half. We've sold three,

0:39:470:39:51

and I think that's a grand total of around £595.

0:39:510:39:54

I'm pleased with what we've achieved.

0:39:540:39:56

That's a bonus, because you didn't know they were in there

0:39:560:40:00

-in that drawer, did you?

-No.

-Thank you for bringing them.

0:40:000:40:03

It was lovely to see them, and I hope you're not disappointed,

0:40:030:40:06

but I'd rather they weren't undersold.

0:40:060:40:09

I think it's right that we just hold them back

0:40:090:40:12

and see what happens for the future.

0:40:120:40:14

That's why we have reserves - to protect the value of treasured items.

0:40:160:40:20

It's time for Volkan and Cheryl to see their vase go under the hammer.

0:40:210:40:24

Who will get their own way when it comes to the end result?

0:40:240:40:27

Let's see.

0:40:270:40:29

-Why are you selling this?

-Because it's very ugly.

0:40:290:40:32

I don't find that ugly at all.

0:40:320:40:35

I find that quite attractive in a strange way.

0:40:350:40:38

-I really do.

-Very strange way.

0:40:380:40:40

-I like it.

-I quite liked it too, but we mustn't tell Volkan,

0:40:400:40:43

-because he didn't want to sell it.

-I didn't want to sell it.

0:40:430:40:46

-Oh, I see.

-And I won't give it house-room.

0:40:460:40:48

Got you! Know where you're coming from, Volkan!

0:40:480:40:52

-I didn't get a say in the matter.

-Let's just be quiet

0:40:520:40:54

-and watch it sell, shall we?

-Exactly.

0:40:540:40:57

Lot number 743 is the Amphora vase,

0:40:570:41:02

and I am bid £20 for that lot. At five. 25,

0:41:020:41:05

the Amphora vase. At 25. 25.

0:41:050:41:08

And 30. And five.

0:41:080:41:10

And 40. 40 bid.

0:41:100:41:12

At £40 only. 40. I'll take five anywhere.

0:41:120:41:16

Any more? At £45, and I sell, then, at £45.

0:41:160:41:20

And done. Thank you.

0:41:200:41:21

It's £45. We sold it.

0:41:210:41:23

You see, someone found the beauty in it.

0:41:230:41:26

-It's gone to a different house.

-Yes.

0:41:260:41:28

-Thank goodness for that.

-Never mind.

-Thanks for bringing it in.

0:41:280:41:32

-"Never mind, never mind"!

-THEY LAUGH

0:41:320:41:36

Poor Volkan's lost his vase,

0:41:360:41:38

but at least Cheryl's got rid of it.

0:41:380:41:41

Jim's silver vinaigrette is next to face the bidders.

0:41:410:41:44

-Why are you selling this?

-I've had it for a long time,

0:41:450:41:48

-and we have a trust fund for my grandson.

-OK.

0:41:480:41:50

-So it's all going into that.

-By the time he's 18,

0:41:500:41:53

he'll have enough for a car, so let's get enough for a gallon of petrol.

0:41:530:41:57

Preparing for the future! That's what it's all about.

0:41:570:42:00

-It's not a lot of money, this, and there's a lot of lot there.

-Yeah.

0:42:000:42:03

It's quite late for a vinaigrette,

0:42:030:42:05

-but I love the stone setting.

-Yes, so do I.

0:42:050:42:08

-The malachite is fantastic.

-It looks good, doesn't it?

0:42:080:42:11

-It looks 150 quid.

-It does. It's a real swanky thing.

0:42:110:42:15

We're going to find out what this lot think.

0:42:150:42:18

It's going under the hammer right now.

0:42:180:42:21

Here's a nice lot. 55 I have. At 55.

0:42:230:42:26

55. 60. 60 bid. Five.

0:42:260:42:28

70. Five. 80. Five. 90. Five.

0:42:280:42:31

100. 110. 120.

0:42:310:42:33

130. 140. 150.

0:42:330:42:36

160. 170.

0:42:360:42:39

180. 190. It's the lady's bid.

0:42:390:42:42

At £190 and done, then. At 190 and done.

0:42:420:42:45

Yes! Sold! £190! I knew it looked like a good 150 quid, didn't I?

0:42:450:42:51

-You've got to be happy with that.

-I am.

0:42:510:42:54

It'll buy a couple of gallons of petrol when he's 18.

0:42:540:42:57

-I wouldn't bank on it!

-Not the way it's going up.

0:42:570:43:00

-There'll be electric cars by then. We'll all have them.

-Yes.

0:43:000:43:04

I love hearing what people plan to do with the proceeds,

0:43:040:43:07

and what a great result for Jim.

0:43:070:43:10

I thoroughly enjoyed that. What a marvellous day we've had!

0:43:120:43:15

Another day in another saleroom - that's what it's all about.

0:43:150:43:18

Keep watching. There'll be more surprises to come.

0:43:180:43:21

But until then, goodbye.

0:43:210:43:23

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:43:230:43:27

E-mail [email protected]

0:43:270:43:31

Today's valuation day is being held in Cheltenham's Pittville Pump Room. Paul Martin and experts David Fletcher and Adam Partridge are primed and ready to value people's unwanted collectables and antiques.

Amongst the items brought in, there's a ventriloquist's dummy which raises more than just a laugh at the auction, and a collection of miniatures which is split up to face the bidders. Paul visits the Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museum to learn about Edward Wilson, a celebrated polar explorer from the town.