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Like Rip Van Winkle waking up from a deep sleep,
"Flog It!" has come to Sandon Hall in Staffordshire
to shake it from its slumber.
We're throwing off the dustsheets to reveal some forgotten treasures
and uncovering some stories within this great historic house.
Welcome to the show.
Tucked away amongst 4,000 acres
of beautiful Staffordshire countryside,
Sandon Hall has been home to the Earls of Harrowby
for nearly 300 years,
during which time they've distinguished themselves
in the fields of politics, banking and the military.
The Second Earl of Harrowby,
a distinguished officer in the Crimean War,
was awarded the Order of the Garter by Queen Victoria,
one of the highest orders offered by the Crown.
The motto can be seen on these magnificent gates,
which translates to shame on him who thinks evil of it.
Well, today, hundreds of people have turned up here at Sandon Hall
laden with antiques and collectables.
And, of course, on "Flog It!", we have our own motto, which is...
-What's it worth?
-Stay tuned and you'll find out.
Scanning the crowd and hoping for a big surprise
are experts Christina Trevanion...
Ooh, I love this bit. It feels a bit like Christmas, doesn't it,
when you're unwrapping things? What have you got?
..and master chef David Fletcher.
There we are. Result.
Egg and bacon sandwich for breakfast.
Later on in the show,
David is transported back to childhood...
I defy any man not to be moved by a collection like this.
..I discover the unbelievable story
of a British prime minister defending his honour...
It's quite incredible to think one of these pistols
was held by William Pitt.
..and there are some unexpected results at the auction.
I knew there was going to be a surprise.
I didn't think it would be that one. I really didn't.
But now it's time to get everyone seated
and ready for our first valuation.
Well, everyone is now safely seated
inside this magnificent, historic building.
We've literally taken over all of the ground floor.
There's so much to see.
But right now, we need to find some items to take off to auction,
and it could be any one of you here in this room. Fingers crossed.
-Having a good time? CROWD:
-Well, it's just going to get better.
We need our first item and here it is.
It's straight over to Christina Trevanion's table.
First up, it's a classic piece of pottery.
Kim and Nick, are you Moorcroft collectors?
I've got a few bits of Moorcroft, but more because I like it
as opposed to being a collector of it.
I just... The odd piece, that's all.
And is it particularly sort of early pieces that you look for generally
or just any pattern that you like?
I go more by what I actually like.
Obviously, Moorcroft's good quality, but I just... I like it.
That's why I tend to buy it. I'm a bit of a hoarder.
-Ooh, is he?
-What's he like to live with?
-28 years, I've stuck this.
-I'm only 42, really.
-Almost three life sentences, I've been through.
-Oh, my goodness.
I think I need to provide some marriage guidance counselling.
-Kim, it's all right. It's all right.
-Brilliant. And do you like the Moorcroft?
-I like it, yeah.
Does he go and buy at auctions and things
and come home with sort of funny things
-that he hasn't told you about?
-You little pickle.
-I buy from everywhere.
-So, where did the bowl come from?
About five years ago, I bought that
from a local chap who does house clearances.
He's got a little shop where he sells stuff off
and I bought it from there. I just liked it.
Didn't know a great deal about Moorcroft at that time.
-Just liked the bowl.
-Have you done any research on it
-since you've had it?
-None at all.
-So, you just love it as a piece.
I can quite see why you love it. If we look a bit more at the bowl,
it's decorated in what we call the anemone pattern.
These lovely sort of white and pink and blue blooms here.
This one's agate, so it's lovely green and blue graded ground here.
They did them against various different backgrounds.
You have white, pink, red, flambe backgrounds,
so this is a particularly lovely colourway.
And the way that it has been tube-lined
with this design is just typical of Moorcroft, isn't it?
You see this style of design and pattern and you think,
"It's got to be Moorcroft."
And, of course, when we turn it over and look at its bottom...
And there we go.
Oh, look at that. This is what I loved about it.
The green squiggle is a signature from William Moorcroft
who established the factory in the early 20th century.
1913, I think he set it up.
"Moorcroft", obviously impressed into the body there.
And then this wonderful label,
which we really don't see very often. Sometimes...
-Do people peel them off, do they?
-People, A, peel them off
and B, sometimes, you see, on Moorcroft, "Potter to the Queen.
"Potter to Her Majesty the Queen."
Which was given to them in 1928, which is when this bowl dates to.
But you don't often see this wonderful
"W Moorcroft Handmade Pottery Registered Number 784,"
which I think is the number of this particular bowl.
So, to see that and to still have that is really quite lovely.
It just sets it apart slightly for a Moorcroft collector.
The only downside - and it's just a very, very tiny downside...
If I was being hyper, hyper critical.
..is that Moorcroft collectors do prefer vases rather than bowls
because, obviously, vases are easier to display.
Obviously, a bowl, it has to be displayed quite low down
in order to see the pattern.
So, that would be my only hesitation, really.
That's going through my mind when I'm thinking about a value for it.
Nonetheless, it's a nice, early piece
and at auction, I think that a sensible auction estimate on it
would be somewhere in the region of £100 to £200.
-What are your thoughts about that?
-Sounds fine to me, yeah.
-What did you pay for it? Do you mind me asking?
-I think it was over £100.
-I can't remember exactly.
-Somewhere around that figure.
-Somewhere around £100, yeah.
-So, if we were to put 100 to 200,
with £100 possibly discretionary reserve,
-would that be all right?
-Yeah, that's fine.
So, do you think he'll use the money
-to go and buy some more antiques maybe?
-I have space to put something else.
Antiques should come with a warning -
they're highly addictive.
Now, they say you can tell a man's age
-from his collection of Corgi Toys.
But, of course, I don't know that these were actually your Corgi Toys.
-No, they weren't mine. They were my brother-in-law's...
-..who died a few months ago.
-And I knew of the collection, but I'd never seen it.
And my brother-in-law knew I was interested
and he left them to me to dispose of as I wished.
Did you collect them when you were young?
I did, and if they were here now,
-the condition wouldn't be as good as these are in.
-But I'm a designer.
-Oh, right, yeah.
-I'm interested in design.
Particularly sort of period designs such as these.
-I just find the whole...the style of that era fascinating.
I mean, not only the design of the cars themselves,
-but, of course, the packaging too.
-Yeah, the packaging.
In a way, there's as much sort of nostalgia
which attaches to that as to the cars themselves.
I gather this is part of a larger collection.
Yes, it is.
And that you want to sell some of the collection.
-Maybe, at a later date, you might want to sell the rest of it.
So, how many individual models
would you say we're going to unload at this time?
-I think there are around 23 here today.
Well, these probably comprise some of the more interesting.
The Kit one here is particularly rare
because it's never been built.
-So it's still there ready and waiting for somebody to assemble...
-..which is quite nice.
-There it is.
-There are the contents for a petrol station.
As you say, unassembled.
-I quite like this one here...
..because you feel like you're driving it.
-You're turning a steering wheel on the top...
-..which links to the front wheels.
I really, really do like that one.
-And I love this little Dinky Toy here.
-We're going to Dinky Toys away from Corgi Toys.
-It's got the split-screen as well.
-A split-screen Morris Minor.
-Yeah, it defines the period, doesn't it?
-It does indeed, yeah.
-Fantastic. And, you know, there is a boy inside every man.
-And I defy any man in his... I don't know.
-..late 50s or 60s not to be moved by a collection like this...
-..because it stirs all sorts of memories.
But what I have to say, Chris -
-they are all in fantastic condition.
Um, they haven't been played with.
We need to talk about value.
I'm not going to go into individual values now,
and there are several more boxes, as we've discussed,
-which we'll include in this lot.
-But I'd like to go with an estimate of 300 to 500.
-Um, put a reserve of £300 on them...
..which I think really is just a covering estimate.
They are just so collectable.
And in today's market,
which is not really as straightforward as it used to be,
-it is collector's items that are continuing to do well.
-And I'm sure we'll have a good day. All right?
-Thank you very much.
# Rolling down the road at eight miles a gallon... #
Quality and quantity.
Chris's collection certainly ticks all the boxes.
# I don't feel so guilty about eight miles a gallon... #
Here's an interesting story for you. Look at the portrait over there.
That's Spencer Perceval, OK?
Now, the First Earl of Harrowby was a politician for some 50 years
serving under a succession of prime ministers,
including his friend Spencer Perceval.
Perceval came into office in 1809,
but if you look closely at this portrait of him,
you'll notice that his face looks slightly pale and washed out.
That's because it was painted posthumously.
Spencer Perceval has the dubious credit
of being the only British prime minister
to have been assassinated while in office.
To the shock of the nation, the prime minister was shot dead
in the lobby of the House of Commons on the 11th of May 1812.
The assassin was John Bellingham,
a British merchant who had run up debts in Russia.
Feeling let down by the government,
who refused to compensate him for his losses,
he sought his deadly revenge.
Perceval's body stayed at Number Ten Downing Street
for five days while this portrait could be painted.
He was propped up in that chair.
I've been told the eyes show a little bit of life.
Well, that's because his sister sat in for them.
And right now, we're going to sit in on one of our experts
and catch up with what else they're sending off to auction.
What a wonderful collection of medallions we've got here.
It's almost like looking...
This one, particularly, is like looking at the view
-here at Sandon Hall. Isn't it wonderful?
-The arch. It's wonderful.
-It's very palatial, isn't it?
-I've only just noticed that.
-Great place to be.
Tell me a little bit about these medallions.
Well, I inherited them within the last 18 months,
when the lady I'd been looking after died
-and left me everything to clear the contents of her house.
-Oh, my gosh.
And these belonged to her stepfather
and they were just dusty and in a box.
This medallion here, which I find particularly fascinating,
is basically a medal for craftsmanship
-for boot and shoe repairing.
It says, "Boot and Shoe Repairing Competition,"
and it's signed, or it's engraved, "CFS Starling, 1940."
-That's right, yes.
-Do we know who CFS Starling was?
He was the stepfather of the friend that I looked after.
Did he have any connection with boots and shoes?
Oh, he was a repairer, so he was obviously a very talented man.
Obviously. To get a medallion for something,
-it's not necessarily something that we see a lot of these days.
There are prizes or commemorative medallions.
It would have been, like these two later ones that you've brought in,
which are smallholder championship medallions,
it would have been in a really beautiful, fitted,
-morocco leather case originally.
And then, moving on to this little silver coin
that we've got here, this is particularly beautiful.
Again, if we look at each side, we've got "Queen Consort...
"Alexandra Queen Consort" and then on the front, really... It's here.
..we've got "Edward VII Crowned August 1902."
So, it's a most wonderful Silver Coronation medallion there...
-I like that, yes.
-..which is so detailed.
I mean, you can almost see every little hair
in his beard, in his hair.
You can almost sort of feel the gems and jewels
in the crown and coronet there.
So, really, I mean, the smallholder championship medallions
-aren't necessarily as interesting.
-They're quite a lot later.
Who was the smallholder champion? Was it Mr Starling?
I think it must have been.
-He was a breeder of show rabbits.
He got Clarice into show rabbits when she was eight years old
-and she did that until about ten years before she died...
..which is how I met her in the '70s. I don't know...
It would probably have something to do with that, wouldn't it?
I think it's a really interesting little collection. Fascinating.
Obviously, it's so important that you've got that provenance -
where it's come from -
about Mr Starling and his achievements as well.
-It's really quite splendid. And that's why provenance
and making sure that we communicate to the people
where we got these things from.
-But to get those stories and that history...
..is so important.
Probably, at auction, then, not going to have a huge value,
I don't think. But I think there is a market for it
-and I think we're probably looking somewhere maybe £30 to £50.
-Something like that. How do you feel about that?
-Yeah, that's fine.
As long as someone will appreciate them because...
Well, that's it. And I think that's the key to it, isn't it?
For them to go to a home where they will be appreciated by a collector.
-Yes, they're not worth a huge amount...
-..but to a collector...
And they will be looked after for generations to come.
Thank you for bringing them in and sharing that wonderful story.
-It's been a pleasure.
-That's OK. Thank you very much.
Well, we're certainly finding the treasures here today
worthy of our magnificent surroundings.
We've got three items to take off to the sale room
and we're going to put those valuations to the test.
Here's a quick rundown, just to jog your memory,
of all the items we're taking with us.
Nick's bowl is a beautiful example
of classic Moorcroft that would adorn any collection.
And this colourful array of classic toys
has universal appeal
and is bound to make a buzz in the sale room.
And finally, Linda's medallions.
They may be small in size,
but they're big on history.
Today, we've travelled across counties
to Halls auctioneers on the outskirts of Shrewsbury
for our auction, where we're assured of a warm welcome
from the proprietor.
Jeremy Lamond is our auctioneer today
and the commission here is 19% plus VAT.
Nick and Kim, good luck.
A great name in ceramics going under the hammer right now.
-Moorcroft, it's a lovely bowl, you love Moorcroft...
-..and you don't like Moorcroft.
Why did you buy it?
Did you want to upset her on purpose?
That's a good reason, but...
that wasn't the particular reason in this case, no.
I just like quality, that's all.
Yeah, it is quality, it is quality, you've got a good eye
and you paid the right money for it,
so hopefully we can get the right money back.
-Fingers crossed. Here we go.
Lot 210. I can start this one at £100.
At £100, anybody else at £100? 110 now.
-£110, the bid is in the room.
At £110, it's your bid at 110.
All done, selling at 110.
GAVEL BANGS Yes, the hammer's gone down.
-There we go. Moorcroft bowl.
-We are happy, yeah.
We would like a bit more money.
I've already spent the money on another piece of Moorcraft anyway.
-Oh, you haven't.
-Oh, he's a wind up, isn't he?
-No, he's not.
-Oh, isn't he?
He's a fully paid-up antiques addict, that's what he is.
Going under the hammer right now - four medallions belonging to Linda
who is moving, you're downsizing.
-And you're looking forward to a bungalow.
So you live in a house at the moment.
House at the moment, going to a bungalow,
but just around the corner, 400 yards.
Oh, so you love...you love where you live,
-that's the main thing, isn't it?
-Yes, well, family are there.
Oh, that's nice, isn't it? Why are you selling these medals?
Well, because they've been packed away in a drawer
and nobody's looking at them.
Nobody's appreciating them and I want them to be looked at and loved.
It's the start of a big clear-out, isn't it?
It's the start of a big clear-out, yeah.
It'll pay for the decorating and what you've got to do...
Well, it will pay for the solicitor's fees.
I tell you what, it haemorrhages money, doesn't it?
And the stamp duty and it just goes on and on and on and on.
-Well, good luck and let's see what we can get.
-Happy with this?
-Best of luck, Linda.
-Here we go.
Lot 65. There they are
and I can start at £25, at 25.
That's good, that's good. More.
At 25, I'll take 30. At £25.
-I'm going to sell then at 25.
-Made the bid, no reserve.
-Could've been a tenner.
-Good luck with that 25 quid.
-It's another drawer emptied.
-Yeah, 25 towards the solicitors.
Oh, look... Look, you're positive and you're upbeat
-and that's the main thing.
-And you enjoy life, so...
-And you know what?
It's a new passage, it's a different thing going on,
-so it's good, isn't it?
-Very exciting, yeah.
Well, let's hope they go to a good home.
Next, it's Chris' car collection,
which the auctioneer split up into five lots.
-Well, good luck, Chris.
-Fingers crossed we get top money.
There's some cracking ones here. Ready for it?
-Here we go.
Lot 276, a collection of Dinky and Corgi toys.
Who's going to start me at £140?
At £140 bid on the internet.
150, 160, 170, we all finished then?
At £170, 170.
GAVEL BANGS There's the first one.
-It's a good start.
-It's a very good start. 170.
The Dinky Muir Hill Loader,
Corgi Bentley Continental
At £120. At 120, 130, £130 now, 130.
140, 150, the bid is in the room at £150.
Selling to a room bidder at 150.
GAVEL BANGS 150. Two down.
Lot 278, the Corgi Major toys,
Priestman Cub Luffing Shovel
£100. At 100, 110 where?
There's someone in the room bidding.
120, 130, 140, 150.
At 150 all done then. At 160, new place.
160, at 160.
-1069 - 160.
Lot 279, the Corgi,
No. 468 London Transport
Routemaster Bus, etc.
50 for the three.
50 bid, at 50 I'll take five.
Five on the internet.
Bid's in the room at £60. All done at £60.
-So far so good.
The Corgi Heinkel Economy Car,
Austin A60 Motor School Car, etc.
Five in the lot.
What about £100 for them?
On the internet. 120, 130 on the internet.
140, 150, internet bids 160, 170.
£170 now on the net.
180 on the net, 190 on the net, against you 200, at £200.
-This is good.
-This is good.
220 in the room. The bid's in the room at 220. At 230.
240, 250, internet.
260, at 260. Internet, yes or no?
270, 280. At £280, room bid.
-At £280 all finished then? At 280, 290...
-300. £300, yes?
20. 340. At £340.
Still with you at £340.
All done then at 340.
Yes, hammer's gone down. That's five out of five, that's £880.
-That's really good.
Well done, you, congratulations, thank you for bringing those in.
I'm delighted, the last lot made more
than I estimated the whole lot at.
That's probably why they split them into the different...
-Yeah, he did good job, actually.
-He did us proud.
A terrific result.
Well, that's our first three lots under the hammer,
we are coming back to Halls later on in the programme, do not go away.
The thing I love about antiques is not only do they tell us
a story about the past,
but also they tell us something about the people who own them.
Now, back at our valuation day venue, Sandon Hall,
there's a wonderful collection of objects
which can give us a real insight
into the dramatic and colourful life of one of its earliest owners.
This small and rather unremarkable watercolour portrait
is of Dudley Ryder, the first Earl of Harrowby
and the owner of Sandon Hall,
back at the turn of the 19th century.
It was painted in the early 1800s,
when Ryder was in his 40s
and at the very peak of an extraordinary political career.
Born in 1762, Dudley Ryder, the first earl,
lived through one of the most turbulent times in British history.
SOLDIERS FIGHT AND SHOUT
The rise of Napoleon after the French Revolution
resulted in a war with Britain
that would last for nearly 20 years,
putting enormous pressure on the government,
particularly the first earl,
who was the foreign secretary at the time.
So, what do we know of Dudley Ryder's life
during this period?
There are clues scattered throughout the house.
Firstly, there's this portrait of William Pitt the Younger,
so called because he was England's youngest ever prime minister,
taking office at the tender age of 24.
Secondly, there's this letter from Pitt to Dudley Ryder.
And this pair of duelling pistols.
Now, individually they don't mean much,
but put them all together
and they tell an extraordinary story,
which puts Ryder at the very centre of English politics.
But to understand how all of these items are related,
we need to go back in time to 1798.
Britain's long war with revolutionary France
was an expensive drain on the government's resources,
so when the prime minister, William Pitt,
agreed to a request for more funds,
the leader of the opposition, George Tierney,
accused him of being reckless with the country's finances.
A heated debate followed, leading to the very unusual situation
of the prime minister having to defend his honour in a duel.
It was then that Pitt wrote the letter to Dudley Ryder,
his friend and member of his cabinet.
"Dear Ryder, if you find five minutes,
"I should be much obliged to you if you would come here,
"if possible before dinner, if not as soon after as is possible,
"on a matter on which I know I may trust to your friendship
"and which does not admit of delay."
When they met, Pitt asked Dudley Ryder to be
his second in the duel,
a request usually reserved for the dueller's best friend.
One of the roles of the second was to provide the pistols
and these are the very pistols that Dudley Ryder took
to Putney Common in South London at dawn the next morning.
Many people said the duel
was slightly unequal,
because Pitt was very thin and Tierney was very fat,
thus making him a larger target.
It's reported Pitt fired twice, once at his opponent
and his second shot into the air.
Fortunately, neither man was injured and they retired
with their honour intact.
Alone, these three items are interesting,
but put them together and they are exceptional.
Their provenance, which relates their story together,
imbues each item with much greater meaning.
Sandon Hall is still home to the first earl's descendants.
I met up with Conroy Ryder, the eighth earl,
to hear more about his ancestor's eventful life.
That time, the first earl was foreign secretary
and after the end of the battle, the Duke of Wellington
wrote his dispatch to the government.
One of his staffers set off to London...
..with the standards, which had been captured from the French.
They arrived at about 10 o'clock in the evening.
He went to Downing Street to deliver the message
and was told that there was nobody there,
that they'd all gone to dinner with Lord Harrowby,
who was the foreign secretary, as I mentioned,
in his house in 44 Grosvenor Square.
So off he went with a growing pride...
Swelling the streets.
Yes, you can imagine the excitement.
I mean, this was the end of a very long war.
So, this great throng went off to Grosvenor Square
and there they found the cabinet
and he was able to rush into the house shouting, "Victory!"
Now, there's a rather lovely story,
because my late grandfather remembered, as a very young boy,
an extremely elderly aunt who was a child in that house on the night
when the announcement was made.
And, because it was a family home,
she was woken up by a great rumpus downstairs
and rushed out from the nursery bedroom
right up to the top of the house
and looked down through the stairwell
and saw all these old men, the old cabinet members
dancing around the house shouting, "Victory! Victory!" and celebrating.
-And it's just rather a lovely...
-What an image.
-..sort of memory
that links back to the battle.
He lived an incredibly long life into his 80s, didn't he?
And, in fact, it was rather a sad end, I mean,
he could've lived much longer, but in December 1847,
Lord Harrowby's favourite granddaughter, Charlotte Mary,
was standing too close to an open fire.
Her dress went up in a sheet of flames, she was very badly burnt.
He had tried to help put the fire out
and got quite badly burnt himself.
She sadly died a few days later.
He was inconsolable, he loved this girl.
Maybe the shock from that, who knows,
but he contracted pneumonia and died on Boxing Day a few days later.
Dudley Ryder, the first earl of Harrowby, died as he lived -
What an extraordinary life.
Back at the valuation tables,
David delves into some more recent history.
-How do you do, sir?
Wolves autographs - 1946, 1947.
Yes, they belonged to my late husband who was a football,
-Yes, he was. Yes.
-He was a fanatic.
Right, how old would your husband have been then?
-Born in 1931.
-In which case, he would have been 15...
..when he went to collect those autographs.
-Remarkable, really, a 15-year-old lad.
Yeah, him and his brother used to cycle to Wolves
more or less every Saturday.
Well, good for him.
And are they all football autographs?
No, there's some film stars, some radio stars.
Well, I see you've tagged some, shall we make our way through them?
The first one is football, as it happens.
Stoke City, Stanley Matthews...
Right. The great Stanley Matthews.
The great Sir Stanley Matthews, a Staffordshire legend.
Played for Blackpool as well, of course. And who is this?
That looks like Deborah Kerr. Is it? OK.
Famous for that speech seen with Burt Lancaster.
-What was the film called From Here To Eternity?
That's right. It was great that film.
That was very naughty, wasn't it?
Well, it was a naughty film in them days.
So, we've already got a mixture, haven't we?
We've got film stars and footballers
and you've tagged this one here which is...
Gosh, so, that's a military one, I suppose we could call it.
Royal Air Force, of course
and founder of the Leonard Cheshire Homes.
So, we've got a really good little collection here
from a wide range of backgrounds.
Now, I don't think any of them are big, big stars.
But your husband, bless his cotton socks, collected all of these.
-He must've worked jolly hard to get them.
I think this is a great little collection.
Now, you're obviously happy to sell it...
-..otherwise you wouldn't have agreed to that.
Do you have any hopes or expectations as to...?
-Let's go with an estimate, an auction estimate of £50-£80.
-And I think we should put a covering reserve of say £30.
-Yes, that'll do.
Well, I look forward to seeing these sold. They are...
Well, many of them are of local interest, which is great.
And I'm sure they'll do well for you.
-All right, then.
-See you at the sale, bye.
-Thank you very much.
She's enjoying herself. Look, enjoy the rest of the day.
Button, thank you for coming in. All dogs welcome.
Now, for another local speciality.
I think they're utterly charming, I really do.
We've got a set of four Royal Doulton figurines here,
which were produced by Royal Doulton about 1988 onwards.
And they are depicting a time that I can't really get my head around.
I mean, it was the evacuation period of the Second World War, wasn't it?
-Where children were sent away
-so that they weren't, basically, during The Blitz...
..they weren't in any sort of danger and you can see
on their little faces, I mean...
-..they're looking very, very sad to go away.
And then, a couple of years later, they're coming home
and they get to see their cat and their dog
and they are just utterly charming, aren't they?
Yeah, they are nice, yeah.
Now, Verna, you're obviously far too young to remember The Blitz...
-Oh, I don't know about that, I remember it well.
Yeah. I had a little girl come to live with me with her mother.
-They were evacuated.
And they stayed with us.
I'd be about three
and I can't really remember how long they stayed.
My vivid memory is of...she wore a beret.
-Oh, how exotic.
And I always wanted it off her,
so I had it and caught nits into the bargain.
-Head full of nits.
That's the price you pay for wanting a beret.
Everything that we really need to know is on their bottoms.
So, let's turn them upside down and see what happens.
So, we've got here, they've got their title.
This one, particularly, is The Girl Evacuee.
It's got an HN number here, which is basically the model number.
So it's HN3203 and it tells us it was modelled by Adrian Hughes
and issued in a limited edition of 9,500.
And this one, this particular one is number 5462.
So, it's a relatively late one in the whole run of it.
But, nonetheless, it says here 1988, Royal Doulton
and we've got a really nice Royal Doulton mark here as well.
-The green, printed mark,
which is the traditional lion on top of a crown
and then that lovely, circular mark there.
Now, Royal Doulton were known for producing figurines
-and they are very collectable...
..which is obviously great.
The market does fluctuate for them, though, it really does
and it's quite important that they are all marked as firsts,
which they are.
If they were marked as a second,
then this would have a little dot or a scratch
through this centre here.
Now, I've checked every one and none of them is marked as a second,
so that's really good news, really good news.
Normally, you see just these two, I haven't seen these as often,
the coming-home type.
-So, it's really nice to have those as well.
But people aren't buying ornaments as much as they were doing,
-so we do have to take that into account.
I mean, if I were putting a value on them as a group today,
I would be looking at putting a value
of maybe £200-£300 for the whole group, OK?
-What's your thoughts about that?
-A bit low, really.
OK, have you had them valued before?
-Only when my sister passed them on to me.
The lady valued them at 400. That was for just one set.
And when was that?
Well, that would be about 14 years ago.
Yeah, so, I mean, that's absolutely right.
14 years ago the market for this sort of thing was very,
And it is a different marketplace today,
so I would suggest if you do want to sell them,
we need to maybe just readjust those figures slightly.
-I mean, I think if we were to put an estimate of £300-£500...
-and a reserve of £300...
-..how would you feel about that?
-I'd feel all right with that.
-Would that be all right? Yeah?
So if we say £300-£500, a reserve of £300 firm, I really,
really hope that we get there for you. You never know.
-Keep everything crossed.
-Keep everything crossed.
I think it's been a wonderful story, it's been great to meet you.
-You haven't still got nits, have you?
-I won't stand too close.
Well, I've heard a lot of stories on "Flog It!",
but that one takes the biscuit.
Well, I wasn't kidding when I said we've taken over the whole house.
The room I'm in right now, the great hall, this is now our research area.
A holding bay for potential owners who will hit the screens later on.
It could be you going home with lots of money, fingers crossed.
All the hard work is done here by off-screen valuers,
so our experts on-screen can hit the ground running.
Now, we need one more item to take off to auction
before it gets exciting and this is it.
David Fletcher meets a pioneering woman
from the world of motor sports.
You have brought in with you today a watch, or a chronograph,
which speaks for itself, and something here
which I find rather more confusing.
I see that it's marked Monte Carlo.
-Monte Carlo to me suggests motor rallying.
Tell me a bit about it.
Well, in the late 1950s, early 1960s,
my husband and I did a lot of motor rallying in various cars -
Morgans, Sprites, Sebring Sprites, etc.
And it wasn't very easy to get timing equipment,
so, the navigator relied on these.
So, my husband actually cut off the corner there to mount it
on the dashboard, so that it was in front of the navigator
and then the second one I bought for him as a gift
which is also a stopwatch.
Right, did you drive as well?
-Yes, I did.
-So, you were a rally driver yourself?
-Yes, I was.
-As well as a navigator or...?
-I didn't do much navigating.
-So, you had someone to navigate for you?
-There weren't many ladies...
-..if I can call myself one.
-It was unusual...
-..they were nearly all male drivers.
And what a great car to be driving, a Morgan, I mean,
I love Minis too, but a Morgan...
I drove Minis, my husband...he had a couple of Morgans built.
-I drove Sebrings, Sprites and Minis...
-..rather a lot.
-Looking back, I think it was.
-And very exciting.
-I think so, yes.
It was, but one didn't realise at the time.
-Anyway, this was made by a Swiss manufacturer, Heuer.
And the original design was patented in the 1930s,
but I think this is going to be later than that.
I'm sure it is, because it was new when I acquired it.
So, I think we can probably assume that this is going to be
-mid-'50s, would you say?
-Yes, yes, yes.
So, it's 60 years old
and it's a beautifully designed object, isn't it?
-I like it.
-I mean, clearly, it was meant to be read
-and understood in quite difficult circumstances...
-..if you were hurtling along a bumpy track at 60mph.
It had to be clear and it is, I think it's beautifully designed.
-The numbers are, obviously, luminous and they've just faded a bit.
So, that's a bit of a problem.
This one, I'm not sure who made this.
-We never have known.
It would be nice to think it was also by Heuer, but I'm not...
The story was that it was a sample watch.
-A sample watch.
-Yeah, I don't know.
No. It has conventional hours and minute hands.
You've got three additional dials.
You've got the day, the month and the number of the day of the month.
And, of course, it's a stopwatch, as well.
-So, value, let's go for 150 to 200 as the estimate.
And can I suggest a reserve at the bottom estimate
-with 10% discretion?
-OK, so, effectively that's 135.
Jolly good, I'm sure we'll have a great sale
and I look forward to seeing you on the day.
I hope so, I hope so. Thank you.
Well, what a day we've had here
in a house full of history and treasure.
Everybody has thoroughly enjoyed themselves
and as you've just seen, our experts have found their final items
to take off to auction, which means it's time to say farewell
to Sandon Hall as we head over to the saleroom for the last time.
And here's a quick recap of all the items we're taking with us.
Marjorie's autographs are a who's who of sportsmen
and entertainers from the '40s and '50s.
Verna's little evacuees are perfect examples
of Royal Doulton's masterful art of the figurine.
And rally driver Val's two timepieces
have been dusted off for one more lap of the track.
So, zooming back to the auction house in Shrewsbury
where our next item is about to go under the hammer.
-Your autograph albums.
Do you have a favourite signature in there? Stanley Matthews, I bet.
-Well, no, the Wolves.
-Oh, the Wolves?
-I don't know any famous...
Derek Dougan, he was a Wolves player.
-But that was a bit earlier, wasn't it? Was he in there?
-I don't think he's in there, no.
-No, he's not in the book, but...
-But your husband was a Wolves fan, wasn't he?
-Yes, yes, he was.
Well, let's hope there's some football fans here today.
-There's other autographs, it's not all football, is it?
-There's some film stars and radio stars.
So, it's a mixed lot and they're going under the hammer right now.
Lot 190, four autograph books from the 1940s.
40, 50, £60.
-At 60, I've got five, 70...
-£80 here. At £80.
-90. Commission's out at £90.
-It's on the internet at £90. At £90.
-All done at £90.
-GAVEL BANGS Oh, what a good result.
Yeah, we had a fixed reserve of £30, we had to make that
-and we busted through it.
-We did, yes.
And now, for Verna's poignant story in porcelain.
Now, I'm not normally a big fan of Royal Doulton figures,
but I do like these.
We've got the evacuees, we have the two going away from home
and two coming back with their bags.
It's so sentimental, it's so poignant
and the condition is so good and their firsts, aren't they?
They are, yeah. The condition is mint.
Just really endearing figures, aren't they? Really sweet.
We need a reserve of £300, but I'm sure they'll blast through that,
cos I've not seen these come on the market before, especially four.
Well, we're internet bidding, so let's hope so.
-Yeah, fingers crossed. Ready for this?
Let's enjoy it, here we go.
Lot 220, there they all are.
At £220. At 220, 240, 260, 280.
-Come on, one more to get to the reserve.
-At 290. At £290 it is.
-290. Any more?
Not today for those.
-I can't believe that.
-Well, they are worth that so...
I'd put them in a drawer for another day.
-Just wasn't the day, that's auctions for you.
-Just wasn't the day.
Sad face, happy face.
Verna's little evacuees are staying home for the meantime.
And finally, it's rally driver Valerie's well-travelled timepieces.
Hold on tight, Valerie. Every rally driver will need one of these -
a good watch and a stopwatch.
-Hm, I mean, this is quality, isn't it? It really is.
-I hope so.
I like the Heuer. Why are you selling these?
-I have no use for them.
-They're just in a drawer?
But my daughter, I promised her she can have a new stopwatch...
..if I sell them.
And therefore she may take the interest of rallying up again,
which we hope. I hope.
-Oh, it would be nice, wouldn't it?
-Keep the family tradition going?
-It would be nice.
Well, let's find out what the bidders think.
They're going under the hammer right now.
Now, Lot 105.
Good lot here and various commissions.
£450, £550, £650, £700.
-We can start at £700.
-750 on the net. 800 on commission. 900.
1,000 with me. 50. 1,100.
50, 1,200, 50, my commission's out
and you're in at 1,250.
Are we all finished then? At £1,250.
GAVEL BANGS Hammer's gone down. £1,250.
-That was a surprise, wasn't it?
-I think so.
-You weren't expecting that much, were you?
I could see that in your face.
I should get a very good, new stopwatch now.
There was so much interest, everybody wanted it,
cos quality always sells.
What a way to end today's show. That was absolutely brilliant.
Well done David, well done, Valerie.
Join us again for many more soon, but until then from Shrewsbury,
it's goodbye from all of us.