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Today I'm at Powis Castle,
a magnificent, medieval, architectural gem,
situated just outside of Welshpool,
close to the Welsh/English borders.
It was originally built as a fortress in the mid-13th century
by a Welsh ruler.
However, successive generations have turned
the castle into a magnificent stately home,
resplendent with lavish interiors, works of art
and fine treasures that I'm looking forward to discovering
later on in the programme. Welcome to Flog It! from Wales.
Today's programme is a little bit different
from the norm.
We're taking a tour around the country,
to revisit some of our stunning valuation day locations
from the series, where you showed our experts your prized possessions
and we took them off to auction houses far and wide.
We journeyed to Cumbria,
to the stately 13th century Muncaster Castle,
situated in the picturesque Lake District.
And you turned up in your droves to our valuation day
at Norwich Cathedral in Norfolk, where Kate Bateman
disapproved of one owner's treatment of her collectable.
Well, it's sort of a doorstop.
You use it as a doorstop?!
We visited the 19th-century purpose-built Bowes Museum
in County Durham where, in a gallery full of the finest in European art,
David Harper came across a painting with an interesting story.
My father, he found it in a skip.
And our final port of call was the Grand Pier
at Weston-super-Mare in Somerset,
where our experts valued your items amongst the amusements.
But before all that, I'm back in Wales at Powis Castle,
which today is owned by the National Trust.
For centuries, many of the families who lived here at Powis
were keen to leave their mark.
They had ambitious plans when it came to remodelling
and updating the castle,
for instance, in the 1770s, the 2nd Earl of Powis
had a ballroom installed, complete with minstrel gallery,
so he could throw a big party and celebrate his 21st birthday.
But earlier in the 1660s, William Herbert,
the 3rd Lord Powis,
was the first person to initiate any major internal redevelopment.
He was keen for his home to reflect his power and his wealth.
He completely revamped everything,
creating a series of state apartments
designed to impress his guests and visitors,
so, consequently, Powis turned from a castle
to a very impressive stately home, fit for a nobleman.
And later in the programme,
I'll be returning to Powis to admire its remodelled interiors.
But first we are crossing the border to Weston-super-Mare in Somerset,
where Thomas Platt hit the jackpot on the Grand Pier.
Roy, tell me, you brought along an Albert chain,
-a sovereign and a gold watch.
-How did you come by them?
The watch was my brother's, who's passed on and he left it to me,
and I was going to hand it down to my sons, but they don't want it,
so they said, "Just sell it and use it on a holiday,"
which I'm going to do.
-So where did you get this Albert chain?
This is what we call an Albert chain,
-which one puts on one's waistcoat.
That didn't come from your brother?
-No. No. No, I bought that here in Weston...
-..in a little shop and I paid £100 for it.
And what about the sovereign?
-The sovereign, I bought in Belfast.
-I paid £150 for that.
And the fob as well, is that...?
No, the fob, my partner bought me that, so she did.
-She's all right letting you sell it?
Let's just start with the watch.
It's an open-faced watch, 1930s, it's nine carat gold,
and it's a Dennison case. It's a really good quality case.
Lovely white enamel face with a second subsidiary dial here.
You can see it is ticking away, so it is working.
And it's got "Swiss made" on the bottom there.
So it's a good, proper, wind-up fob watch, open-face.
Nine carat gold back.
Then you've got this nine carat gold Albert chain,
or fob watch chain which goes here, and there's the bar,
which fits into the button here
and then you put the watch in one pocket and you've got two fobs,
one here with the tiger's eye, carnelian and onyx,
and then you've got this sovereign here, which is a George V sovereign.
It's dated 1917.
It's also got something else, which just makes it more unusual.
You probably didn't know this when you bought it,
but just above the date is a very small, little P.
-What do you think that P stands for?
-I don't know.
So, that P on there is the mint mark.
Think of a place beginning with P in the Empire
-and is a long way away.
An Australian mint on that.
-So that is a really cool thing, isn't it?
Yeah, to have the Perth Mint.
So that adds a bit of value to the whole thing.
Ottawa is the rarest.
-Bombay is quite rare, but Perth is good.
So, as a whole, you want to sell it
-cos you said you want to go on holiday, is that right?
-Is it one week or two?
-Where are you going?
-Xanthus, the Greek islands.
-The Greek islands.
-Now, you're not going to go five-star spa luxury, are you?
Cos I think we've got a week's worth of holiday here.
I would see this at making between £600 and £800...for the lot.
-Happy with that?
-Fixed reserve at 500.
-It's definitely a seller then.
And I look forward to seeing you at the auction.
-Very kind, thank you very much.
Roy's pocket watch was certainly fanciful,
definitely designed to impress.
Now, back here at Powis, the alterations
and modifications that took place
in the latter part of the 17th century
were also designed to impress.
A series of state rooms collectively known
as the State Apartment were designed.
These are public rooms for greeting important
visitors and guests.
Each room in the series had to be more impressive than the previous,
so the higher up the social ladder you were,
the deeper into the house you got.
The entrance hall and the grand staircase
are the first of Powis's state rooms.
This is what the guests would see first upon arrival.
It's highly decorated, it's very colourful
and it certainly does have the wow factor when you look around.
I don't know what to talk about first,
but I guess the artwork on the walls.
This has been completed with a technique known as grisaille -
it's different shades of grey that make the image
look like it's three-dimensional sculpture,
but the staircase is very impressive indeed.
Look at these pineapples, carved on every single one.
That's symbolic of a warm-hearted greeting,
that's hospitality at its very best.
Guests would have to climb this grand staircase
to see the state rooms above, if they were allowed that far.
Of course, when you get to the half landing and you're up this high,
you're greeted with the most spectacular view -
But look at the doors there, beautiful symmetry.
Above them, that's known as a broken swan neck pediment.
It's rich in detail.
And as your eyes drift up towards the heavens,
you're greeted with the most wonderful mural up there.
If this is the first of the state rooms,
I can't wait see the rest.
Next, we travelled eastwards to our valuation day at Norwich Cathedral
in Norfolk, where Kate Bateman came across
an interesting little object.
Hello, Liz. What can you tell me about your lion?
-Nothing at all, I'm afraid.
-It's one... I've inherited it.
-It's been in the family all my life.
Do you have it on display at home, or what you do with it?
-Well, it's sort of a doorstop.
-You use it as a doorstop!
-Well, it's very heavy, you see.
-Well, it is.
-Do you know what it's made of?
Ah, it's a hard stone called serpentine, which is
this kind of really green, hard, very heavy stone
and it almost looks like patinated bronze,
it's got that lovely sheen to it.
So what do you like about him? You must have liked something about him.
Yes, what I do like, he's very tactile
and I like his smooth bottom.
So that's why he's got quite a shiny rump, isn't it?
-You've been rubbing him.
He is quite nice and he's very smooth and that's part of the...
-the serpentine is, it makes that lovely, smooth feel.
Now, you know what it depicts?
-It's quite an allegorical little lion, this.
-Right. No, I don't...
-No, no idea.
-Well, he's known as the Lucerne Lion,
and apparently he used to commemorate the massacre -
it's not a happy story -
massacre of the Swiss Guards
right at the beginning of the French Revolution, 1792, an angry mob
stormed the Tuileries Palace, which is just outside the Louvre,
and killed all the French Guards, or actually the Swiss Guards,
that were guarding the French Royal family
-and basically what you've got is the dying lion...
..and this is the Swiss flag and the shield here
and he's lying on a fleur-de-lis, which is
like the crushed French monarchy, basically, a symbol of them.
-Now did you notice he has been injured?
-Have you ever seen it?
-He's got, like, a thorn or something in his side.
-So he's not a happy lion.
-Oh, bless him.
-He's probably Continental.
He's not marked, I've looked everywhere,
and it would be nice to have a name on it or something,
but there were quite a few of these produced.
It's not contemporary to the French Revolution, it's probably Victorian,
about 100 years later or so.
So I think he's about the £50-£80 mark.
He's quite an interesting thing.
And as you say, I wouldn't use him as a doorstop,
I'd probably catalogue him as maybe, you know,
desk item, paperweight...
Yes, I wasn't sure what to call...what to call him.
-Would you be happy with that kind of figure at auction?
I mean, I hadn't got a figure in mind so that's fine.
So, 50 to 80 and maybe a reserve of £40 firm,
so you don't sell him for less than that.
Yes, that would be good, would want him to...
I don't want him to just go for nothing.
Well, what would you do with the money if we sold him?
Well, I've taken up doing stained glass.
-I want to a bit more at home so I need some equipment.
Well, that's a fantastic hobby, and you've got the right place here,
-look at all this inspiration all around us.
Would you ever think about something that big?
I think that's a little bit complicated.
-I'm into little figures, not big panes of glass.
-You can work up.
Think big! Come on, let's work up to a big window, come on!
Next we travelled northwards to our valuation day
at Muncaster Castle in Cumbria.
Caroline Hawley found a quiet spot away from the crowds
to immerse herself in stories of the Middle East.
-Hello, Sonia. Hello, Deborah.
Thanks for bringing these books along.
Now, are you both avid readers?
Well, I am an avid reader, and I do collect books,
but I like... I've got to really like them
and there's something sort of antiquey about them, or...
-Well, there's certainly that about these.
Four volumes of picturesque Palestine, Sinai and Egypt,
complete with a supplement to it, social life in Egypt,
-from about 1880.
So, where did you come by them?
I used to have a bric-a-brac... antique and bric-a-brac shop.
This is years ago, in the Isle of Man.
And they somehow turned up there, I must've got them
from the local auction house or something like that.
And did you try to sell them, or did you decide...?
No, never tried to sell them, I loved them too much.
They've had some restoration on them,
we can see they've got a new spine,
but it's been professionally done.
-Have you done this? Have you had this done?
-I had it done, yes.
Which is great, you haven't put a bit of gaffer tape on or anything,
have you? They've been properly done.
If we open this one, published by Virtue & Company in London,
and they were edited by Colonel Wilson,
who did an awful lot of work out in Jerusalem,
So, they really are very, very good works on the subject.
-Yes, they are top-notch of their kind.
-Oh, they are. They are.
And a lot of people, I think, would be interested in these.
Wood and steel engravings, but they show everything.
As it says, they show social life.
There's furniture, there's food, there's dress.
Oh, now look at this one. This is beautiful -
a daughter of the East. Now, the quality of that
is amazing, with jewels, headress. Look at the fan she's holding.
-It really is lovely.
-And although they're black and white,
you feel you could touch the fabrics, don't you?
And the beauty is that this is still in the book,
and not cut out, hanging on someone's wall.
This was suggested to me,
but I couldn't contemplate committing such a crime.
Well, you are very wise, but a lot of people,
Sonia, did that,
because purely for monetary reasons,
they're worth a lot more cut up than they are complete.
Now, value, do you have any idea as to value, either of you?
-Well, it's difficult.
I'd rather wait for the expert to suggest.
Well, I would think for the lot of them,
-for the five, £100-£150...
..with a reserve on. And would you be happy with £100 reserve?
I would like that. They have got to go, cos I haven't the room now.
-Shall we take them to auction, then?
-I'm afraid they have to go.
-Oh, don't be afraid!
-Let's flog 'em.
-Let's flog 'em.
And that's it for our first lot of items as it's now time
to find out if they made our owners any money
when they went under the hammer.
Roy hoped that his pocket watch, Albert chain
and gold sovereign would sell well so he could
afford a holiday to somewhere a bit more exotic
than our valuation day at Weston-super-Mare.
When Liz brought her serpentine stone lion to our valuation day
at Norwich Cathedral, Kate Bateman was shocked
that she'd been using it as a doorstop.
And finally, at our valuation day at Muncaster Castle in Cumbria,
Sonia turned up with a late 19th-century picturesque Palestine,
Sinai and Egypt books.
We stayed in Cumbria to sell the books,
but travelled to Carlisle to Thomson Roddick & Medcalf saleroom,
where auctioneer Stephen Parkinson was on the rostrum.
Remember, whenever you're buying or selling, at every auction,
there is always commission to pay and VAT on top.
-I've got my fingers crossed for you, Sonia and Deborah.
It's great to see you again
-and I know you're an avid reader and book collector.
It's hard to let these go, but they're going under the hammer,
the books on Palestine, we're looking for around
You've had a long time in the possession of these, haven't you?
-Yes, I have.
-What was the final straw?
Was it Flog It! that made you sell them, do you think? Or you just...
Well, it was because I was downsizing, I've moved
and I had to get rid of some things
so my daughter said, "Take these books."
-And they're big, aren't they?
-They are big.
-Yes, take them.
OK, it's going under the hammer now. Good luck, everyone. This is it.
Rather interesting books here.
Palestine, Egypt, etc, where shall we start with these?
I can start straight in at 70 bid. At £70, at 70, 75, at 75.
At 75 and 80, anybody else? At 80, at £80. 85 and 90.
Still, at 90 bid. At 90, 95, 100.
-At 100 bid.
At 100. At 100, are we all sure? At 100.
At 100. Is that it now?
At 100, at 100. 110. I nearly missed you.
That's it, make sure you wave.
110. At 110 you are in, I'm out. At 110.
-He spotted a late bidder.
-At 110, at 110.
And that was a solid sold sound. Did you hear the desk go...? Well done.
-Thank you. Thank you very much.
-Thank you for bringing them in.
Definitely a fair price for Sonia's books, which were just beautiful.
Next we headed to TW Gaze in Diss in Norfolk,
but did Janet's stone lion managed to create
a roar in the saleroom?
The man we had our hopes pinned on was auctioneer Ed Smith.
Looking at all our lots going under the hammer really takes me back
to that wonderful valuation day at Norwich Cathedral.
It was such a good time, and, Elizabeth,
-I bumped into you, didn't I?
-You did, yes.
And I saw that little stone recumbent lion and I thought,
"Oh, that looks so nice," it really does, and a good valuation.
Do you know, we have got his big brother here right now?
Yes, I saw him. I thought mine had grown.
It was a good job you didn't bring that one in!
-I don't think I could have carried that on the bus.
It's a great example, it really is. I'd like to see it do the top end.
I really like this but it's not everyone's taste, you know,
-it's not very useful, but it's lovely.
-It is, isn't it?
-Yeah, but it's kind of like a proper desk toy.
-It's a bit of class. It's lovely.
Let's put it to the test. Good luck, both of you. Here we go.
Lovely carving, this is.
I start in just below guide at £40, for which I have. Who's a two?
The Lucerne Lion at £40 now. Two, five, eight,
50, five, 60, five.
-That's more like it.
One more? 85, I'm out. 85 with the lady.
It's 85 now bid. It there 90? It's the lady's bid at £85.
Is there 90? We'll sell at £85. We go.
Yes! £85. Now that's more like it.
That's a good result, isn't it?
I'm glad it went over the top estimate.
-Yeah, top end. Yeah.
-I'm surprised, I must admit.
-I take it you're into stained-glass window making and designing...
..and the money will go towards glass and tools...
Yes, I want to get a grinder to do it at home, which is quite fun.
-Well, look, good luck with that.
-Thank you very much.
A great result and worth every penny.
Finally, we headed west to Somerset, to Clevedon salerooms
in the seaside town of the same name,
where auctioneer Marc Burridge wielded the gavel
over Roy's mixed lot of pocket watch,
Albert chain and gold sovereign.
Now, I know since the valuation day,
when Thomas put the reserve on it, we had a reserve of 500,
you've upped that to 600.
-You're just being a little bit cautious with it.
I don't think it makes a lot of difference. There's a lot of gold.
There's a lot of gold, there's a lot going on.
-And you've got a watch which works.
-I was about to say that it works.
-It's a good lot.
-I think I should have one here.
-I do think so.
Let's put it to the test, shall we? Are you ready, Roy? Here we go.
And we're bidding at 520, 550, 580, 600,
I have, 620 anyone else?
620, 620, 620. 620, 620, 620.
Make no mistake, then, selling on the book
-Job done. That was good, wasn't it?
-That was good, yes.
-And you did the right thing, putting the reserve on.
-Yes, you did.
-Because there was not a lot of competition then,
if your reserve was at 500, it may have only
sold at five, or 550.
-Well done you, Roy.
-Congratulations. Put it there. Thank you so much.
-Well done, Thomas.
A quick auction, but great result, which
should go a good way to sending Roy on holiday.
Don't go away, because we'll be returning to the salerooms
across the country later on in the show.
Now, back here at Powis, it wasn't just the castle
that was lavishly refurbished and redesigned.
Love and attention was also shown outside to create a garden,
which is now famous worldwide.
Just look at this, it is so spectacular.
Powis now boasts a multilayered garden,
with a series of Italianate terraces,
and to achieve this
they had to blast into the side of the rock
that the castle is built on.
Now, that's some early feat of engineering.
The major overhaul of the gardens was started
in the 1680s by William Herbert, the 3rd Lord Powis, who was also
responsible for the character of the state rooms inside the castle.
Some type of terraces were here before,
though Lord Powis had additional terraces built.
This was probably done under the direction
of the English gentleman architect William Wynne,
who was also responsible for the magnificent grand staircase,
as Wynne was known to take an interest in the gardens
of the houses he designed.
Unfortunately, work on the gardens came to an abrupt end in 1688
when the family fled to France,
accompanying King James II into exile.
They returned to Powis in 1703 and work resumed on the gardens
with the help of a French gardener who'd been working in Holland.
The result was a mixture of styles when it was completed.
Of course, there was still the fantastic Italianate terraces
but there was also a Dutch water garden,
which, sadly, isn't here today.
Later, in 1771, the direction of the gardens changed once again
with a more naturalistic-looking landscape
made popular in the 18th century by garden designer Capability Brown.
And over there, planted up in the wilderness, you can see oaks,
some of those oaks survive today from that period,
so that really is nice.
That is the connection back to the past
and thankfully these Italianate terraces remained unscathed
and they really are a joy to behold.
The following century saw little changed to Powis's gardens
until a new enthusiasts came along in the shape of Violet,
the wife of the 4th Earl, who persuaded her husband to let
her manage and improve the gardens in the early 1900s.
Violet came from the Lane-Fox family,
a great gardening dynasty from Yorkshire who still continue today.
Violet relocated the kitchen garden,
made a new formal garden, which was typical of the Edwardian era,
and enriched the planting on the terraces
in her attempt to make Powis one of the most beautiful gardens
in Wales and England.
The gardens here at Powis today are a legacy
to Violet, as they are managed largely how she left them.
To find out more, I'm meeting head gardener Dave Swanton.
So, how loyal are you today for Violet's visions of the gardens?
I would say we are fairly loyal, in the fact we want it to be one
of the best in Britain, and obviously gardens evolve
and we bring new plant introductions that weren't available at that time,
-so we're not stuck in history.
-No, it is ongoing.
But obviously, the perfection,
the high standards of maintenance, we're certainly achieving.
We get a great view from up here. You can see almost everything.
Can you talk me through the different sections?
Yeah, we've got four terraces,
so the top one's tropical effect plantings,
then we have Mediterranean on the terrace.
The orangery terrace with double herbaceous borders is fantastic.
It's starting to look really nice.
It is the right time of the year, isn't it?
It'll get better and better. You can't go wrong, to be honest.
The big lawn was the site of a Dutch water garden in the 1800s,
so we'll do patterns on there for the kids to play on, mazes,
and then further down the hill we have Lady Violet's formal garden -
apple trees, vine arch and poles.
-It looks so pretty from up here.
-Oh, it's beautiful!
There's more to Powis Castle Gardens than just the eclectic mix
of exotic and domestic plants and shrubs.
As you wander around, you stumble across wonderful works of art.
The sculpture of Hercules slaying a many-headed Hydra
with his club now stands at the far end of the top terrace.
It used to be placed in the lost water garden below,
alongside the sculpture of Fame and Pegasus,
which is now situated in the castle courtyard.
Here on the aviary terrace there is a delightful line of lead statues
depicting shepherds and shepherdesses over the years.
The lead has mellowed down to a lovely, warm tone.
But back in the 18th century, these figures would have been
picked out in bright, chromatic colours as in keeping with the day,
but it looks like they're enjoying the view.
During the 1950s, even works of art from inside the house
were brought outside and displayed in the gardens.
Powis's Caesar busts were placed in handy nooks along the top terrace.
Today, they reside safely back inside the castle.
The garden art doesn't end with the man-made sculptures
and statues, though.
Powis's majestic yew hedge is viewed by some
as a work of art in its own right.
It towers over the garden
and its organic shape evokes thoughts of clouds.
You know, the gardens are famed for their yew trees
and their box hedges - what's the story behind them?
Well, the yew trees were planted over 300 years ago,
designed by William Wynne, planted as topiaries.
-So, quite small.
Kept small and then when the landscape movement came,
they were left to grow into huge trees
and the Victorians clipped over them
so these lovely lumps in the hedge here are actually branches
that have been pruned, rather than a hedge that's got bigger and fatter.
Yes, I see. It almost looks like clouds floating everywhere.
-It's so magical.
This must be very difficult to manage, to cut properly.
How do you do it?
-Well, you have to have a head for heights is the first thing!
-But currently, we use a cherry picker.
A small cherry picker set-up can reach about 40 metres.
Prior to that, they would have been on ladders,
so using sickles and scythes.
We have an old photograph with a gentleman stood on top
-using a scythe.
-It seems there's a lot to do here.
How big is your team, how many gardeners do you have?
Well, we have five that are full-time in the garden
and two in the nursery, growing plants
for the gardens and plants for sale.
That's not many, compared to how it would have been in Violet's day.
No, but they didn't have the machines we use today.
We have power trimmers, the cherry picker instead of ladders
and mowers that handle the situation better.
What is the future for the gardens -
are you staying loyal to the past or are you planting up for the future?
Well, the past has a big effect on Powis.
All the structure, but with plantings,
we've got more of a free hand.
Keeping with the spirit of the place, so how it should be,
but we can introduce new varieties and more disease-resistant, perhaps.
Fantastic. Thank you very much.
I think you and your team have done a brilliant job.
Everywhere you look, there's something different to see,
there's vibrant colour and a surprise around every corner.
-Thank you so much.
Now, we continue our tour of the country
as we return to the Grand Pier at Weston-super-Mare,
where Jonathan Pratt found an item that wouldn't look
out of place on the Italianate terraces of Powis Castle Gardens.
I hope you had someone to give you a hand carrying this.
-It is quite bulky, yes!
-You brought it here in one piece
and that's an important thing about pottery and porcelain. is
that it doesn't have any damage and looking at that, it's a good thing.
Where did you get it from?
Well, I bought it around 12 years ago
because I thought it was so beautiful, so decorative,
but I don't really know an awful lot about it,
-so I was hoping you would tell me.
-You know what it is?
I know it's Minton jardiniere, yes.
Minton's was a factory, a porcelain factory that started up
at the end of the 18th century
and it was a chap called Leon Victor Solon
who brought to the factory the fashionable styles
of the Arts and Crafts and this being...
in this particular that he's introduced a secessionist style.
This is from the second phase, this dates from around 1908
and I know that because on the bottom you've got the marks
and that little mark there with the 8 in
is what denotes 1908.
It's interesting in 1908,
a gentleman called John Wadsworth joined the company
and he was responsible for some of the design elements of that period
so it may be that he was responsible
for the design of this particular vase.
So, it adds a little bit more history to the object.
-You haven't had it that long.
-No, that's right.
-Why are you selling it?
-I recently moved house and, er...
changed my colour scheme so I now have purple and grey
-and it just doesn't fit in.
-No, it wouldn't, actually!
-And you used it, you had a flower...?
-Give me a picture, a big...?
-It was a very big plant, yes, yes.
It would have to be.
Like a lot of things, they come and go in and out of fashion
and they are popular with some and there's an adjustment in price
and probably 15 years ago, the market was riding quite high
with the fashion for the Art Nouveau, the decorative arts
of that period from the late and early 20th century.
I would have thought at auction, an auctioneer would probably
want to get away now with an estimate of 250, 350.
-It should make £300, it might make a little bit more.
-That would be fine.
And we'll put a reserve of £250 on it and let's hope it gets there.
-Thank you for bringing us along.
-It's brilliant. Thank you!
Keep watching to see
if Jane's Minton jardiniere sailed away at auction.
But first, we are revisiting Norwich Cathedral,
where a healthy crowd was still packed into the nave
and another couple of items had caught Kate Bateman's interest.
-So, Margaret and Margaret. A brace of Margarets.
Tell me what you've brought in today.
We've got some objects given to us. We think they're German.
-We were told they are.
-And that they are quite interesting, so here we are.
-What shop is this?
Charity shop in town.
-So, these were just donated, they cost nothing, effectively.
They don't cost anything at all.
And what, if you sell them, are you going to plough the money
-back into the shop, presumably?
-We want to finish our building.
We are building a community building.
Oh, OK, that would be nice.
They're called Black Forest carvings, so Bavaria, Germany,
but some people suspect they might be done in Switzerland
and brought across the border,
but either way they are known as Black Forest
and you have a handsome bear with a ring at the end of his nose
-and this is a really strange thing. It's like a lidded cup.
And it has three people on the front, she seems to be playing
a musical instrument here with two attractive swains listening to her.
-There is a bit of damage.
-A bit, yes.
He's literally armless and he has lost his foot
and the poor old bear has lost his paw as well.
So there's limbs missing all over the place.
Usually, they are made out of walnut or sometimes coquilla nuts.
It is quite nice. They are turned and nicely carved.
This is called a stiff leaf border around the outside here.
And he's got nice fur.
He's not quite as detailed, but his eyes are nice.
He's got little inset, like, glass eyes.
-They are glass, aren't they?
Price-wise, they are out of fashion a little bit at the moment.
You're looking at the sort of £40-£60,
somewhere straddling the £50 mark for the two.
But they're quite interesting.
-Presumably any money is going to be good for your community centre?
-Anything is good.
-Well, do you like them?
-Would you have them in your house?
-I love them.
I don't know whether they are very useful but they are very decorative.
I think we will give them a go. How if we put £40-£60 estimate?
-Do you want a reserve on it?
-What do you think?
The damage might kill it a little bit, but we will try it,
and there will be collectors hopefully that will want it.
-We will give it a go, shall we?
-Yes, that would be lovely.
-Thank you very much.
Those two Black Forest carvings really had been
in the wars.
Back at Powis Castle,
the antiques and the interiors are in superb condition.
In the late 17th century, this room
was known as the great chamber or the saloon.
Once the guests had got past the entrance and grand stairwell,
this was the first of the state rooms here at Powis.
Every single little surface has been adorned,
whether the ceiling, the walls or the furniture.
Just look at it. It's rich, it's decorative and the light
really picks out the gilding.
The whole room embraces you.
Now, at a valuation day at Bowes Museum, expert David Harper
found a little item that was highly decorative too.
Well, Jenna, I've got to say that is an absolutely
but it's a bit dwarfed, let's be honest,
surrounded by this artwork at Bowes Museum.
-I mean, this is astonishing.
-Are you big into art?
-I watercolour paint.
-Do you? I don't do anything like these!
-Oh, I'm sure you could.
-No, I couldn't!
-I wouldn't know where to start.
-Do you do it professionally?
Tell me the story, when did you get it, how did you come about it?
My father liked to go to the tip to throw things away initially,
but then he liked to rummage around to see what other people
-have thrown away and he found it in a skip.
-So, it was thrown out.
-And not broken.
I don't think he ever thought it was anything in particular,
-just somebody was good at painting cats.
I think this is by someone who's particularly good at painting cats.
You see, I took a photograph and put it into the internet
and couldn't find anything.
Two weeks ago in the local paper... It is full of houses
and I look to see what house I'm going to buy
-when I win the lottery!
-We all do that.
In the back of the paper, there on the antiques page
were two little pictures of kittens painted with books or something
and I thought, "That's just like mine,"
and it had the signature on the corner just like mine.
-And do you now know the artist?
Bessie Bamber. What a fantastic name.
-Do you know when she was painting?
-The late 1800s to 1910.
1890 to 1910 she was prolific, so it's not dated,
but we know it is circa 1900.
Normally she paints on porcelain or canvas or paper. This is on glass.
-It is very delicate.
Bear in mind it was chucked out and your dad found it,
-it's amazing that it's in this state.
-It was very dirty.
The white was very dirty.
What do you think it is worth?
It cost you nothing, that is the best way to get anything.
-Well, in the paper it said £700 to £1,000...
-Did it really?
..which kind of made me jump for joy.
-But I really don't know.
£700-£1,000 is a bit optimistic, I've got to say.
-I think it is 300 or 400, 350, 450. It's that kind of price.
-Could we go 350, 450 and reserve it at 350?
What are you going to do with the money?
-I'm going to take my dog on a holiday to the coast!
-I might take my husband, I might not.
-No, just take the dog.
But the irony is marvellous.
A bunch of cats funding to take a dog on holiday.
That's brilliant. I love that.
Before we see what happened to our second lot of items
as they went under the hammer in the auction room,
I just want to show you the piece de resistance of the state rooms,
here at Powis. It is this. The state bedroom.
This is the last in the series of the state rooms.
Only the most important and distinguished visitors
would have made it this far to wonder over the opulent decor
and the furniture, which dates back to the late 17th century.
The bed itself, well, that's a magnificent four-poster tester.
That's slightly later, that's late 18th century.
This bedroom is the only one surviving in Britain
that retains an architectural feature,
and I'll point it out to you.
As you can see, the bed is raised on a platform
so it's this high off the floor.
But it is separated from the room
by this magnificent, decorative architectural balustrade.
Look at that.
It's copied from a design of Louis XIV's bedroom
at the Royal Palace of Versailles in France.
Two important ceremonies took place there -
the King waking up every morning
and the King going to sleep every evening
surrounded by his courtiers.
Well, whatever the inspiration, if it is Continental,
I don't care, because I am totally blown away by this room.
Let's hope the bidders were equally delighted by our owners' items
when we headed to the auction rooms across the country.
Jane had got a lot of enjoyment from her Minton secessionist jardiniere,
which she brought along to our valuation day at Weston-super-Mare,
but it was time to find a new home.
At our valuation day at Bowes Museum,
Janet turned up with her cat painting on glass panel
by Bessie Bamber, which had been rescued from a skip.
And finally, the first lot to go under the hammer
was the two Black Forest carvings
which were brought along to our valuation day
at Norwich Cathedral in Norfolk by the two Margarets.
We stayed in the county to sell the pair when we revisited
TW Gaze in Diss, where Ed Smith was still on the rostrum.
OK, Margaret and Margaret.
Your Black Forest carvings are going under the hammer now.
In fact, the charity's carvings. Who spotted these first?
And you thought, "Ooh, I recognise these. I've been watching Flog It!"
-They're always bringing in things like that.
-Is that what it was?
I collect treen as well.
You collect treen, so you had a feel for the wood.
I think you've got a good eye. Let's find out what they make, shall we?
Lot 151, then.
We have the Black Forest carved bear with ringed nose
and the carved treen chalice. What do we have?
£40. 40. 30, I have.
Is there a two? It's 30 now. Where is the two?
Two pieces at £30 now.
32. 35. 35, I have. 38. 40, I have to be.
Is there two? It's £40.
-42 online. 42 is online.
-Well done, online.
-It's going to sell.
Is there five? Selling at £42. Are we all done?
OK, look, it's £42 for charity.
Good luck with it and good luck in the future, OK?
-Thank you very much.
-We're almost there.
Next we headed to South Lakeland in Cumbria,
where Janet's Bessie Bamber cat painting
went up for sale at 1818 Auctioneers.
On the rostrum was Kevin Kendall.
I will take 50 on the phone now.
Something for all you fine art lovers right now.
An oil on glass and it's a group of kittens and it is exquisite,
belonging to Janet who's right next to me. Good luck with this.
And I love the idea of selling this
-because Janet wants to take your dog on holiday, is that right?
I just wonder how the kittens will feel about funding
a holiday for a dog, come on! The irony there is ridiculous.
-I do like cats just as much as dogs.
-Good luck with this anyway.
Fingers crossed. It's going under the hammer right now.
300, surely all at once. 300. 300.
Start me at 200, if you will.
200, somewhere. Somebody start me at 200.
£200 we'll go. 200. 200.
I will take 20s. It is a long drag but we will get there. 200. 200.
220. 220. 220. 220. 220. 220.
-220? Not today.
-Oh, dear. Oh, it's going home.
But the dog's still going on holiday, isn't he?
-Is that OK, then? We haven't ruined the dog's holiday?
Janet should try her luck again as her glass panel was very collectable
and I know somebody out there would just love those kittens.
Right, time for our last stop on today's show.
We headed back to Cleveland salerooms in Somerset,
where Jane's Minton jardiniere was up for sale
and auctioneer Marc Burridge was still wielding the gavel.
Right now, we've got a great name in ceramics going under the hammer.
Minton. It doesn't get much better. We have the owner as well, Jane,
and our expert, Jonathan. Why are you selling this?
Well, I've had it for 12 years now.
I bought it at auction
and I have had it in my living room. Now it's time to move on.
My ears pricked up - bought at auction.
-So, do you do many auctions?
-I love auctions.
-Buying and selling?
Yes, that's right.
I just love the whole adrenaline rush. It's good, isn't it?
Let's find out how it goes and we will talk about it afterwards.
This is it.
Interest here at 160, 170, 180,
190, 200. 200.
-210, 220, 230, 240 in the room.
-You could sell at £240.
260. 260, madam. 270.
280. 280. 290. 300. No, I'll take 10.
I'll take a £10 note from him. 310.
Thank you. 320. 320, gone a long way.
-At £310. 20, is it?
All done, then, and selling at 310.
And that hammer's gone down. £310.
-That's a good investment.
-I think so.
Jane's Minton jardiniere was certainly popular with the bidders.
What a hotly contested item!
Well, that's it for today's show.
I've had a great time exploring the magnificent gardens
here at Powis and looking at some of the fine art
and antiques inside the castle's lavish interior.
And you have shown us your treasures from around the country
and we have had some fun times in the auction rooms.
And that is what it's all about on Flog It!
Join us again soon, but until then, it's goodbye.