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Today, we're in Grimsby, in north-east Lincolnshire.
At the very heart of the town is this church,
founded in the 12th century.
This magnificent building has had more than one name in
its 900-year-old history,
but it knows exactly what its duty is -
to provide a warm welcome to its congregation
and, today, that includes us.
Welcome to Flog It! from Grimsby Minster.
Despite former incarnations as St James' Church
and Grimsby Parish Church,
the spirit of Grimsby Minster goes back centuries.
Over time, there have been changes in its layout and description,
but whatever it's been called, this is very much a living church,
serving the local community, and today, the whole town's come,
so we're going to make the most of it,
and it looks like we've got an enthusiastic Flog It! crowd.
Now, in a moment, we're going to find out what's hidden
in all of these bags and boxes. Now, that is the front of the queue.
If you follow me, if you come with me, I'll show you the end,
but in fact, you can't see the end because the queue goes all around
this fabulous architectural delight -
hundreds of people have turned up,
laden with antiques and collectibles.
We really do have our work cut out.
Our experts are limbering up for that all-important moment
when we find out what's it worth.
And if you're happy with the valuation, what are you going to do?
Hot in the trail of sparkly gems is Christina Trevanion.
You know I can't resist diamonds.
Neither can I. That's why I'm getting rid of some.
Oh, my goodness!
It's girl power today, as she's joined by Anita Manning,
who's always a hit with the crowd.
Hello. Good morning. Good morning.
We're having a good time.
What have you brought to the valuation day today, Madam?
-A big smile!
Time to get this lot inside -
they've been getting tempted by the sausages.
We'll find out more about them later.
For now, though, the queue's wiggling its way around the aisles,
into the nave, as people settle in and unpack.
Here's a preview of what's coming up in today's show.
There are questions for Christina.
-Who might use it as a butter dish?
-A very smart person.
Anita has a lady chomping at the bit.
-I'm getting you all excited.
-Good. Go on, what's it worth?
What's it worth...?
And some TLC is needed at auction.
-Top estimate, Shirley.
This is so exciting, isn't it?
And I learn about the struggle that faced a Lincolnshire lord
when he battled between duty and loyalty.
The balcony where the organ sits is a wonderful spot for me
because I get a great view from up here.
I can see what's going on down there,
and it really is a hive of activity.
Right now, we're going to find out what's in those bags and boxes.
It's lights, camera, action, and over to Anita Manning's table.
Let's take a closer look.
I have to say to you that this is a most interesting and intriguing lot.
It is showing medallions, little silver medallions,
with pigeons on them.
Tell me, where did you get them?
They're my father's father.
And he was keeping pigeons up until the war
and, when he stopped keeping pigeons, he kept his medals.
Right. So what about your dad? Did he work with the pigeons?
Are you interested in pigeons?
No. No, I wouldn't exactly call myself a pigeon fancier, no.
No, they're not, er...
They're not the nicest of creatures!
I think they're fabulous. In Scotland, we call them "doos".
For me, there is something of mystique about pigeon racing,
where you have these small creatures who will be taken away,
let free, and then will come back,
and I can understand how people can become passionate about them.
And I know, as well as racing,
they were involved in the war effort, in espionage.
So the pigeon has... Although it may not seem a glamorous bird,
it is nevertheless an interesting and intriguing bird.
During the Second World War,
a quarter of a million pigeons were used to carry messages.
Pigeon fanciers stopped racing
and their birds were used in the war effort,
often aboard RAF aircraft.
If a plane had to ditch, the pigeon was sent back to base
with the location coordinates so a rescue party could be sent out.
These plucky, speedy birds flew in all weathers
and, over the course of the war, saved thousands of lives.
These medallions were awarded to the owner of the fastest pigeon,
so we have 12 here.
I think that what makes them quite beautiful,
and aesthetically pleasing to the eye,
are the wonderful enamelled pigeons.
These ones here would have gold insets.
What I'd like to do is to take one out and to have a look at it.
OK, let's look at the back first.
We have our silver hallmarks, made in Chester.
Presented to R W Lingard.
This was presented in 1933 and we have O S Ave.
That means Overseas Average, so the bird that won this medal
would have been taken across the Channel
and he would have flown back.
And there we have this beautifully enamelled depiction of a pigeon.
If we're thinking of estimates, auction estimates,
it's a very difficult thing because it's a very unusual item.
-A niche market.
-It's a niche market,
but I would take a stab, really, at an estimate of 250 to 350.
Would you be happy for them to go into auction at that price?
-Yes, yes. Yes.
Well, I mean, we might get a surprise here.
It's entirely possible.
They might fly!
Let's put them in to auction, 250 to 350.
We'll put a reserve on them - 250 with a little bit of discretion.
-Thank you very much for bringing them along, Stuart.
Christina's got her eye on something shiny.
Janet, you know I can't resist a bit of diamonds,
a bit of something sparkly, my goodness!
And what a sparkly bangle of beautifulness
you've brought in to us today. Tell me about this.
-I bought it at an auction in Brigg...
I like going to auctions
and the house was full of brown furniture,
so I couldn't buy any more of that.
-So I went on to jewellery for a little while.
-I like it.
You've gone from collecting brown furniture to jewellery.
-Brilliant. So, what is it exactly that you loved about it?
I like the way it sparkles,
and I have a sapphire in another ring that was my mother's
and just always liked sapphires and diamonds together.
You're absolutely right.
Diamonds and sapphires do sit so well together, don't they?
And there is a reason for that that we'll come on to,
but first of all, let's have a look at the whole thing.
So we've got this wonderful central diamond and sapphire cluster
and then the diamond set shoulders here.
Now, this us very much in a Victorian/Edwardian style,
but actually this is a later 20th century example
and we know that because of the type of cut on the diamonds,
which are brilliant cuts.
If it were genuinely an early Edwardian/Victorian piece,
those would be old cut diamonds,
or at least old brilliant cut diamonds and they're not.
They're modern cut diamonds. OK?
-So you say you bought it in 2004?
I think it probably dates to about maybe the 1980s,
maybe the early '90s, something like that.
So it hasn't got huge amounts of age to it.
Nonetheless, it's still a lovely piece.
Now, sapphires and diamonds are quite suitable to go together
because they're of relatively equal hardness, equal durability,
and they've got that same lovely lustre to them,
-they're both very sparkly.
So diamond weight, we've got about 1.3 carats, something like that.
Now, they're all set in yellow gold.
I would expect it to be 18-carat gold -
9 would be a little bit too soft.
The fact that it isn't hallmarked,
does that mean that it's foreign, that it's not English, not British?
Not necessarily. No, not necessarily.
I would expect it to be hallmarked if it was a British piece.
It might just be that it may have been resized at some point
and that the hallmark, unfortunately, has been taken out,
so it doesn't necessarily mean it's not a British hallmarked piece,
it may have been at some stage.
Why are you thinking of selling it?
-Well, I think it needs a young hand.
-Do you think?
-Yeah, mine are old and wrinkly.
-I would totally disagree with that.
-That's kind of you.
-But I think it probably is a good time to sell it.
If you look at this cluster,
if you think of the engagement ring of the Duchess of Cambridge,
obviously, she's brought coloured stones back into fashion.
So when you say you bought it at auction, what did you pay for it?
-Do you mind me asking?
-I paid £880.
-OK, at auction, I would put it in the region of £500 to £700.
How would you feel about that?
-Well, I don't wear it. So, yes, I'd prefer to sell it.
So if we put a firm reserve at £500,
and we won't let it go for any less than that and hopefully...
I'll send an email to the Duchess of Cambridge
and see if she wants a bangle to go with her ring.
-Fingers crossed! Thank you.
Well, it's certainly a hive of activity in there.
Now, you cannot come to Lincolnshire
without sampling some of the local produce.
Lincolnshire sausage is certainly one of them.
I'm here with John Pettit. Hello, pleased to meet you.
-You're a third-generation sausage maker.
His family business sells around 25 tonnes of sausage each week.
-That's a lot of sausage.
-Where does it all go? All over the country?
-All over the country, yeah.
My grandfather started the business in 1892.
I'm retired and I've got my little black book here
with the recipe to hand on.
What's the secret?
Are we allowed to see in the little black book?
Can you tell us what makes them so special? We'd like to know!
It's the consistency and the quality of the ingredients,
plus sage is the integral part that makes them very distinctive.
-The ground sage.
-And here is a bowl of Lincolnshire sausages.
-Look at this.
-Been slightly depleted by some of your crew.
Well, we are a hungry lot. We've got our work cut out today.
Now, most of you know I'm a vegetarian,
so I, unfortunately, won't take a bite out of this.
My kids would.
But I do have two trusty helpers here, Christina and Anita.
-You don't know what you're missing out on.
I like them a wee bit burnt.
Could you tell that that's a regional sausage?
-Lincolnshire sausages are the best.
-They are the best.
-Mm, very good.
Very, very good. Cheers!
We need to leave the sausages,
and it's straight back to work for Anita,
who's discovered something from one of the oldest
working potteries in the world.
-Margaret, welcome to Flog It!
And you've brought along this divine little Belleek honey pot.
Tell me, where did you get it?
I got it quite a few years ago at a school summer fair.
A lady in the summer fair
knew I collected Belleek.
-Oh, you collect Belleek?
-Oh, you're one of those mad collectors!
-How did you start collecting?
-When my son left college,
-he fell in love with an Irish girl and he went out there.
-So did you become interested in Belleek at that point?
Because he lived near Enniskillen, which is quite near Belleek.
-So have you got a lot Belleek?
-Every room in the house, virtually!
Now, Belleek started in the 1880s and, over periods of time,
they used different colours of back stamps,
so we can date the pieces to certain periods
and here we can see this black back stamp,
which is third period Belleek,
and that is between 1926 and 1946.
So it's putting us within that period there.
And if we look in the inside,
-it's almost like an egg shell porcelain.
It's a little honey pot and it's in the form of a beehive,
sitting on a little platform.
And we have bees here, making their way in to the honey pot,
so the object has humour.
Now, tell me, Margaret, you collect Belleek,
-you have many, many, many pieces.
-What's your favourite piece?
-This is your favourite piece?
-But, you know, times change.
I would put an auction estimate of 100 to 150 on it.
-Would you be happy to put it into auction at that price?
-We will put a firm reserve of £100 on it.
And I'm sure that there will be fierce competition for it.
So thank you so much for bringing it along.
It's a lovely wee object.
Such a pretty honey pot
and that should appeal to the Belleek collectors.
Well, can see the Minster has provided
some wonderful inspiration for our hardworking team,
our experts have been enthused
and indeed all the people who have turned up today -
they've brought some marvellous treasures along
and, as you've just seen, our experts have found
their first three items to take off to auction.
So, while we get ready to put them to the test in the saleroom,
here's a quick recap, just to jog your memory,
of all the items that are going under the hammer.
The proudly-won pigeon racing medals.
Will they find favour with any fanciers?
A stunning diamond and sapphire gold bracelet.
And the pretty Belleek honey pot.
We're heading south west to Lincoln,
a city with an impressive heritage and a very steep hill.
This was built by the Romans to help boost trade routes
and it's still a bustling shopping area.
And we're hoping for some good sales of our own now.
On the rostrum, we have two auctioneers.
Colin Young and John Leatt.
And the commission rate here today is 15% plus VAT.
It's looking busy and hopefully,
there's somebody who fancies these pigeon medals.
I've just been joined by Stuart and Anita, our expert,
and something quite rare, we rarely see on Flog It!,
racing pigeon medals.
-These have been grandad's, they've been in the family a long time.
-So you didn't want them?
-This is such an unusual lot.
-How do you put a value on to it?
-Very, very difficult.
Look, I hope these go to a good home. Going under the hammer now.
What shall we say for this?
Who is going to start me at a couple of hundred? £200.
200. Start me at 100. 100 bid. At 100.
120 now, make it. 100 bid. 120 anybody now?
At 100, 120, 140, 160.
160, 180. 180, 200.
200, 220, 240.
240 now. 240. 220 bid.
40 now. At 220. 230 then.
Anybody else fancy joining in?
At 220. Well, I've had enough bidders for it. At 220.
We are going to sell. That's the competition.
That's where it all ends.
Or does it?
Is anybody else going to home in on it?
No? At 220, on my left here then.
Selling at £220.
-Well, he used a wee bit of discretion there.
-Just got them away.
As we thought, a tricky thing to value,
but it's good Stuart's grandfather's medals have found a new home.
It's Margaret's turn now,
and here's hoping the bidders come buzzing to her honey pot.
Going under the hammer right now, we have some fine porcelain.
We have some Belleek going under the hammer,
all the way from Northern Ireland. Why are you selling this?
-Well, I'm supposed to be... cutting back a bit.
But I have still another...
-about 150 pieces at home.
-She's a mad collector!
We're going to put this to the test. Who's going to buy it?
We don't know, but we're going to find out.
Here it is, under the hammer, now.
£80. Any interest at 80?
I've got 50. £50, I'll start it. £50 with me.
With me at £50. 55 and 60.
65 and 70.
At £70, here with me at £70.
At £70. All done at £70? At 75 at 80.
85 and 90.
At £90. Anyone else at £90? Anyone else at £90?
All done at £90.
He was asking for £90 - he didn't sell it. So close.
-..it's got to go home.
-I don't mind.
-It's going to join its mates.
It didn't want to be separated, did it?
That piece certainly won't be lonely -
it can snuggle back in with Margaret's other 150 pieces,
and hopefully Janet won't be taking her gold bracelet home.
Good luck, both of you. I know you both like this,
but sadly it's got to go because tastes change.
We all evolve and we look at things in different ways.
-It's a diamond and sapphire bracelet.
-It is, yes.
-Very in vogue.
-And, at the end of the day, it is all about taste, isn't it?
-It's all about who likes it.
-Two people liking it.
And Oscar Wilde said there's no such thing as good taste
and bad taste, just your taste and my taste, so let's hope we have
lots of bidders in the room that have exactly our taste.
He also said drinking's a mug's game -
the bigger the mug, the better.
I think I'll stick to that one in future!
Right, let's put this under the hammer. Here we go.
What shall we say for this one?
Who's going to start me, bottom estimate, 500 for it? 500.
Five. Four to go then, 400 anybody?
Four. Three if you like. Three.
Three over there. £300 bid.
At 300. 320, at 320. 340. 340, 360.
360, 380. At 380, 400.
400, 420, 440, 440, 460.
480 now. 480 do I see?
480 surely, 480.
500 now. 500, 500.
-550, 550. 600?
600 now. 650, I'm bid 650.
700 now, surely? 700. 700.
750, at 750. 800 now?
800 surely. 800 bid.
850. 900. 950?
I'll offer you 75 to help you out.
975 bid. At 975.
-1,000 now, surely. 1,000.
-Go on, Colin!
It's at 1,000 bid. Offer 25.
Last call for the room, last call for the internet.
I will sell, and sell at £1,000.
Thank you very much.
Oh, thank you, that was...
-I'm tingling, I'm tingling for you, Janet.
-I was nervous. Amazing!
-You were spot on.
What a great result, doubling the reserve!
Well, three lots down and three more to go later on in the programme
but before we return to Grimsby Minster to find some more gems
to go under the hammer, I'm going to be exploring
one of Lincolnshire's many great stately homes,
to find out about a Lord who became confidant
to the only British sovereign to abdicate voluntarily.
This is Belton House, deep in the Lincolnshire countryside.
Since it was built in the 17th century, members of the family
who lived here have been closely linked to the royal court.
This man in particular was destined to play a part in British history,
which had repercussions far beyond these walls.
Peregrine Cust, the 6th Lord Brownlow, inherited Belton in 1927.
Like his predecessors, he mixed with royalty
and he and his wife, Kitty, were close friends
of the Prince of Wales, who was to become King Edward VIII.
Whilst he was still Prince, Edward was having an affair
with a married woman, the American socialite Wallis Simpson.
This, in the day, was a real scandal.
I'm meeting house and collections manager Katherine Grainger
to find out more about Perry, as he was known.
What kind of man was the 6th Lord Brownlow?
From what you read about him and hear about him,
he was the most incredibly loyal friend and servant,
with an enormous sense of duty.
He'd been in the Army, in the Grenadier Guards, in his youth,
and I think that bred in the man
something that he couldn't get away from, I suppose.
-Discipline and honour.
What were his links with the Prince of Wales?
He'd known him for many years.
Edward owned a house on the edge of Windsor Great Park
and that was a place where people would gather to socialise -
dinners, weekends - and Peregrine and his wife, Kitty,
were very much a part of that Fort Belvedere set.
So if they were that close, Perry would have known
about Edward's relationship with Mrs Simpson.
Yes, very much so. He would have been fully well aware
of the relationship that was developing.
Which would have been a real pressure for him.
I'm sure there would have been a sense of unease about it
because I believe that George V and Queen Mary, I think,
had made their feelings quite clear as to what they thought about it,
so again that sense of duty comes in
because he is faithful to his friend,
but he knows that his King's not happy about what's going on.
In January 1936, King George V died,
leaving Edward to ascend to the throne.
When Edward succeeded the throne in January 1936,
Lord Brownlow became his Lord-in-waiting.
He ensured all his needs were met and accompanied the King
on his first and only State Opening of Parliament,
and, during that year,
he became Edward's closest friend and confidant.
When the king's supporters realised his intentions
were to marry Mrs Simpson, they turned to Lord Brownlow,
to persuade Wallis to give up the King, and leave the country.
Wallis was divorced and marriage to her was constitutionally impossible.
The Church of England, of which Edward was head,
did not allow divorcees to remarry,
and there was no precedent for the monarch to marry a commoner.
The Cabinet made it clear they would not accept it.
With rumour and speculation mounting amongst the establishment,
the risk of some very bad press,
the King realised he had to get Wallis away from the furore.
This is detailed in documents held by Lincolnshire Archives.
This, over here is a notebook, which was put together
by Lord Brownlow and it relates to his adventure to France,
taking Mrs Simpson with him,
to get her out of the way while the King made up his mind.
Did the King ask Lord Brownlow to take Wallis to France?
He did, and there is a piece in here
about the fact that he had a job for him to do for him,
and that he mustn't tell anybody about it, not even Kitty, his wife.
"Tell no-one under any circumstances about this, not even K.
"Can you manage that for me?"
There are also here two draft statements
which Lord Brownlow wrote on Mrs Simpson's behalf.
In fact, this one is actually signed by her.
She signed it, hasn't she, Wallis Simpson?
And this does state that she would be willing to give him up.
"Today her attitude is unchanged and she is willing to withdraw forthwith
"from a situation that has been rendered
"both unhappy and untenable."
So, plainly, they had talked about it
-and discussed her issuing a statement.
Just looking at that,
that's terribly upsetting in any relationship,
let alone one that the King was having.
Yes, and I suspect he would have been deeply distressed
by the fact that these statements were being issued.
Did it influence any situation?
Well, it didn't, no, because as we know, in the end, he abdicated.
-'This is Windsor Castle,
'his Royal Highness Prince Edward.'
'I have found it impossible to carry the heavy burden of responsibility
'and to discharge my duties as King as I would wish to do
'without the help and support of the woman I love,
'and I want you to know that the decision I have made...
'has been mine and mine alone.'
With Edward's abdication after less than a year,
his brother became King George VI,
leaving Edward free to propose to Wallis.
He followed her to France, intending to marry the woman he loved.
There's a letter here from Edward and some train timetables.
Yes, he wrote that letter to Perry, including the train timetables,
saying how much he and Wallis hoped that Perry and Kitty
would attend the wedding, and then Perry did actually
write to the King, George VI,
asking his permission to attend the wedding,
but very, very quickly withdrew that letter
because he realised he was asking him an impossible question.
As Lord Lieutenant of Lincolnshire,
you are King's representative in Lincolnshire,
therefore he was the representative of George VI.
To have gone to the wedding would have,
in the eyes of the people of Lincolnshire,
would have been perhaps very uncomfortable for him.
So obviously Lord Brownlow had to let Edward know
he couldn't attend the wedding.
He did and there is a very, very, brief communication between them.
Peregrine wrote and indicated there were considerable difficulties
back here in England, and he received a telegram by return from
the Duke of Windsor to say he quite understood and no more need be said.
Did duty win over friendship?
Yes, I think duty did win over friendship,
although the friendship then carried on over time.
So, yes, I think it would be fair to say that.
Lord and Lady Brownlow remained in touch with Edward and Wallis
in the years that followed the abdication crisis.
And in 1937, Edward and Wallis were married,
and they were given the titles the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.
They never returned to live in England.
Lord Brownlow was Lord Lieutenant of Lincolnshire
right up until 1950, when he retired,
coming back here to Belton House, the family seat,
where he later died in 1978.
He always knew that his name would be linked to Edward's,
and he was proud that it should be so.
Back to Grimsby Minster,
where the crowd's showing no signs of petering out.
And Christina's found a quiet corner
to examine some rather exotic beauties belonging to Brian.
Tell me about them.
Where did you buy a pair of pineapples? I'm intrigued.
We were driving through Yorkshire, they was on a bric-a-brac stall.
As soon as I saw them I thought, "Well, I've got to have them,"
because they really looked the bee's knees.
-Yeah, they're very smart.
-Really good, yes.
I asked the chap how much, and we got them for £10, believe it or not.
-No! My goodness me.
-Were you wearing a mask at the time?
That's amazing, isn't it? And do you know what they're for?
I think they've come out of a big house
where they were on the newel post of a big staircase,
a sweeping staircase, they'd be on the bottom.
Right. OK. Mm. Potentially.
The reason that I bought them was for them to put in the garden.
But having discovered they were cast iron,
I thought they would rust in the garden
and I didn't want to spray anything on them.
-I think it would have taken away the look of them.
-It's a lovely patina on them.
-You're absolutely right. Yes.
Now, they're very much in the style of...
I don't know if you've heard of a factory called Coalbrookdale.
They started in the 18th century, producing cast ironware.
They produced the most amazing big benches and they produced, I think,
the gates to Buckingham Palace or Hyde Park gates or something.
So they made some wonderful cast-iron pieces.
-And they're very much in that style.
But, unfortunately, they're not marked. Let's have a look.
No, definitely no marks on their bottoms,
which is such a shame because, if they were marked,
we could definitely attribute them to Coalbrookdale.
Then we'd be laughing. It would be brilliant.
I just don't think that they are newel post pineapples, sadly.
I think they were made to go outside.
-And I think that they were potentially gatepost finials...
..and that these sections here,
unless this is a very tiny weeny inkwell,
which it isn't, we think that that's what you would have had
if you had night-time parties,
you may have put a torchiere in the top of there,
-like a storm lantern, effectively...
-Oh, I see.
-..that would have gone either inside that or sat on top of that.
These came off a very nice house with a very long drive
with some very well-to-do people.
And you would have had staff that would have cleaned them
-and kept them right and kept them in good condition.
Unfortunately, without that mark,
we're not talking the stellar realms, sadly -
we are talking as a nice pair of decorative finials.
£100 to £200 would be very suitable for it,
which I don't think is a bad investment...
-Not a bad return.
-..on your £10.
So would you want to protect them with a reserve?
Well, I'm quite prepared to let them go without a reserve.
So we'll put an estimate of 100 to 200 and no reserve,
and we'll let the market dictate.
-See who wants a pair of pineapples on the day.
Thank you so much for bringing them in.
-I love them, I think they're gorgeous.
-And a great find.
I think I need to come on a drive with you.
Brian had better check his passenger seat the next time he goes out.
Now, Anita's made a great find
from the early 20th-century Arts and Crafts period.
Julie, welcome to Flog It!
Now, you've brought in to us, today, a slightly bashed
and kind of kicked-about little candlestick,
BUT it's quite an important little thing.
Where did you get it?
I work for a charity shop in Hull, and it got donated.
And the girls were sorting through it,
and they put it on the shelf for me to check.
Now, did the girls recognise... Did they see some sort of quality?
They saw a code number on the base of it. 022.
And, obviously, now we've got the access to the internet,
I took it upstairs to check it.
And there is a Liberty and Co stamp on the underside.
-Did you get quite excited?
-Yeah. That's why I'm here today...
..to see whether it is a proper piece.
And I think what we'll do is look underneath it first.
We can see that it's English pewter.
The number is 0222.
Now, the zero is the thing which is giving me the indication
that it could be Archibald Knox.
Archibald Knox, born in the mid-1800s,
was one of the great designers
of the late 19th, early 20th century.
If we look on the other side, we see, and it's very faint,
we can see that it has been made by Liberty and Company.
Two big, big names.
And what Liberty were selling were items which had an artistic,
or a design influence, and in actual fact,
they are still doing that today.
Archibald Knox was involved in the Arts and Crafts movement.
He designed items in silver, and he also designed items in pewter.
He had a great interest in botany,
and, very often, we see his designs
having a botanical influence with these four posts,
which are almost like the stalks of flowers or leaves.
-I'm getting you all excited.
-Go on. What's it worth?
-What's it worth?
-Now, it is a single candle stick.
The price on it... I'm going to make it a conservative estimate.
-I would like to put it into auction at maybe £60 to £80.
-I feel that a conservative estimate will draw in the bidders.
Now, would you be happy to put it in at that estimate?
-Any funds that we raise today will go to the charity.
A fixed reserve of £60,
and let's hope it makes an enormous amount of money.
-So do I.
No pressure, Anita(!)
Now, this is the Memorial Chapel,
a place to remember those who lost their lives in battle.
And what's caught my eye is this monument to the Grimsby Chums.
I'd never heard of this before, so I did a bit of investigating.
When the First World War broke out,
Britain was the only major force not to have a mass conscripted army.
The Army wasn't big enough to fight a global battle.
So many thousands of men volunteered their service
under Lord Kitchener's New Armies.
Known as Pals Battalions,
these harnessed local ties for national gain.
The thought was more men would enlist
if they could serve alongside their friends, relatives and workmates.
And out of the 300 battalions, only one had a different name,
the Grimsby Chums.
Factory workers, bankers, farm workers,
they all got together, they trained together, and they went off
and they fought their first battle at the Battle of the Somme in 1916.
They suffered their highest casualties
on the first day of this battle.
Half were reported killed, missing or wounded.
Since the war broke out,
a total of 810 men from Grimsby lost their lives in battle.
This is a memorial to them, the Grimsby Chums.
Now back to the valuations and Christina's in her element.
I love this beautiful piece that you've brought in to me.
-Why did you bring it in?
-It belonged to my maternal grandmother...
-..and it spent a lot of time on the windowsill
with a flowerpot in it, sometimes, and sometimes it was empty.
You couldn't get further from a flowerpot if you tried,
-to be honest.
So where did Granny get this from?
-I believe she got it in a bring and buy sale.
-A bring and buy sale.
-I believe so.
-Gosh, somebody brought it and she bought it.
-I like her style.
-So do I.
-Have you been offered any money for it in the past?
-Well, she was.
She used to keep it in a windowsill, as I said,
and it was when rag-and-bone men came around.
-It was shortly after the Second World War, '47-ish.
He'd offered her £5.
And she thought,
"Well, it must be worth more if he's offering me five."
-Reverse psychology. I like it.
-Let's have a look at it.
Let's start from the beginning, shall we?
Let's start from the bottom up.
-What we've got is this mark on the bottom, which says WH90.
-Do you know what that means?
-I've no idea.
WH is a maker called Wang Hing,
who was a Chinese silversmith and retailer
-and exporter of very good quality silverwares.
This particular example is a 90 standard. OK?
So that's a really good sign. That's a very good-quality silver.
Wang Hing started production of these sorts of wares in about 1854,
OK, but I don't think this is one of his earlier pieces.
I think this is more maybe 1880s, 1900,
maybe slightly turn of the century. It's not his early work.
We can tell that by the mark.
It's got this amazingly beautiful embossed and cast decoration
of these, what have we got, we've got chrysanthemums,
we've got peonies.
-It's just so detailed.
-That's sort of like a dahlia.
-And so on.
-It looks like a jungle of a garden, doesn't it?
And that's what the Chinese were so good at,
in creating these wonderful floral views.
It is a very unusual form.
Now, we think it was probably a butter pail or butter container.
But the smartest butter dish I think I've ever seen in my life.
-Well, yeah. Who might use it as a butter dish?
-A very smart person.
So what you would have done,
is you would have put your ice in the bottom,
and you would have put your butter in a little liner inside there
-to keep the butter cool.
It may have had a lid because, if you see around here,
you can see that there is a little indentation to that rim there.
-So it may originally have had a lid.
So if I were to put this into auction,
I would estimate it at 300 to 500, 400 to 600.
How would you feel about that?
I would prefer a higher reserve because of the years I've known it.
-If you don't mind.
I think that's fine, I think a comfortable estimate,
if we said 400 to 600 with a firm reserve at £400.
-We won't let it go for any less than that.
-Is that all right?
Right now, we're going to leave this scene behind
as we put those valuations to the test in the auction room.
This is where it matters.
This is where we find out what's it worth.
So while we make our way down to Lincoln,
here's a quick recap of all the items that are going...
HE IMITATES A GAVEL BANG ..under the hammer.
There are the decorative cast-iron pineapples.
An Arts and Crafts gem - the pewter candleholder.
And the beautifully-decorated silver from China -
a very posh butter dish.
As we return to the saleroom,
it's all eyes on the auctioneer, John Leatt,
as the exotic fruit tests the bidders.
Brian, going under the hammer right now,
we've got your two pineapples.
Cast-iron pineapples, possibly gateposts.
Brian and I have been debating this since the valuation day.
Well, let's put them to the test.
They're going under the hammer right now.
A bit of interest in this. Various, in fact.
More than a bit, we've got quite a lot of interest in this,
and I'll start them straight with me at £40.
At £40. At 40.
-I thought straight in at 200.
50. Let the internet take it at £50.
The internet's at 55.
At 55 in the room. And 60. 65.
80. 85. 90
-£90 on the net, anyone else at 90? On the internet. £90.
-You're in profit, absolutely.
-Done at £90?
On the internet? Nowhere else? In the room?
-They could go for more than that.
-So on the internet at £90, then...
Well, they're gone at £90. That's a good profit, isn't it?
£80 profit for you there, Brian.
That's not bad, is it?
-Pay for the trip home.
Now, Julie was very keen to make as much as possible
on her Arts and Crafts candlestick holder.
Belongs to Julie, not for much longer. Why are you selling this?
-It's donated for the charity.
-Oh, is it?
So all the money is going towards charity?
It's going to sell, but what for? We're going to find out right now.
This is it.
Who's going to start me at £50? 50?
40 to go, then. £40? 40? 30?
We're looking for £60 to £80, aren't we, Julie?
38, 38, bid 40. At 40, we've got a bid.
Bid 50 now. 50, got a bid.
It's getting brighter. It's flickering.
Five anywhere else, now?
-This is good.
75? £70 bid?
Do I see five now? At £70.
You're all out now. 75 with you. 75.
Bid 80 with me. And five now.
-This is very good.
Five, anywhere? Surely, we are all done.
At £80. Last call for everybody.
It's on the market and selling at £80.
£80. Yes, well done, Colin Young. Thank you for bringing that in.
That candlestick did shine in the saleroom.
And hopefully Shirley's stunning silver piece will. too.
We are just about to sell
this Chinese export silver two-handled bowl.
-It is, it's beautiful.
-It is, isn't it?
Yes, stylistically, it's perfect.
It stands so well,
and we're going to put it under the hammer right now.
Let's find out what the bidders think.
Start me at 400 for this.
400, 3 to go, 300 bid, 300. 320. At 320.
340. At 340. 360.
360. 380. At 380.
At 400 bid.
-We've got the reserve price now.
-420, anybody now?
420. 440. 440 bid now.
440. 440. 460.
-460. 480. 480. 480.
-Well done, Colin.
Come on, keep working that bid.
550 now, do I see?
550. 600. Up to £600.
That's the top estimate, Shirley.
This is so exciting.
At 650, here.
75 if it's going to help you?
My bid of 675...
-..is in the room.
700 is your last chance.
At 675. Are we all done, then?
No? At 675, all done at 675...
-Oh, thanks, that's lovely.
-Look at your little face.
Top. That's what we like. Well done, Christina.
Right, it was a lovely piece.
And well done, you, for bringing that in.
What a fantastic result, and Shirley's over the moon.
Well, that's it, it's all over for our owners.
As you can see, the auction is still going on.
We've had a fabulous time here in Lincoln.
Our owners have gone home happy
and our experts have been on the money,
and that's what it's all about.
Join us again for another surprise in another auction room.
Until then, it's goodbye.