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Packwood House 18

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Today, I'm at Packwood House in Warwickshire.

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It's a magnificent country residence,

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which isn't all that it first appears.

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It's filled with intriguing stories and treasures,

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just like those we discovered on our travels all around Britain for

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today's programme.

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Welcome to "Flog It!"

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On today's show, we're taking a tour around the country to revisit some

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of our wonderful valuation day locations from this series.

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It's another chance to see those stunning venues and discover some

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extra treasures, which were brought in for our experts to see.

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There was a real warmth when we visited Grimsby Minster,

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which dates back some 900 years.

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This is exactly what they would

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have been drinking their tea out of in 1807.

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So it's terribly Jane Austen, darling.

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And the faithful "Flog It!" crowds also flocked to the impressive

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Wolverhampton Art Gallery,

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where Caroline Hawley discovered how a young teacher invested his first

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-pay packet.

-Goodness me, so his first wage as a teacher.

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-They were ten shillings.

-That was a lot of money in the early '30s.

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-It was, yes, it was.

-An awful lot of money.

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We were thrilled by the turnout at our valuation day in the magnificent

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St Albans Cathedral.

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I do remember Princess Diana coming into the hotel.

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That's pretty good, isn't it?

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And we also went to the seaside.

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In Morecambe, Lancashire, we spent the day at the wonderful Platform

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Building, once the terminus of the town's old Promenade station.

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And Charles Hanson found an item to get his teeth into.

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We have two small dogs at home and this very much reminds me of our

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terrier called Oscar.

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DOG CREAKS

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Yes, quite right, I heard that.

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And I'll be spending some time here at Packwood,

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really getting to know the house and its fascinating story.

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Packwood House started out life as a rather modest Tudor farmhouse but

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eventually it was added to over the years,

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turning it into a typical Warwickshire manor house.

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Georgian Gothic windows,

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a Victorian hall gallery did their bit in changing its appearance.

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But when one of the richest men in the country bought it,

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primarily because his teenage son fell in love with it,

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no-one could ever have imagined the transformation that it was about to

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undergo. Graham Baron Ash had real plans and vision for this place

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and later on in the programme,

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we'll be finding out more about him and his home improvements.

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But first, we're off to the magnificent St Albans Cathedral,

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where James Lewis is chatting to Patrick about something with a bit of a story behind it.

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Well, Patrick, we always have time for a good wristwatch on "Flog It!"

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and that is about as good as they come, isn't it?

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-It certainly is.

-The leading maker,

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the name that everybody talks about when they talk about wristwatches.

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But the interesting thing and something that I didn't realise

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-until recently, where do you think Rolex are?

-Switzerland.

-Yeah.

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Yeah. You would think they were a Swiss company, wouldn't you?

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It was started in London.

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-Oh, really?

-It's a British firm, Rolex was originally British.

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But they were founded in 1905, moved to Switzerland in 1919.

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Right from the start they always made the very best.

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Let's have a... Just turn it over.

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It's what we call a Dennison case, which has a nice, flat back

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and original Rolex strap.

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We've got the crown there of Rolex at the end

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and it's marked for nine-carat gold, 375.

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But tell me, yours, father's, grandfather's?

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No, no, I used to work in the hotel business and I was the sales

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director of the Park Lane Hotel, which was an independent hotel.

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Yes, lovely hotel.

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And if I had had a good year, or the hotel had had a good year,

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I would buy myself a present at Christmas.

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And we had an antique fair there and I saw Ronnie, and Ronnie said,

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-"Why don't you have that?"

-Who's Ronnie?

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He's a society second-hand jeweller.

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So, in terms of a society jeweller, he buys off

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the wealthy of London, I would guess.

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-Yes, yes.

-And sells back to them and probably gives loans against it

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-as well, occasionally.

-Yes, yes.

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Yeah, wonderful. So, tell me, when you were at the Park Lane,

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did you have any wonderful guests?

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Well, I do remember Princess Diana coming into the hotel to do an event.

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Well, that's pretty good, isn't it?

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And probably we had the gig of the year, which was

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the Kasparov and Karpov World Chess Championship in the ballroom.

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Did you?

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And Maggie Thatcher came down to do the opening and she had the

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communists, of course, as they were at that time,

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absolutely eating out of her hand.

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-JAMES LAUGHS

-That was a real high spot.

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OK. Do you remember what you paid?

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From Ronnie, probably, certainly 500.

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-OK.

-I don't think it was less than 500 from Ronnie.

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Yeah. You were very wise to go to Ronnie and not to buy a new

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because £500 was reasonable value.

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-Yeah.

-Of course then it was retail, today we're selling at auction,

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so there is a slight difference.

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I would think that 500 is still about right for it.

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I think we should put an estimate of £400 to £600.

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-Oh, right, OK.

-And probably a reserve of 400.

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-That would be brilliant.

-Is that all right?

-Yeah, fantastic.

-Great.

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Well, I think there'll be certainly more antiques than Prime Ministers

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and princesses at the auction but fingers crossed there'll be somebody

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-worthy of a gold Rolex watch.

-Thank you.

-Thank you.

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What a great watch and a great tale.

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Next, we're travelling north to Grimsby Minister where

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Christina Trevanion spotted something shiny.

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Julie, please tell me that somewhere languishing in your handbag are two

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-more pieces with this teapot.

-I wish there was.

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Well, nonetheless, you've bought me a very lovely teapot,

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-so thank you for that.

-You're very welcome.

-Do you use it?

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-No, I've never used it.

-And where's it come from?

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It was my mother's mother's and so...

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-So it was your granny's?

-Yes.

-OK, right.

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-Yeah.

-And where do you have it now?

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I just had it in a china cabinet, that's all, at home.

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Oh, my goodness.

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Well, originally, obviously, it would have been part of a

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three-piece service, originally, so you would have had your teapot,

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you would have had your sugar bowl and you would have had

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your milk jug. OK, so one of three pieces.

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-Right.

-And this is what we call an oval boat form.

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-Right.

-Now, what I always do,

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look at its bottom. And look, there we go,

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it's got everything we need to know on the bottom there.

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-Right.

-So, it's got JE here, which is the maker's mark, which is

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John Eames, OK. We've got the lion passant,

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which is the standard sterling silver mark.

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-Right.

-We've got the duty mark there, which is the head

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of George III, 1760 to 1820.

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We've got the crowned leopard there,

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which tells us that it's pre-1819 and that's the town mark for London.

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-Right.

-And then we've got this date letter here,

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which is the date letter for 1807,

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which is a capital M and it's got this wonderful anthemion decoration,

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this honeysuckle decoration, around the bands here,

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which is very typical of that era.

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If you think of material, you think of the Jane Austin era,

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all those wonderful empire-line dresses that they were wearing,

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this is exactly what they would have

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been drinking their tea out of in 1807.

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All right. So it's terribly Jane Austen, darling.

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THEY LAUGH

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Lovely thing.

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Without the rest of its service, it is unfortunately just a teapot.

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But nonetheless by a great maker.

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But I think at auction for a standard teapot,

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I think we might be looking at a couple of hundred pounds.

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-Right.

-So if we said an estimate of 150 to 250 and a firm reserve at 150.

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-Yes.

-And we'll keep everything crossed that somebody else has got the

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-sugar bowl...

-Oh, that would be lovely, and they really want it.

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..and they want to reunite it.

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Yes, that would be lovely, wouldn't it?

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Brilliant. Cup of tea?

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Yes, please!

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Milk, no sugar for me, please, ladies.

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Now, let's take a quick break from our valuation days as I want to show

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you around the Packwood House gardens.

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One of the first things that attracted the Ash family to Packwood was the

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famous and mystical gardens, especially the yew gardens,

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which date back more than 350 years.

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It was originally laid out in the mid-17th century by the house's

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then owner, John Fetherston,

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a wealthy lawyer who was responsible for extending Packwood to include

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stables and outhouses.

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The clipped trees are said to represent the Sermon on the Mount.

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The group of 12 trees are called the apostles and the four taller ones in

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the middle are known as the evangelists.

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And if you follow up this tight, spiral pathway lined with box hedges,

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you climb a hummock called "The Mount".

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And then once you've found the top you'll find a single yew tree crowning

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the summit and this is called "The Master".

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And it's from here you can look down at the rest of the collection of

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smaller trees known as "The Multitude",

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and many of these were planted up in the 19th century.

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I say small but look,

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a lot of them are around 30 feet high and they take a lot of maintenance.

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It takes two full-time gardeners plus a team of volunteers

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two-and-a-half months every year to keep these clipped.

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Well, from something really large and tall to something quite small.

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Caroline's found two wonderful items in Wolverhampton.

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Liz, tell me about these lovely dishes.

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They came from my father-in-law, we've had them about 15 years.

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He bought them in Worcester with his first wage packet as a teacher.

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In the early part of the 1930s, I guess.

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And he paid ten shillings for them.

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Goodness me. So his first wage as a teacher,

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-that was a lot of money in the early '30s.

-It was.

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-Yes, it was.

-An awful lot of money.

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Amazing, and he kept them all those years.

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He was very proud of them, very proud of them.

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They hung on the wall in my in-laws' home all the time.

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How lovely. And to have something to remember your first wage.

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-Exactly.

-That puts them into such a context.

-Yes.

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They're not just any old pots.

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Well, shall we have a look at them?

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-Yes, fine.

-Now, they are Royal Worcester, and he bought them,

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I would think, straight from the factory.

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More than likely, yes.

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They are signed, can you see here?

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-James Stinton.

-Right.

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They are hand-painted, they're absolutely fabulous quality.

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-Stinton is a big, big name in Royal Worcester painters.

-Yeah.

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There was Harry, there was John, there was James -

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and if we look at the back of them, let's turn it over,

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we can see Royal Worcester here, made in England.

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With "made in England", that puts them into the 20th century.

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-OK.

-But we can be even more precise as to the date

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because Royal Worcester

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used a specific set of dots, circles, different sizes.

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If we see here, we've got three circles, two dots, this puce mark,

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which later became a black mark.

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That dates it exactly to 1934.

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So they were possibly new when he bought them.

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-That's what I'm thinking - they tie in exactly...

-Yes.

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..when he would have got his first wage...

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-That's right.

-..gone out and bought these.

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Now, another good thing to look at,

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-this gilding here is in absolutely tiptop perfect condition.

-Yes, yes.

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And that is often the first thing to go.

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Two reasons. One, with lots of handling, use, it would wear.

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-Yes.

-Another thing is, if they've got wire hangers,

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it's the worst thing you can do.

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They grip them and they nibble away at this gilding.

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Yes, they've never had wires over the gilding,

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they've just had a home-made wire circle hanging from there,

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which was always quite loose, and a little loop to hang on the wall.

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-And do you like them?

-I don't like them particularly,

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but my husband always liked them

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because they belong to his dad, I suppose.

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Right, so have you decided now is the time to sell?

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Yes, he's happy, he's happy for them to go.

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-So these were bought in 1934 for ten shillings.

-Yes.

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-Which equates to £50.

-That's right.

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Now they are worth considerably more than that.

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I would put a presale estimate of 120 to £180 on the pair.

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-That's brilliant.

-What an amazing investment.

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Yes, yes, he would be really pleased to know that.

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So we will put them into auction with a discretionary reserve of 120.

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-That's fine.

-Brilliant.

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Look forward to seeing you and your lovely dishes at the auction.

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Thank you very much.

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Those lovely Royal Worcester dishes

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are the last of our first batch of items -

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and now it's time to find out if they make our owners any money

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when they go under the hammer.

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Patrick's gold Rolex watch was a gift to himself,

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but now he no longer wears it.

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Julie's terribly Jane Austen teapot is a lovely thing.

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Let's hope the owners of the sugar bowl and the milk jug

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are watching at the auction.

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And finally, Liz hopes the little Royal Worcester dishes

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will prove to be a fantastic investment

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on the ten shillings they cost.

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Our first auction is at Tring Market Auctions in Hertfordshire...

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..where Patrick's watch is up for sale,

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and auctioneer Steven Hayne is on the rostrum.

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Remember, whether you are buying or selling at every auction,

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there is always commission and VAT to pay.

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Right, time is up for the Rolex.

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Patrick's is just about to go under the hammer,

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-and we are looking at £400 to £600, aren't we?

-Yeah.

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James, I read your notes -

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you pointed out something that I didn't know.

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You said Rolex were English, I always thought they were Swiss.

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-They started in England.

-Yes, there you go. I didn't know that.

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See, you learn something new every day on "Flog It!", don't you?

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And that's what this show is all about, information, information.

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Get out there, get buying and collecting.

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-Good luck with this.

-Thank you very much.

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It's going under the hammer now.

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There you are, the gold wrist watch, movement and the strap with it.

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Rather nice watch.

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Are we going to get to 500 for a good Rolex?

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500, 400, 300. 300 bid.

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300 I have. 320 I'm bid for it.

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350. 380.

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Yes. One more.

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400 I'm bid for it.

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At 400, you are out.

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At £400, then, I'm selling.

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Make no mistake, it's going for £400, then.

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-Just.

-Close!

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Just. Why did you want to sell it, anyway?

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I used to use it for work, when I went out for dinner.

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-It is quite dressy, though.

-Yes, it is a bit dressy.

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Well, that watch was a great thing, that's for sure.

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Next we're heading to Golding Young & Mawer's in Lincoln,

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where auctioneer John Leatt's in charge

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of selling Julie's lonely silver teapot -

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but it is not the only thing lacking company.

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Going under the hammer right now, we have a George III silver teapot.

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We do have the item - sadly we don't have our owner, Julie.

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We do have our gorgeous expert, Christina,

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and I'm pretty sure this is going to sell, don't you?

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You would hope so, George III silver teapot, what's not to love?

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-We've got a reserve on this, haven't we?

-Yes, we've got £150,

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-so it is protected.

-It's protected. Do you have a silver teapot?

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-Well, I don't, that I use.

-Too young.

-Do you?

-No.

-I bet you do.

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-No, I'd love one, actually.

-Does the butler bring it for you?

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My son Dylan actually makes a cup of tea for me -

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but I wouldn't trust him with a silver teapot.

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-Anyway, we are going to put this to the test right now.

-OK.

-Here we go.

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This George III silver teapot,

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John Eames, London 1807,

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and who will start me on this one at £150?

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£150 start. 150 start.

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£150.

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-It's gone quiet.

-It is very quiet.

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120. I've got £100.

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110. 120.

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130. 140. 150.

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Yours at 150. Anybody else?

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In the room at 150. Anybody else?

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At 150. £150 in the room.

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No? All done at £150, selling at £150.

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150.

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It's gone.

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-And that's what it's worth.

-Yeah.

0:16:520:16:54

It's part of a set.

0:16:540:16:56

Obviously without the other items, it is difficult, isn't it?

0:16:560:16:59

-It's good news, it's good news it's gone.

-Good news for Julie.

0:16:590:17:01

-Should I give her a call?

-I think so.

-Yeah?

0:17:010:17:03

Don't hang about, Christina,

0:17:060:17:07

because we need you back in your auctioneer's hat

0:17:070:17:09

at Trevanion and Dean's saleroom in Whitchurch, Shropshire.

0:17:090:17:13

Going under the hammer right now, we're not only selling porcelain,

0:17:140:17:17

we are selling art - the images are beautiful.

0:17:170:17:21

You get a lot for your money with this lot.

0:17:210:17:22

Liz, it's good to see you again.

0:17:220:17:24

-Thank you.

-Two bowls, 1930s.

0:17:240:17:26

-Yes, '34, I think.

-Yeah.

0:17:260:17:29

I think these are great value for money.

0:17:290:17:31

These will go well, they are such good quality.

0:17:310:17:33

They're great quality. Stinton is a great name.

0:17:330:17:36

Why are they so low in value?

0:17:360:17:38

I don't really understand.

0:17:380:17:40

Well, they're not highly fashionable at the moment,

0:17:400:17:43

but I think they will top the top estimate.

0:17:430:17:45

-OK.

-If I stick my neck out, 180, 180, 200.

0:17:450:17:50

OK, OK.

0:17:500:17:52

-It sounds good value to me.

-Yeah.

0:17:520:17:54

-It is.

-We are going to find out what the bidders think,

0:17:540:17:57

and let's hope it just goes through the roof. Here we go.

0:17:570:17:59

A pair of Royal Worcester dishes by James Stinton.

0:17:590:18:03

Much admired, very pretty little example, dated 1934.

0:18:030:18:07

A pair of them altogether,

0:18:070:18:08

and I have got 100, 110,

0:18:080:18:11

120 here with me.

0:18:110:18:12

At 120. At £120.

0:18:120:18:15

130. 140. 140, sir.

0:18:150:18:18

-The chap in the room.

-150.

0:18:180:18:19

160. At 160 here.

0:18:190:18:22

170. Clears my book.

0:18:220:18:24

At the very back at 170.

0:18:240:18:25

You still in, sir? 180.

0:18:250:18:28

Thank you, anyway. 180. Well held, sir.

0:18:280:18:30

At the middle here, I've got £180.

0:18:300:18:32

Looking for 190 now.

0:18:320:18:34

At £180,

0:18:340:18:35

I can see you hovering online.

0:18:350:18:37

190, he's in.

0:18:370:18:38

200, sir.

0:18:380:18:40

Round it up for me. £200 is bid.

0:18:400:18:42

-At £200, standing at £200.

-That's more like it, isn't it?

0:18:420:18:45

220 now.

0:18:450:18:46

I'll take 210 if it helps,

0:18:460:18:47

but I've got £200 in the room,

0:18:470:18:49

and £200 I'll take if we're all done.

0:18:490:18:51

At £200, fair warning now at 200.

0:18:510:18:54

-Yes!

-Excellent.

0:18:540:18:56

-That's really good.

-I love that term, "fair warning"! 200.

0:18:560:19:01

Well done, you, and well done.

0:19:010:19:04

-£200. That seems a nicer figure to say, doesn't it?

-Yes.

0:19:040:19:09

A fantastic result - but they were great dishes.

0:19:090:19:13

Don't go away, because we'll be returning to our salerooms

0:19:130:19:16

across the country later on in the show -

0:19:160:19:18

but before that, I want to take you back to a grand house

0:19:180:19:21

in Warwickshire,

0:19:210:19:23

which has quite a story to tell.

0:19:230:19:25

Graham Baron Ash was the son

0:19:380:19:39

of one of the wealthiest men in the country...

0:19:390:19:41

..Alfred Ash, an industrialist

0:19:430:19:45

who made his money supplying metal parts to, among others,

0:19:450:19:49

the London and North Western Railway.

0:19:490:19:52

When Alfred bought Packwood House in 1904, he was asked why.

0:19:520:19:56

His response was, "I bought it because the boy wanted it."

0:19:560:19:59

"The boy" was just 16 years old at the time,

0:20:000:20:03

but for the next 40 years of his life,

0:20:030:20:05

it was devoted to transforming Packwood into a grand Tudor mansion

0:20:050:20:09

fit for a country gentleman.

0:20:090:20:11

Graham Baron Ash had high aspirations -

0:20:110:20:13

he wanted to cast his factory funded roots

0:20:130:20:16

and be seen as a man of class and breeding.

0:20:160:20:19

He began by insisting upon being known by his middle name, Baron,

0:20:230:20:27

and then living up to the self-appointed title.

0:20:270:20:30

Each morning, fresh flowers would be delivered to the house

0:20:330:20:36

and Baron would personally oversee the arrangements,

0:20:360:20:39

and each evening he and his butler Stanley would dress for dinner -

0:20:390:20:43

even if Baron was dining alone.

0:20:430:20:45

Bachelor Baron was a fastidious man

0:20:480:20:50

who liked everything ordered and in place.

0:20:500:20:53

Guests were welcome, but untidiness wasn't tolerated.

0:20:530:20:57

House guests recalled

0:20:570:20:59

that if they left as much as a hairbrush out on display,

0:20:590:21:02

it would be tidied away in a drawer the minute they had left their room.

0:21:020:21:06

Baron had grand ideas for Packwood.

0:21:060:21:09

The original house dated back to around 1570,

0:21:090:21:12

but it had been altered over the years,

0:21:120:21:14

and Baron didn't approve of the changes that had been made.

0:21:140:21:17

Georgian Gothic windows had been added

0:21:220:21:24

along with a Victorian galleried hall,

0:21:240:21:26

and other Victorian touches -

0:21:260:21:28

but Baron wanted it to look Elizabethan -

0:21:280:21:31

the sort of place that might have been

0:21:310:21:33

in a titled family for centuries.

0:21:330:21:35

In 1932, he created this stunning long gallery

0:21:370:21:41

and he finished it with salvaged rich wood panelling,

0:21:410:21:44

tapestries and treasures and antique artefacts.

0:21:440:21:47

The plans were drawn up by the architect Edwin Reynolds,

0:21:470:21:50

who restored Shakespeare's birthplace

0:21:500:21:53

in nearby Stratford-upon-Avon -

0:21:530:21:55

but it makes the most wonderful walkway

0:21:550:21:57

between the old part of the house into this.

0:21:570:22:00

A great hall, grand enough to embrace any baronial mansion.

0:22:060:22:12

The great hall was created from what had previously been a cow barn,

0:22:160:22:21

and Baron linked the 100 foot gap with his fabulous long gallery.

0:22:210:22:24

Baron added a full-height bay window,

0:22:260:22:28

a minstrels' gallery and a sprung dance floor.

0:22:280:22:31

The new wing of Packwood wasn't universally admired.

0:22:310:22:34

One architectural critic of the day

0:22:340:22:36

sniffily said the results looked like a modern grammar school -

0:22:360:22:40

a comment which wounded the sensitive Mr Ash.

0:22:400:22:43

But he loved the scale of the great hall

0:22:470:22:50

and he took great delight in finding pieces to finish it.

0:22:500:22:53

In fact, he bought several items of furniture

0:22:530:22:56

from local stately homes and grand manor houses

0:22:560:22:59

that were falling into a dilapidated state of repair,

0:22:590:23:02

or lack of finances following the First World War.

0:23:020:23:06

Baron claimed that by buying up their fixtures and fittings,

0:23:060:23:10

he was saving them from being lost and destroyed forever.

0:23:100:23:13

Now, perhaps he was right -

0:23:130:23:15

but then perhaps he was also thinking,

0:23:150:23:17

by buying them for Packwood,

0:23:170:23:19

he was providing the house with a history and a class that he craved.

0:23:190:23:23

Among the items of the great hall

0:23:250:23:27

that came from a wonderful house just two miles up the road,

0:23:270:23:30

Baddesley Clinton, is this magnificent banqueting table,

0:23:300:23:34

also known as a refectory table.

0:23:340:23:36

It's one of the nicest pieces of furniture I have ever seen.

0:23:370:23:41

Now, the top dates to around the 15th century -

0:23:410:23:45

the base is slightly later.

0:23:450:23:47

That's 17th century - it is a marriage, but nevertheless,

0:23:470:23:50

look at the length of this table.

0:23:500:23:52

Two single planks of oak, 21 feet long.

0:23:520:23:57

Bear in mind, the oak tree that this came from

0:23:570:23:59

was fully matured when this was felled, maybe 200 to 300 years old,

0:23:590:24:03

was hand-cut by two men in a pit saw, one above, one below,

0:24:030:24:08

guiding that saw, making sure the width of that plank

0:24:080:24:12

stayed uniform all of that length.

0:24:120:24:15

Now, that is a great skill.

0:24:150:24:17

If only this could talk.

0:24:170:24:19

Gosh, it would tell us some tales.

0:24:190:24:21

The partying that went on.

0:24:210:24:23

For me, this is so contemporary -

0:24:230:24:25

this is the sort of thing we'd like to live with today.

0:24:250:24:28

It's so fashionable - but not many of us have got a room this size.

0:24:280:24:32

This great hall was also used for extravagant parties

0:24:370:24:40

and lavish entertainments.

0:24:400:24:42

Concerts and plays were regularly put on here,

0:24:420:24:45

or in the gardens,

0:24:450:24:46

and they were known collectively as follies.

0:24:460:24:49

And with Packwood being only about 20 miles from Stratford-upon-Avon,

0:24:490:24:53

productions of the works by Shakespeare

0:24:530:24:55

featured heavily in the annual programme.

0:24:550:24:57

But Baron Ash's proudest moment

0:24:590:25:01

was possibly the day the Queen came to tea.

0:25:010:25:03

It sounds nice, doesn't it? "The day the Queen came to tea."

0:25:030:25:05

Well, apparently Queen Mary was staying with some friends

0:25:050:25:07

in Warwickshire and it was suggested that she visited Packwood,

0:25:070:25:10

and she did. She spent a couple of hours looking around the house

0:25:100:25:13

and taking in the gardens, looking at the changes

0:25:130:25:16

that Baron was in the process of making,

0:25:160:25:18

and, by all accounts, when she left, Baron was beside himself,

0:25:180:25:22

he jumped in the car and hurtled off to Birmingham

0:25:220:25:25

to have this glass case and plaque made

0:25:250:25:27

to put the royal cup and saucer in,

0:25:270:25:30

the very piece of Minton that Her Royal Highness drank from -

0:25:300:25:33

and the pen that she used to sign the two autographs.

0:25:330:25:35

So I think that's really, really lovely.

0:25:350:25:37

And the bedroom that was put aside for her,

0:25:390:25:41

in case she did want to stay the night, from that day onwards,

0:25:410:25:44

was always known as Queen Mary's bedroom.

0:25:440:25:46

Baron never received a title,

0:25:510:25:53

but in 1938 he was appointed High Sheriff of Warwickshire.

0:25:530:25:56

He attended the county assize courts

0:25:590:26:01

with his butler Stanley acting as a footman.

0:26:010:26:04

Trumpeters heralded the visiting church with the Ash flag,

0:26:040:26:07

bearing the family crest of two chevrons and a Maltese cross

0:26:070:26:11

fluttering from their instruments.

0:26:110:26:13

Baron had achieved a high degree of social standing.

0:26:190:26:21

He'd also transformed Packwood

0:26:210:26:23

into the grand Tudor mansion he always dreamt of.

0:26:230:26:27

His work was complete.

0:26:270:26:28

He handed over the house to The National Trust in 1941.

0:26:280:26:33

He stayed on for another six years but he left instructions

0:26:330:26:36

that the key rooms should remain exactly as they were,

0:26:360:26:38

how he created them - they were his legacy.

0:26:380:26:41

He left nothing personal of himself except his wish

0:26:410:26:44

that there should always be fresh flowers in the house.

0:26:440:26:48

And apparently when the house was handed over to The National Trust,

0:26:480:26:51

it looked exactly like a museum -

0:26:510:26:53

but by all accounts, according to people who knew him,

0:26:530:26:56

that's exactly how it was when he lived here.

0:26:560:26:58

Well, from Packwood House,

0:26:580:27:00

it's straight over to St Albans to look at an item

0:27:000:27:02

that would look perfect at one of Baron Ash's soirees.

0:27:020:27:05

Claire Rawle is our export.

0:27:100:27:11

Jill, you've brought these lovely items in.

0:27:120:27:14

Now, I've noticed today

0:27:140:27:15

there's a lot of people wandering around the cathedral

0:27:150:27:18

in ecclesiastical vestments -

0:27:180:27:19

but actually what you've brought in is much more commercial, isn't it?

0:27:190:27:22

And wearable, really.

0:27:220:27:24

So tell me, are they family pieces?

0:27:240:27:26

Yes, they are. It belonged to my father's mother,

0:27:260:27:30

and the story goes that she wore it on the Queen Mary

0:27:300:27:34

on her maiden voyage, which would have been in 1936.

0:27:340:27:38

-That must have been magnificent.

-Yes.

0:27:380:27:40

Can you imagine what that must have looked like?

0:27:400:27:42

That wonderful ballroom,

0:27:420:27:43

all the ladies in their sparkly, beautiful costumes.

0:27:430:27:46

-It must have been fantastic.

-Yeah.

0:27:460:27:48

Do you have any record, does she remember, did she tell anyone?

0:27:480:27:51

It's a family story.

0:27:510:27:52

Unfortunately we don't have any photos...

0:27:520:27:55

-Oh...!

-..although you hope there would have been photos at the time.

0:27:550:27:57

-I'm sure.

-Yeah.

-Oh, what a shame -

0:27:570:27:59

but it must have been a wonderful, wonderful scene,

0:27:590:28:01

and a wonderful occasion for her as well.

0:28:010:28:03

How lovely. Did she wear them again, do you know?

0:28:030:28:06

I don't know, unfortunately, no.

0:28:060:28:08

Oh, right. And have you worn them?

0:28:080:28:09

I wore them to try them on, and we have got photographic proof.

0:28:090:28:13

-But you haven't been out anywhere, to a lovely party?

-No.

0:28:130:28:15

So what we have here is a black velvet evening coat, very sumptuous,

0:28:150:28:21

very long, rather attractive buttons there, glass buttons,

0:28:210:28:25

and very typical, they did like these quilted collars,

0:28:250:28:28

and you can see on the shoulders,

0:28:280:28:30

slightly puffed out and long narrow sleeves.

0:28:300:28:33

The line in the 1930s into the '40s

0:28:330:28:35

-was very long and slinky and very elegant.

-Mm-hm.

0:28:350:28:38

In a certain extent, it has come back into fashion today.

0:28:380:28:42

And then the ballgown, which of course it was - it was a ballgown.

0:28:420:28:45

People went and you sort of danced like you do on Strictly.

0:28:450:28:48

So here you have - it's machine-made lace, which in actual fact,

0:28:490:28:53

they had been making machine-made lace since the 19th century,

0:28:530:28:56

it wasn't a 20th-century invention, they had amazing looms,

0:28:560:28:59

they could make wonderful things.

0:28:590:29:01

Beautiful, sparkly, spangled bodice with these wonderful flowers.

0:29:010:29:05

Fitted to the waist, very much so.

0:29:050:29:07

And then lovely flaring away,

0:29:070:29:08

and then you have the stiffened petticoats underneath,

0:29:080:29:11

looked very elegant, very beautiful.

0:29:110:29:13

Now, there is a real resurgence in vintage clothing.

0:29:140:29:18

A lot of people are buying it to wear.

0:29:180:29:20

Condition's all-important -

0:29:200:29:22

both of these actually don't look as if they've had an awful lot of wear.

0:29:220:29:24

The telltale sign is usually in the hem of a dress,

0:29:240:29:27

where someone has put their foot through,

0:29:270:29:29

but this all seems to be in pretty good order.

0:29:290:29:31

-So, you've decided to part with them?

-Yes, indeed, yes.

0:29:310:29:34

You're not going to rush out to another ball or anything?

0:29:340:29:37

No, I don't think so.

0:29:370:29:38

No, no. Now, we need to talk value.

0:29:380:29:40

Because obviously they're going to go to auction.

0:29:400:29:42

I would suggest, for the two of them,

0:29:420:29:45

we would do an estimate of £90-150.

0:29:450:29:46

-If you're happy with that.

-Yes.

0:29:460:29:48

I'd pitch the reserve just under the low estimate at £80.

0:29:480:29:51

-OK.

-So you're happy with that?

0:29:510:29:53

-Yes, that's fine.

-Shall we fix the reserve at £80,

0:29:530:29:55

so they don't make any less than that?

0:29:550:29:57

-Yes, I think so.

-Excellent. Fixed reserve at 80, 90-150.

0:29:570:30:01

-Hopefully they'll do very well for you.

-Thank you.

0:30:010:30:03

-Thank you very much.

-That's lovely, thank you.

0:30:030:30:05

What a fabulous outfit - and what a great story.

0:30:050:30:08

That maiden voyage on the Queen Mary must have been quite something.

0:30:080:30:12

Now we're heading over to Grimsby Minster

0:30:160:30:18

where something quite showy has caught Michael Baggott's eye.

0:30:180:30:21

Gordon, thank you for bringing in

0:30:240:30:26

this wonderful bit of English porcelain today.

0:30:260:30:29

Before I tell you anything about it -

0:30:290:30:31

I suspect you know rather a lot already - where did it come from?

0:30:310:30:35

Well, I bought it in Doncaster,

0:30:350:30:37

-which is not very far from where the actual pottery...

-Pottery was.

0:30:370:30:40

-Where it was made, yeah. That's right.

-Oh, that's marvellous.

0:30:400:30:43

Are you a collector of English porcelain or was there something particular

0:30:430:30:47

about this vase that you liked?

0:30:470:30:49

Well, my mother was called Brameld, and she was a descendant,

0:30:490:30:53

-so we're told, of the Brameld family who made this china.

-Oh!

0:30:530:30:58

So, your - if you go back far enough -

0:30:580:31:01

your ancestors were making these pots?

0:31:010:31:04

-That's correct, yeah.

-Owners of the factory. Well, we'll turn it over.

0:31:040:31:07

Cos we should always turn a pot over.

0:31:070:31:09

Well, you can't really get much better than that - Rockingham Works,

0:31:100:31:16

Brameld, and the wonderful family crest there, the griffin on top -

0:31:160:31:21

and we've got a piece of Rockingham porcelain.

0:31:210:31:23

Now, porcelain and pottery had been made at Rockingham

0:31:230:31:27

-from the mid-18th century...

-Yeah.

0:31:270:31:30

..but it had all fallen into disrepair.

0:31:300:31:33

It was really in 1826 when the Brameld family revived it,

0:31:330:31:39

as the Rockingham Porcelain Works

0:31:390:31:41

that you get this lovely fine quality china being produced.

0:31:410:31:46

-Very much in Regency taste...

-Yeah.

0:31:460:31:48

..but this one, if we see,

0:31:480:31:51

decorated with this beautiful spray of flowers.

0:31:510:31:55

I mean, that's like a miniature oil painting.

0:31:550:31:58

-It is, yeah.

-And done by one of Rockingham's best flower painters,

0:31:580:32:03

-John Cresswell.

-That's right, yeah.

0:32:030:32:05

On the downside - wear, to gilding.

0:32:050:32:09

Other than that, I think in terms of condition, we're absolutely fine.

0:32:090:32:15

How long ago was that, that you bought it?

0:32:150:32:17

1979.

0:32:170:32:19

-For?

-£200.

0:32:190:32:21

Crumbs. That was at the height of the market,

0:32:210:32:25

that was desperate for these pots.

0:32:250:32:26

Yeah, and I never asked for a discount, either.

0:32:260:32:29

That was a mistake! Always ask for a discount.

0:32:290:32:32

Might not get it, but you should always ask for one.

0:32:320:32:34

So why have you decided to sell it now?

0:32:340:32:36

-Over the years, I've collected quite a lot of Rockingham china.

-Ah.

0:32:360:32:42

So, this now is surplus to requirements?

0:32:420:32:45

That's right, yeah.

0:32:450:32:47

So in terms of value, I think we'd be cautious.

0:32:470:32:50

It's not much of a return for you, I know,

0:32:500:32:52

but if we put an estimate of £200-300,

0:32:520:32:55

and we put a fixed reserve of £180 on it,

0:32:550:32:58

and I think that's going to find it a new home -

0:32:580:33:01

and hopefully we'll see towards the top end of that.

0:33:010:33:04

And I've had the pleasure of it all these years as well.

0:33:040:33:07

This is the joy of antiques, people don't get it.

0:33:070:33:09

You can go and buy something, have it half your lifetime,

0:33:090:33:13

-and it's still worth something at the end of it.

-Yeah.

0:33:130:33:16

We'll pop it into the auction and keep our fingers crossed

0:33:160:33:19

for a whole horde of Rockingham collectors, Gordon.

0:33:190:33:22

-Thank you so much for bringing it in.

-Thank you.

0:33:220:33:25

Now, that's what you call a vase -

0:33:250:33:27

and it's great to have the personal connection.

0:33:270:33:30

Let's hope it does well at auction.

0:33:300:33:32

Before that, we're heading off to the seaside town of Morecambe

0:33:320:33:35

where Charles Hanson has found a new four-legged friend.

0:33:350:33:38

Neil, it's great to see you -

0:33:400:33:41

but this actually isn't a real dog, is it?

0:33:410:33:43

-No, no.

-You've had it a long time?

0:33:430:33:45

I've had it about 30 years, probably.

0:33:450:33:47

How did you acquire it?

0:33:470:33:49

It was my auntie's...

0:33:490:33:50

Auntie and uncle, they bought it in from West Africa in the late '50s.

0:33:500:33:55

That's amazing. Are you a dog lover now?

0:33:550:33:57

-Not really, no.

-A cat lover?

0:33:570:33:59

Definitely not!

0:33:590:34:01

Well, we have two small dogs at home

0:34:010:34:04

and this very much reminds me of our terrier called Oscar.

0:34:040:34:08

He is a Boston terrier, in essence,

0:34:090:34:11

and, of course, what he's got is hopefully still lurking inside him

0:34:110:34:18

after 130 years or so -

0:34:180:34:20

an infamous growl.

0:34:200:34:21

-May I do the honours?

-Please do.

0:34:210:34:23

On this chain here, which is the original - I believe it is...

0:34:230:34:27

HE CREAKS

0:34:280:34:30

-He's lost a bit of growl, hasn't he?

-He has.

0:34:300:34:33

But he's still very much in working order.

0:34:330:34:36

And I love how that head bounces

0:34:360:34:39

and just has that wonderful nod in appreciation. Really nice.

0:34:390:34:44

So - French, automaton, made by a company called Roullet & Decamps,

0:34:440:34:50

who were a French company who formed as early as 1865,

0:34:500:34:55

and they only closed as late as 1995.

0:34:550:34:59

-Right.

-But they were a renowned company

0:34:590:35:03

for making upmarket automaton toys for a fairly noble class market -

0:35:030:35:09

and he really is that.

0:35:090:35:13

What we look for, first of all, Neil, is condition.

0:35:130:35:15

You've kept him very, very well.

0:35:150:35:17

Where has he been kept, a kennel, or...?

0:35:170:35:20

-Just in a cupboard.

-In a cupboard.

-Yeah.

0:35:200:35:22

I mean, he was more or less in this state when we got him.

0:35:220:35:25

He probably got most of his wear and tear when my auntie had him.

0:35:250:35:29

He's very light. You might think, at first,

0:35:290:35:31

is he a base metal that's been coated?

0:35:310:35:34

He's not, he's papier-mache.

0:35:340:35:36

-Yeah.

-He would have had a red russet collar,

0:35:360:35:38

and also what we call flocking -

0:35:380:35:41

the actual body is slightly bare,

0:35:410:35:44

and that fur, you can find, in places, has a suedey feel,

0:35:440:35:49

but otherwise, elsewhere, it's slightly bald.

0:35:490:35:54

Happens to us all, eh?

0:35:540:35:56

-Yes.

-He's great - the ears are in good condition.

0:35:560:35:59

I don't think his mouth has been repainted, has it?

0:35:590:36:02

-Not in our time.

-No, that's OK.

0:36:020:36:04

His teeth are all there, aren't they, still? No fillings.

0:36:040:36:07

-He's charming. I'm going to go in between 150-250...

-Right.

0:36:090:36:14

..and I really hope, Neil,

0:36:140:36:16

with the wind blowing, at the auction,

0:36:160:36:20

he might just give a bigger...

0:36:200:36:22

-HE CREAKS

-..bark...

0:36:220:36:23

..and could just take off and leave you and him feeling very happy.

0:36:240:36:29

-Oh, right.

-OK?

-Yes, fantastic.

0:36:290:36:31

Thanks, Neil - thanks so much for sharing your doggy story.

0:36:310:36:34

-You're very welcome.

-Thanks a lot, thank you.

0:36:340:36:36

Well, that's it for our last lot of items -

0:36:460:36:48

we'll find out exactly what they're worth

0:36:480:36:50

when they go under the hammer in the auction room shortly -

0:36:500:36:53

but first I want to tell you about the night

0:36:530:36:55

Packwood was the place to be.

0:36:550:36:57

We've already discovered

0:36:570:36:58

that Baron Ash loved entertaining and his parties were legendary.

0:36:580:37:03

Well, in 1931, the celebrity socialite and pianist

0:37:030:37:06

Prince George Chavchavadze was invited to play here at Packwood.

0:37:060:37:11

George was a White Russian,

0:37:120:37:14

a supporter of the deposed Russian monarchy,

0:37:140:37:16

whose family had lost most of their aristocratic riches

0:37:160:37:20

during the Revolution,

0:37:200:37:21

and had fled their wealthy estates in Georgia for sanctuary in London.

0:37:210:37:26

The recital was performed in the Great Hall on this very spinet,

0:37:270:37:32

and this was made by the acclaimed musical instrument maker

0:37:320:37:36

Thomas Hitchcock in the early part of the 18th century.

0:37:360:37:39

So this is sort of circa 1710, 1715, and it's absolutely beautiful,

0:37:390:37:45

and these keys are real ebony and ivory.

0:37:450:37:48

It's a stunning, stunning piece of craftsmanship,

0:37:480:37:52

and apparently, to mark the occasion, the Prince did sign it -

0:37:520:37:55

it's signed somewhere on here but it's so faded I can't find it.

0:37:550:37:58

I'd play a few notes if no-one was looking,

0:38:010:38:03

but we've got work to do and antiques to sell,

0:38:030:38:05

so let's take a look at the items going under the hammer next.

0:38:050:38:08

Jill brought in a wonderful ballgown

0:38:100:38:12

worn on the maiden voyage of the Queen Mary.

0:38:120:38:15

Michael was really taken with Gordon's Rockingham vase,

0:38:150:38:18

with the family link.

0:38:180:38:19

And finally, Neil brought in the wonderful dog.

0:38:210:38:23

He may have lost a bit of his growl,

0:38:230:38:25

but hopefully the bidders will bite when he goes up for sale.

0:38:250:38:28

First, we've headed back to Tring

0:38:330:38:35

where Jill's evening gown's up for sale

0:38:350:38:37

and auctioneer Stephen Hearn is still in charge.

0:38:370:38:39

Jill, we're just about to sell your grandmother's dress and coat.

0:38:410:38:44

-Yes.

-Fingers crossed we get it away at the top end,

0:38:440:38:46

we're looking at around £150.

0:38:460:38:47

I've got to say, we work well together.

0:38:470:38:50

-We do.

-The colours are working now, we're not clashing!

0:38:500:38:53

-A good omen.

-It's great to see you, though.

0:38:530:38:56

So, why have you decided to sell Grandma's clothes?

0:38:560:38:59

It's been in a wardrobe for a long, long, long, long time,

0:38:590:39:03

and so I said to my mum and dad,

0:39:030:39:04

let's just go and see, and here we are.

0:39:040:39:06

Yeah. OK, OK, fingers crossed.

0:39:060:39:08

They go, they get to a collector.

0:39:080:39:10

-Yeah.

-Right, let's find out what the bidders think, shall be?

0:39:100:39:13

It's going under the hammer now.

0:39:130:39:14

Rather lovely that one, the black velvet, lot number 2028,

0:39:140:39:19

shall we say £100 for it, or £50 for it?

0:39:190:39:21

£40 for it, 45, £50?

0:39:210:39:23

Five, £60, five, £70?

0:39:230:39:27

And five?

0:39:270:39:29

At £70, then, five anywhere?

0:39:290:39:31

No? At £70, we're going to have to leave it, I believe.

0:39:310:39:36

Madam? You're going, no?

0:39:360:39:38

At 70, then, we leave it, at £70, thank you.

0:39:380:39:42

No. Well, you got £70, he was still two bids away,

0:39:420:39:45

unfortunately, just under the reserve.

0:39:450:39:47

-That's a shame.

-Couple of bids would have done it.

0:39:470:39:49

It's a shame, so close, wasn't it?

0:39:490:39:50

Yeah, I think Grandma wants you to keep it, that's what it is,

0:39:500:39:54

-I think so.

-Yeah, I'll have to go to a ball.

0:39:540:39:56

Yeah, try it!

0:39:560:39:58

That's disappointing, but that's it, Jill,

0:39:590:40:01

find a ball to go to and wear it with pride.

0:40:010:40:05

Next, we're back in Lincoln

0:40:050:40:06

and hoping to make a good price for Gordon's Rockingham vase.

0:40:060:40:10

-Gordon, fingers crossed.

-Yes, I know!

0:40:100:40:12

We've got your Rockingham vase going under the hammer right now.

0:40:120:40:15

Michael, I think we'll get top dollar for this.

0:40:150:40:17

We're in the right area.

0:40:170:40:19

The thing I'd like most of all is a time machine,

0:40:190:40:22

-because the market for this was 15 years ago.

-It was better.

0:40:220:40:25

Architecturally, though, it stands well,

0:40:250:40:27

I love that flared look about it.

0:40:270:40:29

OK, look, good luck, here we go. Let's put it to the test.

0:40:290:40:32

Right, lot number 171, this rather nice Rockingham vase.

0:40:330:40:36

Hand-painted vase, here we go, and I'll start it straight with me,

0:40:360:40:39

I've got various bids on this.

0:40:390:40:40

-Oh, cool!

-Straight with me at £150.

0:40:400:40:43

That's not enough.

0:40:430:40:45

At 150, 160, 170, 180, 190?

0:40:450:40:47

At 190, with me at 190, at 190?

0:40:470:40:50

£190, it's at 190.

0:40:500:40:51

200, 220, 240, 260,

0:40:510:40:55

here with me at 260.

0:40:550:40:57

Here with me at 260.

0:40:570:40:59

Anyone else at 260, all done?

0:40:590:41:00

It's selling at 260, all done at £260, then?

0:41:000:41:04

-Good price.

-Brilliant. We've seen English 19th-century ceramics

0:41:040:41:08

turn the corner on "Flog It!"

0:41:080:41:10

-Marvellous!

-Quality.

0:41:100:41:11

It's all about quality and craftsmanship.

0:41:110:41:14

-A work of art.

-And you get a lot of value for your money with that.

0:41:140:41:17

A good price for a good thing.

0:41:180:41:20

Now for our last and rather quirky item.

0:41:200:41:22

We've come to Clitheroe and Silverwoods saleroom

0:41:220:41:25

where auctioneer Wilf Mould is on the rostrum.

0:41:250:41:28

Well, things are definitely flying out today,

0:41:290:41:31

and what a cracking atmosphere there is.

0:41:310:41:33

Right now, we're going to find out

0:41:330:41:34

how much that doggie is in the auction room.

0:41:340:41:36

I've just been joined by Neil,

0:41:360:41:37

we've got that wonderful papier-mache dog

0:41:370:41:40

going under the hammer.

0:41:400:41:41

Good luck with this. We've seen these on the show before.

0:41:410:41:44

Thank goodness it still growls.

0:41:440:41:46

Indeed.

0:41:460:41:47

HE GROWLS

0:41:470:41:48

It is 900 years in doggie years!

0:41:480:41:50

Yes!

0:41:500:41:51

Right. Do you know what this dog would fetch

0:41:520:41:55

-if it was in perfect condition?

-How much?

0:41:550:41:57

Sticks!

0:41:570:41:59

It's going under the hammer right now.

0:41:590:42:01

Lots and lots of interest in this lot,

0:42:020:42:04

which is the papier-mache model of a Boston terrier,

0:42:040:42:08

and we'll set it off immediately on the pad at 150, 160, £200.

0:42:080:42:13

-Wow!

-200, 220, 220, 250,

0:42:130:42:16

280, 280, 300,

0:42:160:42:19

and 20, 320 online.

0:42:190:42:21

350 with me.

0:42:210:42:23

380, no, I have 350 on the book.

0:42:230:42:25

At £350 for the Boston terrier.

0:42:250:42:28

£350 is bid, have a little think online, quickly, now.

0:42:280:42:33

All done at 350, I'll take 380 quickly.

0:42:330:42:36

All done at 350.

0:42:360:42:38

-350.

-Good. Well done.

-Well done, well done, everyone.

0:42:380:42:41

-Thank you for bringing that in.

-You're very welcome.

0:42:410:42:44

-Loved that.

-Good, good.

0:42:440:42:45

Now we know what it's worth, don't we?

0:42:450:42:47

-Woof, woof, woof!

-Very much!

0:42:470:42:49

Good boy!

0:42:490:42:51

Well, sadly, that's it for today's show.

0:42:550:42:57

I've had a marvellous time exploring Packwood,

0:42:570:42:59

finding out more about the house and Baron Ash, who worked so hard

0:42:590:43:03

transforming this place into a country house fit for royalty -

0:43:030:43:07

and we've enjoyed some of your fascinating stories,

0:43:070:43:10

we've had some great results from auction rooms around the country.

0:43:100:43:13

I was especially pleased for Neil -

0:43:130:43:14

£350 for that little terrier was a great price.

0:43:140:43:18

So, until the next time, it's goodbye.

0:43:180:43:21

Paul Martin showcases a collection of interesting and previously unseen finds from the show's travels round the country. The team visit St Albans Cathedral, Wolverhampton Art Gallery, the Platform in Morecambe and Grimsby Minster.

The antiques experts are James Lewis, Clare Rawle, Christina Trevanion, Caroline Hawley, Michael Baggott and Charles Hanson.

Paul also visits Packwood House in Warwickshire.


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