Mark Stacey and James Lewis value items in Northampton. Paul Martin steps out to discover how footwear company Crockett and Jones make their fabulous boots and shoes.
Browse content similar to Northampton. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!
There's nothing like the thrill of an auction room.
Whether you're buying or selling, it really does get right under your skin.
Hopefully, lots of you this afternoon are going to feel the buzz
as you join me from this sale room to flog it.
To find the items for today's sale, we've come to Northampton's beautifully decorated Guildhall.
Everybody's now safely seated inside, thank goodness,
and our two experts, Mark Stacey and James Lewis, are hard at work
delving through all the belongings looking for all the gems.
Hey, guys, save something for me. What have you found so far?
-Obviously, he's forgotten to shave this morning.
-He has! I'll hold him!
Of course, we only send things off to auction if our owners agree with
the experts' valuations and then we can get excited about the sale.
But right now there's work to be done, so let's get on with it.
-# Have a nice day
-Dum dum da dum dum
# Have a nice day. #
A nice silver basket here. Can you give us a bit of the history of it?
It was about 30 years ago, something like that.
An elderly lady, she was about 90 at the time, gave me two pieces.
This, and I don't know what the wooden cane is...
-snake wood cane.
Her maiden name, I believe, was Hoffman and I believe she was the great aunt of Dustin Hoffman.
Oh, really? Gosh, how interesting.
She was a lovely lady.
You know what it is. It's quite straightforward. It's a little table silver basket.
You put bread, fruit, bon-bons, anything you like really, into it.
It's a very nice shape, a very classical shape, this sort of boat shape...
-Boat shape, yes.
-..with this sort of laurel wreath type decoration on it there.
Quite a nice turned handle, little hallmarks on the side of there and on the base.
We've had a look at the hallmarks.
It's by James Dixon, a very prolific maker in Sheffield.
The mark is for 1913/14.
So it's getting on for 100 years old.
And it weighs around about 15 ounces, so it's a nice object.
Why have you decided to sell it?
Well, it's been in a cabinet.
It's the old story, everyone says it's in a cabinet.
But this really has been in a cabinet and it's been on the third shelf down,
so we decided that we'll just see...
I mean it's quite a nice thing and if somebody could put it on display and utilise it...
If you do want something to use on the dining table, it's very nice. It's got that classical shape.
One thing I do particularly like about it actually
is this sort of foot on it, which is very Regency looking.
-The style of it is.
It's got a bit of a combination of styles. But it's a jolly nice item.
In terms of value, silver is up and down and it will depend on who wants it on the day.
-I would put £100-150 on it, with a 100 fixed reserve.
-So we won't sell it below 100.
-I'd hope that it settles somewhere between those two figures. If we can get more, wonderful.
Can you tell me, is it sterling or is it Britannia? I can never work that out.
This is sterling. Britannia's a much higher standard.
But is it a cutoff? Is Britannia...
Britannia standard is mainly 18th century, but you do actually get
some Britannia standard reissued in the Victorian and in the 20th century.
-But this is sterling.
-This is sterling. This is 925.
Wonderful, that's brilliant. You've answered all my questions.
Fantastic. I aim to please, as they say.
-You do please.
-We look forward to seeing you at the auction.
-I look forward to seeing you.
-Let's hope we can toast our success.
Hilary, I have to say, we see a lot of pocket watches on Flog It,
but not many Rolexes.
Obviously, it is the king of watches, isn't it?
It's the name that everybody knows.
But I have to say, we don't see many from this period.
So, tell me about the history.
My mother-in-law had to go to a retirement home, a care home,
and we were sorting through the house and found it in one of the wardrobes.
This is what we call a gentleman's pocket watch.
It's an open-faced pocket watch.
During the 18th and 19th centuries, pocket watches came in various forms.
If they didn't have a cover on the dial, they were known as an open face.
If they had a cover both sides like that, so you open that up
to reveal the dial, they were known as a hunter pocket watch.
And if they had a little window in the centre of the dial, then they were known as half hunters.
But this is a straightforward 20th century, Rolex, open-faced, gentleman's pocket watch.
If we open the back...
..we can see here a very good Rolex movement.
Swiss-made. Just marked on the edge there, Swiss-made.
But what Rolex did was they made the movements and they exported them.
And the watch retailer in England would say,
"OK we have a Rolex movement, we can put that into an 18 carat gold case,
"a nine carat gold case, a silver case or a gun metal case
In this case, we've got a silver case
marked with the anchor for Birmingham,
the lion for sterling standard silver,
and the K is the date letter for 1934.
It's interesting also
because the mark at the bottom
is what we call the duty mark
and that duty mark was put on to say tax had been paid on the silver.
But that was used from the Georgian period in the 18th century
right the way through until almost the end of Queen Victoria's reign in 1890.
Then it wasn't used apart from one year, 1934,
and that was this one. Just as a little commemorative mark.
So an English silver case.
So, how to date a pocket watch when you're looking at it?
If you've got a winder on the top, the general rule is that it will be a 20th century watch.
Generally, watches were wound with a little key until about 1900.
And here we have the Arabic numerals and a subsidiary seconds dial here.
The dial itself is made of enamel.
Then we move away from the watch and look at the chain.
This is known as an Albert, because Queen Victoria's husband Prince Albert made them fashionable.
This one has seen better days, I'm afraid.
If it wasn't a Rolex and it was a standard silver pocket watch,
it would be worth about £30, something like that.
But isn't. It is a Rolex, and it's a good name.
I think that this will make around £150, something like that. Is that all right for you?
-Yeah, that's great.
-And a reserve of 120? Are you happy with that?
-Yes, lovely, thanks.
-Let's take it along and see how we do.
Jacqui and Ron, we've struggled in with this. We've got it on the table.
Let's open the box!
We know what's inside. Look at that.
It is a tool chest and it's absolutely jam packed full of tools.
-Are you a carpenter?
-Yes, I am.
Why do you want to flog these then?
-Because I'm not using them any more now.
-Are you a local lad?
-I'm a local lad, yeah.
And you've always used your hands for a living. It's a really nice thing
to look at tools knowing that somebody has actually, you know,
had a livelihood from these, from holding these gouges, these chisels
and making something, and turning something.
It's quite a comprehensive set.
How did you come by these? Did you buy all of these individually?
No, I bought them altogether. It was when I was in hospital
and a bloke next to me was talking about hobbies
and things we used to do and he said, "You're gonna use it,"
-and I did use it.
-How much did you buy them for?
-How long ago was that?
-About 14 years ago.
Looking at it,
it does look like there's an awful lot of large gouges, which would have been used on a lathe.
-Did you do much wood turning?
-A little bit. A fair bit of wood turning and all that.
-Turning things out.
I've counted all the chisels.
In there, there's 24 or 25.
Is there really? Lock at that. All these date back to the early 1900s.
Most of them have got maple handles
and maple is the ideal wood for a handle on a tool, because it absorbs all the shock.
-Can I take this drawer out as well?
-You can take that one out.
-It's a fantastic tool chest.
It's one of the best tool chests I've seen.
So many different gouges and chisels. There's paring chisels,
mortise chisels. Are you sure you want to sell this?
Yeah, cos I don't use it now at all.
-It's sitting in the garage.
Sitting in the garage and I thought...
-Did the kids go into the trade? Any sons?
-They're in the trade, but they don't want it.
This day and age, it's all electrical. They don't want to do anything like this now.
-I find it fascinating, because there's history in this box.
-Yeah, there is.
There really is. A bit of your history as well.
-Look, shall we put the whole thing into auction...
-And see what happens.
-..and put a value of...
-..I think, £175-275?
And a bit of discretion on the reserve.
-So if it gets anywhere near £175, you can use the 10% discretion and hopefully we'll get this away.
I love that smell. I love that smell of oil, I love that smell of wood.
There's mixed woods here, all sorts of hard woods.
-What's it like being married to a carpenter? Has he done the up.
-Or has he started and not finished it?
He spends hours wood carving, which is smaller chisels.
A lot smaller, yes. Smaller gouges, so you don't need these, do you?
-Not at all now.
-I can see why you're selling them.
-What about your lathe? Have you sold it?
-Yeah, the lathe's gone. Sold it.
-It's bowling now.
Now, these Whitefriars, where did you get them from?
I got them from a departmental store in Southampton.
-It was called Tyrrell and Green.
-Oh, I know Tyrrell and Green. It was a lovely store.
-But it's not there any more.
-It's closed down.
So you bought them when? In the '70s?
-No, in the '60s.
-So you bought them brand new?
Tell us what room they sat in and give us the flavour of that room.
They were in a sitting room on a fire surround, which was very popular then with a gas fire.
-And I picked the orange out because it matched a Cyril Lord carpet that I'd bought.
Wonderful. So there was orange in the carpet?
-What about the curtains and things like that? Did they...?
They were like a gold brocade and that was in the carpet as well. It was a multicoloured carpet.
Fantastic. Sounds very psychedelic.
-Did you partake of anything at the time?
So you bought them and they took pride of place there.
We went through the '70s and '80s and '90s and all the rest of it
and they've gradually gone off the fireplace. You're not in the same house...
Oh, they went a lot time ago off the fireplace and I've moved around since then.
Work has taken me here, there and everywhere.
This one, I think, is called the guitar shape because of this curvaceous body.
This one, I think, is known as the television vase
because it's kind of like that sort of '60s television screen.
Today... The prices do vary and the larger ones we see
on the show a lot and they can still make high hundreds.
-These ones are slightly more modest. So I would say let's say 150-200...
..if that's all right with you? And we'll put the reserve just a little bit below at 130,
which means that we won't sell them for nothing.
-So, Janice, it's time to get shot of them.
-I think so.
And to buy something more contemporary for your home.
-No, I want to take my grandson to New York. He's into basketball.
So it's to go towards his fare.
-A very worthwhile cause. We need to make as much money as we can then.
Yes, there are hundreds of people inside the building, all waiting for valuations.
Our experts have been hard at work.
We're halfway through the day, so it's our first trip to the auction room.
They've selected some wonderful gems and here's a recap of what we're taking.
Although silver isn't all that popular at the moment,
Max's bon-bon dish is good quality. It should do well.
A name like Rolex always conjures up
something classy and Hilary's watch, I'm sure, is no exception.
Ronald's beautiful tool chest just wreaks of history and character,
but will it be of interest in today's market?
And trendy Janice invested in two Whitefriars vases in the 1960s.
Fortunately, they're back in fashion.
We're off down the road to Market Harborough to Gilding's auction house where, today,
Mark Gilding is presiding on the rostrum.
Max is first in line to sell his silver basket.
Max, this is a classic bit of silver, I love the shape as well. Why do you want to flog it?
Well, I'm quite desperate, actually.
There was a rumour that my wife married me for my money.
There wasn't any money then, there hasn't been any money since
and there's no money now, so we're going to call THIS the money.
We'd better come up trumps with 100 quid, Mark!
-No pressure then is there?!
-It should do it.
-It should do. It's an honest little piece.
I think it will attract some of the private buyers.
-It's a nice thing to have on the side.
-Good luck, Max.
-Let's see if we can money for the wife.
George V silver basket on four cast feet, James Dixon and Son, Sheffield
1912. Bids start here at £85. 95.
100. In the room at £100. At £100.
100. 110. 120. 130. New bid in at 140.
Ooh, fresh legs.
At 140. Your turn at 150. At 150. At 150 now. 160.
160. Still left at 160. Shaking his head at 160.
-Retirement is looming.
-Second house and grounds.
-Not quite a second house, but...
-Saving towards it.
At least you can hold your head up high when you go home. £160.
Right, time's up. It is for Hilary and her pocket watch.
Lovely Rolex movement.
£150 is riding on this.
-Let's see if we can get a bit more for you.
It's a lovely piece of kit, with the Rolex movement.
-Rolex ones are unusual, so, yeah, it's the name you want.
-It is, isn't it?
Marked Rolex, Dennison case, Birmingham 1934,
on a silver graduated watch chain.
Commission bids straight in at £120.
120. 130. I'm out at 130 in the room. Commission's lost. 130.
-150. You're out at the back at 150.
It's forward at 150. 60 if you like? 150. Sold at 150.
Yes we're gonna take that.
That's good. Spot-on valuation.
-What are you putting the money towards?
Into the kitty for my mother-in-law's care.
-Ah, bless her. What's her name?
-Olive, I hope you're watching right now.
Hilary's done us proud, haven't you? Well done.
Ooh, Ronald, Jacqui.
I don't know about you, but I'm on the edge.
So am I, to be honest.
£175-250. Something like that we would really like for this chest.
I've seen lots of people pulling the trays out. It doesn't look much, does it?
When you look down on it and see that black dome lid, it looks, "What's in the box?"
-But it's like Pandora's box, because it all comes out.
-Having a good day so far?
Hopefully, I'm not going to spoil it.
Let's flog it, shall we? Let's see what we can do. Here we go. It's going under the hammer now.
1970, stained wood tool chest.
I have to start at £180.
Ooh, we've sold it.
-Ooh, ever so pleased.
-Gosh, I was scared.
180, on commission. Watching you in the room at 180. 190, looking for.
£180, on commission and selling. Just the one bidder.
Quality all the way.
OK, you've got 180 quid. It's gone, a little bit of commission to pay.
Jacqui... I'm going to ask Jacqui, because she'll end up spending it.
-She'll spend it all for me.
-What are you gonna do with £170?
We're going on holiday in June to Tenerife, so it's towards our spending money.
Bit of spending money. Well, you take care and have a good time.
We'll go with friends, so we'll have a few drinks on it.
Good old knees up.
Right now, we've got a bit of 20th century modern and two lovely ladies here.
Geoffrey Baxter Whitefriars glass.
Janice and Angela, good to see you again.
Let's hope we get the top end of Mark's estimate, £250.
I'm a big fan of Jeffrey Baxter, so I think
these are classics, especially the guitar shape.
They are and they're that lovely tangerine colour. I love them.
I just moved in to Brighton, so I'd love some on my window ledge.
-The light coming through.
Let's hope that the bidders here fall in love with them. They're going under the hammer.
Two Whitefriars here.
Bids start at £100.
110. 120. 130. And I'm out at 130.
140. 150. 160.
Anyone else? 160. 170.
170 now. Forward at 170.
-Come on, a few more.
-180 at the back.
-190. 190. 200, do I see? It's 190. 200.
210. Forward at £210. 20 anywhere?
210. Selling away at £210.
Geoffrey Baxter is definitely worth investing in. Whitefriars glass.
What will the money go towards?
We're going to America soon.
-So who's getting it?
I don't know about you, but I've got a soft spot for a good pair of shoes. I love my shoes.
So while I'm in Northampton, which is incidentally the shoe capital of Europe, I'm gonna pop in
to the upmarket and classy Crockett and Jones to find out exactly how a good pair of shoes is made.
In 1879, James Crockett and Charles Jones, both a bit strapped for cash, set up in business with just £100.
They started with 20 staff, built the business up and in 1924
were rewarded with Royal patronage and a visit from King George VI.
And the company is still family run after all these years.
So let's go and meet the managing director, Jonathan Jones, who's a direct descendant
of one of the original co-founders of the company, Charles Jones.
Jonathan, it's good to see you.
What a marvellous factory. Surrounded by shoes as well. I am in shoe Heaven.
-It's wonderful to see a family-run business still.
-Yes, we are a family business.
Four generations and we're still making shoes the way that we have been for the last 100 years.
-You've selected a pair for me here, haven't you?
They look very practical and the weight in them, that's real quality, isn't it?
This is a jackboot from our current stock range.
It's quite a long involved process, shoe-making.
When people go around the factory they're surprised how long it takes to make a pair of shoes.
-We're talking about something like 200 different processes...
-..something like that.
It takes around about eight weeks from start to finish in our factory
because, although we can take advantage of modern technology in certain areas,
there is an awful lot of hand work involved.
Making shoes like this, it's a bit of an art as well as a manufacturing process.
Do you know, they are very, very smart, aren't they?
-They look as though they fit you quite well.
-You can feel the difference.
-We often find that once people have our shoes on
-they don't worry so much about the price and become loyal customers.
-I'm going to hide my cheap ones.
In the Middle Ages, Northampton became the most important centre in England for the tanning trade.
Mostly because the town was conveniently placed for the north, London and east and west routes.
In addition, Northampton was surrounded by forests
which provided an abundance of oak bark, an essential tanning ingredient.
And where tanning and leather is readily available, it wasn't long before the shoe-makers gathered.
-And this is where it all starts. Steve is it?
-Hello, pleased to meet you.
They told me I could find you here.
You're the guy in charge of all the hide, all the skins?
This area controls all the quality for the business.
Incoming goods and we have to make sure
it meets all the qualifications and standards and quality.
You have some mixed hide here. I can just see by the finish. What's this?
This is American pull up leather. Older animal, natural scars.
Big scars, healed scars.
This is a calf, which most high class manufacturers use now.
This is what we start with and this is when we've antiqued it.
That's the basic colour. You steep it in a liquid?
No, what we do is, in the final stages of the shoes, we apply antique creams, polish.
-Very much like a woodworker.
-To enhance the grain and the anonymity of the product.
Where is that scar again?
-Did you have to repair that scar?
-No, you can't use that.
That'll split eventually, won't it? Right, Steve, where do I go next?
Point me in the right direction.
You have to go that way for the clicking.
The clicking? Sounds good.
-Thanks very much.
Hi, Graham. You're one of the clickers. Why do they call you that?
It stems back from a long time ago, when the knife comes from the pattern, it clicks.
-Show me what you mean by that.
-Here we go, round the pattern.
-Just a little click off the leather.
-A little click as it comes out.
-So you're given a load of patterns and you've got to cut the leather out.
Obviously, you get the best part of the leather, the prime part,
-for the best part of the shoe, then you work away for the rest of the shoe.
-To the edges, yeah.
Very sharp knife. That just cut through that like butter.
-Let's have a look.
-Hack saw blades.
-Old hack saw blades!
Just grind the teeth off them and sharpen them to the shape you want.
That looks difficult to do, because I know that's hard to cut as quick as that.
-Where do I go from here?
-Down to the closing room.
See you again.
-Is that difficult?
-It looks difficult.
Just hope I don't mess up.
-That's very clever. Are the ladies shoes harder to work on than the men's?
-Yeah, cos they're smaller.
-Sorry to stop you in your work.
-You're in perforation.
I can see now exactly what you are doing.
-Yes, I've been doing it for 25 years.
-You must be very good at what you do.
It's looking more like a shoe.
Sorry to butt in. So what's that then?
That's a leather softener, just to put it on the toes, to help the stain, help to moisten it,
then put it in the machine...
-..which pulls it over.
It'll stop in that last now for two or three weeks.
-I'm impressed with that. Thanks a lot.
-That's all right.
One of the unique Crockett and Jones features is the cork filled sole
which provides wonderful insulation. It was used for an early Ernest Shackleton polar expedition.
And it proved so successful it was used for a further voyage in 1914.
-Welting process, talk me what you are doing now.
We've put a strip of welting and we sew it through the ribbon on the shoe.
Which then gives us the foundation for sticking the sole and stitching through the welt.
That looks hard to do.
They told me it was good money when I started.
-How many do you do a day then?
-About 300 pairs. It's technically a skilled job.
Its uniqueness is that once you put it in, if you want to mend this at any stage,
-you can simply do that.
It's a chain stitch so you can remove the whole process to mend the shoe, unlike a stuck-on.
-Yes, exactly. Unlike my stuck-ons. You noticed that.
-Always notice what somebody's got on their feet.
Basically, I've got to treat myself to a new pair of shoes while I'm here.
You should go in the factory shop, mate.
Down the factory shop. I'm going to do that, Dave, treat myself to a new pair of shoes.
Mention my name, you get a 10% discount.
That was incredible. And here... well, here's the finished product.
Now who would have thought that there's over 200 different processes into making a single shoe?
Wouldn't have believed that.
But they don't come cheap, mind you. The average price is £250 to £350.
But they will last you a good 10 to 20 years.
So you could say a bit of a bargain.
It's back to the valuation. It looks like James is having afternoon tea.
Sandra, one of the nightmare things for an auctioneer is seeing somebody unpack a tea service,
because time after time, people unwrap a cup and saucer
that's been a treasured belonging for generations and we have to say, unfortunately, it's worth nothing.
Generally, today, tea services are very hard to sell. People don't use them.
Society has changed so much that tea services are just out of vogue.
But this one I absolutely love.
Two reasons. It's a great design and I love fish.
So tell me, is this something that you've used every afternoon...?
-I've never used this.
-No, I like looking at it though.
I think it's too delicate to use.
-I'd have liked to have put it in a display cabinet but I haven't got one.
And I moved to Australia and this all came with me.
-Then I moved back again and it's been sitting in a suitcase in the attic.
-So how was Australia?
-It was nice.
-As good as Britain?
I like Australia but I like Britain too.
Well, the tea set is lucky to have survived.
I've been very careful.
So obviously, the fact it's here means you're wanting to sell it.
-So have you fallen out of love with it?
No, but I'm frightened of damaging it.
OK, it's got some advantages.
The gilding and the decoration on this is absolutely fantastic.
It's an unusual design and it's something that's going to appeal to collectors
as well as somebody who will want to display it in a china cabinet.
It's by a factory,
if we have a look, Carlton China.
Very similar script mark to the famous Carlton Ware.
But this is by Burke Rawlins and Co. This would have been produced around the 1930s.
-It has the Made In England mark, and that was put on in 1925 and later.
Before 1925, it was England.
But it's missing its teapot, sadly.
-It's teapot, I think, is in my loft.
-In your loft?
-It is, somewhere.
-You need to go home and go through the loft and see if you can find it.
But you must do that before the catalogue goes to print.
The most important thing, in some ways. We need to come to a conclusion of value.
-I think, without the teapot, we ought to put an estimate of £50 to £80 on it. OK?
If you can find the teapot, that will up it to £80 to £100.
-Is that OK for you?
-See if you can find that teapot - it'd be lovely to keep it together.
-Now, tell me about this clock garniture.
Well, we were left them by a friend about 14 years ago.
We haven't got much room for them now. We're getting a bit cluttered.
They're not in pride and place on your mantelpiece?
No, they're on a shelf on the stairs.
I think they're rather fun. Do you know what they're made out of?
Not really, no.
Because normally people assume this is going to be bronze.
But when you pick them up, they're very light.
They're made out of spelter, which is a combination of metals, which gives the effect of bronze,
-particularly if you paint them with a bronze colouring.
-Are they hollow?
Yes, they are. They are cast, but they are hollow inside.
So they're very delicate. It's a very fragile metal.
If you were to hit it, it would just break, whereas bronze, of course, is quite a strong metal.
These have been painted. What really attracts me to this is,
normally these are going to date to the end of the 19th century, the beginning of the 20th century.
Late Victorian, Edwardian.
And they're normally classical subjects - Diana, the Huntress, Apollo, Mercury, that kind of thing.
But here we've got one of the early representations of the fire brigade.
-With their old helmets.
It's all-action. You've got, obviously, the chap here standing on the roof with flames billowing out.
And he's got his hose in his hand. The other one is about to break into somewhere to save somebody.
And then on the clock, you've got the chap with his ladder,
saving a young child.
And he's just saved her, presumably from the fire that he's getting away from.
From that point of view alone, they're quite unusual.
I've certainly never seen them before.
-They're probably French, rather than English.
-Yes, they've got...
There's some plaques on them that show that they are titled in French,
but these are normally made in France.
And the clock movement itself would be very basic.
Intrinsically, I don't think they're worth a huge amount of money.
What I like about them is I think they're quite rare
If there's two collectors out there who want them, we might set the saleroom alight. Excuse the pun.
There's a little bit of damage on this one.
-A part of his pick or whatever he's holding.
-An axe, I should think.
It's broken off, which is a bit of a shame, because the rest of them are in quite good condition.
The colour's quite good. If we were to put them into auction,
we'd probably be looking at £50 to £80, but who knows?
If two collectors want them, we might even get over the hundred.
-Just being the right day.
-Absolutely. Do you want a reserve on them?
-No, not really.
-I think we'll just let them go.
I think that's wise of that sort of level.
I think they're great and I certainly could live with them.
-I hope we get a good price on the day and I look forward to the auction.
David, when I first saw this in the box, I thought,
"We'll have at least half an hour while you set it up,"
-but you put it together like a real expert. You've done it a few times?
-Two or three.
Whenever we're looking at optical instruments, in particular microscopes or telescopes,
there is one name that really does ring out above all the others.
And that's Dollond of London.
I don't know how much history you know, but I'll tell you a bit about what I know.
John Dollond, the first John Dollond,
was born in 1706, died in 1761.
But he was the grandson of a French silk Huguenot weaver
and in the late 17th century, a lot of the French came over because they were being persecuted in France,
and they were often very skilled workers, either silk weavers or silversmiths and jewellers.
So John Dollond's parents came over, had him in 1706,
and he started one of the most famous optical instrument makers that Britain has ever seen.
-Where did you get your glasses from?
But you could have got them from Dollond and Aitchison,
and they are the great, great, great, great grandchildren of John Dollond, the person who made this.
And Dollond of London were optical instrument makers
for King George the Third and also for Queen Victoria.
They made telescopes and they made microscopes mainly.
If we look at the box this microscope came in,
we see these wonderful flush brass handles on the sides.
And that indicates that it was made to be packed away and for travelling.
And look at that box - wonderfully fitted.
This takes into - what would you say - about 10 or 15 pieces, at least?
-And all fits together beautifully into this box.
Then we've got other bits in here as well. We've got little turned ivory cases.
We've got slides made in bone.
You often find the most gruesome things. What's that?
A leg of something by the looks of it.
But there we go. These aren't labelled.
They're contemporary with the microscope, so...
It's what we call a monocular microscope, for obvious reasons - it has one lens.
Binocular or monocular.
And this alters a rack and pinion.
-There we go. But we've got a couple of bits missing, haven't we?
-So tell me how you came to have it.
-My son gave it me three years ago.
Nice gift. Spend a lot of money on it?
No. It came out of a skip.
-Who on earth would put this in a skip?!
-Your son put it in the skip?
-Yeah, when they cleared the house.
Yeah. Then he took it back out and said, "My dad would like that,"
so he said, "Here's part of your Christmas present."
I mean, really, it is the most fantastic quality thing.
You've saved it and I'm so pleased.
So, having done the research, what do you think it's worth?
-Couple of hundred quid, I suppose.
-It's going to be more than that.
We've got bits missing, so that's a slight problem.
But it is the best of makers in its original box.
And, OK, we've got a few bits missing, but you've got a lot left.
So I think we ought to put an estimate of 400 to 600.
-I've seen them sell before, complete, at £1,000 to £1,500.
And if it's a rare model - and I'm not sure because, obviously, on a day like Flog It!,
we're here in Northampton Town Hall and we haven't got a reference library with us at all.
-But this is a lovely thing and thank you very much for bringing it in.
-Been nice being here. Love it.
That's it for the valuation day, and all our items seem to have something missing.
Sandra hasn't been able to find the teapot for her unusual Vichy tea service.
Dermot's clock garniture is also unusual, but it's spelter rather than bronze,
and one of the firemen has lost his axe.
Will the pieces missing from Dave's microscope blur the bidders' vision?
Well, auctioneer Mark should be able to tell us.
This is a nice little lot.
A good brass microscope. London maker, as you've seen.
Belongs to Dave. What you don't know is his son found this in a skip.
Wow! OK, yeah, that's a surprise!
Well, this is a brass monocular microscope by Dollond, London maker.
At the time, these were classed as amongst the finest of the optical instruments.
This would date from 1820, something like that.
I'll tell you what our experts have said.
-James has put a valuation of £400-600 on this.
-That's not bad, is it?
I think that's quite conservative, actually.
-I would like to think that this would make quite a lot more than that.
-Really? How much more?
I would like to be closer to 1,000.
Very good. It's a comprehensive set.
It's virtually all there. There's a couple of items missing.
Yes, but having been found in a skip, I don't think we can hold too much against it, really.
Just a fantastic item and should do well.
-Had a lot of interest in the viewing so far.
-Let's hope we get it up there, then.
-Let's hope so.
And next to tempt the bidders is Sandra's tea service.
James, there's no teapot.
-But we can't find it.
-Have you had a good look?
-I've had my loft inside out and back to front.
-But it's there somewhere, isn't it?
-I think so.
-What have you done with it?
Well, we've got a valuation of £60 to £80
and the teapot would have crept that up to about 120, a complete set.
-What a shame.
Unusual design for Carlton Ware, though.
It's a stylish set, but that gilding and those fish are brilliant,
-but not what you'd expect with Carlton Ware.
-No. Why are you selling this?
This is to go towards my central heating. My boiler broke down.
Oh, gosh, that's expensive. Right, we've got to help you out.
We need to get a new boiler for Sandra, so fingers crossed, a bit of money towards it. This is it.
Carlton china tea service decorated with carp
in gilt and coloured enamels. 21 pieces.
Unfortunately, no teapot.
-Here we go.
-Lot number 35.
I have to say £30. Bid 30 here.
He's got a commission bid on the book. That's good.
-There's interest in the room now.
-£60 in the room.
-65, new bidding, at 65.
-We've sold it anyway.
65 right at the back, at 65. 70 do I see? 65 and selling.
-Yes, the hammer's gone down. £65.
-That's £65 less a bit of commission towards the new boiler. Keep you warm.
-Right, Dermot, your clock, rather unusual.
Typical French spelter clock.
-But I've not seen firemen decorated...
Well, we've got a valuation of £50-80, so it's cheap to me.
Well, it's spelter. Also, there is a bit of damage.
One of the firemen's lost the end of his chopper, which of course is going to react a bit.
But there must be people that collect fire brigade memorabilia.
Exactly. That's why it should put the price up.
That's what I'm thinking, anyway. That's my reckoning.
-We'll find out soon.
-In fact, we're gonna find out right now.
460 is the spelter three-piece clock garniture.
Starting at £50 for this.
-Oh, come on!
..And will be sold then. Away at £60.
-We've sold it.
-But there we are.
-No world cruise.
Didn't set the saleroom alight, did it?
-What can I say?
-It didn't set the room alight.
It was that one chopper.
A damaged chopper is always the kiss of death!
It was missing.
What are you hoping for? Secretly, deep down, what have you been thinking about?
I'd like £500 or £600, yeah.
Within James's estimate. We're talking about Dave's microscope - a boxed set.
I had a chat to the auctioneer earlier.
He said, yes, top end of that estimate. What do you think, James?
Come on, you've had a bit more time to sort of do a bit more research now.
It's always difficult in these circumstances because Dave found it in a skip.
-His son did.
-So it owes him nothing. I don't ever like to get people's hopes up.
I know, but come on, just stick your neck out. We're friends!
-I think it should make 1,200, 1,500.
-Dave, are you shaking?
-Wouldn't that be nice?
I'm gonna feel awful if it doesn't!
Thinking about £400 or £500 last week, now he's all of a sudden going, "Ker-ching, ker-ching!"
Early 19th-century monocular compound brass microscope
by Dollond of London in a fitted mahogany box.
-Listen to the buzz in the room.
-Lots of interest here.
Have to start at £380.
380. 400. Now 420. At 440?
440 on telephone one. At 440.
460. 480 in the room, at 480.
480, at the back, at 480.
And 50. 600. And 50.
700. And 50.
-Oh, yeah, keep going.
It's gonna be a good, steady climb, this one.
-900. And 50.
1,200. 1,300. 1,300 in the room.
At £1,300. Away at £1,300.
Put it there. What a lovely Christmas present.
What comes to mind?
A drink for my son. Bit more than a drink, really, I suppose.
Treat yourself. Holiday?
Do the brakes on my car.
-Go to Skeggy for a week.
-Go to Skeggy for a week!
Rent a caravan!
Dave, thank you so much for coming, and James.
What a cracking day we've had. That's auctions for you.
Join us again on Flog It! for plenty more surprises coming your way.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
Email [email protected]