The Scarborough News
How we won the lot on hit show Bargain Hunt!
A couple of amateur antique enthusiasts share tips so you too can make cash from an absorbing hobby
One of my all-time ambitions was to appear on a television antique show, says Rob. I appeared on Dickinson’s Real Deal. You just turn up with an item of interest and hope that you make the cut.
I took along a Sunderland Lustreware plaque, dated c1870, bought in a charity shop for £7.
It was initially viewed by a member of the production team and then it got moved on to the auctioneer’s expert. He asked me a few questions including “Do you know what it is?” and “How much are you expecting to sell it for?”
If the expert thinks that it is something to appear on the show, you get moved on to the waiting area where tea and sandwiches await. Eventually the big moment arrives – in front of the camera. My expert, Tim, was very nice.
Lights, camera, action! “Hello Rob, tell me what you have brought along today”. Tim started at £20 and we eventually agreed at £55.
The question that always comes next is “What are you going to spend the money on?”. My reply was a pub dinner and a pie from my favourite bakers.
It was a pleasant experience and when I saw myself on air, I thought it looked very good.
Bargain Hunt – the big one and the one we had been waiting for. All form filling, making and sending in a twominute video was done by Janette.
We went to the audition in York that included a set of games about antiques, questions about our knowledge and background information.
We had to take an item each and had to talk about it in front of the camera. We were asked who we would like as our expert and was measured for a fleece. After a four week wait, we found out that we had been selected to go on the show.
We were invited to buy our antiques at Wetherby Racecourse on a wet, cold and windy Sunday. Buffet lunch and hot drinks were provided and a friendly atmosphere.
The show was introduced by Charlie Ross. We were the red team and our expert was our favourite, Charles Hanson. The blue team got David Harper.
We enjoyed our time with Charles and he talked us through various antiques that we wanted to buy. He made a couple of suggestions.
You do only get one hour and it’s not as easy as it looks. We were given a £75 challenge and we had to buy an item ‘relating to the coast’.
I saw a shipwrights’ drill, a coastal item, and purchased it for £20. The next item Janette chose, a beautiful if expensive, set of Victorian scales and weights for £130.
Our last item was a Mauchline ware wool holder for £10. We were all done in about 40 minutes. I was confident about the drill. I just liked the look of it, and it is something I would have bought myself. The scales were the big worry, had we paid too much for them? The wool holder was our banker, we couldn’t fail to make a profit at £10 spent.
The auction was at Beverley Racecourse on a Sunday in October. Dressed as the red team, we were well looked after.
The auction itself was fun and exciting. The drill was no problem, it was correct and a quality item going for £40, doubling our money spent on it. The scales, our big worry was next. There was a lot of interest as they were quality. The opening bid was £80 and eventually sold for £220. The wool holder, our banker, sold for £35. We had done it, a golden gavel. We were over the moon.
Then came the bonus buy. Charles had bought a gold Art Nouveau pendant and paid £140 for it. I didn’t want to go for it, but Janette was given the choice and said ‘Yes’. It sold for £95. Overall, we made a profit of £95.
The blue team also did well. They made a profit on each item, won a golden gavel, and their bonus buy made a profit. They made an overall profit of £75.
We didn’t talk about the auction to the other teams until the final bit of filming, so it came as a surprise that we had all done so well and we won.
When Bargain Hunt was aired, I booked a room at my local pub and invited ‘anyone who knew me’ to come along – 30 people from the village turned up. I had kept our win a secret, so celebrations took place.
I would recommend the television antique shows to anyone. It’s a great way of antique buying. The whole experience is fantastic.
Janette: Bargain Hunt was a really enjoyable experience, one of the best things I have ever done. If you were the person who bought Victorian brass and iron grocer’s scales at an auction in Beverley on Sunday October 27 2019, If you ever want to sell them, I would love to buy them off you!