Ipswich: TV show test for amateur antiques experts
12:24 24 January 2013
Do you know your Arthur Spooner from your Arthur Daley, your Thomas Affleck from your Ben Affleck?
The knack of local amateur antique experts for spotting the real deal has been put to the test in new Sky Arts 2 show Antiques House, showing every weeknight at 7pm.
Teams must find genuine artefacts, furniture and collectables; spot the item worth the most; and find items related by designer, manufacturer or place of origin true to whatever period of history three rooms have been decorated to resemble.
Some 5,000 antiques were borrowed from some of the country’s biggest private collections, museums and prop houses. These include toys, vintage clothes and film memorabilia including a pair of Michael Caine’s glasses to snuff boxes, delicate crockery and more.
“We had great fun; I’ve never been involved in any kind of production television work before so it was very interesting to see behind the scenes,” says Kim Reed, manager of the Tea Boutique in Ipswich.
“It’s incredibly difficult because you have two minutes and that doesn’t give you enough time to inspect everything.”
Car boot sale regulars Chris Mason, from Ipswich, and Philip Brown, from Framlingham, have both had the odd stroke of luck in finding hidden gems in the past. Chris recently picked up a painting for £5, which was bought at auction for £124 by somebody in New York. But they still found filming the show nerve-wracking.
“You don’t know until two minutes before you go in what period that room is going to be. Our technique was not to panic like rabbits caught in headlights,” laughs Chris.
Keeping an eye on contestants are host Josie Lawrence and professional antiques expert Paul Hayes.
“They built these huge rooms at Pinewood Studios, which is really cool,” says Paul. “We were filming and Angelina Jolie was in the room next door apparently doing some film about Sleeping Beauty.”
Kim and her team-mate Adrian Phippen, from Plymouth, made it to round two, airing on February 6, while Chris and Philip’s second round airs on February 5.