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Antiques R

Image Copyright BBC

If you add the splendour of Castle Howard in Yorkshire to the fun and anticipation of the BBC’s Antique Roadshow, then you can imagine the adventure I had on July 13th.

  Antiques R

Image Copyright BBC

Add to this heady mix the vagaries of the weather, plus the thrill, never to be admitted of course, that you might just be filmed, then the experience is complete.

We opted to arrive early. Good move. Although we had 45 minutes before the doors opened, it whizzed by. And the weather was kind to us. The whole show is so well organised. You are greeted with stewards selling coffee and bacon rolls, others handing out leaflets telling you what to expect on your visit. Now this was revealing. The queue wends it way to a reception desk where your precious item will be given a quick check before being given a slip to take to the correct expert.

Antiques R

Image Copyright BBC

But the cameras were out and about way before then. We were encouraged to hover behind one of the experts valuing something already at the ‘production area’, then the cameras moved up and down the queues.

I was impressed by all the experts wandering around allowing for lots of nudges and squeals, and one or two actually giving quasi master classes for the gathered crowds. They were accessible, patient, and to think that they started this from 0930 and could still be there at 1930. That is a long day with fixed smiles.

 Antiques R

Image Copyright BBC

There was a lot of camaraderie in the queue too, people peeking at objects, though sometimes this wasn't necessary with huge swords and paintings. Just how did they get them there. There was an excellent guide book warning not to sell to ‘scouts’ and how to find auction houses.

Antiques R

Image Copyright BBC

Everywhere you looked there were well known faces or the splendour of Castle Howard, the tea tent, with the most scrumptious scones and cream. Clever people the BBC and incredibly you never felt that anywhere was overcrowded.

Even the Loos were spotless. Very important !

We mooched around and then the word went up, 'Fiona Bruce, look.' Poor woman, all these faces peering whilst her makeup was done, she was corrected, re takes were done. Nightmare, but all done with a smile and such elegance.

Antiques R

Image Copyright BBC

The options of what to do were huge. Places to sit, table to hover round, and the beautiful lake . We found a seat high up at the end of a lake to relax and have our picnic lunch. What a view that was.

When we turned round we gasped. It was 1300 and the queue of hundreds stretched round the back and sides of the House. So many people with carrier bags, push chairs, dogs, more dogs and shuffling along to the reception desk.

No wonder they sell badges saying ‘we queued for the Antiques Roadshow’.

Carolyn S Antiques R

Image Copyright BBC

To be recommended as a day out. Huge fun and entertainment, but get there early, and I hope you get filmed, we weren't but that didn't matter at all.

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