David Dickinson spots a bargain as the TV cameras come to town

David Dickinson during filming of the Real Deal in Harborough.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER
David Dickinson during filming of the Real Deal in Harborough.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Scores of people turned up at the Market Harborough Leisure Centre on Saturday to get their antiques valued by David Dickinson and his team, for his Dickinson’s Real Deal television programme. Among the crowd were the Mail’s Alex Dawson and photographer Andrew Carpenter. Here’s our report on the event.

She hadn’t even noticed they were in the box of jewellery she’d brought to David Dickinson’s TV “saleroom”.

In the money...Keith Brown takes home �50.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

In the money...Keith Brown takes home �50.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

But Lara Smart, from Lutterworth, ended up being offered £330 for a broken pair of sovereign cufflinks in front of the TV cameras at Market Harborough Lesiure Centre.

“I don’t know where the cufflinks have come from” admitted Lara, who works in catering at Asda in Magna Park.

“And to be honest I hadn’t even noticed them in the box of things I’d brought to be valued. But it turns out they were gold...”

Lara ended up being whisked in front of the cameras for Dickinson’s Real Deal, which was filming at Market Harborough Leisure Centre at the weekend.

Penny and Leon Blakey with their collection of coins.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Penny and Leon Blakey with their collection of coins.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

The daytime TV show invites members of the public to bring along their antiques and collectables, and the most interesting are snapped up by dealers - or sent on to auctions.

“I was pleased with the £330 offer, because the cufflinks don’t mean anything to me” Lara told the Mail. “And, yes, it’s a lot more than I can earn in a day at Asda!”

Lara said the day in front of the cameras was “great fun” as well as profitable.

Scores of people from across the East Midlands turned up at Market Harborough Leisure Centre on Saturday, with their antiques, ready for them to be valued.

Lynda Benson with her picture.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Lynda Benson with her picture.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

The Leisure Centre’s main hall was in comparative gloom, but dotted with the brightly lit “pods” where the filming was taking place.

The show’s host David Dickinson flitted busily between the different sets, able to switch his larger-than-life TV personality on and off at the touch of a button.

“The beauty of the job is that we never know from place to place what’s going to come in” he explained to the Mail.

“But in the 10 years the show’s been going we’ve had all sorts of really valuable antiques turn up.

Catherine Bailey and father Robert Stirzaker.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Catherine Bailey and father Robert Stirzaker.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

“What am I looking for today? A great art deco figure by a maker like Chiparus would be great. His art deco figures are the business and now they fetch hundreds and hundreds.”

Meanwhile Keith Brown, a retired scaffolder from Rothwell, was pleased with his on-camera offer of £50 for a five pound note.

“It was an old white five pound note from, 1955” he said.

“You do feel the pressure when the cameras are on you. On site I used to waffle on all day. Suddenly you’re in front of a camera, and you don’t know what to say!”

Chris Dix, a firefighter from Wellingborough, also got in front of the cameras - he had an offer of £230 for his Moorcroft Fruit Bowl.

“It was a good experience, and I met a load of people you just see on the telly” he said.

Roy Guest with ornate vase.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Roy Guest with ornate vase.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Meanwhile Lynda Benson was heading back to he rhome in Market Harborough still clutching an attractive Victorian print depicting a “mythical character - perhaps Persephone or Ceres we were told”.

“No we didn’t get offered a fortune” she said. “But I really like the picture, so it will be going back up at home.”

David Dickinson meets Market Harborough Army Cadet Force during their visit to the Leisure Centre.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

David Dickinson meets Market Harborough Army Cadet Force during their visit to the Leisure Centre.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Chris Dix with David Dickinson during filming at the Real Deal.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Chris Dix with David Dickinson during filming at the Real Deal.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Lara Smart of Lutterworth with David Dickinson during filming at the Real Deal.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Lara Smart of Lutterworth with David Dickinson during filming at the Real Deal.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Lara Smart of Lutterworth with David Dickinson during filming at the Real Deal.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Lara Smart of Lutterworth with David Dickinson during filming at the Real Deal.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Chris Dix with his ornate bowl.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Chris Dix with his ornate bowl.'PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER